How 9 Airlines Are Celebrating International Women’s Day

Mar 8, 2019

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In an industry historically underrepresented by women, airlines across the globe are honoring their female employees and passengers to commemorate International Women’s Day.

Ethiopian Airlines, for example, marked the day by operating all-female flight and ground crews — from airport operations to dispatch, catering and security, the BBC reported. An all-female-crew flight departed from Addis Ababa and landed in Oslo on Friday morning.

The African airline isn’t the only one celebrating International Women’s Day with women-run flights. In Colombo, the national carrier SriLankan Airlines operated its first-ever flight with an all-female flight crew on Friday between Colombo and Singapore. Etihad Airways flight EY17 was also the first for the airline with an all-female crew. Air Canada and Brussels Airlines flew similarly symbolic, all female-operated flights on Friday.

Airlines across India observed International Women’s Day with flights operated entirely by women (52 just from Air India). The budget carrier GoAir went one step further, promising women discounted upgrades to the front of the plane on March 8, depending on availability.

In a tweet this morning, Aer Lingus announced it would honor the occasion by offering complimentary priority boarding to all female passengers. The airline also made a meaningful — and lasting — change to its policy. On Friday, Aer Lingus relaxed the dress code for female cabin crew members by no longer requiring women to wear skirts or makeup.

It’s a move that follows closely in the wake of Virgin Atlantic’s decision to scrap makeup requirements for women flight crew members.

In another symbolic move, Norwegian added eight new female “tail fin heroes” to celebrate the holiday. The low-cost carrier will add British writers Charlotte Brontë and Virginia Woolf to the fleet of tail fin portraits, along with civil rights activist Emmeline Pankhurst, and nursing pioneers Florence Nightingale and Mary Seacole, among others.

Featured image courtesy of Aer Lingus.

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