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Two Questions About Female Pilots  
User currently offlineegph From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2006, 262 posts, RR: 0
Posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 22073 times:

Hello guys and gals,

I was having a chat with a female friend of mine today and the topic of female pilots (and lack thereof in the industry) came up I have one serious statistical question and another kinda more fun/interesting one:

1. Does anyone have a link to/ info on the % of pilots in the UK/Europe who are females and the % of captains who are female?

2. This is more of an observational one, both my friend and I have both only seen female pilots wear trousers to work. Is there some sort of policy at most airlines that stipulate that female pilots cannot wear skirts and tights to work or is it a case of I have never seen those females with skirts?

Many thanks

EGPH

56 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePGNCS From United States of America, joined Apr 2007, 2858 posts, RR: 48
Reply 1, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 22001 times:

Well the three airlines I have worked for all encouraged qualified females to apply, and have hired quite a few. Of course I live in the US and not the UK, so I can't help with your statistical breakdown. I have flown with both female Captains and FO's.

The same airlines I am familiar with don't have pilot skirts because they don't mix well with yokes. (I actually can't recall about the first airline I worked for, so I could be mistaken but I certainly never recall a female pilot in a skirt. Sadly.)

Yet another reason Airbus is superior!  


User currently offlinevgnatl747 From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 1515 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 21924 times:

I'm in the USA so I can't help with your stats either, but I have seen a lot of female pilots. It's certainly still a male dominated industry, but when I worked for OH I was surprised how many female flight crews we had from OH, RP, EV, etc. I've been doing a lot of flying with Republic lately and have seen lots of female crews there too (have had an all female flight crew on more than a few occasions). There's also a pretty decent number of them at 9L.


Work Hard. Fly Right. Continental Airlines
User currently offlinejetMarc From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 563 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 22 hours ago) and read 21827 times:

I saw that Air France offers a female skirt uniform piece... my airline only offers trousers. I think most female pilots would opt for pants as they have to sit with a control column/yoke in-between their legs and would be awkward with a skirt to sit with your legs open while keeping your feet on the rudder peddles...


"Sucka, I'm gonna send you out on Knuckle Airlines. Fist Class!!" ~ Mr. T
User currently offlineEagleboy From Niue, joined Dec 2009, 1917 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 21603 times:
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I have seen only a single female captain wearing a skirt. In Aer Lingus the rest wear trousers.

EI also have the only female Chief Pilot I believe.


User currently offlineLightbug From United States of America, joined Aug 2010, 73 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 21463 times:

I found this quoted out there:

According to FAA:
"As of 2006, just over 6% of certified civilian pilots (both private and commercial) in the U.S. were women."

It does not tell you the percentage of female commercial pilots, but I would assume the percentage would be close to that of private pilots. US statistics only, and somewhat dated. Sorry!

I have actually been flying on two flights crewed by a female only cockpit crew. One was a KLM flight and one was a SAS flight (737-300 and 737-500 respectively). Trousers seemed to be worn in both situations (though I didn't really "check this out" too closely).

I think the participation of women in piloting commercial airliners may be increasing. Though one thought that comes to mind is the difficulty of a pregnancy. Most mothers take time off following a birth as can female pilots of course. No issue there. But I do believe pregnant women are discouraged from flying after the 6th or 7th month of a pregnancy, and in some cases there may have to be a certification from a doctor that flying is safe and low risk. I am sure most airlines have clear policies for both female pilots and flight attendants. I have no details on how these policies apply or if flight crew are even allowed to work at all while pregnant.

But you would think that this could be an issue and a consideration as it would result in more time off than just a maternity leave. Additionally since females still represent the primary caretaker, it might also be a difficult profession to combine with that of a caretaker at home.


User currently offlinejetblast From United States of America, joined Nov 2004, 1232 posts, RR: 10
Reply 6, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 21174 times:

I don't have a link for you unfortunately regarding a percentage, but we have a pretty good number of female pilots here at BA (and they do have a skirt option, although I've never seen it worn).


Speedbird Concorde One
User currently offlineskoker From United States of America, joined Apr 2006, 440 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 20111 times:

Quoting vgnatl747 (Reply 2):
but I have seen a lot of female pilots. It's certainly still a male dominated industry, but when I worked for OH I was surprised how many female flight crews we had from OH, RP, EV, etc

Same here. I went to one of John Bendoraitis' "town hall" style meetings in CVG... of course I was the only non-crew member there but I made a few good friends there, one of which was a female pilot (whos name I sadly forget, it's been a while) but she was on our JFK runs quite a bit and they were always delayed so we talked whenever she was in. Really nice person, it was always a pleasure to see her pull up the jetbridge and see her.


User currently offlineplanesmith From United Kingdom, joined Jun 2009, 139 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 19451 times:

Why is the sex of a pilot relevant? Female bus drivers, truck drivers, cab drivers, train drivers don't get a second thought so why should a pilot? It is not more relevant than the colour of their skin or their choice of religion (or not!). It is almost as insulting as questioning why some of the cabin crew are male, not at all an acceptable male environment!!  

As to their attire - well I seem to recall a large number wearing skirts when flying. Would one pose the question of a Scots pilot not wearing a kilt?  


User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 9, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 19174 times:

To an extent, modern female pilots can be traced back to WWII and the women of Air Transport Auxillary, a thousand-strong organisation that delivered aircraft to the frontline RAF during Britain's darkest hours. Every day, responsibility fell on their shoulders to get the planes to the fighters which often pushed them into dangerous and even deadly situations.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00tw1m1

One of the most remarkable features is that once they got past flying trainer planes here there and everywhere, arguably they flew a greater variety of aircraft than any other pilots. And their first flights in each type were solos. They flew into the teens of different aircraft a WEEK, often four different types in a day. Ranging from Spitfires to Wellingtons. One having delivered a heavy bomber was asked where the pilot was. The questioner then searched the aircraft as he did not believe the lady she had flown it.

At least we have come some distance since those times, but immediately after WW II, only one of those women obtained an airline post IIRC.

That programme is showing on QF flights in May 2011 - under documentaries.


User currently offlinehappyhaydn From United Kingdom, joined Apr 2007, 4 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 18912 times:

I thought female pilots preferred trousers due to the 5 point harnesses present on some aircraft.

Regards


User currently offlineetherealsky From United States of America, joined Apr 2010, 328 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 18258 times:

Quoting planesmith (Reply 8):

No need to be offended, OP asks a perfectly fair question. It would be foolish to pretend that aviation isn't a heavily male-dominated field when it comes to flight crews.



"And that's why you always leave a note..."
User currently offlineGiancavia From Vatican City, joined Feb 2010, 1385 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 18155 times:

Anytime im listening to Flybe land in LTN the pilot seems to be female, Same goes with alot of the executive planes. Hangar 8 and Vista Jets from Austria seem to have quite a few?

Alot more female pilots then people assume.


User currently offlinevaustralie From Australia, joined Jul 2010, 182 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 18087 times:

I listen to SYD radar and a fair few JQ and Regional Express pilots are female ...   I've seen a few DJ female pilots as well, I've even had an all-female crew (F/A and Flight Crew!)
Can't help with the % though!



a346
User currently offlinesandyb123 From UK - Scotland, joined Oct 2007, 1133 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 17901 times:
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Quoting planesmith (Reply 8):
As to their attire - well I seem to recall a large number wearing skirts when flying. Would one pose the question of a Scots pilot not wearing a kilt?

Ridiculous comment.

Sandyb123



Member of the mile high club
User currently offlinekiwiinoz From New Zealand, joined Oct 2005, 2165 posts, RR: 5
Reply 15, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 17825 times:

Quoting planesmith (Reply 8):
Why is the sex of a pilot relevant? Female bus drivers, truck drivers, cab drivers, train drivers don't get a second thought so why should a pilot?

I think the gender is not as relevant as the statistics. It is quite clear that the traditional "male only" environment is well and truly a thing of the past. What is interesting is how long it takes for them to make up the same proportion/representation as other industries, (such as the ones you mention)

Quoting planesmith (Reply 8):
As to their attire - well I seem to recall a large number wearing skirts when flying. Would one pose the question of a Scots pilot not wearing a kilt?

The kilt is a moot point. Most Scots are too drunk to fly anyway.


User currently offlineJCS From Netherlands, joined Jun 2004, 211 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 17422 times:

Quoting happyhaydn (Reply 10):
I thought female pilots preferred trousers due to the 5 point harnesses present on some aircraft.

That would be all commercial aircrafts?


User currently offlineAirNZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 16735 times:

Quoting etherealsky (Reply 11):
No need to be offended, OP asks a perfectly fair question. It would be foolish to pretend that aviation isn't a heavily male-dominated field when it comes to flight crews.

I don't think any offence, per sé, was taken, but yet I understand his point entirely........it is more as what is the importance or relevance of it. Indeed, what actually is being discussed? Whilst the question was clearly asked/defined, why has no poster been able to supply the answer, yet the vast majority are very quick in posting that they don't know it? So thus, what is the point in such posts? Sorry, but I fail to understand this seemingly 'importance' of posting to actually say nothing. I just don't get it!


User currently offlinegr8circle From Canada, joined Dec 2005, 3130 posts, RR: 4
Reply 18, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 16482 times:

Quoting AirNZ (Reply 17):
Sorry, but I fail to understand this seemingly 'importance' of posting to actually say nothing. I just don't get it!

There are quite a few threads on a.net that are even more irrelevant than this one..... 


User currently offlinequalitydr From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 120 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 15942 times:

My wife is an engineer. One thing she noticed when entering the workforce was the low number of women doing engineering. That's improving, but low enough that you sometimes still notice. In commercial flight, the numbers are quite a bit lower yet (6% quoted above, 5 yrs ago), so it gets noticed.

I've been on plenty of flights with a female FO, a few with a female Captain, and a couple with an all-woman nose cabin. One observation I've made is, there are almost no female pilots working for the Asian long-haul carriers. (Small sample problem? Or is the imbalance larger there?) I've been on plenty of domestic Chinese flights, but I can't say anything about pilots' genders there; the cockpit doors are never open, and I don't see pilots in the concourses. Flight attendants, plenty; pilots, never.

I read somewhere that the "minor gender" has to get to above 20-25% in a job/profession before folks generally quit noticing the imbalance. Same thing for e.g., nursing, but the other way around. Or daycare.

It's human nature, of a sort...



All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence; then success is sure. -- Mark Twain
User currently offlineAirNZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 15225 times:

Quoting gr8circle (Reply 18):
There are quite a few threads on a.net that are even more irrelevant than this one.....

Absolutely agree with you 100%, and sadly the trait seems to be growing. To me the question itself was valid enough (as most questions largely are), but it's the thread/answers which are the irrelevant and laughable part.


User currently offlinesandyb123 From UK - Scotland, joined Oct 2007, 1133 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 14756 times:
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Quoting kiwiinoz (Reply 15):
The kilt is a moot point. Most Scots are too drunk to fly anyway.

Lol true. Most kiwis are to busy shagging sheep to fly. In fact those sheepskin cockpit seats must make you feel right at home. Bhhaaaa.

Sandyb123



Member of the mile high club
User currently offlineAF1624 From France, joined Jul 2006, 665 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 14609 times:

Quoting sandyb123 (Reply 21):
Lol true. Most kiwis are to busy shagging sheep to fly. In fact those sheepskin cockpit seats must make you feel right at home. Bhhaaaa.

Mwahahahahah good one.

Skirts are rare for obvious reasons (5 point harnesses and yokes).

Female pilots are not THAT rare. There are a few and I'd say that about 1 out of 15 flights I take are flown (partly of course) by a female pilot or captain (I never really remember who spoke on the PA, I just know it's from the cockpit).

An interesting thing I've seen is that I have witnessed women being / looking scared when hearing a female voice on the PA announcing that she will be flying today. Talk about reverse sexism.



Cheers
User currently offlinegoblin211 From United States of America, joined Jun 2010, 1209 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 13956 times:

Quoting Lightbug (Reply 5):
According to FAA:
"As of 2006, just over 6% of certified civilian pilots (both private and commercial) in the U.S. were women."

I would imagine the percentage hasn't increased much. But, wow! I thought there were more. As I recall, I've only seen 2 female pilots, 1 being an FO.



From the airport with love
User currently offlineDeltaMD90 From United States of America, joined Apr 2008, 7979 posts, RR: 51
Reply 24, posted (3 years 6 months 4 weeks 4 hours ago) and read 13955 times:

Quoting AF1624 (Reply 22):
An interesting thing I've seen is that I have witnessed women being / looking scared when hearing a female voice on the PA announcing that she will be flying today. Talk about reverse sexism.

Lol my gf makes jokes about female pilots too. Whether she believes it or not, idk! lol



Ironically I have never flown a Delta MD-90 :)
25 Post contains images GingerSnap : I've had a couple of flights with WW here in the UK, were both members of the flight crew were female. Also my most recent U2 flight, we were graced b
26 Post contains links breiz : Some cues about that: http://articles.cnn.com/2011-03-18/t...-captain-helen-richey?_s=PM:TRAVEL
27 Max777geek : Not sure about other countries but here in Italy when women started driving cabs and bus people did tend to notice, altough it became normal quite so
28 ltbewr : Someone made the note that female pilots almost always wear pants/slacks instead of skirts. I suspect that part of the reason is due so are not confus
29 Post contains links Av8trxx : 1) I haven't seen a source for such statistics in Europe, but I haven't really looked either. In the USA, the FAA issues an annual airman database tha
30 Aaron747 : There are fewer than 50 female pilots out of Japan's several thousand airline pilots, according to an article I read recently. Just two years ago, a
31 Eagleboy : To throw a spanner in the discussion: I have been on a number of A320 flights where the 2 flight deck were female and the 4 cabin crew were male. Very
32 Aesma : You forgot the most important thing : who was wearing a skirt !
33 Post contains images m11stephen : I'm a CSA and it seems like half of the pilots I see are females which is great!
34 HAL : To show how pervasive the 'all male' attitude is among pilots - about a decade ago one of the major US airlines included this question during their in
35 Post contains links trex8 : Don't know the exact numbers presently but Taiwan is probably less male dominated. There was more than a token female in the first CI cadet classes s
36 MSJYOP28Apilot : One thing that creates the imbalance is that women tend not to like the travel aspect of the pilot career especially when they have kids. The career i
37 Max777geek : "Bill please"
38 Post contains images etherealsky : I don't know if I buy that line of reasoning - if it were the case, then male flight attendants should in theory be wearing skirts so pax can identif
39 himmat01 : Air Indfia and Jet Airways have quite a large number of female pilots both Captains and FOs on their long haul fleet. Approximately 11% of the pilots
40 AirNZ : Why do passengers have to identify female pilots as being pilots????
41 Av8trxx : It isn't a theory. That is what happened to Bonnie Tiburzi, first woman pilot hired by a major/legacy US airline, after she was hired by American Air
42 Viscount724 : I have sometimes confused male KLM cabin crew with pilots since their very similar uniforms also have stripes on the sleeves, although narrower than
43 comorin : I have some serious questions: 1. Do Air India female pilots wear Saris? 2. Any Burqa-wearing pilots on Iran Air? Any issues with range of vision? 3.
44 Viscount724 : Iranian women don't wear burqas.
45 comorin : You're right, it's scarf or chador. Not an IFR situation. Humor aside, I presume flight crew (M/F) the world over pretty much dress alike, right?
46 Max777geek : You should check the uniform belt up, in order to locate the area of interest, not belt down.
47 Baroque : It is good in a way that this thread has attracted 45 - now 47 - posts. But rather depressing that having females as pilots is anymore even a subject
48 Post contains images spr773 : Well it has been proven that females handle stressful situations very well. (Well all of us fellow A-netters who are husbands are pretty stressed out
49 AirNZ : I absolutely agree with you, and I think you perhaps may have taken my comment in the wrong context. Why I was asking was because the original quote
50 maddog888 : I question why there seem to be so few senior female flight crew - India aside. Of the 60+ transatlantic flights I have done in the last 10 years, onl
51 breiz : A few samples from the net: "During the war, the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) flew 415,000 hours and delivered over 308,000[4] aircraft of 130 types
52 Baroque : Nice set of stats. Re the types, the staggering thing is they found out what they were flying minutes before take-off. And off they went with a basic
53 Post contains images freakydeaky : Okay, female captain here... As far as the uniform, skirts are not offered anywhere I've worked, nor requested. Unless you want to reveal everything w
54 Post contains images breiz : Cool Thanks for your authorized insight. In Europe, female pilots and Captains have became common if not yet in big numbers. I think that very few pe
55 Max777geek : WTF ????????????????????????? Did really some atc tought someone else was talking on the radio without being entitled to ???????????????
56 breiz : Yes, as reported by Captain Danielle Décuré of Air France in her book, in French, "Have you seen the pilot? That's a woman!" (1982).
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