Saudi Arabia's national airline is reportedly planning to segregate men and women on its flights after a rise in the number of men complaining about non-related men sitting next to their female relatives.
Some male passengers also recently complained that a flight attendant, whose gender was not specified, was acting too “flirty” during a Saudi flight, Saudi Arabic daily Ajel reported.
“There are solutions to this problem… we will soon enforce rules that will satisfy all passengers,” Saudia assistant manager for marketing Abdul Rahman Al Fahd was quoted as saying.
Exceptions would only be made for male and female relatives.
Saudi Arabian Airlines (Saudia) does not employ local women as flight attendants, instead hiring women from countries such as Pakistan, the Philippines, Albania and Bosnia. However, it has begun employing Saudi women for airport ground positions as part of the kingdom’s push towards opening up employment opportunities for women.
The gender segregation on board flights would be in line with the kingdom’s strict interpretation of Islamic law, including banning unrelated men and women from socialising in public or working together.
Saudia also enforces other Islamic ideals on board including reading a verse of the Quran before take off and not serving alcohol or pork.For all the latest transport news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
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