Galley Gossip: Flight Attendants Walk off the Plane

“Why in the world did you bid that!” I asked my mother, who is also a flight attendant (yeah, I know, it’s a bit of a freak show over here), when she told me about her nightmare trip from New York to Miami. “I haven’t worked that route in years.”

The New York to Miami flight is by far one of the worst trips to work if you’re a flight attendant, which is why, I imagine, when it comes to seniority, it tends to go a little junior.

“It looked good on paper,” my mother said, who is not all that junior, even though she is junior to me. And then she went on to tell me all about the irate passenger who freaked out when she, my mother, also a flight attendant, asked the passenger to put her very large purse (not that size matters) in the overhead bin, a purse that was lying on the floor in the bulkhead row, the same bulkhead row the flight attendant making the announcement kept referring to in her PA, the one that distinctly states carry-on items may not block aisles or exits and may not be placed on the floor at the first row of each cabin.

“You’ve got to stop working those flights!” I said, interrupting yet another story about another irate passenger. How many were there you ask? I lost count. I was too stressed out just listening to her talk to pay attention.

Really, I do not know what it is about that particular route that makes it so unenjoyable to work, but the New York – Miami crowd is tough, which is why I stopped working that flight as soon as I had enough seniority to hold something else, something better, something good, something flying west like San Diego, Seattle, Los Angeles, or San Francisco – simply put, something with a lot less drama. I take pride in being nice and polite to my passengers. I actually enjoy providing a good service. But that’s not always so easy to do from New York to Miami. Trust me, those flights can get ugly – very very ugly! And since I don’t do ugly, not anymore, it’s off to another destination for me.

Hey, just being honest here. That’s all

With that said, imagine how unsurprised I was to hear about the New York – Miami flight on Sunday night where the crew refused to work the flight due to the hostile environment. Apparently the crew was late to the gate. No where does it mention WHY the crew was late, but they could have been late for several reasons, like a late inbound flight they were working, or perhaps the original crew went illegal and this crew was called out at the last minute, who knows, but whatever the reason, they arrived on the scene over an hour late and passengers booed and things just got ugly.

Trust me, it takes a lot to make the crew walk off an airplane. I’ve never seen in it 13 years. Flight attendants, for the most part, are pleasers, which means they would never do anything that would put their job in jeopardy (like walking off a flight), so that hostile environment must have been pretty darn bad, much more hostile than you and I could ever imagine. And so they walked.

Of course I can’t help but wonder how far those flight attendants walked? Did they just walk off the airplane and go to flight operations or did they actually go all the way home? And more importantly, did they ever come back?

Honestly, if this were any other flight going to any other destination, I wouldn’t believe what I was reading either. But this was a New York – Miami flight, therefore I believe, I truly believe that things got so bad the flight attendants broke down and disappeared. Something tells me you might actually see those flight attendants still walking, walking in a daze down the side of the road, a rag tag bunch wearing navy blue polyester and pulling their Travelpros behind them. Poor things. So if you happen to see a worn out group of four or five dressed in blue, show the love and honk your horn!


And while you’re at it, go ahead and show the love to all of your flight attendants! And we’ll show the love right back. Happy travels to all and to all a good flight.