The case of the dancing flight attendants

Thomas Lifson
While the world focuses on a missing jumbo jet, a brouhaha has broken out in India over a viral video of flight attendants treating passengers to a holiday dance performance. The government of India, unamused, has suspended five crew members and is reportedly threatening to suspend the airline’s license.

It must have seemed like a good idea at the time for the management of Spice Jet, a low cost carrier in India, to train 30 crew members in a Bollywood-inspired dance routine in celebration of the Hindu festival Boli.  The UK Daily Mail:

However, the DGCA [India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation] yesterday issued a show-cause notice to SpiceJet, saying the dancing on board the SG-876 flight endangered aircraft safety and created an 'unruly environment', and asked why its licence should not be suspended.

Here is the video causing all the controversy:

 

The Times of India shares my view that the bureaucrats should lighten up:

The DGCA can't see what's so fun about SpiceJet's Holi dance performances in the air. But lots of airplanes have landed back safely after treating their passengers to a live gig. So why can't air travel be made less dreary?

In an at-work Holi celebration, cute air stewards and stewardesses broke into a full desi-style jig on the aisles on board a Goa-Bangalore flight, their grins and wrist-flicks forcing sleepy-eyed passengers to sit up and clap along. The famous composure of the flight attendant was also sent packing as the crew whipped out colourful handkerchiefs and swayed their hips to Balam Pichkari and 'tune maara thumka'.

At an earlier stage of life, I lived on airline flights a lot, and any break in the tedium from a crew with a sense of fun was welcome. I’ve never seen a dance, but have experienced flight attendants cracking jokes and even singing for the entertainment of passengers and don’t remember any reactions other than delighted applause. And speaking of airlines in India, the one and only time I flew on state-controlled Air India, the o- board entertainment consisted of watching a cockroach crawl across the window next to me. Perhaps the DGCA could better spend its time looking into other matters

Other airlines have also featured dancing flight attendants. Check out this video from a  couple of years ago on Cebu Pacific, a low cost carrier in the Philippines. I am trying to remember the last time I saw a smile like that from a crew member.

 

While the world focuses on a missing jumbo jet, a brouhaha has broken out in India over a viral video of flight attendants treating passengers to a holiday dance performance. The government of India, unamused, has suspended five crew members and is reportedly threatening to suspend the airline’s license.

It must have seemed like a good idea at the time for the management of Spice Jet, a low cost carrier in India, to train 30 crew members in a Bollywood-inspired dance routine in celebration of the Hindu festival Boli.  The UK Daily Mail:

However, the DGCA [India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation] yesterday issued a show-cause notice to SpiceJet, saying the dancing on board the SG-876 flight endangered aircraft safety and created an 'unruly environment', and asked why its licence should not be suspended.

Here is the video causing all the controversy:

 

The Times of India shares my view that the bureaucrats should lighten up:

The DGCA can't see what's so fun about SpiceJet's Holi dance performances in the air. But lots of airplanes have landed back safely after treating their passengers to a live gig. So why can't air travel be made less dreary?

In an at-work Holi celebration, cute air stewards and stewardesses broke into a full desi-style jig on the aisles on board a Goa-Bangalore flight, their grins and wrist-flicks forcing sleepy-eyed passengers to sit up and clap along. The famous composure of the flight attendant was also sent packing as the crew whipped out colourful handkerchiefs and swayed their hips to Balam Pichkari and 'tune maara thumka'.

At an earlier stage of life, I lived on airline flights a lot, and any break in the tedium from a crew with a sense of fun was welcome. I’ve never seen a dance, but have experienced flight attendants cracking jokes and even singing for the entertainment of passengers and don’t remember any reactions other than delighted applause. And speaking of airlines in India, the one and only time I flew on state-controlled Air India, the o- board entertainment consisted of watching a cockroach crawl across the window next to me. Perhaps the DGCA could better spend its time looking into other matters

Other airlines have also featured dancing flight attendants. Check out this video from a  couple of years ago on Cebu Pacific, a low cost carrier in the Philippines. I am trying to remember the last time I saw a smile like that from a crew member.