A Light Future for Indian Airline

GoAir, one of India’s budget airlines, recently made a stunning announcement: it will no longer hire male flight attendants. All the men Melvin Durai's Humorcurrently on GoAir’s cabin crews will keep their jobs, but future openings will be limited to women. Any complaints about gender discrimination can be sent to GoAir’s corporate office, where they will be placed in a folder with a special name: “Ha ha! They think India has anti-discrimination laws!”

Having female flight attendants may attract more male passengers, but that’s apparently not what GoAir is trying to do. They’re trying to savego_air_b on fuel costs by lightening the load on their planes, and since the average male flight attendant weighs about 20 kg more than the average female flight attendant, they can save money by hiring only women. (Skinny men may still have a chance, but must submit an application to GoAir’s Department of Special Review for Sex Change Operation Eligibility.)

According to a Times of India article, “every additional kg on board costs Rs. 3 per flight hour.” In other words, for a one-hour flight, the additional cost of having a male flight attendant—if I remember my high school mathematics well—is √3α ÷ ƒΧ – 2 sin ² {( x / 2 ) – 6 cos ( x / 2 )} × {U2 + 50 cent}

Suffice to say, it’s not a very large amount, but GoAir is determined to reduce costs, partly because the Indian rupee has been falling precipitously lately. How badly has it dropped? Well, it used to be worth two cents (American), but now it’s worth only one cent (Zimbabwean).

In case you’re skeptical of GoAir’s motives, its CEO Giorgio De Roni emphasized to Times of India that the company’s strategy to lighten the load goes well beyond the flight attendants. “The size of inflight magazines has been reduced,” he said. “The potable water tanks are no longer being filled to capacity as only 35 percent to 40 percent of that water is actually used.”

Now you know why you had so much trouble finding the inflight magazine. Next time, please travel with a magnifying glass. Not only will you be able to find the inflight magazine, you’ll also be able to spot your inflight meal.

These load-lightening steps by GoAir are just the beginning, of course. You can expect more announcements in the coming years.

2014: GoAir announces that to lighten the load on all its planes, flight attendants will be required to wear strapless blouses and miniskirts. “We are saving thousands of rupees in fuel costs by avoiding heavier clothing,” CEO Giorgio De Roni says. “Also, the size of the inflight magazine has been reduced further. And we are moving from two-ply toilet paper to one-ply.”

2015: GoAir announces that to lighten the load on all its planes, flight attendants will be required to be light-skinned. “The lighter they are, the more money we will save in fuel costs,” CEO Giorgio De Roni says. “We are also reducing the size of the inflight magazine again. And we are moving from one-ply toilet paper to half-ply.”

2016: GoAir announces that to lighten the load on all its planes, laptops will not be permitted, but for an extra fee, passengers will be able to get lap dances. “It’s light entertainment,” CEO Giorgio De Roni says. “In the interest of reducing costs, we have also agreed on a merger. We hope passengers will enjoy our half-ply inflight magazine.”

If you enjoyed this piece, you'll love Melvin's novel Bala Takes the Plunge, available in North America through Amazon.com and McNallyRobinson.com You can also find it at major bookstores in India and Sri Lanka or online at FlipKart, IndiaPlaza, FriendsofBooks or other sites. A number of readers have written reviews of the novel. An excerpt of the novel can be read here.


  1. Oh dude, you missed the ban on people with breast implants and botox

  2. ….and definitely American passengers will not be allowed either….nowt hat they are the heaviest people in the world;-)

  3. Great

  4. hahahaha 🙂

  5. bipin gaur says:

    Strange – people actually liked this, I didn’t know our standards are so low.

  6. phatkickr says:

    good …

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