Is it the stroopwafel fiasco all over again?

By Jelisa Castrodale
Updated February 19, 2020
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A few days ago, frequent travelers were split when a video of a man punching the back of a woman's fully reclined airplane seat went viral, and everyone had to decide whether he was a jerk for repeatedly hitting her seat, or whether he was a huge jerk for repeatedly hitting her seat. Now there's another controversy that threatens to divide the so-called friendly skies: United Airlines has announced that it's going to stop serving those delightful Lotus Bakeries' Biscoff cookies, and will instead be offering bags of Oreo Thins

"Our complementary snack options continue to be a hit and we’re always looking for opportunities to introduce new selections," United Airlines spokesperson Andrea Hiller told USA Today. "We plan to add Oreo Thins into the mix soon and look forward to the response from our customers."

Carolyn Jenkins / Keith Homan / Alamy Stock Photo

The Oreo Thins will be available on United and United Express flights starting in March. Stroopwafels and those small bags of even smaller pretzels will round out its Economy Class snack trio. According to The Points Guy, United also plans to change the way it presents its complimentary treats, and will soon start displaying them… in a neatly organized basket. 

Oh yes, the world's third-largest airline has finally discovered what your grandmother has known for decades: every snack tastes better if you get to select it from a basket. In the primitive B.B. (Before Basket) era of inflight snacks, United's flight attendants asked customers which item they preferred and served it directly from the galley cart.

United was apparently prompted to make this change after receiving feedback that passengers "prefer seeing their choices before making a decision." (United, if you're reading this, here's some additional customer feedback: it would be super if you also handed out Reese's Cups to passengers. Or just to me, on my next flight.) 

But stay strong, Biscoff lovers, because those buttery cookies might not be gone forever. Hiller told Today that United just wants to give its passengers a different choice, and the Belgian cookies "can be rotated back in" at a later date. That makes sense, because Biscoff cookies were added last August as a replacement for Byrd’s Maple Leaf Wafers. 

At the time, United called Biscoff "a favorite among travelers appreciated by young and old all over the world," and suggested that the cookies would make a solid snack choice "for the cooler months." They are especially good when they've been dunked in coffee—and the name 'Biscoff' is a portmanteau of the words 'biscuit' and 'coffee.' (They're only branded as Biscoff in North America, and are known as Speculoos Cookies everywhere else. Feel free to share all of this information with your next seatmate.)

If you're a Biscoff obsessive who can't imagine flying without them, they're still available on all domestic American Airlines flights over 250 miles, and on Alaska Airlines flights that take off before 10 a.m. Delta Airlines was the first U.S. carrier to offer the cookies, and they'll probably forever be part of its in-flight snack selection, too. Of course, if United's previous stroopwafel cancellation (and subsequent uproar and reinstitution) is any indicator, you could always just complain until the airline brings them back.

And the Lotus Biscoff website also sells the in-flight sized servings by the case, in case you want to slide a couple of packages into your carry-on bag. Or your carry-on snack basket.

Update Feb. 24, 2020: Mark your calendars, Biscoff lovers: a United Airlines spokesperson has confirmed that the cookies will return to the snack rotation in May.