My younger brother is not a frequent flyer, but I spoil him when he does fly and he usually ends up in First Class. We exchanged the following text messages today before his United flight:
HIM: Douchebag in 1A upon being offered water or oj: “I want a cup of decaf” FA faked a smile, rolled her eyes and said yes sir. Where do these people come from?
ME: Which ones?
HIM: These douchebags
ME: The FAs or the passenger?
I’m not so sure I agree with my brother.
I think it’s sad, but not surprising that I was unable to discern who he was talking about in his initial text message. Sure, the passenger could have waited until after the plane got in the air to have a cup of coffee. Furthermore, if he is a frequent United flyer he should know that pre-departure beverages, when offered, are usually water or orange juice only. And the passenger didn’t ask in a nice way–especially so early in the morning.
Kudos to the FA for making him the coffee, but why the rolling of the eyes? Is it really too much for a First Class passenger to expect a cup of coffee at 6:45a? Shouldn’t a world-class airline, as United prides itself in labeling, already have the coffee brewed? The purser on my last early morning United flight took the initiative and brewed a cup of coffee for First Class passengers prior to takeoff before anyone even asked her–and it was appreciated. Why didn’t the purser on my brother’s flight do the same?
In the end, both the passenger and the FA deserve to be scolded. To demanding passengers: Be nice. Don’t demand. Treat the FAs with the respect they deserve, not as your personal assistants. To the FAs: It’s not nice to roll your eyes at passengers, even if you feel like gouging their eyes with an ice pick. Grin and bear it–take one for the team. Think of it as job security.