Looking for the ultimate cabin crew secrets to help you survive your next flight?
Well there’s a lot more to the job than meets the eye, so to make travelling easier and your flying experience better, here’s a few tips from the pros.
Read on to find out some of the best hacks and tips provided by cabin crew members. And be ready to take on a new perspective when it comes to flying.
1) Choose the Right Seat for Your Needs
Cabin crew often deal with passengers unhappy with their seat on the plane, and that is why they recommend you pre-book the right seat for your needs when flying.
Do you prefer to sit by the window and watch take-off and landing and get a few hours’ sleep? Or do you often need to use the bathroom and hate having to ask to move past others?
Whether it’s an aisle seat or a window seat, make sure to consider this before you fly. This makes the cabin crew’s jobs much easier too!
2) Wait for Boarding at a Nearby Gate Instead
In order to avoid the crowded gate, cabin crew suggest that instead of sitting right by your gate, you take a seat at an empty nearby gate.
This gives you a chance to relax before boarding and appreciate peace and quiet before the crowdedness of the plane cabin.
It also gives you a chance to charge all of your electronics, as there is more likely to be a spare plug socket to use!
3) Pre-Order a Vegetarian Meal
Did you know that cabin crew heat and serve the vegetarian or specially requested meals first?
If you find you get hungry particularly quickly, make sure to pre-order a requested meal upon booking your flight, that way you get served your meal first!
This stops you from being the last person to get your meal on the plane and according to cabin crew the options are slim pickings.
This can happen if everyone chooses the pasta dish over something less appetising.
4) Cabin Crew Can Refill Your Water Bottle
One of the best ways to be eco-friendly on a flight according to cabin crew is for fellow passengers to bring a reusable water bottle.
They recommend a stainless-steel bottle, something like the Chilly’s bottles, which keep cold drinks cold and hot drinks hot for several hours.
This also ensures you stay hydrated throughout your flight, especially if you are travelling long-haul.
You can simply board the plane and politely ask the cabin crew to refill your bottle, although this is sometimes dependant on the airline. So, make sure to check before you travel.
5) Try Not to Wear Makeup on Your Flight
It is a requirement for cabin crew to look their best on a flight, and that includes wearing makeup.
However, cabin crew recommend that as a passenger you go bare faced. When flying, makeup can break up and create an uncomfortable layer on the face, which is why they have to constantly top-up their makeup mid-flight.
As you can imagine this must be very uncomfortable for the crew, especially on long haul flights! Instead, use a heavy, thick moisturiser to keep your skin from becoming dry and dehydrated due to the air-conditioning.
6) Try Not to Fall Asleep Straight Away
Cabin crew advise against going to sleep as soon as your rear hits the seat. This is due to the time schedules they run, especially on long-haul flights!
The cabin crew have a list of announcements before, during and after take-off, which is then often succeeded by a drink service and then a meal service.
It isn’t until after these announcements and services that the cabin begins to calm and this is when you should think about taking a nap.
This is also the best time to get stuck into that book you have always wanted to read, or that movie you have always wanted to watch, which leads swiftly on to our next tip.
7) Invest in Noise Cancelling Headphones and Personal Electronics
Another tip from cabin crew is to invest in good quality noise-cancelling headphones.
As we all know, the noise on an aircraft can be very intense, anything that can block out as much noise as possible means you can fully immerse yourself in your favourite film or book.
A lot of airlines are also beginning to offer services on their planes that allow you to access Wi-Fi and use your own personal electronics to access the in-flight entertainment system, as sometimes the seatback screens may be faulty or broken.
Cabin crew also suggest – as well as noise cancelling headphones – that you bring alternative entertainment, such as a pack of cards, book/kindle or an iPad to stream movies and TV shows.
8) Bring Slip-On Shoes to Protect Your Feet
Do you like taking your shoes off on a flight? According to cabin crew, you should make sure your feet are protected at all times when manoeuvring the cabin once the seatbelt sign is off.
More often than not, accidents can happen on the plane where glass has been broken or excess food has been dropped on the floor by the crew during the post-meal clean up.
They recommend bringing a pair of slip on shoes or slippers that can easily fit in your hand luggage in order to keep your feet safe.
It’s also a good idea for bathroom visits, because you never know if that wet patch you have stood in is definitely water!
9) Stay Hygienic!
Having good personal hygiene on a flight is common courtesy to not only your fellow passengers, but also the cabin crew.
The in-flight team appreciate passengers that keep themselves clean, especially during long flights as they have a lot of one-on-one interaction with you.
As you can imagine, it’s not very pleasant to deal with a passenger who has bad body odour or bad breath when talking due to the close proximity.
It’s worth picking up a tube of toothpaste, travel toothbrush and a travel sized deodorant to keep yourself smelling clean and fresh.
It’s also recommended by the cabin crew that you bring anti-bacterial wipes to give the food tray and air vents above you a clean before take-off!
10) It Pays to Be Nice
Being nice to the cabin crew is not only the polite thing to do — it can also pay off for you!
Cabin crew members spend their time trying to make your flying experience as pleasant as possible.
And while it’s not your job to clean the toilet after use or keep your rubbish until they’re ready to collect it, you can make it much easier for them.
Most cabin crew members also notice passengers who make the experience more pleasant for their fellow flyers.
Whether it means giving up an aisle seat for someone who needs it more or sacrificing your first meal choice so that someone else can have theirs, good behaviour rarely goes unnoticed.
In fact, it’s often rewarded by the last chocolate pudding, a full can of coke when everyone else gets a cup or an extra bag of peanuts!