British Airways is planning to double the number of Chinese cabin crew working on its flights to Beijing and Shanghai from its hub at London Heathrow, and says once the recruitment drive is complete, there will be four ‘international’ cabin crew on each of its Chinese-bound flights – accounting for around 36% of the total crew onboard every flight.
The airline intends to hire around 44 new crew in Shanghai and a further 26 who will be based in Beijing. It’s part of a big effort by the airline to better serve Chinese passengers on the two popular routes. The new cabin crew will be fluent in both Mandarin and English, with the hope that non-English speaking passengers will get a far better service than what they might currently experience. British Airways has said China is an important emerging market which it needs to better serve.
The new Chinese cabin crew will only work on British Airways flights to and from Beijing and Shanghai – the limited routes have, in the past, led to accusations the airline wasn’t offering enough development opportunities for its Chinese-based crew and its believed retention has been an ongoing issue.