Addressing Microaggressions in Travel

Despite having racked up countless frequent flier miles throughout his illustrious 30-year career as an executive leader, Orlando Ashford sometimes still finds his top-tier airline status called into question.

Sometimes it happens at the gate, when Ashford, who is Black, queues up to be among the first to board the plane.

“There have been a number of times that people have cut me off or stopped me, telling me, ‘Hey, they just called first class,’ said Ashford, a former Holland America Line president and current chairman of Azamara. “And the assumption is, ‘That can’t be you. So let me cut in front of you,’ or ‘Why are you moving up to the front of the line?’”