Cathay Pacific staff 'refuse to smile'

Industrial action will not disrupt flights, but cabin crew will withhold alcohol and smiles

LAST UPDATED AT 08:45 ON Wed 12 Dec 2012

Hong Kong-based airline Cathay Pacific has assured a leading travel agency, Wing On Travel, that its flights will not be disrupted by industrial action over the coming holiday period because it has a contingency plan, the South China Morning Post reports. Cabin crew are planning to stop serving meals and drinks - and even stop smiling, according to some reports - in pursuit of a five per cent pay rise.

Tsang Kwok-fung, leader of the airline’s 6,000-strong Flight Attendants Union, said of the upcoming work-to-rule: “We will be selective in providing our services. This could include not smiling at passengers, not providing certain types of beverages, such as alcohol, or stopping serving meals.” He added: “In a nutshell, it means passengers will still be able to reach their destinations, except they are paying a five-star price to get a three-star service.”

The action comes after the Hong Kong-based airline offered only a two per cent pay rise next year. The union is exploring other measures such as following safety rules to the letter and offloading oversized luggage, which would inevitably delay flights.

Wing On Travel's assistant general manager Daisie Sin Pui-fong was not able say to describe Cathay’s contingency plan, because the airline won't give details. "I guess it will rearrange the number of staff on standby," she said. · 

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so service as usual. on my flights I have found that many cabin crew of cathay don't smile, sometimes they forget to serve alcoholic drinks and on a recent flight a moaning girl was not at all happy to serve me a latte in business class. i think these stupid employees should get a bigger picture view and understand that it really is part of their job description to smile and to serve. If they can't handle that and they are unhappy with the 2% offer (in a year when cathay made a loss) then go find a job elsewhere and grow up!

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