How To Make Flight Attendants Like You


USA Today had an interesting article about How To Make Your Flight Attendant Like You a couple of days back.

When I first saw the title I laughed a bit. Is it our job to make the flight attendants like us? After all, we pay our hard-earned money (or miles) to fly!

In my opinion, I don’t think it is “our job” to make the flight attendants like us, but it definitely doesn’t hurt to be nice and make their jobs a bit easier and more pleasant. Flight attendants have a pretty tough job having to cater to a plane full of passengers from all walks of life.

When boarding a flight and de-planing, I pretty much always greet the flight crew with a smile and a hi, bye or thank you etc… The rare times that I don’t, I might be a little pre-occupied with Lucas!

Over the past couple of years (more than ever), the flight attendants have been crucial in making our flights just a little easier and more comfortable while flying with Lucas. It seems like on most flights we end up spending time at the back of the plane. Lucas likes to go for a walk and knows that the friendly people at the back have juice and snacks! Even when Lucas wasn’t walking, we’d take him to the galley and on quite a few occasions, a flight attendant would give him some attention (some even held him) and show him what’s inside some of the compartments! Curious as Lucas is/ was, this made the flight a whole lot more fun for him!

In the USA Today article, George Hobica of shares 12 tips to make your flight attendant like you.

Here they are:

  1. Say hi back
  2. Listen to the safety demo- (I’m guilty of not doing this.)
  3. Headphones off- when ordering meals & drinks
  4. Be specific when ordering- for example, tell them how you take your coffee
  5. Same for cold drinks
  6. Say please and thank you
  7. Magazines- give the crew magazines that you are finished with
  8. Treats- bring a (packaged & sealed) snack and you might get rewarded
  9. Pens
  10. Wheels in- place your bags with wheel or handles in so you don’t hog up space in the overhead. It will make the flight attendant’s job easier.
  11. Stay out of the aisles
  12. Tell the airlines-if a flight attendant does a great job and don’t forget to take down their employee #.

What do you think about the idea of making flight attendants like you? I think being polite and doing some of the other things suggested in the article are the right thing to do.

Check out the full USA Today article HERE.

7 thoughts on “How To Make Flight Attendants Like You

  1. Erica- Great points!

    A Traveler- I was surprised to see giving out pens to FAs on the list. Maybe we’ll try it some times!

    Pat- That is awesome!

    No Fly Zone- Agreed! I can’t say that we’ve given anything to FAs ever but a smile and being friendly & polite can go a long way!

  2. Just being NICE and paying attention is a biggie….. Extras are not necessary, yet often help. Sealed goodies (a bag of mini candy bars is never a bad idea), More import is to be CLEAN/odor-free, and well dressed. Just pretend that it is the late 50s and you are flying when all flights were First Class. If you look and behave like it is, your service may improve and maybe – just maybe, and ‘operational upgrade’ may happen. Not frequent, not regular and don’t bet on it, but it IS still possible. boarding sober and staying that way is also helpful.
    I agree with @pat, just being nice to those that are helping you will pay huge dividends – and it costs you noting. If something is seriously wrong, mention it, but do so politely. If someone is especially polite, get the name and write to the senior manager. If it is a hotel or airline route that you frequent, word will spread. Being NICE produces far better results than behaving like a jerk. Always!!

  3. #1 rule when traveling: be nice to Flight Attendants and Front Desk Clerks — these are the people that have the biggest influence on your travel experience; many times they have to deal with jerks, and being nice to them will payback in spades.

    I can’t remember how many times I’ve received upgraded hotel rooms, extra amenities during check-in, and free wine while sitting in coach just by treating people nicely and comiserating with them when I see another guest be a real jerk.

  4. Traveling back from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic I realized I have been hoarding up my hotel room pens. After reading the USA today article, I gave a few out to the FAs (to assist other passengers to fill out out the US CBP forms) on the flight to Atlanta. They were surprised when I handed them out and thankful.

  5. I think it’s a great reminder that we should be kind to others while traveling. You never know what brand of crazy your flight attendant may have dealt with on the previous flight.

    Every time we travel, especially when we have our kids, I’ve found that there are always benefits to being nice to those around you. Not only does it put you in a better mood but flight attendants are more willing to let you hang out in the galley with your child, they are happier to bring their pregnant passengers extra things to help make the flight more comfortable, it brings a smile to other passenger’s faces, and in hotels, there is a better chance that you will get upgraded to a better room.

    In the end, it’s true what they say, you kill more flies with honey.

  6. This is otherwise known as “be a decent human being.” I didn’t think we needed a 12-part list for that.

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