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Forget only luggage checking, THIS airline rules to weigh passengers, meals before commencing flight journey

The airline promised there will be no visible display anywhere and the weigh-in data will remain anonymous even to airline staff.

Ajeet Kumar Edited By: Ajeet Kumar @Ajeet1994 Wellington Updated on: May 31, 2023 20:17 IST
Representational Image
Image Source : @FLYAIRNZ/TWITER Representational Image

If you are flying by aircraft-- whether it is domestic or international-- every passenger needs to weigh their luggage. And, if it exceeds the prescribed limit, the concerned passenger has to either take out their unnecessary items or pay for what they called "expensive items". However, New Zealand's national airline is now asking to step on the scales before they board international flights.

Air New Zealand says it wants to weigh 10,000 passengers during a monthlong survey so pilots can better know the weight and balance of their planes before takeoff. But the numbers from the scales won’t be flashing up for all to see. There will be no visible display anywhere, the airline promised, and the weigh-in data will remain anonymous even to airline staff.

From body to meals, everything will be weighed

“We weigh everything that goes on the aircraft — from the cargo to the meals onboard, to the luggage in the hold,” said Alastair James, a load control improvement specialist for the airline, in a statement. “For customers, crew and cabin bags, we use average weights, which we get from doing this survey.” Indeed the numbers are required by the nation’s industry watchdog, the Civil Aviation Authority.

India Tv - A woman hands her bag to a staff member to be weighed ahead of a flight in Auckland, New Zealand.

Image Source : APA woman hands her bag to a staff member to be weighed ahead of a flight in Auckland, New Zealand.

Under the authority’s rules, airlines have various options to estimate passenger weight. One option is to periodically carry out surveys like Air New Zealand is doing to establish an average weight. Another option is to accept a standard weight set by the authority.

Soaring obesity among New Zealanders

Currently, the authority’s designated weight for people 13 and over is 86 kilograms (190 pounds), which includes carry-on luggage. The authority last changed the average passenger weight in 2004, increasing it from 77 kilograms (170 pounds).

Health statistics show New Zealanders are becoming heavier. The latest national health survey put the adult obesity rate at 34%, up from 31% a year earlier. Childhood obesity rates increased to 13%, up from 10% a year earlier. Customers on Air New Zealand domestic flights were asked to weigh in a couple of years ago. James said there was nothing for passengers to fear by stepping on the scales.

“It’s simple, it’s voluntary, and by weighing in, you’ll be helping us to fly you safely and efficiently, every time,” he said. The airline said the survey began this week and will run through July 2.

(With inputs from agency)

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