A Flight Attendant’s Workday: The Predictably Unpredictable Life Of A Cabin Crew Member

Whenever I think I’ve seen it all, I’m surprised by the “OMG! That’s never happened before” moments.  I shouldn’t be so surprised, though.  I have been flying for less than three years and that is only the equivalent of months compared with the career stew.  There is still heaps of time to have new moments and situations.

In my few years of flying, I’ve observed and learned a lot about people.  I’ve learned what it’s really like to work as a flight attendant.  Maybe not as glamorous as it possibly appears on the outside.  I’m not sure it is what I expected.  I think it’s better than I expected.  (I now recommend that all of my friends become flight attendants.  Mostly so we can travel the world together).

I understand that being a flight attendant is about safety and customer service.  I see now that flight attendants are smarter than most give them credit for (even though, they can sometimes make stupid decisions).  I’ve learned that what makes the job so great is not the job itself, it’s the people who I work with.  The people who have become some of my closest friends.

My Fun Co-Workers

There is never a typical day when it comes to flying, but there are things to be expected.  Here are my two cents for those that are curious about what a Flight Attendant’s workday is like and what to expect.

Expect This:


They happen.  They are.  Just get used to them.  Typically, delays happen when you make plans after work.  It’s just some sort of weird, ironic karma.

Too Many People, In Too Small of Spaces.

After seeing, interacting, and bossing around 350 to 600 people in one day, in my “office”, I usually want to hide under a rock for a few days to recuperate.

Pack Your Patience.

Simple as that.   It should be part of a Flight Attendant’s required items like the Flight Attendant Manual.  Patience is one of the most important attributes a flight attendant can carry-on the aircraft.

Some Awesome Passengers.  Some Terrible Passengers.

For every jerk that walks on the plane, there are always those super-rad, nice, and considerate people who make the day better.  Focus on them. Focus on the positive moments in the workday.

Never Take Rudeness Personally.

If someone is pissed off, they are just pissed off.  Not your fault. You have no idea what is happening in their life, so just do your job, be kind, and let “it” go.

Live More of Your Life Outside of Work Than Inside.

It’s easy to get caught in the gossip life of flying, especially when work is where you spend most of your time.  Appreciate your co-workers, and build an honest rapport with them.  Be respectful of their personal lives.  Encourage a positive work environment by checking gossip at the gate.  Gossip will always circulate, but make an honest attempt to be where negative energy stops.

Don’t Live With, or Date People You Fly With.

Keep your life simple.  Quickest way to add drama to your life is ignore this bit of advice.


If you are interested in finding a job as a flight attendant, take a look at online job postings for airlines hiring flight attendants, and you are always welcome to email me at kara@theflightattendantlife.com with questions.


About the Author Kara

Curious. Bubbly. Creative. Curating a life I don't need an escape from and inspiring you to do the same.

follow me on:
To Be Here | The Flight Attendant Life says May 12, 2012

[…] kindly directing a lady to an open seat, assisting her with her luggage, and just doing my job, she sneered, “Well, if you would just get out of my […]

Nicole Boggs says August 18, 2012

I want to become a flight attendant as soon as possible what do I do and where do I start?

    Sergiu Andreca says August 18, 2012

    Google the airlines hiring flight attendants and apply online for all that are accepting applications. It helps if you have a background in the hospitality industry

Kylie Riebe says December 27, 2012

Your particular airline seems much better than other ones I’ve read about on different blogs. I’m extremely interested in becoming a flight attendant but I don’t want to be making 14,000 a year. What airline do you work for, and is that seriously a typical starting salary for a flight attendant?

Comments are closed