Ousted United Chief Will Lose Gym Pass, Keep $20M

Jeff Smisek gets a fat severance package amid scandal
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 11, 2015 8:52 AM CDT
Former United chief Jeff Smisek is shown here.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta, File)

(Newser) – United Airlines CEO Jeff Smisek lost his job amid a corruption investigation this week, but a little scandal won't puncture his golden parachute. Because he resigned instead of getting fired, Smisek will collect cash and stock expected to total more than $20 million, reports the Los Angeles Times. (In fact, the severance could reach nearly $30 million, notes Bloomberg.) United's regulatory filing reveals that the company will no longer pay for Smisek's gym membership, so he'll have to settle for these perks instead: free first-class travel for life, free airport parking for life, and health insurance. Oh, and he'll keep his company car, notes the Washington Post.

"It's like a microcosm of all the anger toward elites," says the chief of the Business Travel Coalition, which advocates for travelers. "There's anger that the system seems rigged against the ordinary guy."

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