Jesurgislac’s Journal

April 24, 2009

Ryanair announces sex discrimination charges

I think Ryanair are going to find themselves in serious legal trouble if they try to implement their extra charges for men over 130kg but women over 100kg (or for men with a more-than- 45 inch waist but women for a more-than-40 inch waist): it’s normally not legal to announce that women and men will be charged different prices for the same service. They may also have a difficulty with BMI, as women and men vary on that so that a court may find that this is effectively sex discrimination even if not explicitly so.

They may be able to charge for a second seat if a person doesn’t fit into just one (their fourth option) as that’s their only non-discriminatory option: but I noticed in the news that a Canadian court has ruled that in fact airlines simply have to swallow the cost of an extra seat, if they choose to provide seats that are too narrow for their customer base to fit into.

I like this better.

January 27, 2009

Tuesday Recipe Blogging: flying food

Via, via, the open letter on Virgin Airlines food, inspired me to this week’s Tuesday Recipe:

I used to fly from Heathrow to Scotland on the BMI earlybird flight more often than I like to remember. In theory, you could get a breakfast on the flight: in practice, getting a vegetarian breakfast required booking it at least 48 hours in advance. (The flight was one of those you can book 12 hours in advance – I don’t know if they still exist, but on at least one occasion I decided to go to Edinburgh if I could get a seat, rang up BMI in the afternoon, booked myself on the next day’s flight… and found I was 36 hours too late to get a vegetarian breakfast.)

The one time I managed to book in advance and navigate their special meal booking system to get a vegetarian breakfast on the plane, another vegetarian was sitting several rows ahead of me, so when he asked could he have a vegie breakfast, he got mine: and no, the flight attendant did not apologise for the mistake.

Food on short flights exists mainly to give the passengers something to do. (Actually, I suppose the practice of serving meals probably initially began because flight attendants, whose primary duty is to save the passengers lives in the event of disaster, were always mostly female, and what do you have women do when they’re not saving lives? Serve food.)

On long flights, though, you do need to eat something – even if you’re not doing anything: and of course the crew need to be fed: they’re working. The only problem is, and particularly if you’re vegetarian: the food is usually vile, where it isn’t inedible.

My solution is baked cheese on bread. (more…)

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