Osama bin Laden Gets Past Airport Security at Heathrow, Flies British Airways

You may have seen this already, it’s all over everywhere: British Airways put together a spread showing their new mobile boarding pass, displayed on an iPhone. And the traveler was… Osama bin Laden.

Here are the details of bin Laden’s travel plan:

Apparently bin Laden likes to fly — or at least knows the value of loyalty — because the boarding pass features a frequent flier number. And don’t worry about his leg room. The world’s most-wanted man is apparently flying pretty up in first class, seat 7C.

Except.. except..

What the crack security staff at Heathrow apparently missed is that this is clearly a forged boarding pass on bin Laden’s iPhone.

That’s definitely not a British Airways frequent flyer number on his boarding pass. In fact, presumably the “NW” at the beginning designates that it’s a Northwest number. But Worldperks has been folded into Delta Skymiles and doesn’t exist anymore, and the BA system isn’t going to take and print a Northwest number on their boarding pass in any case.

And there isn’t even any British Airways aircraft in which row 7 is a first class seat!

What BA is a bit red-faced over, I assume is a political statement about how useless the shoe carnival and War on Water are when Osama bin Laden can fake a boarding pass with his own name and make it onboard an aircraft.

Either that or the practical jokers at BA that put this together for their internal publication don’t know very much about their own aircraft of frequent flyer partnerships. And to me, that takes away from the joke.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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