Chinese Airline Judges Pilot Candidates by Armpit Odor

A Chinese airline has sparked controversy after it was reported it included a zero-body-odor requirement in its pilot recruitment tests. Applicants had their armpits sniffed by company staff, to check for any bad smells.

You think requirements stink in your line of work? Think again. Chinese company Hainan Airlines demanded to smell under the arms of students interviewing as trainee aircrew. Obviously, there were other requirements as well, including 20/20 vision, a maximum height of 1.87 meters and a very good knowledge of the English language, but meeting them and failing the bad odor test meant instant elimination for candidates. “I passed everything, but I was doomed by my armpits, which are always a bit whiffy”, said one of the applicants. Asked about the purpose of this unusual requirement, one of the Hainan Airlines testers said “our staff works very closely with the public, and no passenger wants to smell a pilot’s armpits. And if they can keep their cool min this test, they aren’t going to sweat in the cockpit.” The photos below paint a pretty clear picture of how the BO test was conducted.

Everyone knows airlines choose their flight attendants mainly based on looks, and as unfair and misogynistic as that sounds, it does make some sense, whereas judging candidates by their armpit odor seems just dumb. But look at it this way, if one of the passed candidates ever crashes a plane, at least they’ll smell nice doing it…

via Ministry of Tofu


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Feedback (1 Comment)

  • Chuck Yayger Posted on November 7, 2012

    If the pilots don’t know the existence of deodorants, they probably shouldn’t be allowed to fly a plane.