I’ve been a bad blog owner

26 03 2010

So It’s been forever since I’ve written.  Been working and such, so heres a brief recap of the last 2 months:

Hawaii

So the last time I posted we were in Hawaii.  The trip was awesome.  4 nights in Kauai with an ocean view room, and 3 nights on Waikiki on a 25th floor corner balcony unit.  Spent a nice week relaxing, tanning, and enjoying the scenery.  It was a much needed vacation, and a very easy trip.  Next big travel plans are New York for the weekend, a long weekend Dublin, and hopefully a week in either Southeast Asia or Australia

Honolulu Pictures:

Kauai Pictures

Weight Loss

After being called fat by 2 passengers and a TSA agent, I decided it was finally time to finally stop talking about losing weight and actually start doing it.  I joined weight watchers online, and a company wide fitness challenge in mid january.  Starting out at 320 pounds.  I am now 288, a loss of over 30 pounds in just under 2 months.  Still have about 40 more to go, but well on my way.  Will be writing more about this soon

New Tattoo

I’ve always loved aviation, and I also love tattoos.  It just makes sense for me to get an aviation themed tattoo.  I ended up with a decent size A320 on my lower back, and its my favorite tattoo.  next up is expanding the one on my upper back out to my shoulders, but that’ll have to wait until later

Going back to school

I have also decided to finally do something with the 2 years of UCSB credits I have, and get my AA in Travel and Tourism from City College San Francisco.  Now that all the paperwork is in, just have to wait for my registration appointment and I’ll be a part time student

So theres my brief recap.  My short layovers haven’t ben conducive to much more than sleeping and working out, but will work on writing more soon





The Other No-Fly Lists

1 02 2010

In a perfect world everyone would get along, work together, hold hands, and sing in perfect harmony.  We all know that just isn’t the case.  The same holds true in the pressurized metal tubes that fly 35,000 feet above the earth.  Personalities clash, work styles don’t quite mesh, conflicts arise.  As much as I would love to say I’d be thrilled to work with each and every person at my airline, that’s not the case.  In fact, I think you’d be hard pressed to find any flight attendant where that’s the case.  Each flight attendant has in the back of their mind their own personal No-Fly List.

Admittedly, there are people I have flown with that I don’t have any desire to fly with again.  That doesn’t mean I don’t like them, It just means that I don’t necessarily work well with them.  Fortunately this list is pretty short for me.  The people I don’t want to fly with are people I have flown with in the past.  As flight attendant’s main form of entertainment on the plane is gossiping, you often hear horror stories about other flight attendants.  While sometimes these stories are true, I have heard things about people and when I fly with them they have been a pleasure to fly with.  Other times the stories are 100% true. I’d never add someone to my no fly list from stories, or even one bad trip.  Everyone has a bad trip once in awhile.  Being overtired, feeling sick, or having something going at home can cause someone to have a short temper or be lazy.  Who knows.  Repeated though, and they might just have a bad attitude.

No once someone has earned a place on your no fly list, how do you avoid flying with them.  Usually the answer to that is sheer luck.  Airlines have a ton of flight attendants, and sometimes you can go months or years without flying with someone.  There are flight attendants in my base I have never met, let alone flown with.  Most people I don’t want to fly with have shown up on a trip once, and I haven’t been awarded a trip with them since.

My company’s old bidding system (we have since changed) had an option to buddy bid.  This is where you say you want to fly trips with a specific person.  It also had the option to avoid trips with a specific person.  My airline disabled that option, saying it was detrimental to a sense of teamwork, and if you had a problem with someone you should talk directly to them.  While I can see the point, at the same time it can be detrimental to the passenger’s experience if the flight attendants are bickering in the back. Once a trip is awarded, and someone you don’t want to fly with is on your trip, theres 2 options to deal with it: Drop the trip, or hope they drop the trip.  They both have their ups and downs, and it really depends on how strongly you feel about not flying with the person.

I’m lucky that I get along with most people at my airline, and the people I don’t work the best with like different types of trips, different days off, or are at different bases now.  I have never dropped a trip because someone I didn’t want to fly with was on it.  I just think positive thoughts, remember that at most its only 4 days, remember that I don’t have to hang out with them on the layovers, and make the best of it.





The Non-Rev Gods are still angry (UPDATE)

22 01 2010

So I am sitting at Burbank Airport, waiting to see what was formerly our best shot to get to Phoenix.  The weather turned south again and the first flight this morning was cancelled.  We had to do what us airline employees hate doing most: Buy a ticket.  We didn’t even get to buy a confirmed seat.  The flight was at capacity and we bought full fare refundible revinue standby tickets.  So now the game plan is try to get on our now oversold flight, and if so call to refund our purchased tickets.  If not, we’re #1 and #2 on the standby list for revenue flight.  Wish us luck!

UPDATE:

I am sitting in the boarding area at Burbank airport with a completed jumpseat agreement and a boarding pass with a seat number! we got on the overbooked flight.  Cancelled the fully refundable ticket and we’re on our way





I Angered the Non-Rev Gods

22 01 2010

So we’re trying to get to Phoenix to see some family. Unfortunately we chose the week of the worst storm of the season to go. Great timing, right? Our preferred routing was naturally SFO-PHX. When we checked the loads there were 30-50 seats available on each flight all day. Well, then 2 other airlines decided to cancel most of their flights, leaving the one carrier that was flying between the two horribly oversold. Well, there went the direct option, now its time to do what us non-revers do best: become creative.

We could have gone home, tried again tomorrow, but where’s the fun in that? Time to go online and figure out how to reroute ourselves. Luckily we hadn’t gone anywhere yet, and were still at an airport our airline flies to. As I will explain in a future post, when you are non-reving on your own airline, you have a higher priority than when you are flying on other airlines. So the options we were considering were SFO-somewhere-PHX, with those somewheres being LAX, LAS, or SAN. We called on of the airlines to list for a flight, when we were informed that all of their LAX-PHX flights had been cancelled. Well, there goes another option. All the flights from SFO-LAS were really delayed, so we would miss most of the PHX flights, or just get into PHX really late.

We soon realize there’s next to no chance of us getting to PHX, which is when we get really creative. We ask ourselves, “Who lives near airports that have flights that are A) at a reasonable hour; B) have open seats, and C) would let us stay with them. In this situation, the answer to that question is my Parents. And to make things even better, they were going to be meeting up with us in Phoenix.

So now we are sitting at my parents house in LA after flying down to LAX and spending the night here. It looks good for the flight today (although that’s what we said yesterday…) and the weather is much improved. Will update with our status as we go along.





My big airline geek moment

19 01 2010

So on my flight last night from Florida to LAX, I had a really big airline geek moment. I was working in the back of the cabin and had just finished beverage service, and was sitting with my composition book trying to write a couple new blog posts (Since I can’t have my computer out when I’m working, I bring a composition book to write down my posts and type them when I get to my layover, but thats another post…), when I get a call from the purser. She told me she had something that I had to see.

I walked up to the forward galley where she is sitting in her jumpseat reading an old hand written book. She told me that a passenger had stopped her and asked her to have the pilot sign his log book. We sat in the forward galley flipping through this book, enraptured by this book. Hundreds of flights all signed by the pilots, starting when he was 3 months old, and sometimes with little notes, things like “50th atlantic crossing” or “Diverted to (city) for (reason).” One note caught my eye. It said something to the effect of “If you start another airline give me a call.” I grabbed the manifest and realized that this book belonged to Freddie Laker, son of Sir Freddie Laker

For those of you who don’t know who Sir Freddie Laker was the inventor of the Low Cost Carrier when he started Laker Airways and Laker Skytrain service from London-Gatwick to New York JFK. He was a mentor to Richard Branson when he started Virgin Atlantic, advising him to “Sue the bastards” in regards to BA’s attacks on VS.

I had heard of this logbook once before on the “Fly With Joe” Podcast (episode 15 if you feel like listening) and was thrilled to get a chance to see it as well as meet Freddie and hear some stories. He did not follow in his fathers Airline footsteps, but became a successful internet entrepreneur. It was really cool to see that he is still bringing the logbook his father started for him on every flight that he goes on (over 30 pages now). Very cool experience for me





And we’re back

14 01 2010

And were back from vacation. I started writing a recap while on the airplane, and should have it done and posted in the next couple days. For now, here’s a picture of the hotel in Honolulu





Not so much on the travel journal

10 01 2010

Ok, so I know I said I’d update this more on my trip. Grand plans on daily updates. One thing I forgot is when youre traveling for pleasure, the airline dosent pick up the tab for the Internet. I’m not a huge fan of paing $13 for Internet, so I haven’t done it yet. I also don’t feel like typing a whole long post on my iPhone.

Today I do have to break down and pay for Internet. Bidding closes for feb tomorrow and I neglected to do it before we left. I might update with our trip so far as long as I have the Internet.