A private Indian airline has decided to recruit only female flight attendants in future as its aircraft will burn less fuel carrying them than their heavier male counterparts.
The low cost carrier Go Air maintains that deploying air hostesses, who on average weigh 33-44 lbs less than male stewards, will help it save around Rs30 million ($499,000) per year in fuel costs.
Airline official’s estimate that every extra kilogram (2.2lbs) a commercial aircraft carries costs it an additional Rs3 per flight hour.
Alternatively, an overall reduction in weight results in savings.
“We are looking at all possible ways of cost-cutting to remain profitable” Go Air Chief Executive Officer Giorgio De Roni told the Times of India.
A sharp decline in the value of the Indian rupee-that has dropped 27 per cent against the US dollar since July 2012-had so far cost the airline an additional Rs300 million (£3.33 million), he added.
Operating 15 aircraft, Go Air employs 330 cabin crew members of which 132 are males.
Although none of the cabin stewards will be sacked, all forthcoming recruitment for the 80 additional aircraft Go Air plans on inducting by 2020 will be stewardesses.
Mr Roni told the Times that his airline was constantly engaged in reducing the weight its aircraft carried.
The size of in-flight magazines, for instance, had been reduced and aircraft water tanks were no longer filled to capacity as less than half their volume was normally utilised by passengers.