American Airlines launches their new uniform with about 50,000 employees putting on their new attire today. This comes after the new 2016 Twin Hill uniforms led to thousands of complaints about irritation and worse from another manufacturer.
As a result of these issues American’s employees have been allowed to use a makeshift combination of old uniforms, including old US Airways uniforms and some off the shelf options. This will be the first time, hopefully, that all legacy American Airlines and US Airways employees all have the same look and keep it.
The new uniforms come from Land’s End, the same manufacturer that Delta is currently having problems with, but American is confident that the new clothing’s OEKO-TEX Standard 100 certification means there shouldn’t be any issues.
I don’t think these look bad, but they seem fairly unambitious. They blend in, rather than standing out. I’d prefer if they had gone with a ‘real’ designer rather than just contracting Land’s End.
American Airlines Crew In New Uniforms
American is promoting the hash tag #AANewBlue amongst employees to show off their uniforms starting today. They’ve also been educating employees about uniform standards for the last month.
This consisted of 35 minute online uniform training (that combined with videos to make flight attendants comfortable with the expected return of the Boeing 737 MAX). The message to flight attendants is that they’re going to prioritize making sure uniforms are worn as instructed, to the point of specifying when the winter coat can be worn and when they can roll up their sleeves.
Here’s the Flight Service uniform standards guide. In addition to detailing how the uniform should be worn it also reinforces behavioral rules such as:
- Crewmembers “may not purchase or consume alcoholic beverages, gamble, or sit ata bar, including for the purpose of consuming food.”
- In addition they aren’t supposed to use “cellphones, smart watches, headphones, etc.” while “onboard the aircraft with customers”
- They cannot sit on baggage belts or electric carts, and avoid chewing gum in customer view
The female dress may not be more than 1 inch above or below “the crease at the back of the knee.” The ‘all season coat’ may only be worn “during extreme cold or inclement weather while outside the terminal in the elements.” I think that makes the coat not ‘all season’. And who is wearing a vest with no shirt underneath?
Some of the airline’s grooming standards surprise me. For instance, female nail polish has to be the same color on each nail (but no green, orange or yellow). No glitter or artwork on fingernails is permitted. If any nails chip then “all polish must be removed.”
While some rules seem strict, and others aren’t likely to be followed over time, it’s worth noting that American’s requirements are nowhere near as strict as those of Singapore Airliens.
If only this much thought and detail went into designing the domestic first class seats they wouldn’t have to be ripping those out and replacing them already.