NZ8800
Topic Author
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Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sat Jun 10, 2006 11:20 pm

Kia ora everyone...
After my last couple of threads asking about inflight service (tasks of a flight attendant, and flying in the 50s compared to today), I thought I'd ask what it's like to work in business class/first class, with two (three?) FA's to 25 passengers, compared to about ten to 200 respectively in economy. Is it actually more demanding, due to the more courses served of the meal, more frequent drink runs, and possibly more demanding passengers? (I paid $4000 for this flight and I want...)!!!
I also wondered how airlines work out how many meals and of what kind to carry, when you have a choice of three. I can't see any airline carrying 75 meals for 25 passengers to ensure each passenger gets whatever their choice was. A book I read (can't remember the title but it was mostly about British Airways and Heathrow in the late 1970s - would reference it but it's in my storeboxes at my parent's house) which said men choose the red meat option, women choose chicken, and carry a few fish for the nonconformists on the aeroplane. I wonder if this rather sexist (but possibly accurate for the time) allocation of food still goes on today?
(As an aside, Heathrow was called Thiefrow even back then, and a couple of enterprising flight attendants managed to steal an entire trolley of goods off an airliner and cart it off home, including the rest of the first class meals.)
And I bet the pre-take-off drinks served by some airlines have to be served, drunk, and cleared away pretty quickly! (Unless there's a queue for take-off of course... do you get top-ups then?)
Is it easier, or more difficult, on the whole, than working in economy class? I read avidly the threads about economy service and the military operation to get everyone fed and watered on the full-service flights, and wondered what it is like up the front, with silver service, table linen, china, and ... decorum?  Wink
And yet, despite the emphasis on service, the main job is still to look after the safety of the passengers.
Looking forward to flying business class sometime... Air New Zealand discount business fares to Nadi and other Pacific destinations, so that might be worth a shot!  Smile
MDZWTA ~ Mobile Disaster Zone When Travelling Abroad
 
deltairlines
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sat Jun 10, 2006 11:24 pm

Quoting NZ8800 (Thread starter):
I can't see any airline carrying 75 meals for 25 passengers to ensure each passenger gets whatever their choice was.

I know United serves their meals in F/J based on passengers status...they'll ask passengers for their first and second choices, then divvy it up in the galley...Global Services will get whatever they want, followed by 1K, Premier Exec, Premier, Star Gold, Star Silver and then no-status. Fare paid (be it award, full fare, upgraded, op-uped, etc.) is not given precendence.

Jeff
 
gman3
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sat Jun 10, 2006 11:38 pm

It is a complicated mess sometimes. I have been called quite a few choice names over my years because I was unable to provide a first choice meal to a pax. You would think we lost 2 engines.
As the previous poster said, we do orders by status. We ask 1st and 2nd choice. Then we go into the galley and make it work to the best of our abilities.
 
ba747
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 2:05 am

I used to love it when I was a F/A with BA back in the 90´s. I always try to get Business class in the 747-400 rather than economy. You get more polite passengers, service was full china, linen table cloths and real silverware. Of course only 70 pax and 4 F/A it was a dream compare to 200 and something down the back with 6 F/A a truly night mare. I don´t know if the service in Club world still the same because after 9/11 things change dramatically.

Saludos desde CCS
The World`s Favorite Airline
 
FLYACYYZ
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 2:58 am

Even in Biz Class, many airlines only board meals (entrees) according to the booked or anticipated load. As such, the little blurb on the menu..."We apologize if owing to previous customer selection, your choice is not available..".

On AC International flights, entrees/casseroles are provisioned at 130% of the customer load, allowing for less chance of disappointment. Domestic flights are boarded at 100%, and similar to the other responses, we try to afford first choice to status as follows:

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nwa747-400
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 3:39 am

Every FA has his or her preference on where they like to work be it up front, down the back , in the galley or in the aisle. Sometimes it depends on the loads too, why work up front with 25 pax and 3 FAs when they are only 75 in coach and still 6 FAs?!
 
amirs
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:12 am

Quoting BA747 (Reply 3):
70 pax and 4 F/A

Thats not much, on long haul LY flights, you get 6 f/a for 50 C class pax in 744 and 5 f/a on around 50 pax in 777.


On LY, the purser usually assigns the f/a according to seniority. Working in Business and First might be a bit more demanding put its quieter and peaceful as compared to coach.
 
Jonno
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:38 am

Quoting Gman3 (Reply 2):
It is a complicated mess sometimes. I have been called quite a few choice names over my years because I was unable to provide a first choice meal to a pax. You would think we lost 2 engines.
As the previous poster said, we do orders by status. We ask 1st and 2nd choice. Then we go into the galley and make it work to the best of our abilities.

Do you sometimes ever wonder how many pax *would* be happier to get their first choice of meals *and* lose two engines? It's ridiculous, isn't it?

I know that flying NWA World Business Class I never had to ring the call bell on either NWA 33/34. And I'm hyper-critical of service. It's no use comparing C to F, so I've concluded NWA, with it's one hundred seventy six degree lie flat seat, quiet quiet quiet A330-X series, and AVOD, is a steal for USD 2700.00.
 
TG992
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:50 am

NZ8800, thought you might be interested in how NZ does it, since it's your national carrier!

Most other airlines in our part of the world have one 'rank' of cabin crew that work both business and economy, but Air NZ has a different system. There are two ranks - FAPS (Flight Attendant Premium Service) and FAPC (Flight Attendant Pacific Class). To work in business class, you must apply and be accepted as an FAPS. They work exclusively in Business Class, receive extra training to do so, and are paid a higher wage.

The service has changed since our 747s were refitted and 777s were introduced, as the size of the Business Class seats means that carts will not fit in the aisle, so everything must be delivered to each passenger by hand. When you consider that Air NZ operates with the least number of crew in the world on the 777 (9 + Flight Manager) and a considerable number less than most of our competitors on the 747 (14 - SQ, TG, CX have 16-19) you'll appreciate how busy our premium crew can be. On the 777 there are only two FAPS - one works the galley, which leaves one crew member to deliver 26 people by hand appetisers, main meals, choice of 7 wines, dessert, cheese board, fruit plate, dessert wine, and cognacs!
-
 
utapao
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:21 am

From a passenger's point of view:

I have to mention the FA I had in Biz on AA124 from KIX-DFW this week. His name was Che, and he really made up for some "deficiencies" in the flight.

First, I am one of those who would be just as happy to sleep on international flights. Eat little and no alcohol. A Diet Coke or two and an OTC sleeping aid, and I'm happy. However, I was the 4th person in Business they approached about meal choice. There was 1) Steak, 2) Salmon, 3) Pasta and 4) Japanese. Again, I was only the 4th person approached. Che broke the news I could have steak (can't eat) or Japanese. I said I would pass and take a sleeping pill. He first offered to get me a pork meal from Coach and serve with the Biz set-up. That was fine and I thanked him profusely. He later came back and said he had spoken to the Purser and there was an extra FC pasta dish if I would prefer that. Obviously this was a catering issue he had no control over, and it would have been easy to "go off" on him like the 2 idiots behind me did, but he was so professional, apologetic, etc., he really made it a non-event.

The IFE was about half-working -- no Channel 8/Comedy Channel (happens on many flights with Channel 8 for some reason), one was an American movie dubbed in Japanese with no subtitles (?) while others had either Japanese or English subtitles, Bose headset whose battery died about 2 hours into the flight, yada yada yada. Enough to irritate, but not a big deal. He again was incredibly professional and diffused a situation that others would have been upset with.

I guess where I'm going with is... FA's have little control over some of the situations they face, obviously. But I've been on hundreds of flights where these trivial things above would have received a "shrug of the shoulders" and an "oh-well" attitude, and I think that is what upsets passengers the most. Che seemed to go out of his way to try and make amends, or at least be apologetic, and it obviously ended up as a pleasant flight. Most FA's do, of course, but you normally only remember the exceptions!! Sort of like few ever write a complimentary letter... only complaints.

I wish AA still provided the "recognition coupons" (sorry, forgot the name) because I would have given him one! I did offer my sincere appreciation on deplaning and wrote a note about him to Customer Service.

I think every attendant, regardless of cabin, should be expected to do the same, and probably nothing more. Professional, courteous and friendly service. Anything above that is their personal approach. Unfortunately, the idiots out there (like the 2 behind me) make their job a challenge.

Here's a toast to those who "try"....!
Sawasdee khrab!
 
roseflyer
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:22 am

Quoting TG992 (Reply 8):
When you consider that Air NZ operates with the least number of crew in the world on the 777 (9 + Flight Manager) and a considerable number less than most of our competitors on the 747 (14 - SQ, TG, CX have 16-19) you'll appreciate how busy our premium crew can be. On the 777 there are only two FAPS - one works the galley, which leaves one crew member to deliver 26 people by hand appetisers, main meals, choice of 7 wines, dessert, cheese board, fruit plate, dessert wine, and cognacs!

I've noticed that as a passenger the service is not very good in Business Premier. I feel sorry for those flight attendants running up and down. The seats are great, but it takes darn near forever to get the full meal service done. But a good organized crew helps. While the seats are a hybrid between business class and first class, unfortunately the service isn't.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
qqflyboy
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:36 am

At American, we utilize FEBO for order preferences, ignoring status and/or amount paid for the seat. FEBO stands for First Even Back Odd. That is, preferences are taken from the forward back on even numbered flights and back forward on odd numbered flights. This, in my opinion, is the most fair way to take preferences. I believe we're catered to 120% of load to try and offset any shortages of a certain meal.

As a Purser, I love working up front and prefer it. I enjoy having extended contact with the passegners, engage them in conversation and truly serving their needs. This doesn't mean sucking up, but it does mean providing good service. I have to admit taking preferences is the part I like least. It blows me away how upset people can get sometimes over a meal.

I also like the smaller loads. I'd much rather offer an elaborate service to 16 then a hasty service to 200. It can be a lot of work up front, and demanding, but for the most part I consider it easier then working in coach because I enjoy it more. It's a matter of perspective and preference. Business class can be the most demanding and extremely draining, and often is the service that takes the longest of the three classes.

I do find, which leads to my preference of working up front, that passengers in first class are generally more likely than business or coach to offer true appreciation and accolades for a job well done. I appreciate being told that my service skills are good and that I took care of the customer's needs at or beyond their expectations.

Just for reference, we staff our 767-300s with four flight attendants in business class (one galley, two aisle and the Purser) for 30 pax and coach with five (four aisle and one galley) for 195 pax.

Our 777s are staffed with three F/As in first (one galley and two aisle, including the Purser), three in business class (one galley and two aisle) and five in coach (one galley and four aisle). The T7s have a capacity of either 18/35/194 or 16/35/194.

The 763s have a better pax to F/A ratio in j-class than the 777 because the service on the 763 in j-class is more elaborate than 777 j-class. There are only two classes of service on the 767s so j-class is slightly upgraded.
The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
 
pualani
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:49 am

Quoting TG992 (Reply 8):
On the 777 there are only two FAPS - one works the galley, which leaves one crew member to deliver 26 people by hand appetisers, main meals, choice of 7 wines, dessert, cheese board, fruit plate, dessert wine, and cognacs!

That is almost beyond belief !!! At HA with whom I fly for, we have a galley person and two f/as delivering meals to just 18 passengers in business . There are only 2 choices of wine and I would think the meal choices at NZ are more expansive than what we offer.
How much more would you get paid than the economy f/as ? I would think this position would be junior.

pualani
 
FLYACYYZ
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 7:07 am

Quoting Pualani (Reply 12):
That is almost beyond belief !!! At HA with whom I fly for, we have a galley person and two f/as delivering meals to just 18 passengers in business .

Consider yourself lucky!! With airlines facing mounting expenses and debts, can't believe they crew the forward cabin with 3 for 18 customers.

I would wager that AC could give NZ a run for its money on least amount of crew members on a particular aircraft type. Just out of curiousity, what is the crewing on NZ flights ex LAX on the 767-300 serving APW/NAN/PAP??
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nzrich
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 9:21 am

Quoting TG992 (Reply 8):
NZ8800, thought you might be interested in how NZ does it, since it's your national carrier!

Most other airlines in our part of the world have one 'rank' of cabin crew that work both business and economy, but Air NZ has a different system. There are two ranks - FAPS (Flight Attendant Premium Service) and FAPC (Flight Attendant Pacific Class). To work in business class, you must apply and be accepted as an FAPS. They work exclusively in Business Class, receive extra training to do so, and are paid a higher wage.

The service has changed since our 747s were refitted and 777s were introduced, as the size of the Business Class seats means that carts will not fit in the aisle, so everything must be delivered to each passenger by hand. When you consider that Air NZ operates with the least number of crew in the world on the 777 (9 + Flight Manager) and a considerable number less than most of our competitors on the 747 (14 - SQ, TG, CX have 16-19) you'll appreciate how busy our premium crew can be. On the 777 there are only two FAPS - one works the galley, which leaves one crew member to deliver 26 people by hand appetisers, main meals, choice of 7 wines, dessert, cheese board, fruit plate, dessert wine, and cognacs!

On the Airbus the crew are basicaly nearly all trained to do both business and economy and no extra pay also.. But operate with 1 crew to look after flight deck passengers and galley ..This can make a demanding flight with a short flight time you must be very organised...
"Pride of the pacific"
 
VHXLR8
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 10:25 am

At QF, it varies from long-haul to short-haul. At long-haul, there are designated first/business flight attendants. At short-haul, however, positions are allocated either on seniority, or just however the onbaord manager wants to do it.
On domestic flights, more often than not, the junior crew members end up working in business class (on widebodies), as it is generally seen as more work. However there are a lot of crew out there (myself included) who generally like working in J class anyway.
Internationally, it's the opposite, the senior crew tend to take the business positions; even though it may be a bit more invloved, it's very civilised and doesn't get 'messy' like economy.
Other considerations are things like pax loads, and other crew; when there's only 4 of you working together, you don't want to be stuck with crew you don't like!

As for the service, on international (exlcuding NZ), the entrees are delivered by cart, but the rest is done by hand. The main courses are plated in the galley by the galley operator.
Desserts are delived by a traymobile and plated in front of the pax.
Meal choices are not given according to status unless there is some sort of dire catering disaster, but rather row by row.

Domestically, it's delivered by cart, but collected by hand. It's all pre-done on trays, so as to be a much faster service (choice of two meals, one hot, wine, bread, tea/coffee is still a bit crazy on a 50 minute MEL-SYD flight).
If catering is tight, subload pax will generally be served last.
 
EWRCabincrew
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 11:20 am

At CO -

757 - Two FAs (one in the galley, one in the aisle) for up to 16 customers.

767-200 - Three FAs (one in the galley and two, one in each aisle) for up to 25 customers.

777 - Rows 1-5 (30 customers): three FAs (one in the galley and two, one in each aisle) + the ISM (International Service Manager) assisting. Rows 8-10 (14 customers) on flights over 8 hours: two FAs (one in the galley, one in the aisle). On flights 7:59 and under: rows 8-10 (18 customers) three FAs (one in the galley, two for the aisles.


767-400 - (35/200 configuration) Rows 1-5 are served from the forward galley at the 1L/R door by two FAs in the aisles and one in the galley. Rows 6-7 are served from the galley at the 2L/R door and have two FAs (one in the galley and one in the aisle). (20/236 configuration) Rows 1-4 are served from the forward galley at the 1L/R door by two FAs in the aisles and one in the galley.

Our Business/First service is a cart (three tiered - never a food trolley) service for setting up the tables and delivery of food (appetizers, fruit/cheese and dessert). We run the salads and meals that are dished up in the galley.

On some destinations we have slight differences (NRT - Japanese appetizers as well as Western, a Japanese choice for the replacement of the salad and a Japanese option for the main. FCO/MXP - we have a pasta cart in place of the salads, for example).

It's an equivalent to a 5 course meal brought to your table. You seem to "run" a bit more in these cabins, but you can look at it as exercise (justification). When it comes to who works the cabin, you may get a senior FA or a junior one (too many variables to figure this out). The galley people tend to more work, but it's "behind the scenes" (making carts for display and usage, cooking meals, plating meals, ensuring everything is "just so").

Our meal orders are supposed to go front to back, which at times, can lead to people not getting their first choice. I tell frequent travellers to let the FA taking orders know first thing, this way you get your choice. I very rarely run into problems when the first choice is not available. It's all in how you word things and how you approach it.

We wear serving jackets (supposed to, I might add) and should be using a silver try to deliver drinks, food, coffee, tea, etc.. I, myself, prefer the coach cabin (too many reasons to list) than the B/F cabin.

It is a great service, very personable and our customers do like it.

Give a shout if you have any more questions about this.

Cheers

[Edited 2006-06-11 04:30:37]
You can't cure stupid
 
Jamake1
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 11:25 am

I wish we at United would adopt American's meal order taking policy. Offering first choices to customers based on mileage status creates a caste system in the aircraft cabin and some customers feel alienated when the person sitting right next to them gets his/her first choice of meal and they in turn, get stuck with their last choice. I am advocate of having a more balanced way of taking meal orders. Being that I am male, I have had little trouble when I have run out of meal choices, but I have witnessed some of my female counterparts get totally reemed by a customer in United First and/or United Business. I make it a yes or no question: "Mr. X...I have the beef available for an entree. Would you care to join us for dinner?" Premium cabins tend to go fairly junior on domestic/N. American flights, but go much more senior on international trips, in terms of work assignments. At the end of the day, I am a premium cabin flight attendant. I would much rather fix someone a Johnnie Walker Black over and hang coats, than deal with baby bottles, dirty diapers, and flight attendant call lights going off insessantly in the back of the bus...my mantra at work has always been, "Less is more." I'd rather provide a gracious service to 10-20 customers than provide a minimal service to 100+ customers. Premium cabin passengers are well-travelled and hence, much less demanding.
United's B747-400. "She's a a cruel lover."
 
Gammagirl
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 11:56 am

With regard to offering a choice of meal, flying SQ business class from SYD-SIN-MAN and back again last year with husband and two small children it was great to be able to pre-book all the meals in advance from the SQ website. Knowing I had pre-chosen kids meals which they would like helped ease the stress of keeping them well-behaved all that way , and I guess it makes it easier for the airline too if they know at least some preferences in advance. Do any other airlines offer this?
 
EWRCabincrew
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 12:06 pm

Quoting Gammagirl (Reply 18):
Do any other airlines offer this?

CO has childrens meals available. You can order them throught the website as well. You can also view what is on the menu for your flight as well online and make the decision as well if they would prefer a childs meal or what is regularly served.

http://www.continental.com/travel/in...t/businessfirst/dining/default.asp

If worse comes to worse and nothing is at all appetising for your kids...there is always fairy bread (with extra 100s and 1000s) from home or something from Mickey Dees to go. I see it all the time.

Either way, you can't lose.
You can't cure stupid
 
b777a340fan
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 12:51 pm

Quoting Jamake1 (Reply 17):
I wish we at United would adopt American's meal order taking policy. Offering first choices to customers based on mileage status creates a caste system in the aircraft cabin and some customers feel alienated when the person sitting right next to them gets his/her first choice of meal and they in turn, get stuck with their last choice.

I completely agree with you. I don't think individuals should be treated differently when they're sitting in the same cabin. Whether you're a member of Global Services (what is that by the way, i've never heard of it?) or a passenger who's never travelled before, it doesn't matter. It is unfair and would deter anyone from paying for an F-class seat. I think the best way for airlines to deal with this problem in an economical way is to email/fax/present a menu prior to the flight and have them decide. That way, airlines can plan accordingly, should the passenger change his/her mind afterwards, they only have themselves to blame.
 
EWRCabincrew
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 1:04 pm

Quoting B777A340Fan (Reply 20):
I think the best way for airlines to deal with this problem in an economical way is to email/fax/present a menu prior to the flight and have them decide. That way, airlines can plan accordingly, should the passenger change his/her mind afterwards, they only have themselves to blame.

Excellent idea. Seriously.

I can see a draw back: Like changing your mind and then not having it available, like you said. Maybe, some mix up in the kitchen and your choice not being there at all, etc..

All the meals are already prepared for each flight in terms of ratio based on passenger load for the day and menu for that flight. Usually the day before the flight, meals are packed in carts and placed in coolers.

While it is a fantanstic idea, logistically might be hard to actually put together.

[Edited 2006-06-11 06:05:23]
You can't cure stupid
 
NZ8800
Topic Author
Posts: 408
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 3:14 pm

Interesting to hear about passengers in Business getting choices based on seniority on some carriers.

Quoting TG992 (Reply 8):
NZ8800, thought you might be interested in how NZ does it, since it's your national carrier!

Indeed I was, and thank you! It sounds very hectic to say the least.

Quoting TG992 (Reply 8):
On the 777 there are only two FAPS - one works the galley, which leaves one crew member to deliver 26 people by hand appetisers, main meals, choice of 7 wines, dessert, cheese board, fruit plate, dessert wine, and cognacs!

That must take ages to do!

Quoting Utapao (Reply 9):
But I've been on hundreds of flights where these trivial things above would have received a "shrug of the shoulders" and an "oh-well" attitude, and I think that is what upsets passengers the most. Che seemed to go out of his way to try and make amends, or at least be apologetic, and it obviously ended up as a pleasant flight. Most FA's do, of course, but you normally only remember the exceptions!! Sort of like few ever write a complimentary letter... only complaints.

You're right, it's the service you get, not so much whether the IFE works or you get the meal you want that really makes the difference. I remember writing a complimentary letter to Air New Zealand after a rather trying flight to Nadi, because of the professionalism and courtesy shown by the Flight Attendants; and taking time to chat with the passengers when there probably wasn't time to talk at all really... still remember the Flight Attendant's name I was writing in about too...

Quoting QQflyboy (Reply 11):
It blows me away how upset people can get sometimes over a meal.

That was part of the book from 1978/79ish that inspired the post - some things do not change! They had people going totally ballistic over not getting their choice "I've paid £1500 for this meal!"
Actually no, they had paid £1500 to be blasted 5000 miles from A to B through the stratosphere, but to them, it was all on the dinner.

Quoting VHXLR8 (Reply 15):
choice of two meals, one hot, wine, bread, tea/coffee is still a bit crazy on a 50 minute MEL-SYD flight

I bet it is! The crew would have to hand it all out pretty quickly... and the passengers would have to eat pretty quickly too. No leisurely dining on the shorter flights! I sometimes wonder if that's another reason a lot of carriers have stopped the food service on the shorter flights - not just economics (buying food, having someone cook it, someone else deliver it to the aircraft, enough flight attendants to have it all handed out on time) - but that there's not much time to eat anyway.

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 16):
It's an equivalent to a 5 course meal brought to your table. You seem to "run" a bit more in these cabins, but you can look at it as exercise (justification).

I bet you would run a lot more... and thanks heaps for the detail about how the different aircraft are organised for the service.

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 16):
making carts for display and usage, cooking meals, plating meals, ensuring everything is "just so").

What actually gets cooked on board? I thought it was heating up food/keeping it warm in the aircraft ovens, and that everything was cooked on the ground.

Getting a meal cart laid with table linen, extra plates, fruit, cheese, wine, glasses, and garnishes, AND making it look good in such a confined space as an aircraft galley must be an art.

Quoting Jamake1 (Reply 17):
would much rather fix someone a Johnnie Walker Black over and hang coats, than deal with baby bottles, dirty diapers, and flight attendant call lights going off insessantly in the back of the bus

Exactly - that was what was in the back of my mind but you put it all into words for me. Quality rather than quantity.

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 21):
While it is a fantanstic idea, logistically might be hard to actually put together.

I agree with you totally - good on paper logistically a probable disaster zone - but we can dream eh?  Smile
MDZWTA ~ Mobile Disaster Zone When Travelling Abroad
 
VHXLR8
Posts: 487
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:22 pm

Quoting NZ8800 (Reply 22):
I bet it is! The crew would have to hand it all out pretty quickly... and the passengers would have to eat pretty quickly too. No leisurely dining on the shorter flights!

Absolutely!!! It does get a bit ridiculous sometimes; there's a lot of pax out there who seem to have no concept of time, and eat their meal as if they're flying to London, not Melbourne! Or those who get annoyed when you tell them they can't have another glass of wine, despite the fact that the aircraft is on descent and the crew are preparing the cabin for landing!!

Oh well, all fun and games  Smile
 
ThirtyEcho
Posts: 1409
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2002 1:21 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:05 pm

My first Atlantic crossing was in a Lockheed Super G and I can tell you that the meal service comparison between then and now is like comparing the Russian Tea Room to dumpster diving.
 
bkkair
Posts: 384
Joined: Mon Aug 13, 2001 9:10 pm

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:53 pm

Quoting B777A340Fan (Reply 20):
Quoting Jamake1 (Reply 17):
I wish we at United would adopt American's meal order taking policy. Offering first choices to customers based on mileage status creates a caste system in the aircraft cabin and some customers feel alienated when the person sitting right next to them gets his/her first choice of meal and they in turn, get stuck with their last choice.

As a paying passenger, UA's system based on status is better.

I was flying International J Class on AA (I am Executive Platinum on AA) and was not given a meal choice. I was extremely upset that AA staff got a meal choice while an Executive Platinum (me) was offered the last choice (Seafood - which I didn't want). That was the last time I flew AA Internationally.

Caste system or not, it is more important to make a passenger who pays over $50,000 per year to AA happy than a passenger who is on a once in a lifetime trip on AA or a pass rider.

The good part is I moved to Asia and fly CX (maintaining Executive Platinum on AA while flying CX) where there are 3 F/A's in First Class and Emerald (Executive Platinum's) are given a choice (not that CX would ever run out of choices).
 
virgincrew
Posts: 420
Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2004 1:40 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 7:18 pm

Hey guys,

Working in Business Class as cabin crew at VS was fantastic.

We've never used service carts in J as it brings down the quality of the service having a grotty old service cart in a lush cabin ! lol

With the old 'J product' we used to use a serving trolley for the wine, water and bread service and then the meal service was all done by hand on silver trays. We used full china and glass and used to be silver wear until 9/11. When the 'J Cabin' changed to the Upper Class Suite, the serving trolley was then just used in the galley and it no longer fitted down the aisle.

The meals are loaded to reflect a full passenger compliment and some extra regardless of passenger load ! Also the cabin crew food is 'J Class' Food. So this means on a 747-400 for example, there is also aprox. 20 extra meals onboard that can be offered to 'J' passengers. This means that 9/10 times the passenger will get first choice of meal. There is 4-5 different types of bread loaded, different wines, champayne, spirits etc...

Then for example you would have the same for afternoon tea or breakfast !

Then you have the Upper Class Suite, which is the biggest flat bed in any business class and also bigger than some first class cabins flat bed. Passengers have full duvet's and feather pillows, pj's, ammennity kits, IFBT and then the full bar area with stools etc... Then also supplied would be worldwide newspapers and magazines.

In a 'J Class Cabin' you would normally have 7 cabin crew on the main deck and 2 crew on the upper deck
Hello Beautiful !!!
 
qqflyboy
Posts: 1617
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 9:23 pm

Quoting Bkkair (Reply 25):
I was extremely upset that AA staff got a meal choice

American's policy is to take preferences in order, regardless whether or not you're a paying passenger. However, the paying passenger always wins over the non-rev. We simply go back to the non-rev and let them know their meal choice is no longer available and ask them to chose something else.

This policy helps to eliminate unnecesarily pointing out employees and other passriders.
The views expressed are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect my employer’s views.
 
airnewzealand
Posts: 2310
Joined: Sat Oct 21, 2000 6:00 pm

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 9:50 pm

Quoting VirginCrew (Reply 26):
We've never used service carts in J as it brings down the quality of the service having a grotty old service cart in a lush cabin ! lol

At Qantas our "grotty carts" are lined with blue linen so you cant really tell its a "grotty cart"

Im not a business first flightie, they are a seperate division within Qantas longhaul. Tho we are all "trained" in J/C... the CFA crew have an extra 7 days training within silver service, wine tasting etc etc etc...

We load our meals to pax loads usually with around 2-4 extra meals.

Say if we had Beef, Fish, Lamb, and "Express option", we will load them accordingly to destination...

Just on my recent trip it was ... 12 Beef, 10 Lamb, 5 Fish and 4 Express.

It all gets mucked up when the next cycle of menus is introduced (every three months) as they dont have a clear idea of what customers will take.

We are like UA... Emerald, Sapphire customers always get asked first, tho generally at Qantas our frequent flyers sit at the front of the cabins. So we start forward to Aft.

Customers on staff or discounted tickets will get last priority!!

Cheers
 
virgincrew
Posts: 420
Joined: Sun Oct 03, 2004 1:40 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 10:09 pm

Same at VS, if there are non-revenue passengers they will be offered a meal choice last regardless of what cabin they are seated in.

Although we would spoil them in other ways ! lol
Hello Beautiful !!!
 
TurkishWings
Posts: 1243
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 10:40 pm

It was always more demanding but more fun working in the economy class and usually easier to work in business class. C class passengers are usually more experienced pax and I always found them to be less demanding as they mostly care about landing on time etc rather than the meals they got (I worked short-haul flights only on 737s and RJs )

But you should bear in mind that the F/A working in C class also serves the cockpit who can be extremely demanding too... We never had any problems regarding meals. We always had enough choices and if we really had a difficult pax who insisted on a certain dish which was already finished, we would look at what meals the captains had and serve them  Smile

At TK, usually the most inexperienced F/A works C class on short hauls (number 3 or 4).

As for pre take-off drinks: You wouldn't wait for all the pax to start this service. You serve as they come so you normally finish by the time the plane is ready for take off. And the pax usually know that they need to give their glasses back before take off so they would finish them quickly....
Coffee - Tea or Me?
 
nwa747-400
Posts: 1325
Joined: Fri Sep 08, 2000 2:54 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Sun Jun 11, 2006 11:07 pm

I still think that a silver three tiered cart makes for a better presentation than a regular service cart. A three tiered cart allows the customer to see a nice presentation of what is available ie choices of appetizers, cheeses, dessert etc.
 
echster
Posts: 393
Joined: Thu Sep 02, 2004 4:01 pm

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 7:49 am

Just to add my .02!

I kind of like a system like EVA's when it comes to first and business meals. Just order online! They have their menus posted, you just need to select your flights. I am 12/12 in getting the meals I've requested.

Also, on their new B773ERs, they have a bar area for drinks and snacks near door 2L. As you get up for the restroom or to take a walk, grab your own drinks.
 
jcavinato
Posts: 392
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 8:09 am

I was on a United $8,500 business class ticket SFO-Shanghai-return a couple of months ago. My seat was upper deck, window, bulkhead (a seat I like on either side of the aircraft). By the time dinner requests got to me there was only one choice out of three -- a oyster sauce chicken. Being wildly allergic to any shell seafood, I only ate the salad and some of the appetizer. Eight hours later I was able to get a breakfast.

But, what bothered me most was the cavalier attitude of the flight attendant when I mentioned that I couldn't eat it. She didn't seem to care and didn't offer any alternative (I even asked for anything from economy -- I was hungry).

It made me decide not to build to executive status on UAL for my every six to eight week business class trips to Asia this year.

At least I got a good night's sleep.
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 8:22 am

Quoting Jcavinato (Reply 33):
By the time dinner requests got to me there was only one choice out of three -- a oyster sauce chicken. Being wildly allergic to any shell seafood, I only ate the salad and some of the appetizer.

Knowing you had an allergy to a specific food type, you should have let the FA know that and as a minimum let made it known in your reservation about your allergy.

People with specific food allergies should be more proactive with regards to your meals. Don't rely on an airline/restaurant for food availability, especially if it life threatening. Let someone know about it or bring your own.

Quoting Jcavinato (Reply 33):
But, what bothered me most was the cavalier attitude of the flight attendant when I mentioned that I couldn't eat it. She didn't seem to care and didn't offer any alternative (I even asked for anything from economy -- I was hungry).

$8,500.00 or free ticket, I would have tried to find an alternative for you, but also remind you about what I mentioned about being proactive.

I hate hearing about crappy service.
You can't cure stupid
 
FLYACYYZ
Posts: 1820
Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2004 12:13 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 10:16 am

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 34):
People with specific food allergies should be more proactive with regards to your meals. Don't rely on an airline/restaurant for food availability, especially if it life threatening. Let someone know about it or bring your own.

Sounds like EWR and I went through the same training course. I myself am highly allergic to shellfish, and very often bring my own food. Unless you are responsible for your own food preparation, nobody can absolutely guarantee the absence of all threatening allergens. Bear in mind that many Asian inspired dishes contain fish stock even if you're talking about a base meal of chicken or beef. Enuf said. I and my colleagues on many occasions have forfeited crew meals, sensitive to what our premium customers pay.

Customers have indicated that running out of choice has repeatedly occurred. This being the case, I have no problem with a customer approaching me first to ask if I mind putting aside his/her meal of choice. Pro-activity works on a reciprocal basis. Generally there are enough leftover J/C components where a little bit of culinary creativity can address the issue.
Above and Beyond
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
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RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 10:29 am

Quoting FLYACYYZ (Reply 35):
Customers have indicated that running out of choice has repeatedly occurred. This being the case, I have no problem with a customer approaching me first to ask if I mind putting aside his/her meal of choice. Pro-activity works on a reciprocal basis. Generally there are enough leftover J/C components where a little bit of culinary creativity can address the issue.

Was that you in class?  Wink

I just wish more people thought like us. You would like to think it was a given. We may be catered exact, we may have a set menu, we may have things you may not like, but we have been known to pull rabbits out of hats.

All in being flexible. On both parts.
You can't cure stupid
 
FLYACYYZ
Posts: 1820
Joined: Fri Jan 23, 2004 12:13 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 11:13 am

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 36):
but we have been known to pull rabbits out of hats.

Bingo!! Despite time in the office and at HQ...can still fix more irregularities at the scene of the crime
 Smile
Above and Beyond
 
lincoln
Posts: 3133
Joined: Mon Nov 01, 2004 11:22 pm

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 12:40 pm

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 16):
757 - Two FAs (one in the galley, one in the aisle) for up to 16 customers.

I recently experienced CO's BusinessFirst on a international-configured 757-200 (with an International crew*)...sadly it was a very short hop- CLE-EWR

It was an amazing level of service, even for First, and especially for a hour-long flight- my drink was never less than half full.

My question is... Are all CO 757 flights staffed with two for first with a dedicated person in the galley or are domestic segments/crews one for first?

Lincoln
(I've been told that the odds of getting an upgrade on a CO 757 are the worst in the fleet... So far of 8 segments flown in aircraft with a first class cabin this year, it's the only upgrade I've gotten)

*Or at least that's what the crew said they were...also said they were looking forward to getting some sleep; the aircraft and presumably the crew had just come off of LGW-CLE.
CO Is My Airline of Choice || Baggage Claim is an airline's last chance to disappoint a customer || Next flts in profile
 
ANNOYEDFA
Posts: 441
Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2004 9:16 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 1:06 pm

The crew would not of worked LGW-CLE-EWR. The LGW crew would of been a deadhead crew to EWR. The plane would of been staffed with domestic flight attendant's. If the plane did have a NTA crew or a few crew members they could of been out of base reserve's or a NTA flight attendant picking up a domestic trip. The plane might of been in the BF configuration but that doesn't matter the plane is used for domestic segment's as well. The only route's the 757-200 is staffed with 4 flight attendant's is the Florida run's. When the 75 is staffed with four usually one F/A take's the first class food order's then the galley F/A serve's while the other F/A helps out in steerage.
"TWA... One Mission, Yours."
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 1:29 pm

Quoting ANNOYEDFA (Reply 39):
The crew would not of worked LGW-CLE-EWR

Actually, NTA (CO base designation for Newark international flying) crews do work LGW-CLE-EWR. They are coming off a three-day, four-day or a six-day trip.

Quoting ANNOYEDFA (Reply 39):
The LGW crew would of been a deadhead crew to EWR

That ended this year. We work EWR-CLE-LGW and the return depending on the pairing and how it is constructed.

No matter how you look at it it's a long a** day.

I am, however, glad you enjoyed the trip, albeit the whole hour of it.

[Edited 2006-06-12 06:31:09]
You can't cure stupid
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 1:43 pm

Quoting Lincoln (Reply 38):
Are all CO 757 flights staffed with two for first with a dedicated person in the galley or are domestic segments/crews one for first?

757-200 Business/First flights will have the two in the cabin (one in the aisle and one in the galley - eventhough they are supposed to "assist" the aisle flight attendant).

Quoting ANNOYEDFA (Reply 39):
The only route's the 757-200 is staffed with 4 flight attendant's is the Florida run's. When the 75 is staffed with four usually one F/A take's the first class food order's then the galley F/A serve's while the other F/A helps out in steerage.

So, domestically it's two up front, and three in the bacl with the exception of Florida markets.

From a previous thread concerning our 757 configurations.

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 25):
All 41 of our 757-200s are being converted to the 16/159 configuration (13 have the 16/156; 24 have 16/159 and 4 have the 24/156).
You can't cure stupid
 
EWRCabincrew
Posts: 4306
Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 2:37 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 1:45 pm

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 41):
From a previous thread concerning our 757 configurations.

Quoting EWRCabincrew (Reply 25):
All 41 of our 757-200s are being converted to the 16/159 configuration (13 have the 16/156; 24 have 16/159 and 4 have the 24/156).

The configurations in the parenthesis are current numbers, ultimately they will all be 16/159.
You can't cure stupid
 
jetdeltamsy
Posts: 2688
Joined: Tue Nov 14, 2000 11:51 am

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 4:42 pm

Quoting Nwa747-400 (Reply 5):
Every FA has his or her preference on where they like to work be it up front, down the back , in the galley or in the aisle. Sometimes it depends on the loads too, why work up front with 25 pax and 3 FAs when they are only 75 in coach and still 6 FAs?!

Huhhhh??? What airline do you work for?

We work where we are assigned. I've never heard of a ration of 6 f/a's to 75 pax.
Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
 
HnlBoi
Posts: 128
Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2006 12:37 pm

RE: Working As A Flight Attendant In Business Class

Mon Jun 12, 2006 6:22 pm

How many F/A does CO staff on the 764 flights. My mom retired from DL in 2001 as a F/A they used to have 8-9 on the 764 flights. Soon after with the cutbacks etc etc they have dropped it 7. 3 in First 4 in the back. Lately though some of her friends who still fly say they are getting lucky and getting 8 and sometimes even 9.