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JR8
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Postby JR8 » Fri, 28 Jan 2011 10:42 pm

Ooh la la!

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Newly-formed Thai airline recruits "Ladyboys" as air hostesses
A newly-formed Thai airline has recruited transsexuals as air hostesses, in a pioneering move it believes will be copied by other carriers.
Thailand has the largest number of 'katoeys' ? as they are called in Thai ? in the world Photo: ALAMY
By Ian MacKinnon, Bangkok 12:36PM GMT 28 Jan 2011

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PC Air, which has yet to take to the skies, selected three "Ladyboys" in its first round of hiring this week to promote equal opportunities for what is dubbed the "third sex" in Thailand.

Peter Chan, the new airline's boss, is enthusiastic about his groundbreaking move because of the opportunities it would afford transsexuals.

"I think these people can have many careers – not just in the entertainment business – and many of them have a dream to be an air hostess," he said. "I just made their dream come true. Our society has changed. It's evolution. I'm a pioneer and I'm sure there will be other organisations following my idea."

One of the successful candidates was Thanyarat "Film" Jiraphatpakorn, who won the annual Miss Tiffany "katoey" beauty pageant in 2007. "At first I thought they would just take applications but not actually recruit us, as happened at other places before," said the 23-year-old, adding that she was delighted to have been chosen.

Thailand has the largest number of "katoeys" – as they are called in Thai – in the world, with the country's surgeons pioneering cheaper and quicker sex change operations because of the sky-high demand from men wishing to become women.

But PC Air did not make proof of sexual reassignment a criteria for the job, merely that the applicants possessed the necessary language skills and the potential to provide good service.

Many "katoeys" do not undergo sex change operations, either because of the expense or possible medical complications. But they dress as women, often taking birth control pills to reduce facial hair and grow breasts.

More than 100 transsexuals applied for the first places. The airline decided on a quota of three in the initial round of recruitment, where 17 men and ten women were also hired.

The transsexual flight attendants will wear special gold-coloured "third sex" name badges to help passengers and immigration staff to easily identify the gender they are faced with.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/trave ... esses.html

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Postby poodlek » Fri, 28 Jan 2011 11:25 pm

Ha! Love it! :) Good for them.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Fri, 28 Jan 2011 11:33 pm

They double their chances of joining the 5 mile high club! :o

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Postby JR8 » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 12:12 am

[Lispy katoi accent]

Hellosexymanwhatyournamewhereyoustayyouwanchickenorbeef [raises one eyebrow]?

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Postby ExpatLah » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 2:14 am

Now that sounds like service with a little more than you would expect from a typical stewardess :D

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Postby QRM » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 8:29 am

Will be a classic photo op, a Thai air hostess draining the lizzard at the urinal.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 9:13 am

:shock: :lol:

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Postby x9200 » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 10:52 am

A bit weird business strategy but for a minor player it may actually work.

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Postby nakatago » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 11:40 am

sounds gimmicky but it could work for them.

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Postby x9200 » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 12:27 pm

The only problem they use them as freaks so not entirely a fair thing.

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Postby poodlek » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 12:31 pm

x9200 wrote:The only problem they use them as freaks so not entirely a fair thing.


Do you think this is really the case? Or are they just offering them an opportunity nobody else would? The fact is that people may view them as freaks regardless, but maybe this will actually help folks to see them as people, rather than just Madonna impersonators and/or prostitutes.
However, if they require them to do a routine to "It's Raining Men" while on board, I'd tend to agree with you...

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Postby x9200 » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 2:06 pm

I gave it a 2nd thought - I see the ladyboys from my male and the "Westerner's" perspective but if the airlines will have their target passenger group Thai local then I guess the intentions could be as you said. The acceptance is different.

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 3:06 pm

It's surprising the number of western visitors who cannot tell the difference until it's too late. I agree with poodlek on this one. My company goes out of their way to hire ex-cons (as long as they weren't put in for burglary or robbery). We've been doing it since long before it was fashionable or there was a "Yellow Ribbon" project. They have proven to be good employees, albeit, with some of the secret society tats they scare some people. No difference, give them an opportunity, they will turn out to be good employees. Good service doesn't need a gender does it?

Of course, they would be able to service all wouldn't they! :oops: I mean give good service to all! :-| :wink:

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Postby x9200 » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 3:57 pm

I think it is a bit different situation. As I perceive them, they by themselves or by situation are stigmatized. The airlines is going to put them on board as the third sex so they still going to be labeled. This leave not too much space for a fair judgement on their professional ability as the air crew members.

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Postby poodlek » Sat, 29 Jan 2011 4:03 pm

x9200 wrote:I think it is a bit different situation. As I perceive them, they by themselves or by situation are stigmatized. The airlines is going to put them on board as the third sex so they still going to be labeled. This leave not too much space for a fair judgement on their professional ability as the air crew members.


I think the "third sex" label is more of an airport security issue. At least that's how I read it. Security officers need to know who they're dealing with and gender is one way of identifying a person. On the other hand, I don't suppose it's necessary to identify them to passengers as such. As they've only hired three so far, it can't really be used as a gimmick, since there's no way they could "guarantee tranny service" aboard any given flight. It will be interesting to see how it plays out in practice.


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