A Day in the Life of Cabin Crew
When working as cabin crew, no day is ever the same – this is one of the many things that makes the job so attractive. What follows is an outline of what a day working as cabin crew could entail to give you an insight into the job.
When will my day begin?
This varies from airline to airline however you can expect to report anytime between 5am and 10pm at night for a short or long haul flight. This can be a tough element of the job but it is easy to get used to. For short haul flights you can expect to report around 1 hour and 15 minutes before the departure time and for a long haul it will be around 1 and a half hours before.
How will my day begin?
As crew, your day will begin with a pre-flight briefing. Before you attend this briefing you are expected to have checked in and certified yourself fit to fly for that duty. In the briefing you will meet the rest of the crew and your manager for the flight. Occasionally you may recognise some familiar faces that you have flown with before but usually they will all be new faces. Again, this is something that makes the job as crew so attractive, you get to meet so many new people on almost a daily basis.
During the briefing your manager will go through details of the flight such as the passenger loads and crew position allocation which will determine everyone’s role during the flight. They will also initiate a discussion about both a SEP scenario and a medical scenario. All crew members are expected to actively participate in this discussion to show they are up to date and competent with current procedures. In the majority of briefings the flight crew will also come in and introduce themselves and give details about the flight such as the flight time and any expected turbulence.
Once the briefing is completed, the crew will make their way through security and to the aircraft together.
What happens once we arrive at the aircraft and during boarding?
When you arrive at the aircraft you will be expected to complete your safety and security checks specific to your working position. These are required to be completed accurately but also in a timely manner. Once everyone is happy and the checks have been passed on then the manager can begin boarding. Again your role in boarding will vary in accordance with your working position, you may be responsible for delivering the pre-take off service in the premium cabins or you may be in charge of covering the doors on the ground- either way you will be welcoming the customers onto the aircraft and beginning to build that rapport with them.
During the flight
After take-off is when you will begin the drink and meal service. This service will vary depending on the length of the flight, the destination and the cabin you are working in. You may complete multiple services during a flight. In between the service, on long-haul flights you will take breaks in shifts, normally one half of the crew at a time. Whilst one half of the crew are relaxing in the crew bunks the others will be looking after the passengers and ensuring the cabin, galley and toilets remain clean and tidy.
Once the flight is over and the passengers have disembarked the aircraft you will complete the post-flight security checks and cabin sweeps to ensure nothing has been left behind. On a long-haul flight, once this is completed its time for the crew to disembark the aircraft and get the crew transport to the hotel. If you are operating a short-haul flight you may also do this if you are lucky enough to be night stopping. If not, you’ll be preparing to do all of this again.