If you’re like me, you may have wondered what it’s like working in the flight service industry. In this post, I have interviewed my friend Nino to ask him a bit more about his job working as a flight attendant. If you have any further questions that I have missed, maybe leave a comment and hopefully Nino will be able to answer. I also recommend checking out his Instagram profile (link in his profile below) as he takes great pictures.
Please introduce yourself…
My name is Nino Isaac, born in a small town called Douma in Lebanon. The village is 80km from Beirut in a valley surrounded by mountains. It’s famous for its red brick houses and has been impacted by several civilizations and the most recent being the Ottoman Empire. I grew up in Beirut, went to a French school and later studied Advertising and Marketing. I did my military service for a year that was mandatory at the time and left Lebanon in 2003.
How long have you been working as a flight attendant?
I worked for Emirates for 8.5 years and this is my second year with United Airlines.
What would a typical week be for you?
What’s nice about this job is all the flexibility and days off we get between flights. I have the chance in my company to be able to trade trips with my coworkers, or advertise a trip for other flight attendants to pick up, ie if I have some obligations or want a better quality of life etc. I live in Houston but my base is in DC, I commute to work and it’s working out well because of the flexibility. I try to work 3 flights to Europe back to back and come home to Houston for a long mini-vacation 🙂
What’s the favourite place you’ve been?
I have always been fascinated by Nordic countries. After living in Dubai and now in Texas, I find myself choosing to go as North as much as possible. I had the chance to cross the Arctic Circle 3 years ago and spend Christmas in Rovaniemi, Finland. Those Northern Lights that are probably on every person’s bucket list and are definitely not over-rated and probably the most magical thing I have ever seen. I discovered Iceland 2 weeks ago and it was as breathtaking as I expected it to be.
Which places are on your wish list?
2- Newfoundland and Labrador.
4- And hopefully Antarctica someday before it’s too late 🙂
Do you get time to explore /sightsee when you travel?
Always. And that is exactly why I do and love my job. Even if I sometimes go to the same places over and over, I still always find new things to do. Or I try to explore the surroundings 🙂 For example, on my last layover in Venice Italy, I decided to take a train up North to Trieste, cross the border to Slovenia by bus and spend the night in the charming fishing town of Koper.
Do you ever get scared during turbulence?
Turbulence is truly not something to be feared, airplanes are designed to resist far more force than turbulence can create. And for us flight attendants, our main concern is reassuring passengers who may not understand the lack of threat when encountering turbulence.
Can you tell us about a funny experience that you’d had on board?
There are plenty of funny moments that happen on every flight, but one that stands out to me, and that I can never forget, happened on my very first flight from Dubai to London. A woman travelling with her fiancé had a little too much to drink and became very talkative (and flirty) with me, following me from one galley to another. On top of descent and 30 minutes before landing in Heathrow, she stood up in the middle of the aisle while I was securing the cabin and said loudly ‘here comes my guy!’, grabbed me from behind and kissed me in front of 319 other passengers. And the awkward thing is that it happened right next to her fiancé who was sleeping next to her. After being talked to by another flight attendant who spoke her language, and a big fight with her fiancé who woke up to the scene, she finally sat down and remained calm until we parked at the gate. Passengers all disembarked with a smirk and it sure was the most embarrassing and scariest moment of my life! 🙂
What tips/advice would you give someone wanting to become a flight attendant?
My advice is to take advantage of the benefits this great job can offer. With layovers in hundreds of cities around the world, we have the chance to experience sights, tastes and smells in every corner of the globe. Go to a new city well prepared, read and learn about the new place, and try to come back with experiences that you don’t have back home. Unfortunately, I fly with some flight attendants who only stay in their hotel rooms on layovers, bring their own food and watch TV until it’s time to fly back. Make sure you don’t become that flight attendant 🙂
Comment from: Travel and Destinations/ Mike
Thanks so much, Nino for telling us more about you and your job. You’ve provided a good insight into what it’s like to be a flight attendant and I personally think it sounds great.