Sunday, July 20, 2008

Airline decides to sell cigs on planes

As much as I love the idea of an airline selling cigs (and I love that pic of the chick getting a light), let's be honest. If a USA airline ever decides to sell cigs, that's immoral based on American standards.

But if I ever fly on a plane again, smoking is a must to me. I wouldn't mind buying a pack of menthols on the plane eitha. :)

I can't really smoke in a plane restroom without being disturbed. That's different than smoking in a public restroom where there's more room to hide at. But oh yes! I rememba barely living in the days when FREE cigs used to be given on plane flights!


Qantas to sell cigs on flights overseas

QANTAS has been slammed by anti-smoking groups for a decision to reintroduce cigarette sales on board international flights.

In a letter to staff, the national airline has asked cabin crew to "prominently display" cigarettes on top of duty free trolleys.

The company has denied the policy has any link to the appointment of a former tobacco lobbyist to the Qantas board.

Paul Rayner, the former chief executive of British American Tobacco Australasia, was yesterday named as the airline's latest non-executive director.

But Qantas says the move to offer three cigarette brands for sale on overseas flights was due to customer demand.

It overturns the airline's decision 10 years ago to remove cigarettes from its in-flight duty free range.

Health groups have received several complaints from Qantas staff, who are concerned at having to push tobacco products as part of their job.

The policy, which came into effect on July 1, has been branded inconsistent with Qantas' sponsorship of World Youth Day and children's cancer charity Canteen.

Quit Victoria has described the decision as "backwards" and a "greedy cash grab" at the expense of people's health.

"International flights are an opportunity for smokers to give up smoking, but having cheap cigarettes promoted to them by Qantas in-flight completely undermines this opportunity," said Quit boss Fiona Sharkie. "Qantas are cashing in on smokers who may be going through withdrawal symptoms on smoke-free flights … Perhaps the flying kangaroo should be renamed the cancer kangaroo."

Australian tobacco legislation prohibits cigarettes from being advertised or listed in duty free catalogues.

But in a letter to staff, Qantas management wrote: "… It's vital that duty free carts are taken out into the economy cabin with the cigarettes displayed prominently on top so customers know they are for sale and are aware of our entire product offering."

Anne Jones, chief executive of Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) said Qantas was in effect promoting cigarettes by instructing staff to have the packets in full view. She said several cabin crew members had complained to ASH about the policy.

"Qantas are saying: 'We're not promoting, we're just selling', but in their letter to the crew they're saying they want to prominently display the products on the trolley. It's a backwards step, and totally out-of-step with where governments are moving nationally and internationally to get displays out of sight."

Qantas Group general manager of customer product and services Lesley Grant said other airlines including British Airways, Cathay Pacific and Virgin Atlantic sold cigarettes in-flight.

"The availability of cigarettes reflects customer demand. Regardless of what the product might be, if we see changes in demand we review our product range. We comply fully with all government regulations regarding the sale of all duty free products," Ms Grant said.

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