Behind The Scenes Of Being A Personal Concierge

You see these people every time you go on vacation. They plan your nights out, deliver your messages and go to great lengths to ensure each guest has a wonderful stay at their hotel. Have you ever wondered, however, what goes on behind the scenes for a personal concierge? To help give people an idea of what the job is really like, Michael Romei, the head concierge at The Waldorf Astoria/Waldorf Towers, has been kind enough to answer some personal questions based on his 18+ years of experience.

What does being the head concierge at The Waldorf Astoria and Waldorf Towers in New York entail?

I ensure each guest that walks through our doors receives first-class, luxury service, which can include anything from ensuring the right climate control in your room to coordinating an extravagant event or night on the town. I have been the man behind proposals, birthday celebrations, anniversaries and first-time visits to New York. I’m one piece of what we call True Waldorf Service, a service standard and commitment that delivers the utmost experience that begins at the time you book your trip.

What is the most unusual request you’ve ever received from a guest?

I once worked with a guest from a high profile family from central Africa, opening a bakery in Ethiopia. She asked me to help her purchase kitchen and pastry equipment that could be shipped to Ethiopia. I got to know the guest as she stayed with us for six weeks and made sure she got everything needed to open her bakery. One day, I hope to take a trip over to see how the bakery turned out.How many requests do you receive per day?

I receive approximately 150-200 emails per day. I do not know the number of telephone calls, but I would say it’s probably 50-100. Naturally, not all are valid requests, but very often simple questions, which could be answered quickly. On average I handle about 30-50 requests per day; again this varies tremendously from a simple private car booking to restaurant bookings to very lengthy and elaborate planning. Due to the nature of our guests and the luxury service provided, there are several guests who ask me to recommend or even assist them with planning worldwide travel. I once had to run to a traveler’s bookstore to purchase something for a guest. I was in my uniform with name tag and Les Clefs d’Or keys and a customer noticed me and said, “Oh my God! The chief concierge of the Waldorf is here. Can I ask you for your recommendation of where we should stay when we visit the Amalfi Coast?”

What is your favorite part about the job?

My passion, energy and drive is really about pleasing others and creating an unforgettable and memorable experience. I also enjoy being very curious and investigating new and interesting ideas and places in our city that I know our guests would want to know about. Recently a guest actually asked me where I lived. When I mentioned that I live in the same neighborhood just a few blocks away from our hotel, they wanted to then know more from me as a local in the neighborhood and actually asked me which way I walked to and from work and what my favorite places were along the way.

What are the true rewards of your job?

Knowing for sure that I made such a difference in someone’s life and/or experience of their visit. There are numerous examples, but one that you might find significant. A group of guests in wheelchairs were here from Germany one year to actually participate in the “Special Olympics.” They asked me if there was any way they could experience a typical New York City disco club at night. Of course it meant that there had to be something nearby that was also wheelchair accessible. I actually found a club just a few blocks away and escorted the guests myself in their wheelchairs down the street and called ahead to have the manager and security of the club meet and greet them to avoid any waiting in lines of delays at the door. They were absolutely thrilled and said it was a trip of a lifetime!

What is your least favorite part about the job?

My least favorite part of the job is when I cannot deliver and I know a guest is disappointed. However, I always try to compensate in some way by sending something to their room, a floating flower petal, chocolates, their favorite book or a very nice card. Most of the time it really involves a restaurant that really is completely booked and they just cannot add another table or accommodate. I have personally gone to all of the major restaurants to introduce myself to management and staff and several of the top 10-20 restaurants. I have cultivated relationships with the managers and maitre d’ in order to assist with special requests and sold out situations. In spite of this, there is sometimes a certain evening that they just cannot make exceptions. It doesn’t happen often, but every once in a while.

What kind of in-room surprises can you provide?

We have done it all from providing a family with movies and popcorn or updating room floral arrangements daily, to the more elaborate such as decorating a room for a child’s first baseball game or setting up for a romantic marriage proposal. I have arranged for near life-size chocolate figures to be in the room and even for an American Indian to perform a “bow and arrow ceremony” in a guest room for a family during Thanksgiving. If there is something you want in your room or if there is something we think you will truly enjoy, we do our best to get it there.

Is there anything you’re not allowed to do?

We make every effort to fulfill all our guest’s requests, and they’re generally all very reasonable. If we can’t make something happen, we still work to ensure the guest has a great stay.

What types of guests tend to be the most difficult?

Every guest is different, but that’s part of the fun of this job – understanding or intuiting what people need and going above and beyond their expectations. One of the key characteristics of a good concierge is having this type of intuition, which allows you to make a right match. The match is knowing the customer from communications, interaction, questions and then matching them with the right selection such as a restaurant, Broadway show, concert, shopping or tour.

Have you ever served a famous guest?

I have served several famous guests, however, just like all our guests at Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, privacy is always top of mind.

Are there any new technologies you employ on the job?

As part of True Waldorf Service, we rely on a consumer relationships management system that connects our True Waldorf Service personnel to our luxury clientele with ease and helps us to coordinate services and requests.

Do you get any free or discounted perks for being a concierge?

Information about gifts, commissions and tips cannot be disclosed.

Magic Kingdom Worker Gives Candid Interview About Crazy Guests And Working For Disney

During an IAmA (I am a…) discussion on Reddit, a turnstile and parade audience control worker for the Magic Kingdom at Disney World allowed people to ask uncensored questions about crazy guests and what it’s like to work at Disney. Read below to learn what happens when adults act like children, who the worst guests are and which cast members are the most difficult to work with.

Note: These questions were culled from the Reddit community, and the dialogue was taken verbatim. To view the original thread, click here.

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve ever seen?

That’s really tough, if only because of the sheer volume of incredibly weird people I see. Just the other day there was a pair of fully-grown adults dressed up as Peter Pan and slutty Tinker Bell (it was a child’s costume) who thought it was appropriate and that us not letting them in dressed like that was “ruining the magic for them.” (Adults in costume is against policy anyways, much less when it’s something crazy like that.)

Also, a few weeks ago during the daily flag retreat, right before the band started playing, and all of the background music was off so it was deathly quiet, a lady with Tourette’s walked right through town square shouting obscenities, at first we thought we were gonna have to break up a fight (wouldn’t be the first time), but it was just incredibly awkward.Has anyone ever been so large that they don’t fit through the turnstiles?

Yes. We have gates on either side of the turnstile pairs for strollers and wheelchairs though, so they go through those. Anyone that large is probably going to be wheelchair bound anyways, however.

How much fun is working for Disney?

I really, really enjoy it. There’s some crap, but there’s gonna be that at any job. More often than not, my interactions with guests leave a huge smile on my face. It’s just an experience you can’t get at any other job.

How happy are you required to be?

They like us to smile all the time. Which really isn’t as hard as it sounds.

Do you personally like Disney? Are you a fan, or can you not watch anything Disney because it’s “work”? How many famous people have you seen come through the front gates?

I’m a huge Disney fan. More so since I started working. Famous people don’t usually come through the front gates. I saw a lot when I worked at Toy Story though, especially during ESPN the weekend.

What’s your happiest memory from working at the happiest place on earth?

Oh god, just too many to count. After the parade a couple weeks ago a little girl riding on her moms shoulders walking next to me asked if it was possible to go into the castle. I told her yes and she yelled, “I love you!” and gave me a hug. Things like that happen weekly. It’s awesome.

Does it get annoying hearing the same happy-go-lucky music all day?

Yes and No. It kinda varies. You will catch me singing to it ALL the time.

As someone who I assume can ride/do anything at the park on their day off, what is the best/your favorite attraction? What is the most overrated?

I’m a little biased, but I LOVE Toy Story. It helps that I know how to activate all the secrets. Overrated? Peter Pan’s flight. Not worth the ridiculous wait at all.

Can you please elaborate, what secrets in that ride?

Each game has a “secret” you can activate through doing certain things, look up a guide.

What is the ultimate job(s) within a Disney park? The one(s) that people aspire to get assigned. Do these better jobs just come with experience/ seniority, or is it “political”?

It all depends on your personality. I can transfer to almost any of the entry-level areas, any attraction, any merch, food, etc. Serving, you have to work your way up to the nicer restaurants. A very large amount of cast want to be in entertainment, especially face. Unfortunately, most people don’t fit any character. Other than that, things like moving up in management is almost completely internal, based mainly on your record and experience.

Is it true that Disney provides company underwear for the costumed characters?

Not for years. I’ve read the article, I think that was in 2001 they stopped.

Have you ever had to kick someone out of the park before? How big of a sh*t storm did he throw?

I personally have never had to kick someone out, it doesn’t happen as much at MK as it does at the other parks because there’s no alcohol here. We get people whose tickets are invalid/resold who we can’t let in all the time though, and those people are generally very, very problematic.

Craigslist tickets: am I going to get in with them?

No. Not if you bring them to me, at least. Biometrics work!

Are there certain types of cast members that you or your co-workers think are total jerks?

Total jerks? Nah. If you’re the kind of person who wants to work at Disney, you’re probably a nice person. Some of the older people who work mornings can be crabby, but that’s about it.

Do the cast appreciate how fruitless the half-hearted bag “searches” are at the gate? Is it really just for “optics”? Just checking the main pocket of backpacks really doesn’t stop anyone from bringing a prohibited item into the park.

You’d actually be surprised how much stuff gets caught. They catch a ton of alcohol and knives.

What would be your top tip for guests … something you think is great about Disney World that fewest guests discover?

Master Fastpasses. Go during offseasons. ALWAYS GO TO THE 11 O’CLOCK PARADE. It’s the same as the 9 o’clock one and infinitely less crowded.

I knew someone who worked crowd control for Fantasmic at Disneyland and she would routinely be cursed at, screamed at, physically threatened, and often spit on and pushed. What’s the worst similar story of abuse by a guest that you’ve witnessed or experienced?

I’ve been relatively lucky when it comes to dealing with people. You’ll always get upset people, but I’ve never specifically had a terrible problem. I’ve seen it happen though.

Can you find all the hidden mickeys?

Oh god no. I know where a lot of them are, but certainly not all.

How does the park get cleared out at night?

It’s a pretty thorough process – areas close down back to front, getting full sweeps and then blocking people from going further back in until everything is completely closed. Also, you have to know that there’s custodial and engineering there all night – it’s not like everyone just leaves after a certain time.

is it true that the park releases cats out into the ground to catch any rats?

That happened at Disneyland after it first opened.

Do you ever have to turn people away who are dressed like princesses? …I know my gf was slightly disappointed when we went to Disneyland (her first time) and knew about the no adults in costumes or garb rule.

A couple times. Earlier this week we had an adult Peter Pan and Tinker Bell, with the Tinker Bell being INCREDIBLY inappropriate. She was 40-something, heavyset, and it was clearly a child’s costume. Needless to say, it didn’t fit well. We get a lot of Jack Sparrows as well.

Was it these people:

(no reply)

When are you the busiest? Also, when giant groups come in (schools, tour groups, etc.) are they usually a problem? I came with my school band in April-ish, and I am surprised no one was arrested.

Yesterday [July 4]! Brazilian tour groups are the worst thing on the planet. That is all.

What’s the most outrageous thing you’ve overheard a parent tell their child or better yet, a child tell their parent?

Well, you’ll get the parents you wanna just smack for ruining the magic “I wanna meet mickey!” “NO YOU DON’T HES JUST A GUY IN A SUIT!” kids face drops as his world crumbles around him
I’ve had parents tell their child that I hate them and that’s why I won’t let them stand in the middle of the sidewalk blocking foot traffic during a parade.
It’s hard to pinpoint outrageous from a child because, hey, we’re at Disney and most of the crazy nonsense you get from them just kinda fits. Also, in general, kids tend to be better behaved overall at Disney than other places they go. It’s just the atmosphere. You’ll get the average spoiled kid occasionally, but I’ve never seen one so crazy it blows my mind.

I am a cheapskate at heart, so I want to think that Disney is over priced, but every time I go to any Disney park, I am blown away by how professional and courteous almost every cast member is. This is in spite of hot or cold weather, nice or nasty guests, etc. I always leave thinking it was totally worth it. What kind of training do you get in customer service?

We spend an entire day doing a “Traditions” class that teaches us what’s expected. Working here, you really feel like part of a legacy, and you don’t wanna be the one who ruins it. So basically, it comes naturally.

Are the people who play the princess’/princes stuck up? I mean in my head when I see pictures of them I just can’t believe the are all nice and sweet like the portray.

Yes. A large number of them have a “better than thou” attitude. Some are very nice though.

Do the stuck up princesses stay around?

You’re only young and pretty for so long.

[image via ross_hawkes]

Is Dhani Jones the most interesting man in the world?

We have all seen the commercial. “I don’t always drink beer, but when I do, I prefer Dos Equis.” He’s called the most interesting man in the world. But, beyond the LCD panels in your television, and the din of late night TV, the man is just an actor in an especially resonant role, in a very successful advertising series, mythologized with strange deeds and characteristics. His blood smells of cologne, and he despises gyms. After all, running in place will never get you the same results as running from a lion.

It is all hilarious nonsense.

Meanwhile, in the real world, Dhani Jones may just be the most interesting man in the world. Like the Dos Equis demigod, Dhani spends much of his time defying conventions and curating his own personal mythology. He has conducted orchestras, played a decade at middle linebacker in the NFL, scrimmaged with baby elephants, swam with sharks in Australia, flown a Cessna through a thunderstorm, and even carried a suffering man on his shoulder through the Himalayas to safety at a mountain camp.

He has also played a washboard bass on a corner in New York city for tips, and was once arrested for literally dancing too much in the streets of Miami. For Dhani, life is a journey, an extremely interesting one.Dhani Jones also travels, a lot. Bring up the topic and he leans in a little closer, his eyes light up, and he spouts off philosophies culled from the epic lore of a vagabond sportsman. His eccentric convictions peel back the stereotypical jock persona, revealing that ballers can do more than make plays and cash. They also start philanthropic bow tie companies, write books about life, and travel.

Gadling Labs sat down with Dhani at ‘inoteca in New York to discuss his life, his travels, his partnership with Bing Travel, and his new book The Sportsman.

You recently partnered with Bing Travel. What was your reasoning behind this partnership? In what facets of this service do you truly believe?

There are too many decisions in life. Sometimes, someone has to be the decision maker for you. I wear all black because I don’t want to have to go into the closet and make decisions. At restaurants, 9 times out of 10, I will have the server or someone else at the table choose for me. It’s so much easier. At the same time, you are experiencing the perspective of someone else.

That is why I partnered with Bing: they make decisions for you. So many people think that it is difficult to travel because they can’t find a flight within their budget, or can’t find a hotel room in their budget, or they just can’t figure out where to go. Some people are not to the point of being adventurous enough on their own, so they need helpful coercion. Bing makes it easier to travel with advice and discounts as it pertains to travel. It helps you surf the world.

It also takes the thinking out of the situation. Tools like the Price Predictor pulls historical data with statistical modeling to assist in telling you the right time to buy a flight.

Speaking of flights, have you ever had an especially terrifying one?

I don’t get scared during flights. When there is turbulence, I get kind of happy. I like to look around and think, why do these people not have confidence in the pilots? They have family, friends, and they are in control.

I fly planes, and the worst flight I have ever had was one where I was the pilot. I was in Pennsylvania in a 4-seater Cessna 182, and we were flying, and I was checking out property in Pennsylvania. I was taking one of my practice flights, and all of a sudden I see this storm, but we just keep circling properties. The clouds started getting real dark, and my copilot decided it was time to head back. All of a sudden, we pull this turn, and I see him reach over and tighten his belt down. I ‘m like, oh hell no. The storm was on us. We started dropping 50 feet down and back up, sideways. We finally landed and golf ball sized hail started coming down. If that had happened in the sky, that would have been it. That was my worst flight, and I was at the sticks.

You have been all over the world, what were some of the most racially uncool places you have visited?

Australia. I always knew there was some dissension between the Aborigines and the Australians, but when I arrive in a country I wipe the slate clean. There was an incident where people acted like I didn’t know what sand and water were. People say these things to me, and if I respond negatively, it upholds the negative image. But if I respond in a positive way, then I can change people’s minds. Australia and Switzerland were both a little bit difficult. Everywhere else is pretty cool.

I quickly dismiss the sadness and ignorance of it all and leave it to the past.

Some of these experiences are why I travel. There is ignorance on both sides. In Switzerland, I didn’t feel like they liked me. In Cambodia, they thought I was Barack Obama. Different places have their own ways of things and it’s our responsibility as travelers to make our own introductions. I am like a diplomat of travel.

My favorite travel quote is “Don’t tell me how educated you are, tell me how much you traveled.” As someone who majored in “self-representation” at Michigan, what do you value more, your academic education, or what you have learned from traveling?

Michigan allowed me to understand the world from a diverse perspective, enhancing and encouraging my appetite for travel. I could never say one more than the other. I go to places like Thailand and China and always meet people from Michigan. Michigan is an international school, and they really encourage you to travel the world. You know what I mean. My parents introduced me to travel, Michigan shaped me, the Travel Channel and Bing allowed me the opportunity to really travel.

Aside from the clothes on your back, what are five things you always travel with?

1. a pen and a pad
2. a camera – Canon g11 or 5D, depending on the length of the trip
3. a bowtie – very versatile (Dhani runs a philanthropic bow tie cause)
4. bathing suit – always have to be ready to swim
5. mobile device/phone – for the apps (like Bing travel app) and pictures of family

In your book you mention an especially uncomfortable scene in a locker room in Switzerland. What are some of your other uncomfortable travel experiences?

With every country you travel to, the first day is always a little uncomfortable. You are adapting to speech, trying to get bearings, trying to figure out who to meet up with, and everything falls into place once you start walking. Walking is the key. And opening up to people.

In Russia, we (the film crew for Dhani Tackles the Globe) got caught in passport control for about 7 hours. We went from Cambodia to China to Russia, and after paying a baggage fee in China, Russia also tried to charge us some exorbitant baggage fee. Just stuck in customs, they didn’t want to let us in. It was like that Tom Hanks movie, The Terminal.

Do you ever miss home, or family?

When I’m gone, I’m gone. When I am overseas I am full on into it. I am the country. When I am in Croatia, I am Croatian. When I’m in South Africa, I am South African. When I’m in Brazil, I am Brazilian. I even change around my accent to talk like the locals, eat the food. I ask people how they talk to different types of people: parents, girls, friends. How do they go out, and how do they meet girls. How do they order food. I try to change everything, and just try to find my way through.

I am not thinking of home. I live here now. My hotel is home.

With an excellent career in the NFL, doing the show was very risky. One mix up and your NFL career could be compromised, costing you millions of dollars. And yet here you were competing in some of the most dangerous sports in the world. Did any of it make you extremely nervous?

When we got green-lit for the show, and they told me the first sport I would play was going to be rugby, I thought to myself, shit. I didn’t have a contract. I was in the middle of re-negotiations. I have the opportunity to travel, but I have to play rugby. And I was going to play rugby against professionals. What do I do?

There is no way I am going to back down. I am going to play rugby and I’m going to be all right. Something has to go well. Right?

Then, I get on this horse (in England, during the rugby episode).

I love horseback riding, and when I had to jump, I thought to myself, I don’t know what’s going to happen now. If anything, it’s going to be a telltale sign of why I should be doing what I’m doing.

Falling down off of the horse, I am thinking, I hope I survive this because I really want to keep doing this show.

And I land. I get stepped on by the horse. I look up. Take a moment. I’m okay. From that moment on, I knew that I was supposed to do the show.

Also, in Spain, getting hit in the face with a surfboard – not a fiber glass surfboard, but a Styrofoam one. If I got hit with a real surfboard, my whole jaw would have been broken.

Those situations gave me an indication that I was supposed to do the show. Also the last three years in football, I have played in every game and made every practice. Rather than hurting me, it has allowed me to keep my body fresh. When football started each season, I was not in a lulled state, I was in an excited state. A lot of people are always doing the same thing all the time. As you travel and play different sports and meet different people, your life becomes more fulfilling and fresh, because you never know what’s around the next corner. When you know what’s around the next corner, and you know what you are coming to do each day, there is a complacency factor. I hate to become complacent.

The equation is, do what your passionate about, find a way to incorporate what your passionate about into what you do every day, and you will be alright.

I wrote the Sportsman to allow others a little more insight into why I travel with so much on the line. I don’t have millions of dollars on the line; that is not my thought process. What I do have on the line is, if I am not out there doing it, who is?

Which sport was the most challenging on a technical level during your experiences filming Dhani Tackles the Globe? Also, what sports could you play professionally other than football?

Jai alai is the most difficult. The ball is this big (3/4 baseball size), it goes 200mph, and you have to catch it in a curved basket. If you blink, the ball has passed. If you blink twice, the ball has passed and hit you in the back. If that ball hits you in the back of the head, you are dead.

Other than football, the top three sports I would play professionally are sailing, cricket, and rugby, in that order.

Martin Johnson is the coach of the English rugby team. He would definitely give me a tryout. I would like to play cricket. Sailing is great because you make money, travel, and see the world with someone helping you out.

But, my life is from the middle linebacker position. Playing middle linebacker is equated to seeing the world. From my perspective of travel, you have to have a wide vision. Strong side or weak side has one responsibility. At the mike (middle), you are looking everywhere, seeing the entire field. Looking at multiple different places, interacting with multiple groups of people, it is just like travel. You can’t have a narrow mind and just focus on one thing or one responsibility. My life is from the middle linebacker position.

Now that Dhani Tackles the Globe is cancelled, do you have any television aspirations other than playing on Sunday?

I would love to do another travel show. If I could travel for the rest of my life and tell everybody how amazing it is, I would do that for the rest of my life.

Go on some crazy adventures like travel around the world in a sailboat. Sail the Amazon, or the Nile, or go horseback riding from Montana to Mexico, or drive down to Tierra del Fuego.

Another thing is a talk show. I would love to have a talk show where we give athletes a platform to discuss what they care about and what they are doing. Social media has afforded us the opportunity, and people want to know more about these guys than just the sport side. I think there is a definite spot.

I have dedicated my life to travel so that other people can have the opportunity to understand what it is to travel, where to go, and how to get there. And to just learn, that ultimately is the best type of education to ever be afforded.

After football, you mentioned maybe being a pediatric neurosurgeon in your book. What do you have planned?

I will be the first black James Bond. I am well on my way. I scuba dive. I have a Morgan Aero super sport. Next? I have a 63 mini cooper. I have all British cars. I can fight. I shoot guns and am a sharpshooter. Next? I wear a tuxedo rather well, and I rock the bow tie even better. What’s next?

So basically, a lot of the things you have done have built your resume up to be the next James Bond.

I am dead serious about being the first black James Bond. Once Daniel Craig is done, I want next. I know I can’t be 230 lbs, but I can get down to 215. I’m ready to go. I think the world is ready.

So, is Dhani Jones the most interesting man in the world? Maybe or maybe not. But at age 33, he is well on his way. Check out his blog over at Bing Travel. His book, The Sportsman, was released last month.

photography by Justin Delaney

Taking Travel: interview with Bert the Conqueror at Alaska’s Fur Rondy (video)

In the spirit of journeying during periods less traveled, I’ve embarked to Alaska this winter. Follow the adventures here, and prepare to have your preconceived notions destroyed along the way.

Talking travel and having a laugh with Bert the Conqueror

So it ain’t so! During our time here at Alaska’s 76th running of Fur Rondy, we happened upon a true travel legend: Bert Kreischer. You may know him better as the comedic genius and star of The Travel Channel’s ‘Bert the Conqueror,’ and this weekend, he ventured up to Anchorage for his coldest, most extreme adventure yet. He participated in the Outhouse Races as well as a sophisticated snowball fight dubbed Yukigassen, and when I asked him if he’d become Alaskan enough to consider entering the Iditarod… well, you’ll just have to watch and find out. We cover everything from what kind of food he’s been eating here in The Last Frontier to his strategy (or lack thereof) for toppling his opponents when it comes time to fire off a round of snowballs.

My trip was sponsored by Alaska Travel Industry Association, but I was free to report as I saw fit. The opinions expressed in this article are 100% my own.

Galley Gossip: Flight attendant training – which airline to pick?

Next week I’m to start flight attendant training for American Eagle. But today I got a call from Delta and they want me to go for a face to face interview two days after I’m to start training! If I go to the Delta interview, I’ll forfeit American Eagle completely and won’t ever be able to reapply, as this is my second chance to go to training with them. I’m giving up my good paying but burned out retail management job and changing my life to do my long lived dream job as a flight attendant. I’ve been waiting to get a call back for over a year due to training cancellations last year. American Eagle training is three weeks long, but doesn’t pay, while Delta pays for six weeks of training. I’m afraid to give up American Eagle to go to a Delta interview and possibly not make it and then I’m out both! What should I do? – Laura

Dear Laura,

Have you tried to delay your training class with Eagle? If not, give the airline a call and see if you can push it back a few days, meaning you’d like to start in the next available training class. I’m sure they have a couple of them lined up. This way you can go to the Delta interview without forfeiting a shot at Eagle. Most airlines hire on the spot, so you’ll know the day of the interview if Delta is interested or not. If they send you to “medical”, congratulations, you made it! If they say they’ll contact you soon, that’s code for thanks but no thanks. Move on. And

If Eagle won’t let you change your class date, I suggest sticking with Eagle. Initially I had planned on telling you to hold out for Delta, which is also what most of my coworkers suggested after I ran the scenario by them, but after weighing the pros and cons I think it would be foolish to put all your eggs in one basket. The simple fact is a bird in the hand is worth more than two in the bush . Before I was hired by a major US carrier, I was passed over by one of its biggest competitors. I tell you this for two reasons; you never know what’s going to happen and you should never give up on your dreams. I’d also hate to see you lose a wonderful opportunity because you chose to go to an interview instead of training.

Working for a regional carrier is a great place to start. You’ll gain seniority quickly and get travel benefits, as well as experience on the job. A little experience is always better than none, especially if you don’t speak a second language and you’re interested in interviewing for a major carrier like Delta. Who knows, you might love working for Eagle. I know a lot of flight attendants who do. But if you don’t, simply quit and apply to another airline offering better pay and international layovers. That’s exactly what I did three months after Sun Jet, a low cost carrier, hired me fifteen years ago.

FYI: I’ve heard through the grapevine that you can try to transfer to American after a year on the job with Eagle. I’ve also heard American will be hiring soon.

Ultimately the decision is yours, Laura, because only you know what’s best for you. Good luck! Make sure to write back and let us know what happened.


UPDATE 1/27: I’m excited to report that Laura held out for Delta and got hired yesterday! Only 8 out of 125 people made it through. FYI: Laura is NOT a speaker. I’m so excited for her!!! Now why did she decide to hold out for Delta? It migh have something to do with another question she asked right after this post went live. Stay tuned for another upcoming Galley Gossip post inspired by Laura


Photo courtesy of DavityDave