If you wear a hijab and want to be Cabin Crew, which airlines can you work for?
It’s a question we’ve been asked lots of times, and it seems there’s never a definitive answer!
Hijab is a term describing the act of ‘covering’ yourself, but is also frequently used to refer to the headscarves female Muslims wear. Its religious significance for many women mean that they are limited as to which airlines they can apply for.
Cabin Crew uniform
Everybody knows that Cabin Crew uniform regulations are strict. Cabin Crew are the face of the airline and represent its image to the public.
Niqabs and burkas are not permitted to be worn by Cabin Crew. This is for safety reasons as well as practicality in a customer-facing role. But what about the hijab?
As expected, the majority of airlines that do permit you to wear a hijab are based in predominantly Muslim countries, such as Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Indonesia and Afghanistan.
Airlines in these countries that allow the hijab or even mandate it as part of their uniform are:
- AlMasria Universal Airlines
- Alexandria Airlines
- Lion Air
- NAM Air
- Garuda Indonesia
- Royal Brunei Airlines
- Ariana Afghan Airlines
This is not a comprehensive list, but it gives you an idea.
Some airlines don’t feature the hijab as standard, but work on an individual basis. Emirates will provide you with a white hijab with the Emirates logo on it, if so required.
What about European airlines?
Most European airlines, in contrast, do not allow the wearing of a hijab as it does not conform to their uniform policies. Don’t give up hope, though – there are exceptions.
Air Atlanta Iceland
This Icelandic airline operates Hajj charter flights to transport Muslims on their pilgrimage to Mecca. Therefore, hijab-wearing Cabin Crew are more than welcome!
BA has its own branded hijab for those wishing to wear one while working as Cabin Crew. This uniform hijab must be completely secure and tied at the back keeping the face and neck free. The edges of the headscarf must be tied neatly forming a bun and loose ends must not be visible or hang below the collar.
Before Applying or Attending a Recruitment Event
Make sure you check with the individual airline you want to apply to before attending a recruitment event. Some airlines are stricter than others. Certain airlines require you to sign an agreement which says you would be willing to take off any religious headwear in case of emergency.
You don’t want the disappointment of arriving at an airline recruitment event and finding this out on the day. It’s always best to contact the airline directly with your question to avoid a wasted journey.