• Wendy

Pros and Cons of being a Flight Attendant

Updated: May 24, 2019


Dublin, Ireland


Lots of people ask me for the pros and cons of my job. I feel like the pros are pretty obvious but let me just list you a few.


PROS


1) You travel the world on someone else's dime while earning said dime. They pay you to get from point A to point B and then you stay at a hotel where you don't foot the bill and you even get expenses! (That means they give you a stipend to cover the cost of your meals. This is calculated differently for every company I imagine.)


2) The travel perks are dopeeeeee. But once again, also subject to each company. Our tickets for non-revenue passengers are an amazing deal and we travel at a fraction of the cost. But there's always a flip side.


3) You're your own boss. Sort of. You work with a new crew every trip and you meet a ton of people. I click with most of my colleagues because we're all super out going and we jump right into conversations like we've known each other for a long time.


4) Your work schedule is up to you once you get to a certain seniority. You build your own month and when you get really senior, you'll only work like 9 to 10 days a month for a full salary!


5) Your shopping list is going to be amazing. You'll pick up parmesan cheese from Rome, wine from Paris and skin care from South Korea. Your world will be your oyster and you'll be able to pick up treasures everywhere to share with family and friends or you'll outfit your home with pieces that are from your travels.


Paris, France

CONS


But with every pro, comes a con. There is no perfect job and as much as I love this one I gotta share the bad stuff too.


1) Yes, you'll travel the world for free but you'll only get 24 hrs (or 48 if you've worked for like 40 years in the company and can hold that kind of flying, finally.) You'll be dead tired and you need to make sure you're well rested for tomorrow's flight so you'll only have 4-8 good hours for exploring.


2) The travel perks are amazing, the prices won't be beat by even the best discount airline websites. However, you'll be travelling on passes and they are subject to availability. You might find yourself stuck somewhere and you'll be stressed especially if your travel partners have work or if you're due to fly out yourself!


3) You'll meet a lot of people. But it gets lonely. You'll need to learn to like your own company and enjoy the travelling yourself. You'll click with your crew, but the next week you'll be flying with a whole new batch of faces. You'll have to reintroduce yourself many many times, over and over again. It takes a special type of personality to be extroverted but also be okay with spending copious amount of time on your own. (I have friends at work but we work with each other like once a year if I'm lucky. Or you can sync your schedules on purpose but everyone has their own preferences, and seniority so it can get tricky.)


4) Your schedule can get complicated if you have a family. It's only K and me so it isn't too complicated. But if you have children, you'll need to arrange for child-care or ask your partner to solo parent for days at a time. (Especially if you're just starting out. The first 3 years are tough for parents because you're on call all the time.)


5) You'll be tempted to spend a lot because you'll think you're on vacation all the time. You know how we trick ourselves into thinking that calories don't count when you're over seas. Well if you work and are constantly overseas, those "fake" calories are very real. And you'll have to watch your shopping because you'll keep thinking that you don't know when you'll be back. I know I'm like that! Ha!


Anyway, these are just the first five pros and cons that come to mind. There's obviously a ton more as with any job. But ultimately, I love this job. It gives me the flexibility but a steady income doing something I love.


I realize I didn't even mention the stresses this job has to your body or how difficult working in the air can be but we can save that for another blog post.


Thanks for reading!

-W


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