An Indian airline known for lower fares is reportedly instituting yet another way to keep costs low — ditch heavier male flight attendants in favor of an all-female crew that will be lighter to transport and therefore save fuel.
Times of India reported 40 percent of GoAir’s 330 flight attendants being male. With women generally weighing 30 to 45 pounds less than males and it costing about 3 rupees ($0.05) per hour per extra pound to fly, the airline expects to save up to 30 million rupees (around $500 million) each year in fuel through the new hiring practice.
In the coming years, the airline expects to expand its fleet and flight attendant crew up to 2,000.
“The rupee’s fall has hurt the industry badly. All major expenses — aircraft leasing, spare parts and fuel costs — are linked to the dollar. The fall in exchange rate of a rupee costs us Rs 30 crore on an annual basis. We are looking at every possible way of cost-cutting to remain profitable,” GoAir CEO Giorgio De Roni told the Times.
Just a few months ago, Somoa Air announced a controversial “pay as you weigh” program, charging passengers based on the pounds, which includes their own body and luggage.
In addition to hoping for savings by reducing the weight of the flight crew, other cost-saving measures De Roni noted were reducing the size of inflight magazines, filling water tanks less and using only one engine during taxiing.
He also said, the structural design of new aircraft will have “sharklets,” or wingtip devices, that are expected to reduce fuel burn by 5 percent. Older planes will also be outfitted with sharklets in the coming years as well.
(H/T: Daily Telegraph)
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