Frequent Flier’s Flight Attendant Observations

July 6, 2012

in Flying Hell Commentary

For many years I traveled frequently from my home base in Colorado to the Orient. I flew United Airlines (UAL) in order to grow my Mileage Plus account. I occasionally flew other non US flag carriers. I was always in international first class. Here are my observations:

UAL flight attendants on trans-Pacific routes were nearly uniformly:
• old
• grumpy
• insulted when asked to do anything beyond the bare minimum
• spending an inordinate amount of time complaining to each other about UAL, their schedules, the cockpit crew

Non-US flag carrier flight attendants on trans-Pacific flights were:
• young
• uniformly pleasant and sweet
• energetically willing to do anything to make the passenger happy
• never heard complaining about their employer or anything else

I rate Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific at the top of the list for flight attendant overall rating. Unfortunately, UAL is at the bottom of my list along with the French carrier UTA.

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

flossiesdoll July 6, 2012 at 12:01 pm

In what sense is this about a flight from hell, and what does the age of the flight attendants have to do with anything?


Lily July 6, 2012 at 3:13 pm

Is it possible that older people can sometimes be pleasant, helpful and hard working? Or does being old relegate them to the nursing home say, past 50?


Anonymous August 30, 2012 at 8:37 am

STFU; Old people suck. They whine all the time about everything, smell like crap, and demand to be waited on hand and foot just because they're lazy and old. It's about time hose of us with jobs, worth, and dignity told them to shove it and put them in their place.


Substantial July 6, 2012 at 7:30 pm

UTA? How far back in history are we going here? UTA ceased flying in 1992.


epeek July 9, 2012 at 4:57 am

Completely Irrelevant this post


Fred Flintstone July 11, 2012 at 2:39 am

You do know, you miserable sexist nitwit, that those perky Asian flight attendants are paid crap wages, fired without cause if they get too old or fat, and suffer daily discrimination in the workplace? I wonder how long YOU would last in your job if you were judged on YOUR looks? I'll bet you'd be riding Grayhound, you putz. People like you are what make workers' rights in this country suck. Keep it up–your children and grandchildren (if you can find someone dumb enough to mate with you) will "enjoy" discrimination from idiots with your mindset if sexist pigs like yourself are allowed to prevail. You're an asshole


Howie Feltersnatch April 21, 2013 at 5:29 pm

It would be wonderful if UA would fire those waitresses for getting fat or old or nasty but then they would almost be out of stewardesses now wouldn't they. And Mr. Fred it is Greyhound and there is no need to type UPPERCASE when you want emphasis on a word or phrase. Calm down and take your meds. Unions are definitely either dead or dying because of lazy Freds and others who grew up thinking they had a right to a good paying job but never ever took the responsibility to educate themselves in order to be a better employee and an asset to their employer. It was always "screw you,I'm union" it is all about me and I want more money and more vacation without ever once working harder to earn it now get used to the way it is and the way it is going to be, thanks to you and your lazy hedonistic generation, enjoy.


ExPlat Loyalist July 14, 2012 at 9:34 am

The last time I flew United was on a First Class around-the-world ticket back in 1997. Their partner airlines were wonderful, but I was treated like cabin baggage om the first leg, from LAX to Hong Kong. rude, surly, unhelpful. My next itinerary was on American, and I have been One World loyal ever since, with few if any service disappointments on any of the partners. Although sometimes I wonder if BA long-haul cabin crew were trained by United which it comes to attitude.

As for those of you above who perhaps believe that cabin crew can't create a "flight from hell" through its own machinations, get a grip. Of course they can. Flights from hell are not just inept ATC folk or tedious storm delays. Humans make their own contributions, either through decisions and actions, or writing the policies and procedures which drive those protocols onto our backs.


jilliankat September 1, 2012 at 12:34 am

Go back and read what you wrote ExPlat Loyalist….maybe you bring a flight from hell upon yourself. The F/A's do not make the rules…they just are paid to enforce them….Just sayn'


Bombcar January 23, 2013 at 8:59 pm

I don't know jilliankat, I had a F/A on Northwest complain when I wanted to buy a $2 snack with two $1 coins.


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