Try this one an a US airline!

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Miles/Points' started by Steven Schwartz, Jul 11, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. Steven Schwartz
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    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    Just finished seeing a patient in for a check-up who happens to be a Flight Attendant. She works for United, has been with them 25 years and she flies the First Class cabin from NY to London. Had a lot to talk with her about.

    She mentioned in passing that someday she would love to be a passenger on Singapore Air. My hygienist really knew nothing about this but obviously, anyone reading this post knows that they are considered the premier airline in the world (at least in the top #!). She then told me that all of the Singapore FAs are ,models and that, amazingly, they only stock one size of uniform - Size "0"!!! While my patient is both pretty and sweet, no chance she could fit into those uniforms. Imagine, just imagine, if a US airlines tried to pull that off!
     
  2. marcwint55

    marcwint55 Gold Member

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    they might just fill all of their seats if they did
     
  3. skyvan

    skyvan Gold Member

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    I definitely had a FA working the first class cabin SIN-DME that was not a size 0, nowhere near it, but she definitely did provide great service and with a smile on her non-model looking face. Who cares though if the crew is all models, as long as they are well groomed and look good in the uniform and know their safety roles and provide great service?
     
  4. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    That is why it will not happen: there is such a thing as job security in the US airline industry, and the reason she is working First Class is that she's "done time" and has achieved seniority, allowing her to be assigned to do the lighter load in F. I do not recall the last time I saw a 'youngish' (male or female) FA in C or F on United. Heck, this UA FA has been a FA longer than most SQ FAs have been alive!;)
     
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  5. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    And a good thing too, some people would say. . .
     
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  6. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    Great PR, I suppose, even though it has not a vestige of truth.
    Whether male or female, modelesque or not, size zero or whatever else, Singapore Airlines does give good service. It is astounding to see what people believe. OTOH, they definitely do not have the work rules and employment terms that are prevalent in most of the rest of the world.
     
  7. Steven Schwartz
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    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    Funny - she mentioned that she would love to start flying Asia but doesn't have the seniority required. So it seems that different regions have different aged flight attendants.
     
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  8. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    I guess it depends on how one defines seniority. I fly SQ, TG, CA regularly and since she has been with UA for 25 years, she must have at least twice the age of the FAs for those Asian airlines and must have flown much longer too...that is how I would define seniority.
     
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  9. dhammer53
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    dhammer53 Gold Member

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    Reminds me of Iris. Oldtimers on the UA board here and FT remember her as well north of 80. ;)
    She always flew transpac.
     
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  10. estnet
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    estnet Gold Member

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    And she outran and outserved most of the younger crew! Amazing
     
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  11. Max M

    Max M Gold Member

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    Hooters Air did have actual Hooters Girls on-board [in addition to regular flight attendants] about 7 years ago in the U.S.

    [of course before they went out of business]

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hooters_Air
     
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  12. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    It doesn't seem to be the case that the business class and FC FAs (and above) on SQ are necessarily so young. IIRC they must first serve three years in coach and not have blemishes on their records (tardiness, insubordination, etc.) before they're permitted in the different colored uniforms for biz/FC and supervisory roles. While I haven't seen an old or fat SQ FA, some of them do seem more mature (thank goodness for the judgment) and are not size 0, although perhaps they were when they started the job. Note that I'm talking about size 0 versus size 6 or 8, not at all the infamous size 22 DL red dress.
     
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  13. ducster
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    ducster Gold Member

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    Just remember that when flying, size does not matter. :)
     
  14. Steven Schwartz
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    Steven Schwartz Gold Member

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    Even in a Singapore FC suite?!
     
  15. redbroccoli

    redbroccoli Silver Member

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    Size does matter when flying.
    Larger size usually means higher weight, and higher weight means more fuel burn. ;)
     
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  16. redtailshark

    redtailshark Silver Member

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    It does surprise me that some people would prefer their flightcrew to be screened for body size/youth in what seems an apparent effort to increase their onboard VPQ, at least for the classic straight males. Maybe some of the female lurkers too.

    That's not an aircrew selection criterion I can support. It's not that I have any ideological objection to the visual aspects of hot chicas, as MsShark would say, but that can't be a governing metric for a potentially demanding job like this. VPQ can't be allowed to govern relevant skill factors.

    NH and JL used to make quite specific age/height demands for the profession. But not all Asian airlines support this fantasy aura. I've flown SQ enough to have seen FAs of various sizes and this size "0" concept is really a fantasy. One of them on a 998 earlier this year was almost 6-0 tall and certainly north of a 14, which on her stature was not disproportionate to the other shorter FAs.
     
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  17. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    Have you seen the TV series PanAm? Until the 1970's such criteria were common, but multi-lingual skills, first aid training and, at least until the 1960's some nursing qualifications were also often part of the training/experience requirements. IIRC very few airlines actually practiced the famed size/appearance criteria. The did not much believe in truth-in-advertising though, so the image persists. My guess is taht it persists mostly among people who don't do much international flying.
     
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  18. redtailshark

    redtailshark Silver Member

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    Yes, Pan Am is a hoot. There's this, from the same notorious so-called golden age of air travel:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coffee,_Tea_or_Me?

    This book was partly responsible for creating this entire aura. As you note, largely fictitious but nevertheless stubbornly resonant in the popular media.

    Even better, to watch the series and read the above.... leavened in tandem by a read of "Sky Gods: The Fall of Pan Am" by R. Gandt. I highly recommend this book to all frequent flyers and it will be on the syllabus of my new class on airlines:

    http://www.amazon.com/books/dp/0615611834

    Note the following:

    "In Skygods, Robert Gandt, a Pan Am pilot for twenty-six years, gives the first inside account of Pan Am's unprecedented demise. To tell the complete story, Gandt interviewed hundreds of former Pan Am airmen and executives. Gandt reveals what really happened in the cockpits, where Pan Am's captains, dressed in Navy-style uniforms, once ruled their ships like petty tyrants..... disturbing stories of captains who let stewardesses land their planes, who flew at the wrong altitude and in the wrong direction, and who tragically disappeared along with their planes into the night...." etc.

    Pan Am was more than an airline. It symbolized an entire ideology.

    Back to the FAs. The real management of FA interactions is conducted at the emotional level, according to Hothschild. Her work is interesting and many of the techniques she describes from the 1980s are embedded in induction/training curricula.

    http://www.amazon.com/books/dp/0520272943

    At least PanAm/Braniff others didn't care about all that, back in the day. More recently, DL's in-famous FA Ellen Simonetti revealed DL's real attitude to social media long before @DLAssist and Jeff Robbo's scrubbed wall appeared.
     
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