20 Things Your Flight Attendant Would Like You To Know

If you are a Flight Attendant, you are the heart and soul of an airlines customer service.  The way the customer is treated and the experience they receive defines whether or not that customer comes back to the airline as a repeat customer.  Some people are intensely loyal to certain airlines and some are simply bargain hunters.  In the same way that you look at flight attendants and evaluate their service, they look at customers and evaluate their careers.  Flight attendants are professionals, they cater to hundreds of individuals each and every day.  To say they are experts on human behavior while traveling would be an understatement.    Included is a list of twenty observations that are pretty much standard in industry.  This means it really does not matter what airline it is, people all exhibit one of these behavior traits at some time.

  1. This bag will fit in the overhead bin! This is the usual response when a flight attendant tells you that your bag will not fit.  Of course the passenger knows more about the aircraft and the bin measurements which leads them to taking their bag anyway, trying to get it in the overhead bin, finding out that it wont fit and then disrupting the entire boarding process by trying to come back up the isle with their suitcase.  I would say this statement is issued at least 5 times per flight.  If you work 3 flights a day for 5 days straight that is 15 times per week.  If you do some math, that is 4500 times per year per flight attendant.  That is a lot.
  2. Please don’t hit on me.   Believe it or not, a flight attendant is on board for your safety, not your entertainment.  Most think they are reduced to the waitress in the sky.  The fact of the matter is a flight attendant is responsible for evacuating the aircraft in case of an emergency.  It does not happen often, but when it does, they are right up there in hero status.  If you are attracted, great, thanks for the compliment.  If I am attracted, I will let you know and share my contact information.  Please do not embarrass us with pick up lines.
  3. You don’t have to touch me while you are ordering. This is mostly about men and senior citizens. Some people, especially older people, are sweet, some are not.  If everyone touched their flight crew, the chances of getting sick increase tremendously.
  4. I am not your personal babysitter; you are the parent, how about disciplining your children.   This is an age old problem, some people have very poor parenting skills.  Lets be honest here for a minute, there is a good chance that your child is going to act poorly on a flight.  That’s ok, it happens, however some of you just do not care.  That is where the problem comes in.  We are not talking about just a child kicking the sit back of the person in front of them.  Included are children that are allowed to roam the cabin unattended (2 year old’s),  asking flight attendants to watch your kid while you take a nap, ignoring kids that are screaming because you want to watch the movie and the list goes on an on.  Flight attendants are not paid to watch your kids, a little discipline goes a long way.  And while we are on that subject, lets look at number 5.
  5. Just because you have kids doesn’t mean the world stops and begins revolving around you.There is always going to be the passengers with children that just cannot seem to cope with the idea that they have a child, and an extra bag or two and now they have to either get on the airplane or get off the airplane.  You have seen them, it takes them forever to grab their kid and their gear and get off.  For some reason its usually parents with just one kid.  They cannot seem to figure out how to pick up a child and walk off the plane.  They also cannot figure out, that they have arrived at their destination and now they have to gather all their belongs that have been spread out in the row and leave.
  6. If you bought a $90 ticket and let your kids cause $100 worth of damage, you owe us money. Kids do damage and parents really do not care too much.  The “someone else will clean it up” mentality seems to prevail as their child grinds Cheeto’s into the carpet.  Aircraft walls are colored on, TV screens have been colored on with sharpie markers (amazing) formula is spilled, lunch is dumped in seat back pockets and the list goes on and on.
  7. I get paid to put up with you. Some people are problems the minute they walk onto the aircraft.  They are demanding, demeaning and super high maintenance.  They think the flight attendant role is of a butler or personal attendant.  You would think someone is filming a TV show the drama is so much.
  8. You are not entitled to overhead bin space. Fist fights have broken out over this very fact of entitlement.  People assume that the overhead bin directly over their seat is theirs exclusively.  The fact is, it is shared space.  If the space over your seat is full, find another bin.  If everyone got this simple fact down, life would become much much easier and the cops would have less to do.  Every year people try to get away from checking their bags and try to sneak more carry on bags than the airline allows.  Its a new era, get over it.
  9. I am not the maid.  We come through the cabin several times with garbage bags to collect your garbage.  However no one seems to realize that we are collecting the garbage that you do not want to take with you.  We find it jammed into seat back pockets or left all over the plane.  Have a heart, someone has to clean it up, just throw it into the bag when we walk by.
  10. I do have a brain, in fact there is a good chance I am smarter than you considering you don’t know where row 25 is. Many flight attendants have college degrees, speak multiple languages and have retired from thriving careers.  Some have become flight attendants as a second career to see the world and travel.  But many are treated poorly as if they are some second class citizen.
  11. Why are you not listening when we make our announcement about what snacks and drinks are available? If you did not get refreshments because you were not listening you would probably pay attention.
  12. Please and thank you go a long way.   The polite customer is very rare, so rare in fact it makes us take notice more than bad behavior.  Simple good manners are essential in public transportation.  Not only with crews but with fellow passengers.  It is a well documented fact that ticket prices are proportional to behavior.  The lower the prices the more behavioral issues you will have.
  13. If you cannot put your carry on bag into the overhead bin, then you should not be allowed to bring it onto the plane. If you cannot lift it, chances are neither can anyone else.  If you have a bag that is that heavy, check it at the ticket counter.  I am not paid to hoist your heavy bag into the overhead because you put too much stuff in it. Every year we have a high percentage of Flight attendants who are on medical leave because they hurt their backs putting your stuff away.  That means we try to be helpful and end up with an on the job injury.
  14. I don’t think your pet is cute. So please leave it in the carrier like the rules state.  The airlines carry millions of pets each year.  Almost all of them are small and social.  Some just want out of the carrier and people start by opening the bag so they can stick their head out.  It usually ends with someone carrying the pet down the isle as they deplane the aircraft.
  15. Why can’t you close the bathroom door after using it? It was closed when you got there.  And when you are in there, do us all a favor, put your paper towels in the garbage can not on the floor.  We are all humans but sometimes are abilities to be civil are lacking.
  16. Most people lose the “common sense gene” the moment they get on the plane. I don’t know what it is about getting on the airplane that causes everyone to completely lose their minds. All you have to do is find your seat, stow your gear and sit down, pretty simple.
  17. Someday you will learn how bad the idea of wearing flip flops on the airplane really is. All it will take is for someone who doesn’t have a clue to roll his suitcase over your precious toes and you will regret wearing those silly flip flops onto the plane. You could also be the obnoxious guy who thinks he can have his feet in the aisle while we are doing our service; in that case we aim for your feet just to teach you a lesson.
  18. Why do you feel you’re special and that the seat belt sign does not apply to you? Obviously you have never been in turbulence and experienced being thrown around the airplane. The Captain turned it on for a reason.  If you saw the actual facts about passengers and flight attendants that were injured due to inflight clear air turbulence, you would never get up.
  19. Why didn’t you go to the bathroom before you got on the plane? This is something I teach my kids.
  20. Please leave your shoes on and do your personal hygiene at home.  For some people travel should be more comfortable without your shoes or socks on.  Maybe trimming your toenails in flight is  something you think everyone would enjoy.  Really?  Get a grip on reality, personal hygiene begins at home and stays at home.

Check out https://rantsofasassystew.com/ if your still convinced that people behave poorly while flying.

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