Ethiopian Airlines Operated an All-Female Flight Crew

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On Saturday, December 16, Ethiopian Airlines made history by operating its first ever all-female flight crew on a five hour journey from Addis Ababa to Lagos, Nigeria on Flight 901. Captain Amsale Gualu—who became the airline’s first female captain in 2010—led the historic flight.

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The airline made a similar intercontinental journey back in 2015, with an all-female crew making its way to Bangkok, Thailand.

Although nearly a third of Ethiopian Airlines employees are female, the lot of them occupy service positions rather than the likes of pilots, engineers, and technicians. This flight in particular was set in place in order to inspire and encourage young African girls to pursue careers in the aviation industry, giving them hopes to dream big and beyond their limited confines.

While Flight 109 made history in Africa, other airlines including Southwest, Malawi Air, and Air India have also manned flights of all-female crews.