What Flight Attendants Want You to Know

Want to be the perfect passenger? Remember these simple tips when you're sailing the friendly skies

Credit: iStock / sjlocke

Remembering your manners, among other things, makes for happy flight attendants

Before you push that flight attendant call bell, follow these tips for smoother, happier air travel

Flight attendants don’t have the easiest of jobs, especially when you consider their environment: cramped quarters, tired and stressed travellers, and long flights.

Have you ever wondered what’s going on in the minds of flight attendants and what travellers do to tick them off?

Here are a few things they probably would like travellers to know.

How to Not to Drive Your Flight Attendant Crazy

Be Polite

It’s common sense, but politeness is appreciated. A simple please or thank you goes a long way when flight attendants are distributing snacks or bringing you a pillow on a 12-hour flight. Make sure to say hello or goodbye when entering and exiting the aircraft, something many passengers don’t bother doing.

Stow Your Own Carry-on

Many people don’t know this, but flight attendants aren’t allowed to lift your luggage into the overhead bin for you (airline rules). They can, however, assist you as you do it yourself.

Keep Your Children in Check

If you’re travelling with a small child and you see them pushing the call button or throwing things into the aisle, stop them. Babysitting is not in the air staff’s job description.

Bring a Pen

It’s not the flight attendants job to deliver pens, although many travellers may think otherwise. If you are travelling, especially outside of Canada, bring a pen. You will need to fill out immigration forms, so be prepared.

Plan Your Lavatory Trips

Make sure that you use the restroom at appropriate times. When the flight attendants are trying to offer food and drink service through the cabin, it’s not a great time for you to get out of your seat. They can’t just move the bulky refreshment cart so that you can get back in your seat. Head to the toilet when the aisles are clear.

The most important thing to remember is to use your manners with airline staff. They are just trying to do their job as efficiently as possible. Odds are they have dealt with some nightmare travellers, so try not to be one.

Founder and president of Travel Best Bets, Claire Newell has appeared on The Today Show, Fox & Friends, Good Day New York, ABC Morning News – Chicago, Martha Stewart Living Radio, and CNN Radio, and is the official travel consultant for Global TV. She has been a spokesperson for Disney’s www.family.com, and featured in promotions for the Vancouver International Airport and the Canadian Tourism Commission. Newell has authored or been featured in articles for Success, Professional Woman, Today’s Parent, Readers Digest and for various newspapers. She is the best selling author of Travel Best Bests – An Insider’s Guide to Taking Your Best Trips, Ever and has just finished her second book.
This wife and mother of two has also launched two lines of luggage & travel accessories. Visit www.clairenewell.com for more information.