Qantas is the latest airlines to scrap strict cabin crew uniform policies

Qantas and Jetstar have recently introduced a significant update to their uniform policy, allowing employees to have more choice and flexibility in their attire. This marks the first major update in 10 years and comes as a result of extensive reviews and union lobbying to enhance comfort and practicality for the staff.

In a departure from previous regulations that dictated everything from sideburn length to eyeliner color, the revised policy grants employees the freedom to decide whether or not they wear heels, jewelry, or makeup. Notably, men are now permitted to grow their hair out, while women can opt for flat shoes to accompany their dresses, introducing a more inclusive and modern approach.

While the iconic Qantas uniforms remain beloved and largely unchanged, employees now have the option to personalize their appearance within defined guidelines. Makeup is now ok for all employees, and the same type of jewelry can be worn regardless of gender. The previous distinction between ‘male’ and ‘female’ uniform categories has been replaced with uniform ‘capsules,’ which outline combinations of uniform pieces and associated grooming requirements.

The updated policy also addresses the needs of employees with diverse cultural backgrounds, religious preferences, or specific hairstyles such as curly hair or cornrows. Guideline clarifications have been implemented to ensure inclusivity and accommodate individual style choices.

Certain aspects, however, remain unchanged. Tattoos are still required to be concealed, and hosiery must be worn with dresses or skirts. It is worth noting that Qantas has been inspired by other airlines in embracing gender-neutral uniform approaches. Budget airline Bonza made the move to entirely gender-neutral uniforms in 2022, and Virgin Atlantic in the UK followed suit by eliminating gendered uniforms and introducing optional pronoun badges.

Overall, these changes aim to make wearing the Qantas and Jetstar uniforms more comfortable, practical, and reflective of the diverse workforce they represent.

Image: ©Qantas

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