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Home > Becoming a Pilot > Why a sailor can have tattoo? Why not a pilot?
Why a sailor can have tattoo? Why not a pilot?
Pilot Career - Becoming a Pilot
Tuesday, 26 August 2008 00:34

Hi Captain Lim,

I am a student for the A-Level course and dream to be a pilot desperately. I plan to apply to become a cadet pilot with Malaysia or Singapore Airlines after I have finished my course. I am worried about my tattoo - it is just my name - five words behind my forearm. I do regret about it now.

My question is - can a pilot with tattoo be hired? Why a sailor can have tattoo? Why not a pilot?


Hi Alwin,

Whether tattoos will hinder an aspiring pilot from being hired or not has been a very common question here. Yes, having one has become quite trendy and fashionable among many people today.

Notwithstanding the general consensus that it is fine to have a tattoo if it is tasteful, not big and distractive - most employers would have issues with a tattoo on your hand where it is always visible.

Good airlines (including Singapore or Malaysia Airlines) are unlikely to change their employee code of conduct (appearance, dressing, etc, whilst on duty) to suit to the individual taste. You are unlikely to be hired as a pilot, just like in other professional careers (doctor, lawyer, etc) with exposed tattoo unless it is a small one that can be covered up with clothes during your interview or at work. The general view is that they can completely detract from the professional image that is required for these types of jobs.

Before someone jump on me - this is not to say that you can never be hired with tattoos if you have the requisites to be a pilot. It may be overlooked in certain cases in some other airlines but that would be the exception rather than the rule.

So my advice to other aspiring pilots who contemplate having one in the future is, avoid having visible tattoos. Once you have them you can't get rid of them (unless with surgery). What seems cool now will probably be out of fashion in a few years time. Many have regrets over their impulsive acts without a thought on the consequences.


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tatoos can be removed
tatoos now can be removed by laser surgery
Dev Kamal , 31 Aug, 2008
Why a sailor can have tattoo?
Does an airline captain outshine a ship captain?
i have read this article and you said that both are equally shine and professional.So why a sailor can have tattoo but not a pilot?
So i think you havent answer what alwin wants to know..

I know most of the sailor have tattoo is because to let their relative recognise them once accident happens on them so unfortunately.
So personally,i think this goes the same with a pilot.

Besides,i think most airlines pilot cover their forearm all the time with the coat or long-sleeve white uniform,am i right?

please clarify.

thank you.
kell , 19 Oct, 2008

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