Friday, March 13, 2015

A Day in the Life of a Flight Attendent

I was so excited about the topic this week. I'd love to share with you all what a day in the life of a Flight Attendant is. It is not like an everyday Mon - Fri 9-5 job. And it surely isn't the glamorous job it was back In the 60s


Now since my schedule changes every day and week this is just an example of a day I can experience. 

1. My show time for work is 4:30 am for a 5:15 am flight.  I would get up at 3am to get ready, then drive to airport. This is probably the worse day of the trip. I have to get up so early to drive to the airport just to find a parking spot. After you found a spot you have to walk to one of the bus stops to get picked up then dropped off at the airport. I can only dream of being able to park  right in front of the building I work at. 

2. After arriving at the airplane, I do all my safety checks then it is time to board the flight. Boarding is always a hassle. I work on a smaller aircraft where there is a no carry on policy. Which means all the bigger roller board bags need to get gate checked and picked up after arriving at destination. Passengers come on and say "well it fit on the last flight" or "I have a tight connection, I can't wait for my bag". I make my boarding announcement about stowing all carry on and personal items. Including all bags and purses in the bulk head (1st row) must be in the overhead. As I am seeing a lady holding her purse in the first row. I remind her the bag has to go up.  She explains" But this is my purse".  Ok miss, all bags have to go up and a purse is a bag.  Finally boarding is complete! 

3. We arrive at Rochester NY. Of course it is snowing there so that means we have to de-ice to make sure there is no snow that accumulates on the aircraft. This is always a process having to wait in line to get de-iced.  After it is complete we are good to go. We depart a few minutes behind schedule so of course passengers are worried about missing their connections and ask if I can call ahead to let them know they are coming. Sure, let me get out my imaginary computer that is right beside my jump seat and ensure that they will hold your flight because YOU are the only one that has a connection, even though it is a full flight. 

4. We arrive back to Philadelphia and now we are running late and the gate agent asks me if I am ready to board the next flight. Looks like no food or bathroom break for me. After I pick up all the trash that is left on the aircraft from the passengers from he previous flight and cross the seat belts, it's time to put another smile on my face and do it all over again.

5. We do another turn (which is two flights) Philadelphia PA - Columbia,  SC and back to Philadelphia. We finally get back on schedule.  And we have a 2 hr sit before our next flight that goes into our overnight.  We like to call this airport appreciate. Hanging out at the airport before your next flight. Well at least this will give me a break to eat some food. Oh and did I mention during the sit we will be switching aircrafts for the next flight. Why don't we just keep the same aircraft you ask? Well we would like to know that too. And of course the aircraft is late coming into Philadelphia which means we will be leaving late.

We get to our overnight, which is Newark NJ this particular night. Some overnights are fun when you have a long one and are in a fun city and can go out. Sometimes I am lucky enough to meet up with friends who live in or near the city I am staying out for the day/evening.   As you can tell alot of days are busy and you are just too exhausted to want to go out. On days like this I just have time to get some food, get ready for bed, and do it all over again the next day. One nice thing is that we always stay at nice hotels and most of them have gyms that I can use so at least I am sure to get a run in! Sometimes when the weather is nice, I'll take my run outdoors. It's always nice to explore a new city that way.
This job definitely has its ups and downs (and a little turbulence). It does stink working nights, weekends, and holidays. However because it is not like a normal job, you can swap your schedule around get a significant amount of time off and not even use a vacation day. The end of the month I will have 10 days straight off that I plan on soaking up some Florida sunshine. It's times like that which reminds me why I do this job
 
 

 

79 comments:

  1. I loved reading this!! Thanks for sharing about your day. Sounds like it can be really tough sometimes!

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    1. Yes it can. Like any job it has its ups and downs.

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  2. You had me LMAO...soooooo you won't call ahead to make sure MY next plane waits for ME....even though it's ME!? LOL Seems like a pretty jet-setting life to me! Have a wonderful 10 day, well needed, vacation!!!

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    2. Thanks. Yes, I will definitely enjoy my time off.

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  3. I always try to be nice to flight attendants but I especially do since I met you! :) -C

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    1. Thanks Christine:) We really do put up with alot!

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  4. Do you ever come to ILM anymore? Please keep me in mind if you do. I'll take you for a run at the beach, it's beautiful!

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    1. I haven't had that overnight in forever. I'll be sure to let you know if I do in the future.

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  5. Very interesting! I don't think I would do well with that type of job but I give you so much credit! I do think it would be fun to see new places, but the long hours and being away from home would definitely get to me.

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    1. Thanks. Yes it does take some use to living out of a suitcase.

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  6. It is nice that there are some perks to the job like exploring new cities and having some control over your schedule.

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    1. Yes. Perks are a must for what I deal with on a daily basis.

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  7. The schedule flexibility would be really nice! I really admire you for being able to do this job, to run, and to blog! I think flying is so tiring for some reason--and I'm not even doing any work! I guess you get used to it, plus, it's a good way to stay active during the day.

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    1. The flexibility is really great. It can be alot at times, but yes you do get use to it. Thanks Jennifer.

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  8. Kudos to you! I know a flight attendant is a job I could never have because I'm such a nervous flyer. I don't know why that started, but it happened years ago. And all those people you have to deal with...

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    1. Yes dealing with the passengers is the most stressful.

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  9. This was so interesting to read! I can imagine it would be such a tiring job. Every time I do the Australia to Europe flight, I pity the poor attendants who are stuck on the plane for 14 hour legs!

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    1. Luckily my flights are never that long. But there are times when I do not get off the plane until I get to my overnight.

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  10. I always thought this would be a "cool" job. However, I don't see how you can calmly deal with some of those passengers! I bet you have some very interesting stories! It's nice you get stay in good hotels and can run.

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    1. Oh my stories could go on and on. Not as"cool" as some may think.

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  11. I often feel so bad for flight attendants when passengers try to use excuses for why they must have a bag or why they must do something. You're there for everybody's safety!

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    1. Exactly! Safety is our number one priority, but others think that they are.

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  12. This is really interesting as I had no idea what a day in the life of a flight attendant was like. Thanks for sharing! Dealing with passengers and the bag headaches really sounds like a pain :( But those 10 days off in Florida sound like a wonderful perk!

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    1. Yes alot of pain, but a gain to have that time off:)

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  13. i love reading this! One of my best friends is a flight attendant and he has similar crazy days and the crazyiest passengers stories

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    1. With all the passengers stories I really could write a book.

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  14. Lol so much sass. When your career centers around dealing with people you get to experience so many funny stories like that. I loved reading this! I had no idea what an ACTUAL day-in-the-life of a flight attendant was like.

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  15. I cant even imagine... I hate to fly more then anything in this world so to have a job where I'm constantly flying? I'd just want to punch myself in the face every day instead.

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    1. I think that about working a desk job. But their cushy schedules are nice such as not working holidays.

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  16. Thank goodness you are young! The life of a stewardess seems so demanding and some of the unpleasantness I have witnessed from fellow passengers must be at times a true test of your patience. BUT, if you get the pleasure of running in different cities and enjoy a nice block of time somewhere pretty and warm, it's all good! I will look for you in the skies Meranda!

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    1. You won't be seeing Meranda in the skies. It's Lacey that is the flight attendant. I think it does help that I am young with the crazy schedules but there are so many that have been doing it for 30 plus yrs. I dont know how they have done it for so long.

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  17. Interesting! I fly a little aircraft like yours when I leave directly from our town (we then go to DFW or Houston to get on a bigger plane), so I'm familiar with valet checking your carry on, etc. And I misread #3 at first, and thought you DID offer to call ahead, and was all "they've never done that for me!" - LOL.

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    1. Haha yeah. There is so many times I just want to say yes we will so they stop giving me a hard time.

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  18. Wow Lacey what a schedule! I'm impressed that you are able to balance so much with your work, running, and blogging. Your 10 days off in a row will be well deserved for sure :)

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    1. Yes it will. I am really looking forward to it.

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  19. Wow! that is a crazy schedule. I had a friend in college who was a flight attendant for awhile and I got to visit her in NYC on standby flights. I cannot imagine doing this daily!! You're amazing, thanks for sharing.

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    1. Thanks Mar. Flights are great when they work out, but having to fly standby can be so stressful at times. I sometimes even purchase tickets.

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  20. I always thought being a flight attendant would be an interesting job to have! The hospitality/customer serve field always welds some humorous/stressful stories and situations. Thanks for giving some more insight into this job!

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    1. Interesting to say the least. Oh the stories I could tell.

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  21. I used to want to be a flight attendant. I thought it would be a good opportunity to see a lot of different places. I can relate to every job having its ups and downs. The life of a pastry chef isn't always glamorous either. I hope you have an awesome time in Florida!

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    1. Thanks! Pastry chef sounds so delicious. I wouldn't want to be around that so much. Too tempting.

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  22. Oh wow. What a neat job you have. I'm sure it is hectic at times but you get to meet so many people and so so many places. I would have loved to do this when I was younger. I enjoyed reading this so much! I guess I can live vicariously through you! Hope you have a great weekend!

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    1. Thanks Tricia. I do get to see alot of places but most times I am so tired from working all day that I just relax in room. I like to travel on days off to see all the fun cities I don't get to go while I'm working.

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  23. Oh wow. What a neat job you have. I'm sure it is hectic at times but you get to meet so many people and so so many places. I would have loved to do this when I was younger. I enjoyed reading this so much! I guess I can live vicariously through you! Hope you have a great weekend!

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  24. I think I would have liked your job. I love chaos and changing schedules. I also have a public service job, so I understand the suck that is always having a smile on your face. However, the idea of exploring a new city sounds amazing! This was a great post!

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    1. Thanks. This surely has a bunch of chaos in the job. It's always nice when things run smoothly. It is fun, But after awhile you see all the same cities.

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  25. Wow that is some schedule you have. Enjoy that 10-day stretch!

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  26. This was such an interesting read for me! Over the past year, I went from being terrified of flying to actually loving it. I've even been wondering if becoming a flight attendant was something that I would be interested in.

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    1. I still love traveling when I am not working. It reminds me why I do this job. But traveling for work because you have to and Going on vacation are surely two different things.

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  27. Loved getting to learn more about your life! I'm impressed that you are so consistent with your exercise while traveling - it's always a challenge for me. Staying at hotels with gyms really helps. Hope you enjoy your time in Florida!

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    1. Thanks Emily. It helps when all the hotels have a gym accessible. Now that it is getting warmer out I'll be able to explore a little more and run outside.

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  28. Yours is the most interesting day I've read about! I travel a fair amount and want to punch some passengers who have the "I'm the most important person here" complex. I guess I feel that way about rude people everywhere, but you can't escape them on a plane. That 10-day break sounds well earned!

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    1. Thanks Elizabeth. Looking forward to my time off. Glad you understand what I go through. I suppose every customer service job can be like that at times.

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  29. I dont' think I knew you were a flight attendant! I am sure that is a much more stressful and exhausting job than people might think!

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    1. Yes it really is! Not the glamorous life that some may think.

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  30. It's nice that you get to travel! I had no idea you were a flight attendant! A tough job with good benefits. I have to park really far away from the hospital where I work. Even though I'm a "provider", a nurse practitioner, the hospital doesn't see me as important as a doctor...

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  31. It sounds like a hard job, but the perks sound great. Enjoy your well-earned 10 days off!

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    1. It is at times. But when it does get rough I always remind myself of the benefits.

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  32. I've always wondered the true life of a flight attendant! What a cool post! Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Your welcome. I hope people really know how our day is alot of the time. It's not as glamorous as it once was.

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  33. Yes, this is great! I've worked in customer service as well but not in tight spaces - I'm sure people can be the worst and you just want to run and scream! Good for you for keeping up your workout routine while on the road. That is no small task.

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    1. Yes. Sometimes I feel like running but like you said tight work space and no where to go. Luckily most hotels have a decent gym

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  34. I have nothing but respect for flight attendants. You put a large group of people from all walks of life in a confined space for a prolonged period of time and something is gonna happen. That you guys deal with it plus the hectic schedule is amazing.

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  35. I loved reading this. So fascinating! I have the greatest respect for flight attendants! The job seems hard, and the ones I've seen do it with a smile, even when there are some rude people on flights!

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    1. It's not always easy to keep a smile. Some days I have to work a bit harder at it.

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  36. Fun, I had no idea this was your job! Enjoy your 10 days off :)

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  37. Kudos! I have lots of respect for flight attendants. They have a tough job with customers who can less than friendly (although I am always polite!). I definitely couldn't do this job but thankful to those who do!!
    Karen @karenlovestorun

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    1. If everyone could be polite as you, our jobs would be so much easier!

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  38. I loved reading about your day! Tough job but I can see some perks! This was a fun read!!

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  39. I had no idea that you were a flight attendant! This is such a cool post! :D

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  40. I didn't have any idea you were a flight attendant either :) I've always felt like this was a pretty tough job!
    That's awesome you can get a long break swapping :)

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  41. How cool. I didn't know you were a F/A. I was one from 1998-2003. Sounds like not a whole lot has changed. It's HARD WORK and not all as glamorous as some people think.

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  42. Sounds far more exhausting than I would have imagined. I like when you said "..... put another smile on my face and do it all over again." We passengers assume you've just gotten a wonderful night's sleep and this is your first flight of the day. Thanks for making our flying experience more enjoyable!

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Fairytales and Fitness is a personal blog authored and edited by us, Meranda and Lacey. The thoughts expressed here represent only our own and are not meant to be taken as professional advice. Please note that our thoughts and opinions change from time to time. We consider this a necessary consequence of having an open mind in an ever changing society. Any thoughts and opinions expressed within our out-of-date posts may not be the same, nor even similar, to those we may express today.