China And Qatar Want Flight Attendants To Be Young, Single, Skinny And Female (

January 17, 2014

Just like American airlines did in the 1960s

In China, some young ladies attend university for a chance to enter a beauty pageant. But it’s a very specific pageant, with the promise of employment at the end—a university-sponsored beauty contest for would-be flight attendants.

Qingdao University recently sponsored one of these competitive events, which brought together women who had been recommended by four different universities, Headline Asia reports. The women posed in their bikinis on stage while a panel of judges evaluated them on their weight to height ratio, the shape of their legs and whether they wore glasses or had any scars. Additionally, Headline Asia continues, the women had to be younger than 25, between 5′ and 5’9″ and be single.

Qatar Airways, however, goes a step further than that. An International Transport Workers’ Federation report explains that women working for Qatar Airways who decide to get married or get pregnant will likely be out of a job:

For example, a standard hiring contract for thousands of the airline’s female workers reads: “You are required to obtain prior permission from the company, in case you wish to change your marital status and get married. And: The employee shall notify the employer in case of pregnancy from the date of her knowledge of its occurrence. The employer shall have the right to terminate the contract of employment from the date of notification of the pregnancy. Failure of employee to notify the employer or the concealment of the occurrence shall be considered a breach of contract.”

These requirements are, at the very least, anachronistic—they aren’t all that different from U.S. airlines’ rules for female attendants up until the 1960s.   A 1966 flight attendant classified ad, published in The New York Times, …see full article here >>

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