When you fly millions of miles, mostly on one airline, you develop a kindred spirit with FAs. Although they will generally be pleasant and smile in all circumstances, I’ve learned there are certain things you just should not say to a FA. Here’s my top 10 list of them.
SilverDoor created a great infographic showcasing its top 10 list. We will start with that list, then move to my own.
It’s a good list with some overlap to my own, but my top 10 list is a bit different.
#10 “I lost my number. Can I have yours?” – Here’s a hint: if a FA wants to give you his or her number, s/he will. Don’t ask for it.
#9 “Why is the internet so slow?” – FAs do not have control over internet speeds. They can reset the system if there is no internet, but it’s not like they have a special switch to ramp up the speed.
#8 “I know the seatbelt light is on, but I couldn’t wait” – I never understand why passengers do not use lavatories before they board the aircraft. Unless we are talking about huge A380 first class bathrooms like on Emirates, why would anyone ever want to squeeze into a grimy airplane bathroom? Oh, and the seatbelt sign is on for a reason. FAs don’t really care if you’re up and about, but they are required to inform you the seat belt light is on and that gets annoying.
#7 “Will I make my connection?” – FAs rarely have more info than you do at your fingertips with your carrier’s mobile app. While FAs can be reassuring to anxious passengers who have more than enough time (don’t worry — the three hour connection in LA will be fine even though we are five minutes late), your chance of making a tight connection is anyone’s guess.
#6 “What do you have to drink?” – This one annoys me so much because I have a dear member of the family who shall remain nameless (*cough* Uncle Bill) who asks this on every flight, every time we fly. The menu is in the seat back or in-flight magazine. Chances are the airline will have the drink you want. Just tell the FA what you want to drink.
#5 “Don’t worry, this fits” – I say this one a lot and while I don’t think this is an inherently bad statement, you have to be perspicacious. If a FA is clearly having a bad day, just don’t argue.
#4 “Can you take this?” – FAs serving economy class get this one a lot. They begin meal service and before they even reach the rear of the plane the front has already finished. Be patient and don’t hand your trash to FAs until they walk down the aisle with a trash bag.
#3 “Oh, I thought I could take any open seat” – Rule of thumb: unless told otherwise, always take your assigned seat. Always ask a FA before changing seats.
#2 “Sure, let me just finish this call” – FAs hate the cellular data ban as much as you do, but they are required to advise you to place your devices in airplane mode when the aircraft door closes. Do them a favor and comply. I am disgusted by the people who ignore this instruction and continue their calls.
#1 “I’m Not a Terrorist” – Okay, this one is an inside joke. Five years later and I am still waiting to run into that FA. Best not to use the t-word if you want to remain on the flight…
What would you include on your top-10 list?