Korean airline companies have set up strict rules and high standards regarding how their female flight attendants look and behave.
In fact, the standards are so high, and the competition so fierce, that aspiring flight attendants attend “flight attendant academies where they are taught how to dress, talk, smile, and more. This has become a booming business in Korea, but the intense requirements don’t end there.
Asiana Airlines, for example, required that its female flight attendants wear their signature hats (which are part of their uniforms), both to and from work. While the hat served no other purpose than style, flight attendants had to endure the inconvenience of having to keep the hats on all day and all flight.
This policy has been lifted recently, though, receiving nationwide praise for helping improve working conditions for the company’s female employees. Now, Asiana Airline flight attendants no longer have to wear the hat except for at special events and occasions.
Female Asiana flight attendants can also wear their hair down. In the past, the restriction had all flight attendants tie their hair up into a neat bun. This is no longer the case and flight attendants can style short bobs if they wish.
T’Way Airlines, on the other hand, completely lifted the hair policy to allow all lengths and styles. T’Way flight attendants can now let down, curl, tie, braid, and do whatever else they wish with their hair.
Jeju Airlines also amended several of their beauty-related policies that applied to their female flight attendants. All flight attendants are now permitted to wear eyeglasses, instead of contact lenses. This is great news, especially for long distance flight attendants who suffered dry eyes in cabin.
Jeju Airlines also allowed nail art. While in the past, female flight attendants could not wear anything but nude-toned manicures, now they are permitted to apply whatever color and styles, except large jewel pieces.
Koreans reacted with shock that the flight attendants had so many restrictions when it came to representing themselves. Most view these changes to be positive for the industry, with faith that this is only the beginning of much more that can be done, and continue to fight for improvements in the female flight attendants’ uniforms as well!