LETTERS

Readers React to "Confessions Of... A Flight Attendant"

We've gotten some passionate letters in reaction to our recent article, Confessions Of... A Flight Attendant. Here's a sampling:

I read with some distaste "Confessions Of... A Flight Attendant." I am a flight attendant who has worked for the major carrier for 23 years. I have never and will never accept a tip from a passenger no matter how much he "insists". The "free round", that your flight attendant confessed to, is not hers to give. I'm also am not interested in overburdening my already travel weary customers with the idea that they should bring me "fancy chocolates or even packaged trail mix"! I will agree that it can be irritating to have someone ring the call light to pick up the trash after I have walked up and down the aisle numerous times. Lastly, you definitely won't find me, or many of my crewmembers, "unwinding" in the bar; nor can we be found having a "party" with "snack and cocktails provided by the airline". That is called theft. You'll find me having room service, watching an in-room movie and going to bed early. I guess it just shows you that one person in uniform does not speak for all of us. Thanks for listening. --Jennifer S. Callewaert

I found your article very informative. I would love to know which airline your flight attendant works for. I didn't realize that I had to pay or bribe a flight attendant for service. Silly me, here I thought that in flight service was part of the fare. Oh, those poor folks who thought flight attendants were there for assistance and pushed the call button, especially if they hadn't paid for it. Perhaps, you can tell me what the correct amount is for a tip. Usually, I tip for good service after the fact rather than before. Now I know better. I thought getting only one small snack was because the airlines were cost cutting. I didn't realize any extras was for the personal consumption of the flight attendants. And since your flight attendant doesn't seem to have any qualms about stealing food and liquor from his/her employer, I shall be very careful about my personal items when flying. No doubt taking something from a passenger they may never see again would not be a problem. Lastly, I suggest that you send this article to the different flight attendants associations. For years they have been promoting their members as professionals rather than just flying waitresses. I'm sure this article will delight them (wink, wink). --Ardell Furuta

I can only imagine how many letters and emails you are going to receive about this article...As a former Flight Attendant, and before that, a Stewardess, I am appalled at the tackiness of this girls behavior: one never accepts tips, and treating people differently if they tip is simply amazing to me - not to mention encouraging gifts of chocolates and trail mix! Answering the call button is second nature to a Flight Attendant - although limiting the questions to real needs would be nice. Fortunately, I also know what she describes as "Happy Hour, Any Hour" is untrue - at least for the major carriers - public drinking is monitored and you are usually too tired after a long flight for much of the partying she describes...I pray she doesn't work for the airline where I spent some of the best years of my life. --Diane Brenden, Kauai, Hawaii

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