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"On the last flight, the suitcase still fit": Five sentences that flight attendants no longer want to hear


Highlights: "Can you take care of my child?" is no longer a question for flight attendants. "On the last flight, it still fit" is also no longer an acceptable question for a flight attendant. Flight attendants are there to provide food and drink, not to entertain passengers. "You should smile a little more," says one flight attendant who worked in the '70s and '80s. "It's a good way to start the day" says another flight attendant, "but it's not the way to end it"

In any profession there are certain phrases that you just can't hear anymore. Flight attendants have also heard enough of a saying.

Flight attendants are not only there to provide passengers with food and drinks, they also take care of the safety of passengers and offer assistance with questions. However, travelers should not overdo it with their wishes – and there should be no lack of respect, as one flight attendant says. Too often, it apparently happens that passengers carelessly utter sentences that the staff simply can no longer hear.


Candace Johnson worked as a flight attendant in the late '70s and early '80s – a lot has happened in the aviation industry since then and terminology has also changed. Referring to crew members as stewards or stewardesses is now outdated, as she revealed some time ago, according to the online portal Readers Digest: "Flight attendants can be male or female, and this is the first indication that the word 'stewardess' is no longer appropriate in this day and age." Calling a flight attendant a "stewardess" is about as acceptable as lighting a cigarette on an airplane. "All of these are remnants of the early days of aviation, and none of them belong to the present day," Johnson said.

Some sentences from passengers can no longer be heard by flight attendants. (Symbolic image) © ANP/Imago

"On the last flight, it still fit"

With the dear hand luggage it is always such a thing: The airlines specify how big the suitcases may be and how much weight they may have. Nevertheless, it happens often enough that passengers have apparently miscalculated – and suddenly the suitcase does not fit into the hand luggage compartment provided for this purpose. "One of my favorites was the passengers who insisted that the oversized bags they tried to stuff under the seat or in the luggage compartment should be allowed as carry-on luggage 'because they fit on my last flight,'" says Johnson. "No, that's not true because it didn't fit. And now check in the baggage and stop wasting our time."

"Can you help me pick up the bag?"

Your carry-on luggage is too heavy to put in the overhead bin? Then you probably shouldn't think of it as carry-on luggage, as Johnson thinks. In her opinion, if you can't carry your suitcase yourself, you shouldn't ask the cabin crew to lift it up for you – that's not the job of the staff. "Instead, check it in instead of asking a flight attendant for help," Johnson said.

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"Could you take care of my child?"

Flying with toddlers can be very stressful for parents – the little ones need something to do, want to be fed, or are simply restless because they have to sit still. However, it is not the job of the flight attendants to take care of the offspring and ensure peace and quiet, as Johnson explains. Phrases like "Can you take care of my child" are no longer what she wants to hear. "Flight attendants are not trained governesses, nannies or even babysitters. And if they wanted to do one of these jobs, they wouldn't work as flight attendants, you can assume that." Flight attendants should not be asked to take care of the children – nor should they agree to do so.

"You should smile!"

Of course, passengers should feel comfortable on the plane and enjoy the journey. But asking the staff to smile a little more is not appropriate, Johnson explains. The duties of a flight attendant are to provide routine services to passengers and to respond to emergencies on the aircraft – serving food and drinks is also one of the obligations. But that doesn't make the crew "waiters". And: "They're not there to entertain them either. That's why it can really make flight attendants go crazy when you tell him or her to smile. Would you tell someone at their workplace to smile?" asks Johnson. Therefore, passengers should rather refrain from this saying.

Source: merkur

All news articles on 2023-06-06

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