Air India Makes History With An All-Woman Pilot Crew Completing The Longest Commercial Flight Across The World

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Air India Makes History With An All-Woman Pilot Crew Completing The Longest Commercial Flight Across The World

An all-woman flight crew from India has completed the longest non-stop commercial flight ever undertaken by an Indian national airline.

Taking off in Bengaluru, India, the flight landed 17 hours later in San Francisco, United States, and was undertaken in a Boeing 777. The route the flight took over the North Pole is believed to have saved over 10 metric tons of fuel. The journey in total covered 8,600 miles.

The cockpit was made up of Captain Zoya Aggarwal, Captain Akansha Sonaware, Captain Thanmei Papagari, and Captain Shivani Manhas, all experienced pilots.

Historically, the aerospace industry and commercial air-travel industry has been a heavily male dominated field, where it has been hard for women to enter, in part due to societal prejudices. This flight howeve,r could break the mould and encourage more young women to consider becoming pilots, a fact that the crew of this historic flight were more than aware of.

Captain Zoya Aggarwal told reporters:

"We are India's daughters who were given the opportunity to make this historic flight."

While Captain Thanmei Papagari added:

"[This flight] will create more opportunities for women. The idea of seeing aviation as a male-dominated field is reducing. We are being seen as pilots, there is no differentiation."

Captain Aggarwal also spoke of how difficult it was as a woman entering the field of flight when she first qualified as a pilot 10-years-ago. She said:

"After graduating college, I was jobless for a very long time, as there were no jobs for women pilots. I used to teach young students who were aspiring pilots. When I initially told my parents I remember the tears in my mom's eyes because I was expected to 'walk in the shadow of men' according to society. But I told my parents that this is what I want to do, and I broke away from the norms."

Even today, worldwide only 5% of pilots are women but at the same time, women make up 80% of all flight attendants. India does however, buck this trend, where 12% of pilots are women, the highest percentage in the world. In the United States, 7% of pilots are women while in the United Kingdom the number is 6%.

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Thinking Humanity: Air India Makes History With An All-Woman Pilot Crew Completing The Longest Commercial Flight Across The World
Air India Makes History With An All-Woman Pilot Crew Completing The Longest Commercial Flight Across The World
An all-woman flight crew from India has completed the longest non-stop commercial flight ever undertaken by an Indian national airline. Taking off in
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