Skip to comments.Airline Sorry for 'Drunk Tongans' Slur
Posted on 03/23/2010 11:26:15 PM PDT by nickcarraway
Air New Zealand has apologised after it was discovered that its previous crew manual featured national profiling of its passengers' attitudes and drinking habits.
The 2008 document reportedly claimed that Tongans were "softly spoken, reserved people" but added that they might also "drink the bar dry", the New Zealand Herald reports.
Chairman of the Tongan Advisory Council Melino Maka said: "I don't think Tongans are different from any others when there's free access to alcohol, but what I think [is] the airline should concentrate on education rather than trying to take pot shots at people.
"The remarks are extremely hurtful, and it is not good for public relations or race relations."
Air New Zealand service general manager Alan Gaskin said that the document is no longer in use, adding: "It was not intended to cause offence and we apologise if it has.
"This section of the document was designed as a reference guide to ensure international cabin crew were familiar with the expectations of the diverse range of nationalities Air New Zealand carries on its international services, so they could provide service levels matching each customer's expectations."
The document also suggested that while people from the Chinese mainland are unfussy, those from Honk Kong are demanding. Crew were also told that Korean passengers expect good manners and patience.
What does it say about Muslims?
They carry bombs.
Outstanding airline - but I wonder what they had to say about us Yanks.
I’ve lived in Tonga as an expat and my husband “circulated.” Their lovely, outstretched palms are very nicely coconut oiled for the IMF, et al. It’s so welcoming and friendly of them to to extend an outstretched hand. I hope they are enjoying redistributing all my possessions and my pets they “detained.” I hope my dog fed someone well.
I really hope they're talking about the deprived Yank kid that ate 6 bowls of ice cream in first class (only ticket available) while flying out of the country after a covered up attempted coup d'etat.
Sorry about your situation,but that was great sarcasm.
“Outstanding airline - but I wonder what they had to say about us Yanks.”
It and Qantas are the best too i’ve flown. Agree with them about Tongans though. Shame that they are being forced to swallow political correctness too.
Tonga! Tonga! Tonga!
I like Air France and South African as well. My nephew (state dept guy who travels all the time) tells me Singapore is his very favorite.
Europe also some some no fills carriers that are amazingly cheap. I like those. The worst carriers i’ve flown recently have been US carriers. The prices aren’t great, the service is poor (I recently flew from LA to NC without a meal!), and you get killed with fees. The whole procedure of using a US airport is also a pain now. I’ve been living in New Zealand and just last week I took a domestic flight where I was checked in, had dropped my bag, and was through security in under five minutes.
It is remarkable how unpleasant flying domestic in the states is compared to other countries. It’s like everyone involved is just going through the motions. Speaking of flying in NZ, have you had the opportunity to fly into Queenstown? Not for the faint hearted.
I haven’t flown into Queenstown but have flown out of it. Short of taking a sight-seeing plane over Fjordland or Mt. Aspiring its hard to imagine a more lovely flight. My tip to anyone ever flying out of there is to make sure to nab a window seat. The views of the mountains and glaciers are stunning.
Going into to QT you fly down into and through a canyon. You can actually look up and see cars, sheep, etc, and you’re still 10 minutes from touchdown - it’s like the wingtips are going to scrape the canyon walls - it’s really something. I’ve only done it in the summer, I can’t imagine what winter is like.
Sounds amazing. I’m not a squeamish flyer and i’d love to experience that.
It’s pretty cool. Love to see the view out the cockpit.
Years ago, we took Singapore Air from L.A. to Tokyo, on to Singapore, and then down to Perth.....fabulous doesn’t begin to describe their Business Class.
Any Maori mention?
If I use the kiosk check-in, I can do that at my local airport in Indiana.
I've paged someone who was staying with us last month who took AIR NZ down here and back home for his opinion.
As for the advice AIR NZ offered to the crew, they have to be aware of characteristics in markets where demographics and expectations differ.
The 2008 document reportedly claimed that Tongans were "softly spoken, reserved people" but added that they might also "drink the bar dry", the New Zealand Herald reports.The 2010 version says that Tongans "are loudmouthed, violent drunks who nevertheless respond well to tasers."
I was very happy with NZ airlines.