China Airlines Unveils New Star Trek-Themed Uniforms

China Airlines is trying to reinvent themselves, and so far they’re doing a great job. They’ve introduced new Boeing 777-300ERs, which look gorgeous, and provide a much needed refresh to their longhaul product.

China-Airlines-777-Business-Class

In an effort to further modernize their product, they’re also introducing new uniforms for their front-line staff. And rather than creating uniforms relevant to this era, they’re thinking way ahead, and introducing Star Trek themed ones.

And they’ve chosen a music video to unveil the new product. Regrettably (and I’m going to assume something is lost in translation here), the band’s name is “Men Envy Children.” Here’s the video:

The video isn’t much more logical than the band’s name:

  • Why would China Airlines use their old 747 business class product to showcase their new uniforms, rather than their stunning new 777-300ER product?
  • Does anyone understand what’s going on in the video? Is the guy hitting on the flight attendant, or the non-flight attendant? Or is there some saucy soap opera-style action going on here?
  • If China Airlines has soft serve on a cone onboard, I’m totally flying with them

In case the official “Men Envy Children” video didn’t do it for you, China Airlines also did a public dance with the new uniforms, with the same background music:

Man, those are some of the most impressive on demand smiles I’ve ever seen!

Comments

  1. The thoughts behind their new uniform is based on the traditional Chinese and taiwanese style clothing of Qi Pao. But what you are saying is so accurate. It is Star Trek like!! Hahahhaha

  2. hmm, heavy on the sexual undertones. My favorite is the 20-pound bicep curls while sitting in premium cabin.

  3. As a native Chinese speaker I don’t get it too. The soft serve cone in the video looks like prepackaged ice cream designed to look like soft serve. If you are expecting the “fresh” version, you would be disappointed.

  4. The guy is hitting on the flight attendant, and then it becomes his imagination of how he and that girl dance together. I am a native Taiwanese. Although I don’t really like the Star-Trek like uniform, but I like the song and MV!! I was joking with my friends in Taiwan that maybe one day when they take China Airline, they may hear the announcement: This is captain XXX on the bridge, welcome back to earth!

  5. Lucky: Semi-related sidenote. Have you checked out the CI first class lounge in TPE? It’s one of the nicest lounges I’ve ever been in and would give the Amex centurion lounges a run for their money. Highly recommended.

  6. I think the guy is playing the drums while sitting on the same seat I had when I flew from TPE-LAX.

  7. Anyone who thinks these look like Star Trek uniforms needs to go on Google Images and search for some pictures of ST uniforms. They look NOTHING alike. And frankly, CAL’s designers could only hope to come up with something as stylish as Star Trek (Enterprise excluded).

    >Why would China Airlines use their old 747 business class product

    Probably because:

    1) They’ve got all of four 777s flying between TPE, LAX, and JFK and couldn’t spare one for a shoot.
    2) It’s a Chinese music video for a pop rock band, and the people who’d see this wouldn’t know any better.

  8. Band name: Little Boys Band

    This video concept is probably meant for the Taiwanese / Chinese-speaking market only. There might be another spot for the global market like what KE and OZ. The video was shot in first class onboard a 747 (which CI still flies a lot) might be due to the space–big enough for a drum set and dance moves.

    Yes the new uniforms are way too out there. Not a fan, even though I’m a made-in-Taiwan Trekkie.

    PS: It’s not like you’re gonna fly SkyTeam first class anyway, Ben.

  9. The video was clearly filmed in a cabin simulator, probably at their training center. The door has a fake painted window (and missing the emergency slide light) and one scene shows an open wall on the starboard side.

  10. @ Brian — I haven’t. Have only done the EVA Air lounges in Taipei. Will have to check out the China Airlines one eventually as well, now that they have a new product.

  11. I like taiwan and all. but no to china airlines,, EVA sure.. China airlines has a dismal safety record and overall bad reputation.

  12. Don’t get why Lucky wrote: Regrettably… the band’s name is “Men Envy Children.”

    Why is it “regrettably”? I am a man. I envy children, as do every grown man (and woman) I know – children lead happy life without having to worry about work, office politics, putting bread on the table, foreclosure, retrechment etc. All they need is to do is study (for a bit, in the US context, especially) and then have fun for the rest of the day, and talking about fun, a 2 month summer vacation is coming up for the children. What is there not to envy? Yes, I envy children. You mean there is a grown man who do not envy children? Then that’s really regrettable, for it must surely mean he had a most regrettable childhood!

    (Clearly something is lost even without any translation. Envy = lust for = pedophile? Is my English that bad – I am not a native English speaker, but I thougt envy simply means a feeling of “how I wish I were [whatever that I am envying]!” and in this case, i wish I am a kid, all of ver again. No?)

  13. 1. You obviously have never actually seen Star Trek and know nothing about it. If they cut about 3 feet of fabric off those skirts and they ended a few inches below the belt, maybe. You also obviously know nothing about Chinese or Asian culture, if you did, you would immediately recognize this outfit as based on traditional Chinese clothing.
    2. You don’t know much about commercial airliners, either. Why shoot this in a 747? Because there’s more room, for starters, a 777 cabin is actually quite cramped for a video shoot – but never mind that, this was not shot in an actual aircraft, but a mockup/simulator.
    3. You seem to always take every possible opportunity to mock Asian people. Racist much there?

  14. As a Taiwanese native, I don’t like the new uniform either. (And in fact, it’s like backfired at least on local online community; it seems that you really need to have an unique aesthetic to appreciate this new design.)

    Yet I remember when CI introduced their existing outfits back in 07-08, there were numerous complaints, too, saying that it looks like Taoist nuns. And CI’s response was that the design in light color would give passengers less pressure visually in a compact cabin environment, which I ended up quite agreeing with and loving the design. So maybe just after a while when we all get used to it, it’ll just become natural and acceptable…

    As for the MV, I don’t love it, but I don’t hate it, either. I would assume they were indeed playing the romantic fantasy card, since that’s pretty much what Asian carriers love to do. I would say the dance moves did amaze me because here in Asia, or at least in Taiwan, we all have this impression form the old days that flight attendants are dignified and elegant. It would be a contrast to see flight attendants dancing so I would second one of the previous comments that it’s more likely targeting on local/Asian markets.

    And on the CI new lounge. I saw the pictures. It looks super cool. But my mom went to the new T1 lounge they didn’t have a good experience. Somehow the staff was somewhat rude to her at that particular visit. She said she won’t consider CI again unless absolutely necessary…

  15. The new uniform is okay but those strappy grey shoes are just awful. Red pumps to match the red uniform fabric would have looked a lot better.

  16. The videos stress on “Spice Girls”.
    CA want to tell everyone “We have spice girls in the airplane cabin, fly with us”.
    That’s always a good sale point in Taiwan market.

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