What it is really like to be a flight attendant.

What it is really like to be a flight attendant.

Flying in to PHX.

I’ve spoke on what it is like to be a flight attendant in my blog What to expect when being a reserve flight attendant , but that was directed toward being a reserve. I am still on reserve but I’d like to go in depth a little more for anyone who has ever thought of becoming cabin crew, for any airline.

#1) First of all, lets set things straight here, for the record. Flight attendants do not make a lot of money! Even if you are senior, you will average about $45,000 a year, and at some airlines a select few might make up to $70,000k. Don’t come into this job thinking you will make six figures because that’s not the case. We (flight attendants) don’t enter this field thinking we will make a hefty amount. We do this job because we love what we do. After all, who wouldn’t want to travel the world at someone elses expense and get paid for it?

#2) As we all know, being any position in cabin crew, whether it be a pilot or flight attendant there is no routine. One day we could do 3 legs — legs are what we call from take off to landing, the next we could deadhead. Deadheading is where a crew member is working but is flying in a passengers seat, with positive space. Deadheading is really the company moving an employee from one place to another to work, or get back to base. This is not your typical 9-5 job. This is what makes it so appealing. I think many FA’s have had the 9-5 experience and decided that wasn’t for them. All the flying, time zone changes, pax (crew slang for passengers) giving you a hard time definitely takes a toll on your body. O
ne of the best things about this job is that you don’t take it home with you when you are off. The worst thing that can happen is that you forgot to give that guy in 25F a water.

#3) But, while you are at work you are a Jaqueline (or Jack) of all trades. You are a doctor, firefighter, therapist, and many more! We are the safety professionals, well, at least thats what my airline refers to us as! If there is an emergency in the sky, people look to us 4, or 5 flight attendants to solve it. Being the A FA, Lead, pursuer, or whatever your airline calls it, makes the pressure pile up even more!

#4) So, you finally get to your hotel on layover and you discover that this is lonely. Coming back to an empty hotel room in a different city after a long day of work can be pretty sad. I am writing this post on a layover in New Jersey. We spend hours alone in the hotel, and at the airport. It can be especially lonely if you don’t get a crew that wants to hang out. You’re then stuck running around exploring a new city by yourself. Lets face it though, sometimes its better to explore alone if you don’t want to compromise what you guys are going to do, where you want to eat and etc. Weeks away from home can definitely take a toll on your mood.

#5) You’re at a high risk of getting sick. Being stuck in a flying can all day with people who don’t wash their hands after they use the lav and cough everywhere is a sure fire way to weaken your immune system. According to some studies I’ve read, cabin crew is also at higher risk for respiratory problems due to poor air quality, skin cancer and others.

Don’t let this scare you at all! The pros of being cabin crew outweighs the cons by miles. Here are a couple of the pros!

#1) You get to travel on pretty much any airline. Domestically, there is usually no cost and on international trips you just pay the taxes.

#2) You will make friends all over the world. At a regular office job, you likely won’t encounter thousands of people at work a day. Being a flight attendant is an amazing job to network. You don’t know who you’re helping, and how they just might be able to help you!

#3) Hate your coworkers? You might not ever fly with them again! You don’t always work with the same people. This can be intimidating at first, but overtime believe me it is so much better! (the only downfall about this one is that 5 minutes ago you all just introduced each other and now your evacuating a plane in 90 seconds. The comfort all comes with time, though!)

#4) Layovers are like mini vacations. What if you have an amazing crew? Or, you get lucky and buddy bid with your best pal! If you get lucky and end up having 20 hours in San Diego, or laying over in your favorite city in Europe and having an amazing time! What if you don’t have a good crew, but feel like going to your favorite nail salon in Miami, or shopping in Paris? Safe to say its like a vacation, or maybe it’s just the hotel stays that make it feel like that? Hmmm….

There are so many pros and cons to living this jet set life! I wouldn’t rule it out unless I tried it, for the many people that are even given the opportunity. This is one of the most competitive industries in the world and we can all see why! What are some of your experiences?!

*All opinons are my own*

*This post is NOT sponsored*

*Disclosure: Some of these links may be affiliate links, at no additional cost to you, I may make a small commission*