Do you rate airlines good or bad because of pretty airhostesses?

We all have our airline preferences and good reasons to be liking them or not. One of India’s mainstream newspapers DNA published a column by one of their regular columnists titled “A frequent flyer’s notes on airlines and airports.” The columnist is a French citizen based in India, and has some quirky views on the airlines of India. It seems he has good reason to believe that Kingfisher Airlines is still the best airline in India, in spite of whatever trouble they are going through right now. Here is his reasoning:

Whatever has been said about Kingfisher, it’s the top airline in India: it has the newest wide-bodied planes, the prettiest airhostesses, the best service on the ground and aboard and the best business class. One can dislike Vijay Mallya’s style, but he had the ambition to give Indian passengers a real treat after the drab decades of a state-controlled airline, even if he saw too big. He is also a patriot, wanting to put India on the world map, whether with his F1 racing team, or his airline.

In my view, a dyeing airline which strands hundreds and thousands of passengers every day, has planes fitted with IFE but no money to pay for them, only 1/4th of its fleet in the air, and quite clearly, a foot to mouth existence, does not deserve to be on top but right at the bottom.

He goes on to put Indigo in the second spot, but look at the rationale!

Indigo comes second. Its Airbuses are even newer than Kingfisher’s; its airhostesses not so pretty, but still quite charming and it is the most on-time airline

The writer clearly does not know his stuff. On one hand he is talking wide-bodies, like the Airbus 330s that Kingfisher has in the fleet, and then he is comparing these with Indigo’s fleet which only has A320s. He further goes on to talk about Jet Airways.

Jet Airways, in my book, comes after Air India and Indigo. Its domestic fleet is ageing, its jets are narrow-bodied, mostly Boeings 737, where you have no leg space in economy if you are a big person, its staff is often arrogant and its business class is overpriced. Contrary to Mallya, who has chosen to be in India, Naresh Goyal lives in a palatial house in London with five Roll Royces and has never shown any kind of patriotism. True, Jet is quite reliable and on time and it has a wide network, but Goyal’s choice to cash in on international routes rather than domestic may be a fatal mistake.

The comedy does not stop here. a 6 year old fleet is not considered old anywhere in the world, especially if he would do an apple to apple comparison with Air India which he favours, which has a 10 year old fleet on an average.

You may want to read the complete article to know more, but I think to rate airlines on the basis of the Air Hostesses is not really a humane way to look at airline service quality. I’d have been happy if he compared airlines on the basis of the service quality of the crew and the quality of the hard product (i.e., the seat) but to compare it on the basis of such biased parameters, is just not done. Do let me know what do you think of this comparison Mr. Francois Gautier makes.

And just so that he knew if he was reading this post, I did my homework and Kingfisher is not exactly the airline with the most seat pitch either!

The link to his works once again, with acknowledgement to DNA

About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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  1. Hell no! I’ll take that “Senior Mamma” (Or flying Grandpa?) any day. They know what they are doing, would not be there if they did not enjoy it and, should the need arise, they WILL get your sorry butt out of the airplane. Nuff said.

  2. Probably the columnist might have got the facts incorrect, but I think it is a fact that airlines do get brownie points on such factors. Whether it is fair is another
    Apart from that, a good point about the location of the airlines’ owners was also raised which usually doesn’t get mentioned much.

  3. Would you see a movie with fat, unattractive, surly, and nasty acteurs/actrizes?

    Premium air travel must include glamour, beauty, style, and class. After all, isn’t it what we are paying for?

    When we spend a lot of money for air travel, we demand the best in service by attractive, enthusiastic crewe members.

    For this reason, Singapore Airlines is rated so highly.
    This work is highly demanding physically and emotionally, it is too much for persons well past their prime.

  4. I dont judge airlines by pretty FA but lets face it. Almost any asian airlines are better than the rest. Friendlier (usually), prettier (mostly), cleanest (mostly), and more efficeint workers. I would say USA airlines are worst in every catagory

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