There are several factors that set Etihad Airways apart from competitors like Emirates and Qatar Airways but they are unfortunately no longer the crowning glory of the airline in the face of the continued downturn provoked by the COVID-19 pandemic. Several top-of-the-line Airlines have had to part ways with their popular services; first Emirates bid adieu to their cocktail bars and showers now Etihad Airways continue the cost-cutting saga by deciding to permanently ditch in-flight chefs and F&B managers. Regular flyers of the airline would agree that no one would miss the showers too much as their onboard staff, F&B managers more than made up for it with their exceptional courtesy and service. It is a fact that they do cost more to train and often form part of the crew complement on top of the legal minimum. This is why these fully trained members of the cabin crew will be laid off by the end of October, while F&B Managers could be made redundant by the end of this year. This could mean bidding adios to personalized dishes for First Class passengers, getting the most scrumptious food on-demand, or even getting any help with what’s on offers and menu options. It’s no exaggeration that flyers could enjoy the same quality and service that you’d expect from a world-class restaurant with Etihad Airways. Frequent flyers who don’t exist in the world anymore will miss the involvement of the In-flight Chef to guide you through your menu, make personal recommendations to help you pair the perfect beverage with your choice of meal, or understand how one likes their eggs.
F&B Managers act as onboard sommeliers and guide the service in Business Class. They are differentiated by the white jackets they wear. Etihad started cost-cutting way back in 2016 after suffering a monstrous $1.95 billion loss and already made changes like eliminating seatback entertainment on its short-haul fleet of single-aisle Airbus aircraft or introducing Buy on Board snacks for Economy Class passengers. With COVID-19 crippling its wings even further, Etihad Airways have decided to part ways with much of its luxe onboard product offerings like in-flight chefs and F&B Managers. Etihad has declined to respond or comment on the future of the in-flight chef and F&B Manager roles nor disclosed the selection criteria for redundancy.
[Via: Paddle Your Own Kanoo]