Should You Tell Cabin Crew Recruiters You Have Tattoos?

Should I Have Told The Cabin Crew Recruiters I Have A Tattoo

I was in an interview and the recruiter had asked us if we had tattoos. I was so hesitant to tell them. During the break, I decided to tell one of the assistants helping the recruiters that I have a tattoo in my lower wrist. 

When I told her she automatically said, “sorry you can’t have tattoos unfortunately sorry thanks for coming.”

Do you think I should have never told them and just covered it? I now feel like I should have never said anything.  I always wanted to be a Flight Attendant since I was little and when I finally applied and got the opportunity to become one, this happened.

I don’t think I needed to tell since I was wearing long sleeves. What should I do you think?

Most airlines today have stringent requirements when it comes to tattoos. The majority of airlines don’t allow tattoos entirely anymore. For the few airlines that do allow, they apply the No Visible Tattoos While In Uniform policy.


Why Does It Even Matter?

According to Kim Osborn of GoCabinCrew, when you wear the uniform of an airline, you don’t just represent your personal views or sense of fashion but you are representing the core values and beliefs of the airline.

The reason for this is simple, you represent the airline and its core values and beliefs and you need to look the part and follow company procedures to a very high standard.

Imagine this scenario, you are serving royalty in First class and you have a tattoo on your hand which they disapprove of for whatever reason. The passenger will see it every time you serve them and it might annoy them or cause them to make assumptions about you and the airline. It may be that the tattoo image may be offence to some people, especially considering the diverse cultures cabin crew are exposed to in their everyday life.

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Which Tattoos May Be Allowed?

Airlines who are flexible and allow tattoos have some guidelines. The tattoos should be small and not on specific parts of your body. Here is Etihad’s tattoo policy for example:

Cabin Crew Recruiters I Have A Tattoo

Any tattoos found outside the grey area are not allowed.


What Do You Do?

If you don’t have a tattoo and you dream to become a cabin crew in the future, DON’T GET A TATTOO. Or least wait until you are accepted by the airline and know about their tattoo policy.

Bill Haymaker, an active member of Quora gave this perfect answer:

No matter how popular tattoos are currently, they still carry a social stigma throughout the Western world, and certain other countries as well.

Only you can decide what is more important to you; your personal statement and preference to bear those markings or accepting the fact that your choices may exclude you from certain goals, careers, or opportunities. The choice is yours.


If you have a small tattoo in a part of your body which is allowed by the airline, then go ahead and declare it.


Don’t Tell Anyone

However, if you have a tattoo in an area where it’s not allowed by an airline, this is what you need to do. This is my personal opinion though.

Since your dream and your passion is to be a cabin crew and having a tattoo is the only hindrance blocking your way, I suggest that you don’t mention your tattoos at all.

Once you’re selected, you can think about the options for removing it. You can go for laser removal treatment. It’s costly and somewhat painful and may take a few sessions. If you think laser removal is out of the question, you can try theatrical cover up make up.

When you decide to hide or lie about your tattoo, you have to be careful that you take your secret with you to the grave. While doing the initial training, you’ll be put under full physical exam by the company doctor. This physical exam also recurs every three years. If the airline discovers you have a visible tattoo, you may lose your job. So be very sure that they never discover anything about your tattoos. Don’t tell anyone, not even your colleagues.

Some people have lied on their application forms and have been turned away at the start of their assessment day. Recently a successful applicant did not declare her tattoo to an airline and it was not until after 6 weeks on a grueling training course, when they discovered the truth that she was sadly dismissed!Kim Osborn


If you need to clarify some doubts about the interview, please go to our Frequently Asked Questions On How To Become A Flight Attendant.


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[Photo supplied by Tal]