Hot Air Hostesses

Oct 28th, 2011, in Featured, Travel, by

On the legal, economic, cultural and political issues of hot versus frumpy air hostesses.

Flight Attendant

Blogger Glen Whitman wonders about the decline in ‘hotness’ of airline stewardesses on American airlines, putting the change from young and hot until about the 1970’s to older and plainer nowadays down to deregulation; in the past airlines largely couldn’t compete for passengers on price, as prices were centrally fixed, but instead had to differentiate themselves by quality of service, food… and the attractiveness of their hostesses.

Frumpy, or motherly

After deregulation in 1978 however, when prices were competitively slashed, American airlines found that

as much as male customers might have enjoyed the eye candy, they weren’t willing to pay for it. More attractive staff can command higher wages. The airlines could have continued to pay them, if the higher quality had attracted more customers. But as it turns out, most people just wanted to get where they were going, fast and cheap.

In response, Megan McArdle, senior editor for ‘The Atlantic’, says that the deregulation argument is all at sea, that in fact the change in appearance standards is down to

a combination of feminist shaming, union demands, and anti-discrimination laws

Where airlines once required that female staff be single, slim, childless, and not much over 30, they are now unable to rid themselves of hostesses who no longer meet these standards, and essentially are bound to employ hostesses for life.

Citilink Flight Attendant Ad
Citilink ad – Are you a good looking single female?

In Indonesia, as in most of the wild east of Asia as anyone killing time wandering around Changi airport in Singapore will recount, things are different, unions, feminist harridans, and anti discrimination laws are weak or non-existent, and flight stewardesses still score pretty highly on the hotness scale, with the possible exception of the national carrier Garuda.

To end, a gallery of Indonesian flight hostesses:

41 Comments on “Hot Air Hostesses”

  1. ET says:

    The guy looks very happy with himself… I wonder why?

    Because he didn’t need his parachute.

  2. agan says:

    …..or the poor guy was trying so hard to deflate that tent in his pants
    and dont act like you aren’t impressed too Pak ET .

  3. deta says:

    This poor guy probably thinks the plane has crashed and he is in heaven.

  4. ET says:

    This poor guy probably thinks the plane has crashed and he is in heaven.

    Where are the 68 other virgins?

  5. Chris says:

    Small but curious tangent:

    An air hostess pictured above working for Lion Air appears to now be working for Citilink.

    Exhibit A: The lady on the right in this group of Lion Air hostesses here:

    Lion Air hostesses

    Exhibit B: The lady on the right in the new Citilink ad:

    Citilink promo

    Unless, of course she is a “rent-a-hostess” who is just a model made to look like an air hostess for promotional purposes.

  6. Mauricio says:

    I would have liked to rent the hostess on my Garuda flight from Jakarta to Medan yesterday. Man, was she pretty! I couldn’t take my eyes off her the whole flight. Poor me.

  7. bonni says:

    I just read BB’s comment for my post, dated 28 October 2011…
    Yes I realised he was gay but I couldn’t resist his sexy back… 😛

  8. ET says:

    Has anyone experience with Aeroflot or other airlines from the region? I admit that I have a weak spot for the natural beauty of Russian and Eastern Europe’s women in general. Or are they only booked for posing in airline calenders and promotional videos?

  9. Chris says:

    For completeness and your viewing pleasure, below is a picture of the hostesses from new airline Pacific Royale.

    Funny that they have their arms crossed; I thought that in Indonesia arms crossed means you are angry (like Suharto and Michel Camdessus of the IMF in 1998).

  10. Chris says:

    An opposing view from the boss of Sriwijaya Air:

    Stewardesses Don’t Have To Be Pretty

    According to Chandra Lie, the main requirement to be a flight attendant should not a beautiful woman, but a skilled and have a minimum height of 165 cm. “For me, flight attendants do not have to be pretty, because beauty is relative,” said Chandra Lie to the Tribune Network in the Soekarno Hatta Airport, Thursday (24/10/2013).

    Chandra admitted often conveying this information to the public about the requirements for Sriwijaya Air flight attendants. He prefers high school graduates or equivalent who have a minimum height of 165 cm. “Until now it’s about image, it must be beautiful stewardess. It should not the first priority, but have a minimum height 165 cm. When it comes to beauty, it can be made, “he said.


    If you’re wondering, the height requirement is about being able to open/close overhead bins/lockers easily.

  11. Tommy says:

    Equal rights or a pretty smile with your rubbish coffee. Oh such a hard choice!

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