People who are curious about trying this career for themselves often message me asking me what I love (and hate) about this career. This job is singularly the hardest and easiest, worst and best, funnest and least fun job I’ve ever had. These reasons are, ironically, exactly why I love it. Which brings me to my first point of why I love being a flight attendant.
For me, I have always loved spontaneity and disliked anything too consistent. The 9-5 type of work day makes me want to crawl in a hole and hide in a blanket. It honestly fills me with dread. I’ve done it, made the best friends in the process, and found amazing things to be had in it…HOWEVER, the idea of sticking with it for life would make me feel crazy.
The more senior you get with being a flight attendant, the easier it is to control your own hours and get the days you want off. My philosophy is to bid for the lowest amount of credits (basically means hours) and then I work really hard and am gone for a couple weeks. Then I get the rest of the month off to be with my husband. My schedule is always changing, but that’s my current vibe. I feel like the only other career that allows you this sort of schedule is the oil rigs and I just can’t see myself in a hard hat.
Another unique thing about inflight service is that you’re always working with different people. While I know some flight attendants buddy bid (which allows you to work with your fave FA more often), almost every single flight I might know only a few of the crew. Maybe. Sometimes I know no one. There are times I wish that I could work with the same people more, but it’s fun to constantly be making new friends.
Sometimes I get lucky and fly with the people I trained with. We’ve gone through a lot together, so they are dear to my heart.
There’s something very special about the team player element of being cabin crew. Even though you’ve only known each other for an hour, you have to work as a team. Whether it’s business as usual, or there’s a crazy situation/emergency, you have to be able to rely on each other and support one another like you’re family.
This is a no-brainer. Travel and experiencing different cultures is my passion. However, I see my short layovers as little appetizers to see if I want to come back on my own time. Being a flight attendant gives you that opportunity.
Most flights are calm, where all the passengers are made of angel dust and nothing happens. Then, I’ve had flights where passengers are lying unconscious in the aisle, the turbulence is so bad I’m even a touch nervous, the fighting couple literally need to be separated mid-flight, the drunk man is so cooked he can’t get off the plane, and there’s an unconscious woman lying in my lap getting blood all over my uniform.
Every single month the schedule changes, you never know where you might be flying. That said, even when you’re in the middle of a flight everything can change. I’ve been re-routed from Delhi to Copenhagen because of unsafe airspace. Or there might be a medical that has you land in Iceland (that happened to husby on one of his business trips). You might be delayed many hours and have to layover somewhere else. Nothing is ever certain.
While that might drive some people crazy, never completely knowing what a day may bring forth is the stuff I live off of. The possibility of anything happening and just going with the flow is fun for me.
This is the reason I don’t think I will ever get a gym membership. I love that every hotel has a gym, and if I’m not too tired, it always feels so good to get a workout in.
In the flight industry, you’re always meeting new people. It’s rare to fly the same passengers all the time, although it does happen. Exhibit A: the Irish baby I flew to Vancouver and held in the galley for an hour. Said baby peed on me. I flew the baby back to Dublin a few weeks later but did not hold the baby because of trust issues.
I love how colourful some of the passengers are. I don’t know what it is about air travel, but it brings out an interesting side of people. My theory is pressurized air is to blame for the craziness…but in all honesty, I love my passengers. I’ve met the coolest people flying.
This is my absolute favourite. I’ve always been a story collector. The experiences of traveling in a metal tube with hundreds of every kind of person imaginable are the stuff that collect bookcases worth of drama, parables, romance, intrigue, and most of all, comedy. Even if nothing happens on your flight, you can be sure someone will tell you a colourful tale.
The fact me and the hubs can fly the world for very little coin is pretty awesome. As long as we have no strict time constraints it tends to work out well. There’s a bit of an art to booking tickets when you’re standby and I feel like we’re always finding new ways/loopholes to get where we need to go. However, sometimes we just pay full ticket fare or use our aeroplan points because the stress of flying standby is not worth it.
While a lot of FAs hate that our dress code is so strict, I appreciate having limited choices. When it’s time for work, I never hesitate on what I’m wearing, how I will do my hair, or what I will use for makeup. I like a good time saver.
Hope you enjoyed this list! Like every job, there’s always pros and cons. While there are so many pros, these ones are the ones that get me. As for cons, there’s definitely a list for that too…but at the end of the day, for me, I’m here for it.
What are some of your favourite things about your job? What’s your best work story? Does your job have a dress code?
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