The first people you meet when boarding a plane are flight attendant, well groomed men and/or women who would usher you into the plane, with a smile.
But as they do so, there are a couple of things that the flight attendants will be looking out for, without you even knowing it.
On her blog on Quora, Janice Bridger highlights some of the things they notice.
Flight attendants are mandated to ensure the safety of all passengers and are actually allowed to take action when they feel like your state will compromise the safety of others.According to Bridger who has been a flight attendant for 27 years, flight attendants are always keen to know if you’re intoxicated, and to what level.
“Obviously, if someone appears to be intoxicated, we don’t want them on the plane; the potential for future problems is too great,” states Bridger on her blog.
Passengers with disability and the sick
Flight attendants will watch for disabilities that may disqualify someone from sitting in the exit row.
According to Bridger, passengers who sit in the exit row need to be able to physically lift a heavy hatch (up to 60 lbs) or open a heavy door (several hundred pounds).The flight attendants also check if a passenger is sick when they are boarding the plane to know what measures to take to prevent him or her from infecting others
LanguageIf a passenger cannot understand English, they cannot understand shouted commands, nor can they read the instructions on how to open the exits and this may be disastrous in cases of emergency.
Flight attendants are therefore keen on ensuring only English speaking passengers sit at particular places.
Strong, physically fit men
“If I see someone who is muscular, powerful, strong, physically fit, I memorize his/her face and make a mental note of where they are sitting. I consider this person a resource for me.In the event of an attack on the flight or on me, these are my “go-to” people,” says Bridger in her blog post.
The attendants will also be keen to identify who among the passengers is an airline employee, particularly crew members who have been trained in the in-flight procedures.She says these people are resourceful as they are trained to deal with emergency situation and would therefore become instant “team members” if needed.
“They are an invaluable resource for me, and I like to know who they are and where they’re sitting.”
Nervous passengersFlight attendants also take notice of passengers who are afraid of flying and need a word of comfort and encouragement.
Pet and booze smugglers
Alcohol is allowed in the plane as long as it is kept capped. Passengers cannot therefore drink their own alcohol in the plane and it is up to the flight attendant to check and stop such acts.Upon arrival, as she thanks the passengers as they alight, Janice says that all she thinks about is getting out of her uniform and relaxing in the layover hotel or at home, though the drama doesn’t end.
“Once I had to think about the furious drunk guy who was waiting in the boarding area for me to come out. He was angry because I had cut him off during the flight (he could hardly walk), and was determined to “have it out” with me,” she says.
“As it turned out, he sat down in a seat in the terminal to wait for me and passed out!”