Malaysian budget carrier AirAsia has unveiled a new protective personal equipment (PPE) uniform for cabin crew.
In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, several airlines around the world have adopted similar measures, requiring passenger-facing employees to don masks, face shields and protective clothing in the course of their duties.
AirAsia’s approach, however, differs slightly. Rather than issuing staff with standard medical-grade PPE (as Philippine Airlines chose to), the airline commissioned LA-based Filipino fashion designer Puey Quiñones for the project.
Conde Nast Traveller reported that the suits were launched on a recovery flight from Bangkok to Manila on Friday. Images of the new uniforms have circulated on social media since.
The new uniforms come as part of a suite of health measures implemented by the airline. Speaking on Monday, AirAsia chief safety officer Ling Liong Tien said, “A lot of our normal life has taken a ‘new normal’ turn. And flying will just be one of them. But that just means that we are travelling with heightened steps when it comes to safety and health, which is good for everyone.”
“Safety is the most crucial component of the aviation industry, and we will definitely continue to strive towards ensuring that this ever-important mode of connectivity meets all required health and safety standards for both our employees and our guests,” he added.
Other measures announced by AirAsia on Monday that will form part of this “new normal” include:
- Travellers must bring and wear masks;
- One piece of cabin baggage not exceeding five kilograms will be allowed;
- Temperature checks;
- Floor markers will be placed at queuing areas, check-in counters and kiosks to enforce social distancing protocols; and
- Passengers will need to fill up health declaration forms before or upon arrival.