Coffee talk with a flight attendant
Updated: Dec 10, 2021
Being a flight attendant is a tough job! While most of us think it is all glitz and glamour, it takes more than just looking pretty and pouring out your favorite drinks to hold this position. As one of the most sought-after careers in the world, flight attendants undergo a very tough training period and learn to master the art of keeping their composure with time. The perks are super sweet but just imagine being on a plane ALL THE TIME! I sat down with my favorite flight attendant and asked her a few questions.
J.T. How long have you been a flight attendant?
Y.H. I have been a flight attendant for 10 years. Every airline has a different training process, depending on how many airplanes they have. So, the more aircrafts, the longer the training. But typically, it is 1-2 months. Mine was about 3 weeks.
J.T. What do you love most about your job?
Y.H. What I love most about my job, besides traveling for free, is my mom being able to travel for free as well. And also having a lot of days off if I want to. After a while you get to make your own schedule as you would like and I am very lucky to be able to do that.
J.T. What do you like the least about your job?
Y.H. What I like the least is the fact that we have a lot of unpaid time on the job. For example, we do not get paid when the flight is delayed.
J.T. Do you ever get scared?
Y.H. The only time I have been scared because of a flight, was maybe my 2nd flight out of training. The turbulence was so bad, all I kept thinking was I hadn’t spoken to my mom that day. The girl I was flying with asked me if I was scared (she must have sensed that I was) and she just told me to get used to it because “this was nothing” Lol. And she was totally right, I have had much worse turbulence since then. But after that flight I called my mom crying, I felt better and realized that what is meant to be will be. I haven’t been scared since.
J.T. What’s your craziest experience on the job? Sweet or sour.
Y.H. The best experience was meeting one of my celebrity crushes. There are so many weird things that happen, that after a while nothing surprises you. Someone pooped on a seat? Ok. A kid threw up in the aisle? Alright. Someone left their underwear in the seat back pocket? Awesome. You saw someone clipping their toenails on the tray table? Interesting. Lol…like nothing is shocking anymore.
J.T. You always have a carry on, what’s in it? Things you have to have.
Y.H. I have learned to pack light. In the beginning you think it might rain, bring an umbrella! It might be sunny, bring a bathing suit! It might snow, bring a coat! My bag was so heavy. I had to cut down and be realistic. So now I only bring what I KNOW for sure I will use. I always pack sneakers, a long sleeve shirt and enough under garments for two extra days just in case. My MUST haves are: moisturizer, make-up, a book and my cell phone charger.
At home tip: Flying often dehydrates your body. I always drink plenty of water and I use a face mask sheet once a week and keep them in the fridge for extra cooling effect.
J.T. Any travel hacks? Packing tips?
Y.H. The best travel hack is to always have a snack because a short day or “easy” day can always take a turn for the worst with delays caused by weather or unforeseen events. So always have a snack, a good book, and/or a fully charged phone. If you are travelling with children, always pack extra diapers and food just in case. Try to put all the things you need for your flight into your smaller carry on, that way you can step out of the aisle on the plane quickly and not have to start grabbing things you need last minute.
Try packing clothes in the same tones so that you don't have to bring too many shoes for different outfits. ALWAYS keep your toiletries with you with a change of clothes. Cancellations happen!
I would also advise people to never walk around barefoot in the aisle, never drink the water from the sink and always wipe down their tray tables and seat. I mean passengers actually do the things I mentioned earlier and more often than you might realize.
J.T. What’s one thing you wish you could tell people when you are working? Be nice lol
Y.H. One thing or two, that I wish I could tell people when I am working…first, to be realistic and to be kind. Most people are nice but every once in a while, you get someone who is just mean and unrealistic. A flight that may be five hours, they want you to make it in two. Also, try and use common sense. Some things I am just baffled by and they usually have to do with a lack of just plain old common sense. Delays happen, so be prepared always. Being nice does matter, trust me, we notice.
J.T. What’s a misconception people have about your job?
Y.H. I think the biggest misconception is that we have a glamorous life and we travel the world. It is a blessing but most days I just rather be home. Once I am off the plane, I just want to be home. Lol
J.T. Who is your favorite superhero and why?
Y.H. My favorite superhero is Superman. He was strong when he needed to be and very human when he needed to be. He had weaknesses and strengths. And of course, he could fly.
J.T. What country is next on your bucket list?
Y.H. At the top of my bucket list is Australia, I have yet to go.
J.T. Best travel advice you give to people who are scared of flying?
Y.H. My best advice for people who fear flying, is to understand that flying is probably one of the safest forms of transportation. The likeliness of something bad happening is really small. And if that doesn’t help, I always say drink a glass or two of wine, it usually helps calm the nerves.
J.T. Last but not least, how do we get a free upgrade?
Y.H. There is no sure way to get a free upgrade lol. At some airlines, flight attendants usually only upgrade other flight attendants and that is very rare. It is purely a case by case situation, each airline has their own rules and obviously it's a personal call. Maybe there was an error so you ended up with an unintended upgrade or it was just your lucky day! The best way is the traditional one so use the points you have accumulated with your credit card company or a loyalty program, that way you are sure to score the perfect seat.
(I really tried guys...)
Below is a list of Yussuang’s favorite things.
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