I am sorry!, A flight attendants most common words.


    Дилетант широкого профиля
    pro&con, Why would you make it personal all of a sudden? I have no issues whatsoever with Aeroflot. Actually flying with them on LHR-SVO route every other week (and will take them tonight again, by the way). You challenged me saying Russian airlines had a bad reputation, referring to that Startrex site. I responded that if you read their survey carefully, you will see Russian carriers do have a bad reputation for their customer service. Do you still argue Russian airlines are perceived badly in the West?

    Why do you people just have to make any discussion personal and give advice on how to behave to a complete stranger? And, by the way, you really think taking all these assumtions about my behaviour and giving me advice to improve is polite?
    Последнее редактирование:


    Дилетант широкого профиля
    Now my problem, to be frank, are guys like you who only take 3-4 flights a year and arrogantly teach people like me, who take flights at least once a week, on how to behave onboard.
    Back to the point - so do you have anything else to say (apart from another piece of wonderful advice) re your claim Russian carriers are perceived as top notch airlines worldwide? To the point saying "sorry" even when you were wrong is concept completely alien to Russians.


    I can't see anything wrong abt that "sorry" words. Ppl need em and it can improve difficulties! Sometimes better to use that easy words just to release the situation;)


    ALPA Member
    Bottom line:
    a professional Flight Attendant will say "I am sorry" if she/he does something wrong.

    If she/he doesn't they never will and rightfully so.

    If the problem is lack of service items or programs - it is not their fault.

    Other Flight Attendants come up with all sorts of explanations and actions.
    Thats what I learned in 25 year in aviation.

    PS The info quoted from the blog is obvious exaggeration of real life, but I see the point. It is truly sad that the airlines cut service to stay competitive.


    ORD watcher

    From FareCompare.com ~ An Airline Flight Attendant Sounds Off on Bags, Bad Attitudes and Today’s Flying Experience
    May 10, 2010 By Martha

    Flight Attendant Unleashed: Why Flying Isn’t Fun Anymore
    By: Anne McDermott | Posted: May 10, 2010

    The flight attendant interviewed below is a real person who has been flying for United Airlines and other carriers for more than two decades. He agreed to an interview with FareCompare on the condition of anonymity, and we honored this request, because we believe the issues he airs are important and should be discussed.

    FareCompare: What do you hate about your job?

    Flight Attendant: [Sighing] It’s not that I hate my job. I no longer love it, that’s for sure. How could I? There’s just so much negativity in the cabin these days, from both passengers and crew. It’s difficult to rise above, or to stay positive. It gets you down, you know? I think most of us [flight attendants] are beaten down these days, but the difference is, some of us are just better actors is all.

    FareCompare: What’s a big problem on planes these days?

    Flight Attendant: You want me to narrow it down to only one? [Laughing] The carry-on bags. They’re a hot button for a lot of passengers and crew. People abuse the policy, pushing it over the limits, because they don’t want to pay the checked-bag fees. I understand, but now so many people carry much heavier bags. Per company policy, we are to “assist” with these bags, not stow them ourselves.

    “They just dump [their bags] at my feet at my feet and move on…”

    And I know what you’re thinking, big deal, it’s just one bag – but it’s not one bag. I may work three flights in one day. That’s three boardings, each with hundreds of passengers, and hundreds of bags. We never have enough storage, and the battles begin. Moving bags, lifting bags, assisting passengers, all takes a toll on your back, believe me. With my pay cuts since bankruptcy, I cannot afford to injure myself and risk being out of work. It’s that simple.

    FareCompare: Are some passengers worse than others?

    Flight Attendant:
    If I say, your bag is too big or too heavy, it has to be checked – well, everybody wants to argue. “I carried it on my last flight” doesn’t cut it. I wasn’t there, and it doesn’t matter. Or some customers don’t even ask for help with their bags. Instead they just dump them at my feet and move on, expecting me to take care of it. I cannot. You pack it, you stack it.

    Some of our passengers with disabilities need extra help. This is where the waters get a little murky. I want to assist as needed, but sometimes I am pushed over all limits. Where do I draw the line? With minimal staffing, and minimum boarding time, I may not always be able to assist as needed. Some of our “high-yield” frequent flyers abuse the policies, and we’re expected to look the other way.

    “We can be a very compassionate bunch.”

    FareCompare: Are “nice” flight attendants a thing of the past?

    Flight Attendant: We can be a very compassionate bunch. I remember one elderly gentleman with clearly too much carry-luggage holding up the boarding process. Now, many, myself included, would accuse this passenger of breaking the “policy” with too many pieces.

    But something told me this was a special case, so I approached him with caution, saying, “Sir, you are well over the limit for carryon bags. Are you traveling with someone? And carrying those bags for them?” He dropped his bags and with tears welling in his eyes, he spoke softly, saying “Yes, I mean no. I’m carrying my wife’s bags. She passed away while we were on vacation. I can’t let them go. I have to get them home.”

    I will never forget my feelings of sadness, and will never forget this moment, a big reminder for me to not rush to judgment, and to be compassionate. Of course I assisted him with his precious cargo. Ask any flight attendant, and they will tell you that boarding is the worst part for us. This departure was no exception. As “greeter” I had a lot going on. So I called upon an off-duty flying partner commuting home from a working trip. I explained the situation and she sat next to this special passenger, chatting and comforting him for the entire flight.

    FareCompare: When things get to be too much, do flight attendants hide in the galley?

    Flight Attendant: We can’t, really. Our galley, cramped as it is, is our home away from home, office, and jump seat therapy center.

    “Passengers help themselves to our food…even drink from our water bottles.”

    But if we’re away from it, or our backs are turned, passengers will help themselves to our personal reading material, our own food brought from home, and even take a drink from our own personal water bottles. There is this weird “entitlement” thing. We have no personal space. With flights being more crowded, real estate for staff is minimal at best.

    One time, I was standing in the galley eating and a passenger came to the back and he said “Is it okay if I sit here for a while?” pointing to my flight attendant jump seat (which was folded into the wall). Not only is this our ONLY place to sit on a full flight, passengers are NOT permitted to occupy these seats at any time during a flight, per the FAA.

    The reason is simple: If we were to experience some type of sudden catastrophe during flight, or even severe turbulence, the crew needs to immediately strap into the nearest jump seat and respond/prepare for whatever is taking place at that moment, without first displacing someone. We’ve got to have immediate access to the telephone attached to the jump seat.

    “He starts to rant, telling me I have a bad attitude…”

    Anyway, it had been a long day. I was tired and responded to the man with a simple “no”. This wasn’t good enough for him, and he began to challenge my response. Why? I explained that ‘no’ is good enough. He asked a simple question, I gave him a simple answer. But he starts to rant, telling me I have a bad attitude, and requests my name and badge number, etc. I had to walk away. I had to walk away from my own workspace.

    FareCompare: What do you miss most about the “old days” of flying?

    Flight Attendant:
    [Laughing] Eye contact. I feel like I used to give so much to passengers because I enjoyed it so much, and I used to get back – now I give, give, give and I get nothing in return. You can only give so much, without getting something in return.

    “Air travel is tough. What’s to enjoy?”

    When I am greeting passengers during the boarding process, there may be a hundred passengers coming on board, who are walking within inches of me. Out of that one-hundred, I’d say maybe only ten to fifteen of them will acknowledge me or simply have any eye contact. I’ll say hello, and get nothing back. Now I don’t say hello until I at least have eye contact.

    Look, I get it. Air travel is tough. What’s to enjoy? They’ve made it this far, finally, on the airplane where they expect more but are receiving less. Some are tuned out, or just fried from their travels. We are all tired. As a flight attendant, I really have to go deep to rise above it. I try, really I do. Every flight. But some days I’m able to go deeper than others.


    Follow FareCompare on Twitter: http://twitter.com/FareCompare
    The Sydney Morning Herald Backpacker is Asked, “Who would want to be a hostie?”
    May 17, 2010 By Martha

    Show and hell ... "glamorous" hosties may wish to join passengers in the rush for the door.

    Translation: “Who would want to be a Flight Attendant”
    By Ben Groundwater “The Backpacker”

    Doris (which is almost certainly not her real name) had stormed on to our Jetstar flight from Osaka to the Gold Coast clutching a couple of cans of Kirin beer and had just been advised by the nearest cabin crew that she wouldn’t be allowed to drink it on the journey.

    “Why not?” she snapped, still holding the Kirins protectively to her chest.

    The hostie forced a smile. “I’m sorry but you aren’t allowed to consume your own alcohol on the flight.”

    “What, so I have to purchase yours, do I? Show me on my ticket where it says that I can’t drink my own beer.”

    “It’s in the fine print on your itinerary.”

    Doris wasn’t going to win. Regardless, she was still bubbling with rage by the time the flight took off. There was real fear in the hostie’s eyes as she strapped herself into the jump seat – coincidentally, directly opposite a seething (and probably half-cut) Doris.

    “Where are you based?” Doris spat, straining forward against her seatbelt as the plane taxied to the runway.


    “Missy, you’re really pushing my buttons. Where. Are. You. From?”

    “I’m from Thailand.”

    “What did you just say to your colleague? Don’t just assume I can’t speak Thai young lady.”

    “It was nothing about you.”


    The girl sitting next to me rolled her eyes. “Who’d be a hostie?”

    Who indeed? We have a strange relationship with hosties, us passengers. We whinge about them, we criticise them, occasionally compliment them, sometimes fantasise about them and, most of time, just put up with them. We’re also a little obsessed with them.

    Plug “air hostess” into a news search on Google and see what comes up. Mostly, it will be titillating tales of “naughty hosties” posing nude in calendars, or getting drunk on the job, or engaging in mid-air trysts with passengers. Readers lap it up.

    The reality, however, is far more mundane. The “waitresses of the sky” I’ve met don’t do any of those things. They just arm doors, demonstrate safety, pour drinks, hand out food, disarm doors, smile and get ready to do it all over again.

    Sound glamorous? Not really.

    Consider the day-to-day life of the humble hostie. It can’t be easy.

    For starters, they’re the human face of the multinational corporation that inexplicably cancelled your flight with eight hours’ notice and forced you to wait on hold for 45 minutes to allow you the pleasure of rescheduling.

    They’re also the ones who have to dish out the food that has probably crossed the Pacific four or five times by now. They have to collect the criminal amount of money it costs you for the instant coffee and square of cheese that will keep you alive until Melbourne.

    None of this is their fault. But they just have to smile ingratiatingly and keep pushing their cart.

    A hostie can tell you all you need to know about an airline. At Virgin Blue they’re a bright, charming bunch who think they can get away with cheesy jokes such as, “Cabin crew, disarm doors and cross-dress.” At Qantas they have the weary air of those pretty sure they were meant to be doing something far more important than this.

    Emirates hosties are professional, classy, well presented. EasyJet crew, all forced smiles atop orange get-up, look like they would rather be sunning themselves on a beach in Majorca than showing you where the emergency exits are.

    BMI trolley dollies, with their boater hats and “Y’aw right?” greetings, leave you in no doubt about where you’re flying to. United staff flash passengers their perfect rows of pearly whites at the door, then promptly ignore them for the next 14 hours (the passengers, that is – I’m sure they pay plenty of attention to their pearly whites).

    But I try to cut them some slack. It’s only when you see them having to deal with someone like Doris that you realise what life must really be like for the air hosts and hostesses of the world.

    No week-long stopovers on Hawaiian islands. No triumphant strolls through airport lounges trailed by adoring admirers.

    Just arm doors, demonstrate safety, pour drinks, hand out food, disarm doors, smile and get ready to do it all again.

    And pray you don’t get someone like Doris.

    [email protected].

    See Ben’s blog, The Backpacker, at http://blogs.smh.com.au/travel/
    Последнее редактирование:


    ORD watcher
    World discovers a new hero: The air steward who lost his cool, grabbed a beer, slid down plane's emergency chute and launched himself into stardom on Facebook

    By David Gardner
    Last updated at 10:14 AM on 11th August 201

    They say it's best to go out with a bang.

    And as resignations go, Steven Slater's was certainly memorable.

    When a stroppy passenger swore at the flight attendant after he asked her to remain in her seat until the plane had stopped, the self-confessed 'bag Nazi' first commandeered the public address system to launch a four-letter tirade at shocked travellers.

    Then he grabbed his bags - and two cans of beer from the galley - and popped the lever for the plane's inflatable emergency chute.

    He threw the bags on to it before sliding down to the tarmac himself.

    Once on the ground, Slater, 39, picked up his silver Jeep Wrangler and raced home.


    Flo Hale: 'Steven only did what all of us feel like doing to those inconsiderate people that think they are better than the rest of the world.'

    Victor Nawrocki: 'I think the other passengers should have helped him.'

    Daniel Hood: 'Love the way he took a few beers then jumped down the shoot ha ha this has made my day.'

    Sharyl Madeloni: 'Rude is a way of life anymore - we don't have to take it! Personally I would have thrown the beer on the passenger and thrown the jerk down the chute instead! Good going Steven!'

    Ross Collins: 'I hope you grabbed some peanuts to go with the beer.'

    Naomi Nieves: 'If Steven is reading this, please know that the minute your story aired on TV , I had your back.'

    Police arrived to arrest him about an hour later.

    Colleagues on Jet Blue Flight 1052 from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to New York said Slater was having 'a really bad day' on Monday.

    The day after didn't get any better when he appeared in court yesterday charged with criminal mischief and reckless endangerment.

    He pleased not guilty to the charges and was released on £1,500 bail last night.

    If convicted, he could be jailed for seven years.

    But Slater has become an unlikely folk hero in the U.S., where there was growing sympathy yesterday for the kind of abuse flight attendants have to deal with from unruly passengers.

    By last night, a string of pages had been set up in tribute to him on the Facebook website, with many social networkers admiring his grand exit.

    Slater flew off the handle after asking a passenger not to remove her belongings from the overhead baggage compartment while the plane was still on the runway after arrival at New York's JFK airport.

    The woman reportedly swore at Slater and grabbed her carry-on case anyway, cutting the irate attendant on the forehead with the bag as he tried to intervene.

    After the plane had stopped and the 100 passengers started shuffling to the exit, Slater's voice was heard bellowing over the loudspeaker.

    Passenger Philip Catelinet said: 'He said, "I've had it! To the passenger who called me a mother******, **** you! I've been in this business for 28 years and that's it. I'm done".

    'You don't want to see a flight attendant lose their cool like that. I'm glad it happened on the ground and not anywhere in the air.'

    First officer Scott Bienz told investigators he tried to block Slater from getting to the escape chute, but couldn't hold him back.

    Mr Catelinet said he heard Slater talking to another passenger about his anger just before he launched his tirade.

    'He said that he had a bad day and that this passenger had set him off,' Mr Catelinet said.

    'I thought it was a crazy way to quit your job. And I thought if only we could all quit our jobs so spectacularly, but not get arrested in the process.'

    Jet Blue last night suspended Slater from duty pending an investigation.

    The airline said in a statement: 'At no time was the security or safety of our customers or crewmembers at risk.'

    On his Facebook page, Slater lists his interests as 'fashion, interior decorating, spirituality and recovery'.

    He is said to have previously worked for TWA and Delta.

    He joined Jet Blue in 2008 after a spell as a shop assistant with designer label Burberry.

    A neighbour said about 50 police officers turned up at Slater's home in Belle Harbour, New York, to arrest him.

    He was found in bed with his boyfriend.

    The issue od luggage entitlements is something that has been a pet hate of Slater's for a long while.

    On Airliners.net, an aviation website where he uses the handle 'skyliner747', he wrote: 'I hate to be a bag Nazi when I work a flight, but I feel if I am not, then I am letting down all those who cooperate and try to help out as well.'


    ORD watcher

    Plane-iac's foe faces 25G hit FAA: JetBlue bag lady broke a slew of rules


    Last Updated: 11:51 AM, August 12, 2010

    Posted: 3:42 AM, August 12, 2010

    Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/plane_iac_foe_faces_hit_sKV8ov9bc1fFZcr8XWwmaJ#ixzz0wRZOlTXI

    The woman whose oversize luggage sparked a tarmac tirade by a JetBlue flight attendant is in the cross hairs of federal officials mulling stiff penalties and heavy fines for her temper tantrum, authorities said yesterday.

    The unidentified passenger could be slapped with a fine of up to $25,000 fine for bringing down an overhead bin's door on Steven Slater's head before Flight 1052 took off for JFK from Pittsburgh on Monday, said FAA spokesman Jim Peters.

    Federal regulations state, "No person may assault, threaten, intimidate or interfere with a crew member in the performance of the crew member's duties aboard an aircraft."

    Slater was simply trying to make the woman check the larger of her two suitcases when he was hit, his lawyer said.

    The irate passenger again threw the air-travel rulebook out the window when the jet got to JFK, where she leaped from her seat to take her smaller bag down from overhead storage before the pilot gave the go-ahead.

    That carries two $1,100 fines, Peters said, for unbuckling her seat belt and walking around the cabin while taxiing.

    Investigators are trying to track down passengers who were sitting near the woman in Rows 6, 7, 8 or 9, sources said.

    Detectives also plan to review video of Slater sliding down the inflatable chute he activated after lashing out on the plane's intercom at "the f- -king a--hole that told me to f--k off!" the sources said.

    Investigators flew the other attendant on the flight back to New York last night to be interviewed.

    The airline yesterday offered each of the 100 passengers on the flight a $100 voucher.

    In a company blog titled "Sometimes the Weird News is About Us," JetBlue joked, "Perhaps you heard a little story about one of our flight attendants.

    "While we can't discuss the details of what is an ongo ing investigation, plenty of others have already formed opinions on the matter. Like, the entire Internet." The blog added, "It wouldn't be fair for us to point out absurdities in other corners of the in dustry without ac knowledging when it's about us."

    JetBlue ads often make fun of the prices other airlines charge.

    The blog predicted Slater's antics "may feed your inner Office Space," a reference to the 1999 comedy about disgruntled technology workers.

    It gave no new information about what happened, saying it will let people "speak on their own behalf."

    Meanwhile, Slater continued to bask in his newfound fame.

    "For 20 years I thought about it," he told The New York Times about deploying the emergency chute. "But you never think you're going to do it."

    But that's just what he did, grabbing a beer before sliding down and heading to his home, where he was arrested.

    He was bailed out Tuesday night and stayed at a friend's Upper East Side penthouse.

    Slater visited a bail bondsman on Queens Boulevard yesterday morning to fill out paperwork, before driving home in his Jeep.

    "One door closes, another one opens," he said of his future employment prospects, without elaborating.

    Slater's former wife, Cynthia Niethamer, told The Post her ex has considered a dramatically different career path.

    "He'd love his own fashion line. He's a brilliant merchandiser," she said from her home in Branson, Mo. "Actually, we met working at JCPenney when we were 16. He's absolutely stellar at it."

    Niethamer, 38, recalled the father of their teen son as an "extremely patient" man.

    She said they were married in 1991, for less than a year.

    As far as her ex being gay, she said, "I think love does not have a gender bias. I think he loved me when he did."

    Slater also has the support of his cancer-stricken, 75-year-old mother in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

    "The first thing I heard was 'He's gonna be in jail for seven years' and I thought, 'Oh, my God! That was a setback, believe me. But anyway, it's turning out OK," said Diane Slater, a former flight attendant.

    Additional reporting by Ikimulisa Livingston in New York, Matthew Kent in Branson, Mo., and Anita Bennett in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

    [email protected]

    ---------- Добавлено в 04:28 ----------


    Top 4 ways to get a flight attendant to go Steve Slater

    After an altercation with a passenger, JetBlue flight attendant Steve Slater quit his job on the spot and made a heroic (albeit possibly criminal) slide from an exit hatch. Yes, passengers can be incredibly obnoxious. Here’s a list of what annoys flight attendants most.

    - Matt Rocheleau, Contributor

    4. Flight attendants are people, too

    Hey, you and your flight attendants are starting a brief relationship. Why not get off on the right foot and acknowledge their existence?

    One peeve of flight attendants: “No eye contact at the first point of contact. Not even hello," writes 20-year veteran flight attendant John Safkow of Castro Valley, Calif., in an e-mail. “Most are already tuned out on cell phones or other electronics. Many hand over used food containers they've been eating from the terminal, instead of disposing of it properly before entering the jetway."

    Remedy: “Just say 'hello.' Listen, this experience is no longer a walk in the park for us, either,” writes Mr. Safkow, who blogs under the name Martha Stewardess.

    “A smile, a little eye contact, and saying 'please' and 'thank you' always are appreciated,” writes Bobbie Sullivan, an occupational health psychologist based in Hawaii, in an e-mail.

    3. Safety rules aren't optional

    Remember, most flight attendants aren't making up the rules as they go along. Each rule has a reason behind it. Moreover, flight attendants didn't make the rules, they just enforce them. So if a flight attendant asks you to put that carry-on all the way under the seat, it's probably not a secret conspiracy to make your flying experience miserable.

    “Passengers who won't comply with safety rules – or who comply, but only after arguing with the flight attendant” are an annoyance, writes Ms. Sullivan, who has closely researched the lives of flight attendants and writes about her studies on www.AircrewHealth.com and www.AircrewBuzz.com. “Passengers often seem to view flight attendants as nit-picking and bossy when they hear, 'Sir, I need you to put on your seatbelt NOW,' or, 'Ma'am, if that bag does not fit under the seat in front of you, you'll have to put it in the overhead bin.' "

    Remedy: Please do what the flight attendant says. Generally, they're just trying to make sure you – and everyone else – are safe.

    Besides, if a safety violation is made, regardless of how minor and even if no damage is caused, flight attendants can be held responsible through fines and termination.

    2. Seat upgrade? Don't go there.

    Just because there is an empty seat in business class doesn't give flight attendants the supreme authority to allow you to set up shop there. If you cop an attitude about this, your flight attendant will not be pleased.

    “Flight attendants are not the ones who have the authority to provide upgrades,” writes Sullivan. “That usually is the job of the gate agents or other customer service reps. If a flight attendant will not let an economy passenger move to an empty business class seat, it is because she or he is not allowed to do so.”

    Remedy: If you didn't book ahead online – where you can often choose your precise seat – and if you don't have a serious reason why you need to change your seat (versus want to change your seat), get over it. You’re pretty much stuck.

    1. Seat-back pockets are not trash cans, folks

    There is a reason that flight attendants go down the aisle several times before landing. Those trash bags they're carrying aren't Armani accessories. Yes, trash can build up on long flights, but stuffing refuse and gum into seat-back pockets, fold-up trays, between seats, on the floor, in overhead bins – basically anywhere they fit – is sure to anger your onboard crew.

    “A big gripe on longer flights is the amount of trash and debris that seems to accumulate around some passengers' seats,” writes Sullivan. “ ‘Do they throw their cups and tissues and newspapers on the floor like that at home? I think not!’ said one flight attendant I interviewed."

    Remedy: Use the trash bags, people. Otherwise, if you’ve forgotten to throw something away, bring it out with you when you deplane – or at least don’t hide it. The next passenger will surely find it and complain to the flight attendant.

    ---------- Добавлено в 04:37 ----------


    Flight attendant's job: Harder than it used to be?

    Flight attendants, including JetBlue's now-famous Steven Slater, often deal with annoyed or irate passengers. But the climate in which they work is more stressful than it used to be, experts say.

    By Matt Rocheleau, Contributor / August 11, 2010

    Whatever caused JetBlue flight attendant Steven Slater to make perhaps the most memorable “departure” in airplane history is no doubt more complicated than an unpleasant run-in with a passenger.

    After all, flight attendants deal with annoyed or irate passengers on a regular basis. Attendants are, for better or for worse, often a passenger's first human contact with anyone from the airline – and depending on how the passenger's whole airport experience has gone, that contact can be pleasant or raw.

    The challenge now is that the climate surrounding the job of flight attendant has become more stressful than it used to be, say some flight attendants and those who study their careers.

    IN PICTURES: Top 5 most stressful jobs

    “Our jobs have changed so much over the past 10 years," writes 20-year veteran flight attendant John Safkow of Castro Valley, Calif., in an e-mail. "I never used to feel it was a 'job'. Never felt as if I was going to work. Now, it's a job. I just want to get the hours in and go home.”

    Mr. Safkow, who writes online under the name “Martha Stewardess” and requested that the name of the airline he works for not be published, is one of dozens of flight attendants who blog – and sometimes vent – about their in-flight experiences.

    Before the 9/11 terrorist attacks, he writes, airlines were profitable and spent money trying to make passengers more comfortable.

    “Passengers and crews were happy. We had great trips with wonderful layovers,” writes Safkow. “Now, the carriers have cut back and continue to cut corners and costs. And now the services have been 'unbundled' and fees added. At the same time, airlines have eliminated so many of the features that passengers expect. Our work schedules are worse too. We're doing more for less.”

    While rude or uncooperative passengers can boost the stress level, "incessant uncertainty" is at the root of what makes flight attendants' jobs difficult, says an e-mail from Bobbie Sullivan, an occupational health psychologist based in Hawaii, who has researched the lives of flight attendants and writes about her studies on www.AircrewHealth.com and www.AircrewBuzz.com.

    Job insecurity, especially in this economy; irregular work schedules; substantial time away from home and family; and fatigue from long hours and short breaks are among the challenges, she says.

    The mean annual wage for attendants is $43,350, just below the average for all US occupations $43,460, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

    Flight attendants can be scheduled as many as 14 hours a day, with somewhat greater maximums for international flying, the BLS says. Attendants are typically away from their home base about one-third of the time, flying between 65 to 90 hours a month and spending another 50 hours a month on the ground writing reports, waiting for planes to arrive, and preparing planes for flight.

    “Full-time flight attendants experienced a much higher than average work-related injury and illness rate," according to the BLS. “In addition, medical problems can arise from irregular sleeping and eating patterns, dealing with stressful passengers, working in a pressurized environment, and breathing recycled air.”

    Though employment of flight attendants is expected to grow by about 8 percent over the next decade – the average rate anticipated for most occupations – the attendant job market is likely to remain competitive for a profession where the average tenure is 16 years and rising, says the BLS.

    While the number of unruly passenger reports filed to the Federal Aviation Administration has decreased in recent years, “a new study by the International Air Transport Association found an increase in instances of disgruntled passengers and violence on planes, with the chief cause being passengers who refuse to obey safety orders,” according to The New York Times.

    Like Safkow, most flight attendants do not expect that every passenger will be polite.

    “[Passengers] are frustrated and have no one else to take it out on. We have no way of knowing what each passenger is going through or just experienced before boarding. Some are afraid to fly, and others intoxicated,” he writes.

    “For many flyers, we are their first contact with a human representing the airline,” wrote in an e-mail. “They've booked and purchased on the web. Checked in on-line or at a kiosk in the terminal. Waited in lines, dragged themselves through security, only to wait at the gate. Some are frustrated beyond reason. Others are just plain angry. They want to unload on someone, and that would be your flight attendant trapped with you inside this metal tube flying very fast at 34,000 feet.”

    Of all an airline’s front-line employees, flight attendants have the most face time with customers.

    “If nothing else," writes Ms. Sullivan, "that extends the opportunity to vent their frustrations on these poor workers, who likely had nothing to do with late departures, lost bags, fees, schedule disruptions, and such. Nor do flight attendants have any control over such things.”
    Последнее редактирование:


    ORD watcher
    Flipping off a whole plane: Russian airline hostess fired over middle-finger blog photo

    Published: 29 January, 2013, 15:55


    RIA Novosti / Alexandr Kryazhev

    A web photo of a Russian airplane host raising her middle finger at passengers has resulted in her firing. Aeroflot sacked the girl over her blog post, though she insisted it is not her hand in the picture and the plane belongs to another airline.

    The picture appeared on Tatiana Kozlenko’s wall in Vkontakte (one of Russia’s most popular social networks) back in October 2011, and since that time has earned dozens of ‘likes.'

    The picture recently became a scandal when it caught the attention of renowned Russian blogger Ilya Varlamov, who reposted it on Twitter, prompting hundreds of re-shares. Aeroflot reacted by promptly firing the girl.

    The story has sparked heated debate in the Russian Internet community. Many bloggers do not approve of the company’s decision, posting comments like: @oleg_kozyrev “Why do they blame someone for a photo posted on a personal page? This is common office humour. Is it prohibited to joke in Aeroflot?”

    Aeroflot wrote on its official Twitter account Monday morning that it was justified in firing Kozlenko: “The fact of posting a photo shows Tatiana’s attitude towards passengers and her duties. She acknowledged her fault when she spoke to the leadership of the company.”

    Kozlenko argued the opposite on her Vkontakte page: “I don’t consider myself guilty! The photo was added to my page, I only tagged myself on it!!! The hand isn’t mine, the plane is not my company’s!!! I don’t understand what they spoil my life for!!! I’m asking you for help and support!!!”

    The girl is not the first Aeroflot steward to lose her job over an Internet post. Last May, air hostess Ekaterina Solovyeva was fired after she mocked the crash of a Sukhoi Superjet-100 in Indonesia. 'Office humor' is often discouraged by Russian big companies. Last August, one of the country’s top banks, Sberbank, sacked a PR staffer after she posted a joke about elderly bank clients on the company's Twitter.

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    ORD watcher

    Helen Davey
    Psychoanalyst and psychotherapist

    Cracks in the Cover-Up
    Posted: 04/13/2012 11:29 am

    The recent very public emotional meltdown of a JetBlue pilot -- just weeks after an American Airlines flight attendant broke down in front of passengers waiting for take-off -- has many people wondering about the psychological health of pilots and flight attendants. What is going on with the employees in our airline industry?

    As a former Pan Am flight attendant for 20 years, and now a psychotherapist and psychoanalyst for 25 more, I've been writing at length to sound the alarm about the decline of the American airline industry. In particular, I've discussed the traumatic emotional consequences to employees due to the massive changes they've had to endure.

    In addition to ensuring the safety of passengers, pilots and flight attendants understand that their major role is to create the illusion of the flight crew's emotional invincibility. In other words, they reinforce the denial of death. This is what I mean by the words "cover-up." On board every aircraft are passengers who wonder how in the world this huge machine can actually fly. Moreover, they depend upon the comfort of knowing they have a fearless and confident crew taking care of them. Not always an easy task for the flight crew.

    Having been a flight attendant, I know how psychologically stressful that job can be. Even in the glory days of American aviation, when all employees got to share in the largesse of the industry's perks, the emotional demands of the work could be grueling. Maintaining an outward persona of friendliness, calm, and utter fearlessness for countless hours on end can be very difficult indeed.

    Pilots have a particular problem in this arena, especially when it comes to seeking help. Due to antiquated 1940's FAA standards, it's very difficult, if not impossible, to get help for psychological distress. For example, given that statistics show that at least 10% of the population suffers depression at some time in their life -- and I think that number is vastly underestimated -- then what are pilots to do?

    In 2010, four anti-depressants were approved by the FAA for pilot use, but he or she must be grounded for at least six months (usually a year), and subjected to constant re-evaluation for the rest of his or her career. I understand the flying public doesn't want to hear or think about this, but restrictive and sometimes punitive measures discourage pilots from seeking the help they need, even for "talk therapy." This creates an atmosphere of shame about needing emotional help, and is paralleled by the shame that so often accompanies combat-related trauma.

    Despite the herculean efforts by EAP programs in unions and airlines to get proper help for vulnerable crew members before their behavior explodes into headlines, some people slip through the cracks. I personally would much rather put my life in the hands of a pilot who has received proper psychological treatment than one who suffers silently but has a "clean" record.

    A salient factor that has been left out of media reports and pundit observations about the pilot and flight attendant incidents, is that what they have in common was that both employees began ranting about terrorism. In fact, the flight attendant screamed about having a friend killed in the 9/11 terrorist hijacking of an American Airlines plane, as well as about the recent bankruptcy of her company.

    When you see airline crews walking across the terminal with their suitcase on wheels, just know that they are also carrying another kind of baggage. There is always the possibility of a hijacking, a bomb on the plane, or unruly and violent passengers on board. Most people who go about their daily lives and work don't have to be hyper-vigilant about terrorists. They have not had friends or colleagues murdered by political/religious extremists. They don't have to imagine ways in which they can protect their own lives and those who depend upon them in the air. Nor are they plagued by nightmares about getting stuck on another continent with no way to get home.

    The "cover-up" of their vulnerability by pilots and flight attendants with a facade of emotional invincibility used to be all about the reality of occasional airline catastrophes, but it has now been extended to the nightmare of worldwide terrorism that is often aimed at airlines. Cracks in the "cover-up" are beginning to show.

    There are many reasons for that, and one only has to look at the strained relationships between airline management and employees to understand what's happening. Not only are employees feeling attacked from the outside, but they are feeling equally attacked from the inside by their own companies as well. The executive hierarchy of airlines has changed dramatically, and we are long past the glory days of aviation when men like Juan Trippe led the way, and airline employees were all imbued with a passion for flying.

    Long-promised wages, benefits, and pensions are being slashed, and flight attendants are increasingly on the front lines of an angry and disgruntled public with no tools to offer the public for passenger comfort. Mergers and takeovers and bankruptcies are forcing airline employees to adapt to a new and unfamiliar workforce in which many feel like the ugly, unwanted step-siblings in a blended family.

    And on top of all these issues, there have always been expectable hardships for airline personnel that come with the job, requiring a stable, flexible person who is physically strong. Passengers take this for granted.

    Working conditions have worsened to the point that along with emotional invincibility, physical invincibility is being demanded as well. Extremely long workdays, constant time changes, irregular schedules, and the feeling that their companies don't have their backs, are wearing down the employees to an extent I have not seen before. After all, no human being ever "gets used to" jet lag, exhaustion, sleepless nights, or the feeling of not being valued.

    As I've mentioned in previous posts, similar things are happening to employees in other venerable old companies and industries in the past few years. In the wake of the recent economic turmoil, traditional emphasis on pride in one's company and loyalty to it is being replaced by concern only for profit. This has had a shattering impact on the emotional lives of many people.

    And nowhere is this more apparent than in the current state of the airline industry. As long as it stays in denial about this massive undermining from within, we're going to see more cracks in the cover-up. Another airline employee succumbing to the pressure, captured on tape and broadcast tonight on your evening news!
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    ORD watcher
    Five Reasons Why Your Flight Attendant Hates You
    By Michael J. Mooney Fri., Aug. 20 2010

    When America's newest folk hero, Jet Blue flight attendant Steven Slater, quit his job in one of the great workplace exit scenes in modern history, people had mixed feelings. Some smiled, fantasizing about how they might one day make a similar over-the-top departure. Others wondered what could have caused a flight attendant with 21 years on the job to suddenly flip on a customer and change his whole life. For answers, we went to a local flight attendant who knows just how Slater felt.

    Our industry insider works for one of the bigger airlines and asked that we not use his name (the job is hard enough). But he had no problem telling us everything he hates about you, the passengers he deals with.

    Five reasons your flight attendant hates you:

    1) You dress like shit.
    "Do not come on the airplane dressed in your finest 'come fuck me' outfit and then complain that the airplane is cold. If you insist on wearing wife beaters, please wear one that isn't torn, stained, or too small. And yes, deodorant is a good thing. Also, for God's sake, put on shoes when you go the bathroom."

    2) You can't use the bathroom properly.
    "This is simple: When you go to the bathroom, make sure everything is completely flushed. No one is interested in what your had for fucking dinner. Men, aim for the fucking toilet bowl, not the floor. And please, one at a time in the bathroom. Save the mile-high-club fantasy for home."

    3) You pretend you don't know how this works.
    "If you see me coming down the aisle, please make up your mind about your drink order. Don't wait for me to get to your fucking row and sit there with a blank look as you decide. If you tell me you want coffee, tell me how the fuck you take it. Don't wait till I give you black coffee and then tell me you wanted milk and sugar. I'm not a fucking mind reader. Oh yeah, and turn off your fucking cell phones when we ask you to."

    4) You always ask for free upgrades.
    "No, you can't sit in first class just because there's an empty seat. No, you can't get free alcohol because you're going on your honeymoon. No, you can't be moved up to first class because you're going on your honeymoon. And men, if this is your 'going to get married' flight, do not flirt with the flight attendants (male or female) on your trip to the bathroom."

    5) You are just fucking disgusting.
    "If you insist on picking your fucking nose in public, use a napkin for the residue, not the seat back. Also, I am not your child's disciplinarian. As I am walking by your row, do not tell your kids, 'If you don't sit down, this gentleman is going to be very angry with you.' Yeah, that's a nice thing to say to a 4-year-old, who is now staring at an intimidating stranger with terror in his eyes. And, you back there, yes, we know you are jacking off under the blanket. Please stop."


    ORD watcher
    CHAPTER 7 – Principles of Survival
    Posted on May 15, 2012 by Memories of a Flight Attendant

    When your life is spinning out of control, strange things start to happen to you. Everywhere you go. Every time. You think your hair is falling out more than it usually does. Normally you start salivating at the sight of a chocolate bar, but now even the thought of buying one makes you want to vomit. How strange is that? Or your neighbor begins to make strange noises every Friday night and you’re not sure if he’s started a new religious ritual or if he is having novel sexual experiences.

    I started noticing these weird occurrences in my life ever since I began running into Laurent everyday in various places. He is a cute man, maybe my age, with big, expressive black eyes that compliments his sweet smile. He is also a flight attendant. I saw Laurent for the first time two years ago when I was still with Timmy and I recall being very impressed by him. I can’t explain why I felt that way, but he is the type of person that you meet and instantly like. At first I thought it was his smile, then his eyes, but now I’m positive that it’s his energy.

    I paid no attention to my feelings at first because back then I had Timmy to go home to. So Laurent became a kind of a fantasy for me; an infatuation that you enjoy but when your boyfriend asks about it, you deny vehemently. It’s OK to have fantasies when you are in a relationship, as long as they stay in your head. But now that I am single once again, this man who caused all these secret feelings in me is back in my life. Every day of my life, in fact, and I am starting to believe this is a bit more than strange. I always get butterflies in my tummy when I see him, like a teenager in love for the first time in his life. I run into him almost everyday at work, but the problem is that I have no idea how to react. I can’t be myself, because my confidence level is a bit low right now and I’m afraid that my current “real” self will frighten him. So I decided that the best way to be is to smack a smile on my face and speak French with him (he is from France). The last time I saw him, we exchanged huge smiles- one of those expressions you give when you see someone you like- and then it all went downhill from there. The started chatting and I wanted to impress him with my French, but to my utter dismay, no word of francés came out of my nerve-stricken body. Actually, no word in any language came out. I stood in front of him, gasping, struggling to formulate a sentence in my mind, but when I finally started the phrase I forgot how the ending went. My eyes were blinking so fast like I was having a seizure and my attempt to smile failed me completely. I coughed, smiled again (or at least tried to), and Laurent just stood there with his cute face, looking at me with those charming eyes as I made a complete fool of myself. When I finally composed myself and started slowly speaking to him, a little bubble of saliva flew out of my mouth and landed on his face (I hate it when people do that; saliva on the Pope’s face would be acceptable, but not on Laurent!). After this “conversation” where I didn’t actually say anything that made sense, I excused myself and went away before I peed my pants and/or died from embarrassment.

    I wish I could be different. I wish I could talk to Laurent in a normal way and make him my boyfriend. Maybe he can be the one who comes and rescues me out of my misery. I like him so much, but I know that I’ll never be able to ask him out if I can’t even form a sentence with him. Anyways, none of this matters anymore, as Laurent probably thinks I am the weirdest flight attendant ever. I think I screwed it up.

    What helps me not to think that I am the strangest person in the world is comparing myself with some of the passengers that we have on board.

    Last week, I worked in the business class section on a flight to Canada. All the passengers were sleeping and I was reading a newspaper in the galley, when all of the sudden I heard someone screaming in the cabin. As a general rule, screams are never good, but it’s guaranteed trouble when you hear one on a plane. My colleague and I ran to the source of the scream, only to find a beautiful lady deep in her sleep. At first I was afraid that she was unconscious, but when we realized that she was only sleeping my coworker and I decided to wake her up to make sure everything was okay. I’ve had way too many medical cases on the plane and they are too stressful. This lady, however, was just having a nightmare that someone was trying to kill her. Relieved, we wished her sweet dreams this time and went back to reading our newspapers. A few minutes later, the same woman came to us complaining that while she was trying to fall back asleep, the drunk woman sitting behind her came up to her, laid on top of her, and started kissing her while intermittently whispering “I love you, I love you so much” in her ear. What the hell was she talking about? The Sleeping Beauty of the air? I even considered going to search for the seven little dwarves. Do people usually behave like this in other places or do these things only happen on an airplane? As if this wasn’t enough, the drunk lady that was playing Prince Charming to the pretty woman’s Sleeping Beauty started making out with another passenger a few minutes later and they disembarked the plane hand in hand. And so a couple was formed on board. I was impressed with the lady for having managed to kiss two people in a matter of hours and change her status from passenger, then (drunk) Prince Charming, and finish off as a whore. Strange people, weird talents.

    One thing that’s always looked strange to me is old Israeli ladies’ hairstyles. It’s not even real hair; it’s normally a wig. On one of my flights to Tel Aviv, there was an old lady in the economy class with a gray Coco Chanel style wig. It was a night flight and I was walking through the cabin to do a routine check on the passengers. The old lady was fast asleep and I sometimes find it so funny how some people look when they are sleeping. Her mouth was wide open as if she was at the dentist. That combined with her Coco wig that had too much hair for her little head was not the prettiest sight, but at least it was funny. But the best part happened a few minutes later when I was walking in the cabin again. I caught sight of the lady, her mouth still wide open, but her hair looked different. I think she may have rubbed her head against the seat, because the wig had turned backwards. All I could see was her gaping mouth and her gray Chanel style wig covering her face from her forehead down to her nose. I couldn’t help but burst out laughing and made my way quickly back to the galley. My coworkers asked me what was going on but I couldn’t talk because I was laughing so hard. When I finally recovered, I explained to them what I had just witnessed. They went to check for themselves and then it was their time to laugh uncontrollably. All the passengers around her were laughing too. I’m positive that the teenagers behind her took pictures of her and posted it on their facebooks. This lady, with her hair covering her face, looked like a sleeping poodle. Maybe she just wanted to cover her eyes so she can sleep better. In case she didn’t know, we do give out sleeping masks on board. No need to use her wig for that purpose. This would be scary if it weren’t so hilarious.

    All these things happening in such a short period of time made me realize that strange things always lead to embarrassing situations. Now that I run into Laurent every day, I make myself look stupid by not being able to form a coherent sentence. The drunk hooker on my flight to Canada embarrassed herself with her a bit too friendly behavior and the Israeli lady… Well I don’t think I have to comment on how ashamed she must’ve been.

    Yesterday, a very strange thing happened to me. For now, I am not embarrassed or ashamed; only confused. I kissed a guy. A good friend of mine and I went out to a club and ended up on the dance floor, with me distributing smiles to everyone until someone smiled back at me. His name was Michael. A doctor at the age of 33 years old and he was the kind of man who my mother would’ve been glad to see me with. He was sweet and I surprised myself by going with the flow so effortlessly. For others it would’ve been just a kiss, but kissing someone else can mean a lot of things when you are used to kissing the same lips for seven years, It’s like changing your brand of coffee; it still tastes good but you have to try it a few times to really know if you like it or not. I don’t know what’ll happen between Michael and I. We have a nice conversation and he seems like an interesting man. I am almost positive that he liked me. We walked for a bit after the club and that was nice as well. He said he’d call. At least with him I can talk without gasping or having my eyes move like I was possessed. I can act normally and be myself, even though I don’t know how to be myself at times.

    After coming home from the club last night, I had a dream that was more than bizarre. In this dream, I was working on a plane; but instead of an ordinary plane, it was more like flying theater. It was full of passengers and I recognized a few of them. The cast of my dream included the Japanese lady who swallowed cotton and the pretty lady who was molested by the drunk lady after having a nightmare. It was a packed flight and we were a full staff, led by Jennifer Lopez as the purser. We had a ton of work to do and the flight had no destination; we were going to be in the air forever. People were smoking, children were running loose, and everybody had a special demand. If all this wasn’t confusing enough, J-Lo serenading the safety demonstration definitely did the work. Then, out of nowhere, a huge whale came and swallowed the plane whole. And then everything went back to normal.

    I woke up with a big headache and this dream playing out in my head. I sincerely believe that dreams are messages sent by your subconscious to explain what the conscious mind can´t understand. But this dream was a tough one: a theater-plane run by J-Lo, swallowed whole by a whale? It really didn´t make much sense to me. The only logical meaning I could come up with was that the plane was a mess and this mess represented my life. The huge load of work represented my endless thoughts; the big whale stood for (I think) a life changing event in the near future that will bring everything back to harmony. The only thing I couldn´t explain was, and I swear I tried, J-Lo.

    It´s very possible that I am just waiting to be rescued, but I really am doing everything I can to get out of my misery. Maybe that kiss with Michael meant more to me than just a simple liplock. Maybe this is the end of my loneliness. Maybe the confusing appearance of J-Lo in my dream represents my disappointment with what happened with Laurent.

    When I sit down and reflect on my life, I ask myself how I was able to get in such a mess with men. Why is it so difficult to find the right one? Who the hell is this bloody Mr. Right?

    Yes, I´ve lost control of things. Strange things are happening all around me and I just have to let them be. If I embarrass myself for the millionth time, so be it. I’ve cared too much about the wrong things in the past and for what? To end up deserted by my boyfriend? Or act like a nervous teenager with the man of my dreams and then make out with a doctor at a club the next day?

    Maybe that drunk lady is having dinner with her fellow passenger right now. Maybe Laurent laughs when he remembers the way I talked to him, but at least he knows by now that I don´t care. Even that old Israeli lady had adjusted her hair back to normal by the time she was disembarking. Now that I think about it, everything turned out just fine. Everything takes its proper course in life, even if that right path is through shame and stupidity.

    I close my eyes and picture what happened last night. Now I have something nice to think about. I kissed a guy. A handsome blond doctor. Michael was his name. This also happens to be the name of an angel. Then my eyes pop open as suddenly I recall that Lucifer was an angel as well, until he fell plummeted from the sky and took a few other angels with him. Everyone knows how the rest of the story goes.


    ORD watcher
    The reality of life as a hostie

    April 04, 2013 1:45PM

    Flight attendant lets loose on rude passengers
    Says job is challenging, tests his patience
    Treated with contempt and disrespect
    Do you agree? And your views below

    THIS is an open letter to the public from an Australian flight attendant pleading for respect from passengers who, he says, "almost literally get away with murder" on board planes.

    Hi, I'm a flight attendant* and I've had a long history in the customer service industry. From a sunglasses store to a cafe, as a tour guide and now as a flight attendant, I've had my fair share of job experiences over the past 15 years.

    When I was growing up I really looked up to the cabin crew. Their warm smiles, attention and general presence made me feel welcome, comfortable and safe in that metal tube 38,000 feet in the air. It's a job I'd wanted to do for a very long time but I hesitated due to the stereotypical perceptions that come along with the role. Yet, eventually, I decided I love planes, I generally like people and I absolutely love travel, so why not?

    But being a flight attendant has been the most challenging job I've had by far and there's a huge misconception from the general public as to what the role involves and this ambiguous and mysterious representation leaves us open to a wide interpretation of "expectations" from passengers, so I believe it's time to make some clarifications for the general public and blow away the cloud that covers who we are and what we do.

    Having worked as a flight attendant for almost over two-and-a-half years, I feel I'm in a relatively safe position to share this information with the wider public in the hopes they can identify with us and realise what it is we must go through on a daily basis.

    There's no other job I've had where my patience has been tested to the limit.

    Upon boarding an aircraft we greet you with direct eye contact and even mention your name. In response you shove your ticket in our face and continue walking without a hello, nor even a pause for us to check your flight number. This is a bad start. You'll be surprised with how many people don't recognise our existence. You know, talking to a brick wall has never been fun and you do kind of look stupid, so please give us a simple greeting back.

    We don't ask for much.

    And you may be surprised to know we're not slaves or servants. I understand culturally people are different and communication levels change based on region, yet I work mainly on domestic routes in Australia and I know how we generally communicate. Clicking your fingers, waving your cup in the air and pulling at my pants when I walk past are all unacceptable ways to get my attention. A press of the call bell is perfectly acceptable or, if I look at you, a simple wave or hand gesture does the trick.

    Think I'm being too pedantic? On one flight a passenger put all his rubbish in my pocket then told me to "turn around" so he could stuff my other pocket with rubbish.

    In no other industry would I be treated with such contempt and disrespect. I mean when you order food do you pull at someone's clothing? Do you empty rubbish in their pockets? Do you click for attention? When I'm doing my job and giving you an overwing exit briefing must you have your earphones on? Must you roll your eyes at me? It literally takes 30 seconds and I promise I'll leave you alone for the next hour.

    When we ask you to turn off electronic equipment people forget that this is expected from us and we must do it – it's part of our job. We do not do it to annoy you, or because we like being yelled at because their phone which is on sleep is apparently "off".

    I know if I go to ANY establishment and I'm fully aware people are doing what they are required to do (as part of their standard operation procedures) I respect that and do what I'm told.

    But people love to put flight attendants down and call them insulting names such as "Trolley Dolley" and "Waitress in the Sky" - this is all part of the ignorance and misunderstanding of our position. All due respect to waiters and waitresses out there but I've been a waiter before and I was trained within days. However, training to become a flight attendant takes between six-eight weeks of vigorous, intense training.

    We're up to our heads in manuals and updates, we're constantly assessed every six months. We must do first aid training, security training, swimming training, be tested on emergency procedures, theory tests, fire drills, water drills, equipment studies and every day before each flight we are asked questions and assessed and much much more. During the training process people are stressed, it ends in tears for some and the amount of time devoted to getting through training is immense - I'm pretty sure I sprouted my first grey hair during the training for my position.

    People need to realise we're there for your safety that is our number one priority. Next time you fly, look around you - do you ever think 'what happens if someone gets ill on board?' Do you see any ambulance on board?

    Do you ever think 'what happens if someone becomes a threat on board?' Do you see any security on board?

    Do you ever think 'what happens if someone loses their mind on board?' Do you see any psychiatrists on board?

    Do you ever think 'what do we do if there is an emergency?'

    As flight attendants we take on the duty of several roles combined into one - we are the eyes and ears of the aircraft you are on - we are an IMPORTANT part of your flight. Despite filling your bellies we have other roles and responsibilities - most of which we use rarely but are always prepared for. The fact that you don’t see it on that one flight does not mean it doesn't happen.

    Another misconception is bags. It is not the duty of a flight attendant to lift, carry and manoeuvre your bags around the cabin. In saying that I am a big boy, if I see a frail old lady or someone clearly struggling I am more than happy to lift. Yet once I remember I was in the cabin and a passenger told her husband during disembarkation whilst grabbing their bags "Look, he just stands there while you do his job". Clearly she asserted that my job is to take bags out of overhead lockers. Seeming we may deal with 180 bags per flight, and we can fly up to four times a day - I'd be the hunchback of Notre Air by next week!

    If people only knew what we had to go through and continue to go through to maintain our positions they'd possibly treat us differently. I'm a flight attendant and I love it, I want to be proud of this job. I have seen so much and experienced so much and overall the job is wonderful yet many days you leave home disappointed in people.

    If people only knew what we had to go through and continue to go through to maintain our positions they'd possibly treat us differently. I'm a flight attendant and I love it, I want to be proud of this job. I have seen so much and experienced so much and overall the job is wonderful yet many days you leave home disappointed in people.
    I am fully aware that people are of the belief that the "glory days" of air travel are over. Nowadays, with supposed "5 cent" fares on airlines that pride in their budget style of flying we get a whole conglomeration of people on board an aircraft. Yet there is one thing that should never be sacrificed in the airline industry and that is great service. It doesn't matter if I'm serving Toni Colette or Tony from Nimbin - I intend to deliver the same efficient service and with a genuine smile, because, despite my experiences, I still love my job.

    Yes, we've all been there when we board an aircraft and we see that "stereotypical" flight attendant image. Terribly groomed with arms folded and a face that looks like she just sucked a lemon with added salt. We all have seen it before, the flight attendant that clearly does not want to be there but please do not let them become the "face" of the industry. The media doesn't help either, I have noticed the trend of most flight attendant articles being about angry, annoyed and whinging flight attendants that hate their jobs and hate passengers, another reason why people probably come on board and despise us, so I am hoping to reflect a more positive image that thrives off understanding.

    In no other position would people tolerate being so disrespected on a daily basis, but we suck it up and try to move on. I just hope the next time you board a flight you have the courtesy to be nice to your flight attendant, and being nice is as simple as saying "hello, goodbye" and understanding what we do and why we are there - which includes but is NOT exclusive to only feeding you.

    Thanks for your attention and enjoy your flight.

    *Name removed for privacy reasons