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عبدالله محمد الشهراني

The Flight Attendant... Misconceptions!

الأربعاء - 19 يونيو 2019

Wed - 19 Jun 2019

In society, there is a common misconception about “flight attendant” job, a conception which minimized this job into just catering, and I am sorry to say that this misconception is well established among a large proportion of community members. This might be because of some airlines’ ads which have unfortunately, established this misconception. Furthermore, the absence of specialized “aviation” media has a great negative role in this matter. Flight attendant job is old, over 100 years old. It has also a crucial duties and responsibilities. Even though, catering is among those duties, it is only 10% of a flight attendant overall mission.

To facilitate the correct visualization of this profession’s conception, I will list some of its duties and responsibilities which has three stages. First, ((prior to welcoming passengers aboard)), flight attendant must check the passengers’ cabin, all safety equipment availability and suitability for use including fire extinguishers, first aid kit, oxygen cylinders... etc. He / She must also be sure that the plane contains no strange objects such as a briefcase, weapon or a bomb... etc. Furthermore, he / she has to ensure the cabin is clean and all flight’s required items are available, such as safety brochures, magazines, pillows and blankets, meals. It’s important to check seats are functioning well (seatback, entertainment screens, seatbelts, dining tables), and that there are no seats that are out of order prior to

passengers’ arrival.

Then, the second stage of flight attendants mission is ((passengers’ arrival aboard)), which begins by helping them reach their assigned seats and put their luggage in the overhead compartment. Another very important role is assisting sick people, people with disabilities and the elderly by welcoming them via their specified entrance and accompanying them to their seats. After boarding passengers, flight attendants will start explaining safety instructions, showing the emergency exits and giving a brief detail to those who are sitting near the emergency exits about how to operate in case of an emergency. Before taking off and landing he/she must check that cabin and passengers are ready, which includes (seatbelts fastened, lavatories are devoid of passengers, windows are open, seats and their parts are in the suitable stand and the catering trolleys and other things are firmly tight). After turning of seatbelts signal, flight attendants begin delivering meals and monitoring the cabin to assure that no harm is caused to passengers or damage to the airline’s properties such as fights, smoking, disturbances, damaging with the seats or entertainment screens.

After that, the third stage of flight attendant duties is ((passenger exiting the airplane)), after passengers leave the airplane the flight attendant start inspecting the cabin to make sure there is no luggage or strange objects left behind. Last but not least, writing a report on the flight if needed.

Flight attendants really deserve heaven for being in such job where they deal politely with a big smile with all shades of people with different morals, mentalities, ages and classes (passenger Romeo would misunderstand this smile, just like passenger Juliet). Honestly, it is not possible to include all flight attendants duties and responsibilities here in one article which sometimes goes as far as being a doctor taking care of most urgent in-flight medical cases and a gynecologist (midwife) some other times.

Lastly, the core duty for an flight attendant is passengers’ safety during flight and in emergencies, and let me suggest you to watch the movie “Sully” to well understand flight attendants vital role.

Misconception... Flight attendant duty is catering.

Flight attendant main duty is passengers’ safety.

Flight attendant duties includes Health, Safety, Security, Guest greeting, Humanitarian tasks


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