Long Time, No See

Hello Everyone and welcome back to the Cabin Crew Blog of Crewfie101. Firstly I’d like to apologise for the lack of posts in the last month. I have been super busy with flying and also very busy on my days off.

Since my last post on my trip to Beijing, I have been to Singapore and Sydney, Gothenburg, Calgary and Toronto, Austin and the dreaded Night Moscow. And also  happened to get trained to be able to deliver our First Class Service to our most premium passengers. There have been some huge route moves to my fleet of crew and I got my new roster for March, potentially the best one I have ever received.

So there is a lot to tell you guys. I am currently on a Team Trip with some of my best friends for training, but the weather isn’t the best so taking some of my morning to update you on whats new in the Cabin Crew Life.

Trip Updates:

  1. Singapore and Sydney: In mid January I flew to the other side of the world and unfortunately on the first sector from Heathrow down to Singapore, I developed a pretty bad cold so my first two days of a nine day trip, were unfortunately bed bound trying to recover. My only trips out of the hotel were to a pharmacy and a supermarket. It really wasn’t fun. Luckily enough I recovered in enough time to head down to Sydney and meet one of my favourite Celebrity Chefs, Anna Polyviou at the Shangri-La Hotel and eat some of her new desserts. It was a huge tick in the box moment for me. On the way back home another two nights in Singapore followed with an amazing friend who was on the way out on her trip. We went to the night Safari at Singapore Zoo and then on the last day of my trip we headed to, in my opinion, the best island resort, which is Sentosa. We did the incredible MegaAdventure Zipwire which conquered part of my fear of heights, not really…  Then the Skyline Luge which I have done on all of my trips to Singapore and continue to love it. Then unfortunately it was time to head back to the UK on the long 14 hour flight. And that brought another great trip to the other side of the world.
  2. Gothenburg, Sweden: A very lucky call of Home Standby to head up to Gothenburg on a one out and one back. We headed up late the first night and only had time to nip to the bar for a quick drink before we headed to bed. The next morning, I met with Laura and headed to the “Infamous” Gothenburg Spa. It was an incredibly chilled out day and was so nice to have a good trip to Gothenburg. All of my trips to Gothenburg before this had been what we call “Min Rest”. This means we didn’t have enough time to do anything apart from eat a huge Swedish breakfast.
  3. Calgary, Canada: The day after I got back to London I headed to Calgary, which was my first ever trip on the 787 last April. I headed there with George, an amazing friend, who I really enjoy flying with. We met for a lovely dinner in the hotel with the crew and then headed to bed, it was a really long day. The next morning we decided to go “Tubing” and the First Officer and one of the girls were going to go Skiing at the Calgary Olympic Park, which happens to be the set of one of my favourite movies, Cool Runnings about the Jamaican Bobsleigh Team. I sat in the Sled, so awesome. We shared an Uber and headed to the park to discover that the Tubing was closed.. So for the first time I decided to attach a pair of Skis to my legs and go down the Olympic Run. It was genuinely one of the most terrifying but most enjoyable experiences of my life. I had two brilliant instructors in John and JC and a brilliant Photographer in George who decided to only take photos of me at my absolute worst.. One of my favourite trips in my time flying.
  4. Toronto, Canada: After two days off from Calgary, back to Canada I went and with the new Business Class service for the first time. It went well, given the fact we only had a total of 22 passenger over both sectors. In Toronto, we had a slight issue when we arrived, our stand at Pearson International was occupied so we were taxied to our remote stand at the other side of the airport. We waited for around 40 minutes for a marshaller, the person with the light-up Batons, who never turned up. After that amount of time we were then pushed back and had to taxi back to the terminal. So from the time we landed to opening the doors, an hour and 6 minutes had passed. The passengers, the crew and ultimately the Captain were not impressed. We disembarked and headed straight for bed at the hotel. The next morning I met my friend from school to watch the Scotland vs Wales and Ireland vs France rugby matches in the Six Nations. It did not make pleasant watching, we were heavily beaten, I’m a Scotland fan. That afternoon I went Ice-Skating with one of the crew and it was superb. It really was another excellent trip.
  5. Austin, Texas, USA: The less said about Austin the better, all we did was eat BBQ and breakfast. Not my favourite trip, brilliant crew however.
  6. Night Moscow: The less said about this trip also the better. A there and back to Moscow overnight, what a great idea said nobody ever.

That brings all my trips up to date, now route moves to and from my fleet of Crew at my Company. This happens every six months or so to coincide with the changing of flight schedules between summer and winter. We always look forward to new routes in our fleet and fear which ones we sadly will lose. Our emotion could go either way, very trip dependant.

So what are we gaining? We are receiving a couple of route shared routes between us and the longhaul fleet of Crew. We are gaining the daily A380 flight to Los Angeles, sadly not affecting me as I am not trained on the A380, and also one of the daily flights to Dubai on the Boeing 777! This is quite exciting for me as I have always wanted to see Dubai. We also received the trips to Nassau, Bahamas and the Grand Cayman Shuttle, which is one of our few “beach trips” which makes it quite exciting for us. In the USA, we received the trip to New Orleans, a very exciting prospect and in Argentina, the trips to Buenos Aires, finally another South American route for us! On Short Haul, we are gaining a lot. Unfortunately there are a lot of there and backs, aka Day Trips. Which for me, as a commuter it doesn’t do a lot for me. We have picked up a new route for my Company in Almeria, Spain and in terms of moves, we have Billund and Copenhagen, Denmark, Bucharest in Romania, Faro in Portugal, Munich in Germany, Olbia in Italy, Leeds Bradford in the UK and Split in Croatia. For Mid-Haul we have gained Amman in Jordan and Beirut in Lebanon, both of which I can’t wait to operate. So overall we have gained 16 routes and some absolute rippers! I think we expected to gain more long haul but we are super excited about our new routes! We begin to operate all of these services in May and June, and for the Mid-Haul routes, we start in September.

However, though we gain 16 routes we have to lose some. On Long Haul, we are losing Vancouver, Chicago and Philadelphia. These are not the worst for us to lose at its the USA, which aren’t the most popular within my fellow crew apart from the beds in Philadelphia, which are heavenly. On short-haul we are sadly losing some of my favourite night stops. We are losing Hamburg and Hanover in Germany, Vienna in Austria where I have never night stopped yet and Oslo up in Norway. Overall we are gaining far more than we are losing so we are thrilled. There certainly are exciting times ahead in the skies.

On the topic of exciting times ahead, my March Roster is very exciting indeed. I start with a lovely four day tour of Europe, involving a short there and back to Manchester then to Hanover for TWO NIGHTS and they are a Friday and a Saturday Nights, then off to Milan for the night, a new destination for me. My Birthday weekend follows with myself being off, then a nice three day Chicago with four AV days, which I am planning to get a trip for, then back to one of my favourite cities, a 5 day Santiago de Chile. I really love this trip despite the 14 and a half hour flight time. Then the Holy Grail of My March Roster, a trip to Johannesburg, South Africa. This is a trip I have been bidding for since I started over a year and a half ago so I am very excited. Its a superb roster and a very nice early 22nd birthday present.

We are now up to date with what has happened in the last few weeks. I definitely plan on keeping this site far more up to date than I have in the last few weeks!

Well I now have to go get ready to operate the flight back from Miami on-board the beautiful Boeing 747 on flight BA206, in our First Class cabin for the “first” time. I completed my two day training course over the past weekend. It’s another huge step up for me in my career.

See you next time on-board Crewfie101.

Trip Report: Beijing, China

Hello everyone and welcome to those joining us for the first time on-board crewfie101. This is my first long haul trip of New Year 2018 and what a good one to begin with. It was a new destination, a five day trip with the bonus of only operating one way and being to one of the top destinations I have been waiting to visit.

The day before we departed for Beijing, I operated a short haul service to Stuttgart and back, a nice way to get back into the swing of things after the New Years break! The way out was nice and empty with the way back a little busier but nothing a very experienced crew couldn’t deal with. We arrived back at lunchtime and i didn’t report to head to Beijing for another 24 hours so I decided to take it nice and easy and catch up on some much needed sleep.

So to Beijing! We flew out on-board the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner with a whole crew positioning with us. Positioning is when Cabin or Flight Crew fly as passengers to operate the next flight or position home after operating the way out. This is for whatever reason the airline requires, so on this trip we were positioning home from Beijing after operating the way out. A great way to start the New Year. The flight out was nice and easy with a great crew and a light load of passengers. We arrived in Beijing and after taxing for what seemed like an age due to Chinese Air Traffic rules which state that you are not permitted to cross runways meaning you have to taxi to the end and then back on yourself, not particularly what you need after a 10 hour flight, we disembarked and headed on the train to the bus and baggage reclaim. This train was possibly the slowest in history. I could have run faster, maybe not after the flight but in general, yeah. We got on the bus and fell asleep very quickly, I was knackered. After a rude awakening from my colleagues on the bus, we booked our tour to the Great Wall of China for the following day and headed to bed.

That evening we met at 7 to go for dinner and guided by one of our Beijing based crew, went to the Restaurant. This restaurants menu was as thick as a brick. Now as a particularly indecisive person, this raised several issues. In the end I went for the Peking Duck to share with one of the crew, and it was phenomenal! We all ended up feasting on food from all around the table as everyone had ordered far too much. What a night it was. We walked back to the hotel and I decided to head straight to bed as we had to meet at 7am the following morning. My sleep lasted all of 3 hours as it often does in the Far East. I was up at 1 and stayed awake to when I would’ve had to get up anyway. Slightly frustrating.

At 7am we got picked up and headed out on the death defying car ride to the Great Wall. There were more near misses on this drive than Kim Kardashian has had with the paparazzi. We headed past frozen waterfalls and elephant playgrounds before reaching the bottom of the wall. The driver took our money and wandered off, we hoped to get us the chairlift tickets and returned ten minutes later, luckily with the tickets. We hopped on the shuttle bus and made it to the chairlift up to the wall. Now. This may seem quite odd, given the fact that I work at 36000ft, but I am petrified of heights, so the idea of dangling above the ground doesn’t thrill me. Luckily Hannah came with me and kept me sane. As much as I didn’t want to look the views were incredible.

We got onto the wall, and what an amazing experience we had. For me, this was definitely a Bucket List moment. A wow, speechless and breathless moment. I have wanted to go to the Great Wall for years and actually get to get to do it, well it was incredible. We took so many pictures and if you are currently cabin crew or becoming crew the phrase “doing it for the gram” is a daily phrase for you that you will hear several times every trip! The Great Wall, according to my Dad, is the only man made structure visible from space. It stretches 5,500km along China and we walked around 1 mile of that, so not a huge chunk. We climbed and descended many steps, my Apple Watch loved me, and the views were some of the best I have ever seen. We were walking up the glass steps with a “Carefully Slip” sign. I do love the translations between English and Chinese.

The “Best” bit of the wall or the bit was really looking forward to was the toboggan back down the hill. We lined up and off we went…. for around 30 seconds. These two Women ahead of us quite clearly didn’t understand that if you lean forward and push the stick forward, YOU GO FORWARD!! I am usually quite a calm person, except when people really don’t understand simple things and it ruins it for others. We all were screaming at them, pretty sure I was called Jay at some point but the whole situation really did make us laugh, (afterwards).

We hopped back in the “Death Cab” for the journey back to the hotel and on arriving we headed to McDonalds.. I know, don’t need the hate. After McDonald’s I headed for a sleep before we met again for dinner. Everyone always asks about your sleep patterns in this job and the truth is you don’t really have one. You go from Timezone to Timezone, city to city so your body really doesn’t have much time to adapt to whichever zone you are in before moving onto the next. My philosophy is sleep when I need to on trips as sometimes it works out better like that. It does mean that you are often awake in the middle of the night, but hey perfect time to watch catch up TV, just not in China where you cant access anything due to the internet being so restricted.

So we ended up going back to the same restaurant for dinner and ordered the exact same food, just because it was so good the night before. We got in and all headed to bed. Once again did not sleep, and FaceTimed my cousin at 4am to watch the Liverpool vs Everton football match, yes I did get that desperate.

The following morning the 4 of us met at around 10am to head to the Forbidden City in downtown Beijing. The taxi ride there felt slightly safer but not a huge amount. To be honest it was a shock that the whole crew made it to the aircraft for the journey home, given some of the stories of the various car journeys. We arrived to what looked like the Chinese changing of the guard, however they were a lot more musical than there British counterparts. We watched that then headed into the City itself. This was a very impressive place. The temples were so well looked after and the artwork decorating them was absolutely immaculate. Temple after temple we went through and looked in awe at them all. My only criticism of the place was that, all the temples were very similar, so once you had seen one, you had seen them all. Still it is definitely something I would highly recommend to do when in Beijing.

From the Forbidden City we attempted to find a cheap taxi to the Pearl Market, to pick up some cheap clothes and stuff. This was a bit of a mission. They tried to charge us huge sums of money when we knew it would only cost us around 40 Yuan. We obviously declined until we found a taxi that would take us for 50, which we figured was as good as we were going to get. We got down there and I got my bartering hat on. I got a lovely hoodie down from 1000 Yuan to 100 Yuan. Was happy with that effort. If you ever find yourself in Beijing, Shanghai or probably anywhere in China, you have to visit these markets. You can pick up ridiculously good deals, but you do have to barter otherwise they will take you for a ride. My style is asking the salesperson what it costs and then when they give the huge price, saying no and beginning to walk away. They begin to chase you and lower there price and somehow it works a charm. We bought a few things then headed back to the hotel before going to get some early dinner and going to the supermarket to pick things up for that night as none of us really wanted to go back out.

The next morning it was time to head for home. As we were positioning home out of China we have to get to the aircraft in our uniform then change into our comfy clothes when we get onboard. As positioning crew we are booked J or Business Class seats but only if there are enough seats. Throughout this trip, I had been saying to our Customer Service Manager that I would be happy anywhere as long as I wasn’t in a middle seat in Economy, wasn’t trying to be a snob, just a ten hour flight in that seat makes me feel ill. So we get to the airport and we all know that we are going to be in Economy as the flight is full. Three seats came up in Business class so the guys with the highest seniority got them. Seniority is really the only fair way to decide it, as I have been with the airline only a year and a half, on the Boeing 787 that isn’t going to get you very far in the seniority scale. To be trained on the 787 you have to have been flying for at least 6 months or so. Within my fleet of crew, it is the one with the most experienced crew which is great for working as everyone knows what they are doing but not for positioning. I was 6th on the list out of 8. So I get to the desk and check in, get given a boarding pass for seat 30E. The middle seat. I was not happy. I asked if there were any other seats, but as I was the last to check in there wasn’t. The only positive was that the 4 crew in Economy were at least all sat together, but still was ridiculously uncomfortable for the length of flight that it was.

I couldn’t wait to get back to London. We arrived back and collected our bags before I had to make the mad dash to catch my commuting flight back home! I just made it and got a window seat! Couldn’t have been a better result!

That was my Trip to Beijing, China folks! Next up is where I am writing this from, an incredible 9 day trip to the other side of the World. Singapore and Sydney. I am currently on my final day in Singapore and am flying back to the UK tonight so the post on this trip will be posted in the coming days. Safe to say its a good one.

I hope you have enjoyed this trip with me onboard Crewfie101, and if you have any questions on the job, lifestyle, destinations or anything don’t hesitate to let me know!

Thank you everyone and see you next time onboard Crewfie101

A Cabin Crew Christmas: Abuja and Cape Town

Hello again everyone and welcome to those of you joining us for the first time on-board Crewfie101. Firstly I’d like to wish everyone a very Happy New Year and all the best wishes for 2018. My New Year was a quiet one at home with my Dad before meeting up with the rest of the Family on New Years Day…

This week I am planning to do this post plus a Trip Report on my trip to Beijing, China, from which I returned to the UK yesterday. That will come either later today or tomorrow.

So to this post. In the week building up to Christmas, I was very busy. The Monday before, I returned from Muscat in Oman to then head up to Aberdeen to celebrate my Mum’s Birthday, in the way only we can, by making our homemade Macaroni and Cheese. It doesn’t get better than that.

The day after I headed for my first trip to Africa of the week and I was off to Abuja, Nigeria. Now, amongst my fellow Cabin Crew this trip is definitely not the most popular on the network. However, being a new destination for me, I had absolutely no reason to judge it. I flew down from Aberdeen to London and headed to the report centre and caught up with a few friends before briefing for the flight. We were taking a fully loaded Boeing 777-200 down to Nigeria with a nice and short flight time of around 6 Hours. I would be the Business Class Galley Lead for this trip and was working with a great team of 4. We got on-board and settled in for the flight down. We arrived nice and on time, collected all the suitcases and hopped on the bus to the Hotel, a journey I recall absolutely nothing of due to being practically unconscious. What a sleep. We arrived at the hotel and had our free breakfast before getting some sleep and heading to the pool. I have to say it was strange spending the week before Christmas in 33 degree heat, not that I was complaining. We chilled in the sun, listening to the best Christmas songs in history before heading to get ready for dinner. Most of the crew made it down for dinner, I ate the prawn curry which came out looking a little different to what I was expecting. I was expecting creamy and golden, I got lumpy and brown.. Tasted good looked absolutely vile. Now for crew to be discussing sport is quite a rarity but when Arsenal take on Liverpool, apparently it erupts. As a Chelsea fan, I think I was hoping for Liverpool to win and to be honest I thought they would. Four of the crew and the Captain gathered in the Crew Room to watch and what a game it was. It went one way then the other eventually ending up in a 3-3 draw. I headed to bed at full time and got some sleep as it was an early start for the flight back to London Heathrow. The flight home was one of the longest flights I have operated, despite it being less than 6 hours in duration. I just couldn’t get into it. It was a tough day at the office and I couldn’t figure out why. But when I got back to London, the best thing was waiting for me. My Mum.

With my Airline we get a special standby ticket at Christmas which allows us to take any family or friends away with us. Last year I took my Dad to Singapore and Sydney and this year I was taking my Mum to Cape Town. Its definitely one of the perks of the job. As I commute from Scotland, I wasn’t going to fly back home on the 23rd to fly back down on Christmas Eve so we booked into a hotel for Christmas. That evening we headed to one of the best pubs in the Heathrow Area, The Pheasant for Dinner. You always get a good meal in there and a big one at that. On Christmas Eve my Mum and I headed into Central London to go around all the major sights taking pictures with our funny Christmas Hats on. We went to the Ritz and met an England Rugby Legend, Big Ben, Covent Garden and then ended up in Primark on Oxford Street as my shower gel had leaked in my bag.. Rookie Mistake. That evening we headed to the Royal Albert Hall, feeling very fancy with my Primark bag in hand and in my jeans and T-Shirt, for Carols by Candlelight with a full orchestra. It was an incredible evening.

On Christmas Day we got up, opened our lovely presents and headed for a run. Our Christmas Dinner was definitely unorthodox, McDonalds. We turned up with our Christmas crackers and made a meal of it. From there we headed back to the hotel to get ready, me for work and my Mum to get on the flight and enjoy it. I headed off to Terminal 5 and my Mum to Terminal 3. I met my team and we got completely “Tinselified” and yes I know that isn’t a word. Being a standby ticket, there was always a chance my Mum wouldn’t get on but luckily enough she got on and got a business class seat. I was so made up for her, she really deserves it after all she has done for me in my life. I was working upstairs on the beautiful Boeing 747-400, Queen of the Skies, with one of my good friends, Amber and we had a blast. We flew down to Cape Town and on the short journey to the Hotel we completed our Secret Santa.

We arrived at the hotel and for Mum and I there was no rest for us. We got changed and headed straight for Lions Head Mountain. Yes, we climbed a mountain after an 11 hour flight. Yes, we crazy. We headed straight up the hill and climbed as far as the chains where neither of us felt like that was an option. The views from Lions Head are spectacular. You get the view down to Camps Bay and the Cape of Good Hope, and on the other side you see the City itself plus Table Mountain. The most iconic sight in Cape Town. We managed to weave our way down the Mountain and got ready for dinner. We met the crew for dinner and headed to Café Paradiso for dinner, my favourite dinner at that. A South African Steak dinner, and damn it was good! We chatted for a good couple of hours and headed back to the hotel to get some very deserved sleep. I really needed it.

The next morning it was another very early start, to climb ANOTHER Mountain. This time the morning before an 11 hour flight. We headed to the base of Table Mountain and started the ascent. Now this was something that I had wanted to do since I started my job and to do it with my Mum made it all the more special. The path winded left and right and at times didn’t seem to go very far uphill. I will tell you something, that climb made my legs turn into jelly. The higher we got, the better the views got. Once we got to the top after 2 hours of solid climbing, we took pictures in the most dangerous of places but it had to be done. We had an Ice Cream and being a proud Scotsman, had a lovely can of Irn Bru at the top. This made for some lovely pictures. We walked round the top and encountered some of the of the Wildlife on the top of Table Mountain. We saw some Dassie’s and I managed to get up close and personal to get some absolutely stunning photographs. We descended down the mountain on the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway, which I would recommend to absolutely everyone who visits Cape Town. From Table Mountain we headed to the coastal suburb of Camps Bay for lunch at the Hard Rock Café, another steak was devoured.

From there we headed back to the hotel, got some sleep whilst Mum headed for a run around the coast. I got ready for the flight home before heading back to the airport and as an added bonus, my Mum got the chance to sit upstairs so that I could serve her. This was a great experience for both of us and one that I won’t be forgetting for a while.

After landing back in London we hopped on the flight back up to Aberdeen and lucky for me, I got a lovely Business Class seat. I needed it. But before boarding the flight I found out that I had got my days leave for New Years Day, which was a huge relief.

Both these trips made my Christmas extremely special. This is why I love my job and the people I work with. Yes, we were all away from our family at Christmas time but we became a family on-board the aircraft and made it a special time when we were away. As Cabin Crew we sacrifice a lot. We miss Christmas and Birthdays, Family Weddings and Events and just miss our family and friends in general. However in that briefing room we form friendships and bonds that often last longer than the flight and get us through some of the toughest times because it is hard at times. That is definitely one of the major drawbacks with this job however one which crew definitely embrace and try to make the most of by supporting our colleagues.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas.

See you next time on-board Crewfie101.

2017: A Year in Review

Hello everyone and welcome back on-board this very delayed post from Crewfie101. I hope everyone of you had a brilliant Christmas and are looking forward to a great New Year!

As this has been my first full year flying, I thought I post a review of the year with all the highlights and negatives of each month.

Lets start back in January, where we started in Singapore, for New Years Eve and what a night that was. My Dad and I, plus the entire Crew, watched Alicia Keys live before the 8 minute long firework display with the dodgy Singaporean Hosts, who only Jack understood. This was one of my favourite trips I have ever done with one of the best crews I have worked with in my entire time at BA. I had 6 days off after this trip and headed back to Scotland straight after I had landed, I was still living down in London at this point. After spending some well deserved time at home catching up with both friends and family, I headed back down for a 7 day working block with 3 days of Short haul into my first ever Cape Town.

This Cape Town was one of the good ones. We took the cable car up Table Mountain, spotting eagles as we went, taking lots of dangerous pictures for Instagram, almost losing Jamie as we went. I met my friend Emily and we headed along the Waterfront and enjoyed my first Epic South African Steak, a 500g T-Bone. I can guarantee it did not disappoint. From Cape Town I headed back to my first ever long-haul destination, San Diego, California.

On this trip I was operating as Galley Lead downstairs in our largest Business Class Cabin for the first time. I was lucky enough to work with a great team who helped me through it. These guys have become some very good friends of mine, Olu, Dennis and Ian. We went to the USS Midway, an aircraft carrier turned into a huge museum, and went in the pouring rain and sweeping wind. Another highlight of my year.

In February, I was pretty much joined at the hip to one of my training buddies, Jade. We went on trips to Philadelphia, Cape Town and Vegas. The Cape Town being a team trip with the now christened “Sunburn Squad”. There was also a trip to Shanghai, China with Ollie, one of my best mates from back home in Scotland. This was another highlight and was one of the best crews too. I have also never played Jetlagged Snooker, not a good combination.

March came around pretty quickly, and I had lots of time off around my 21st Birthday. I had a lovely day with my Mum and Dad before heading down to London for my Boeing 787 training day. I was so delighted as this opened up so many new destinations for me. Plus I was down in London and had a picture with one when I was around 13-14. My first night Moscow came and went with not much sleep and I can guarantee that it wasn’t my favourite trip of the year. Towards the end of March I headed back to Singapore and Sydney. Another amazing trip to the other side of the world with a great crew. We went luging in Singapore, to the wrong island in Indonesia and missed my dinner reservation in Sydney. Also in March I decided to begin commuting. This was a huge decision for me, but also quite an easy one. It meant I would move back home to Dundee and fly up and down for work.

My April was pretty much spent in San Jose, California with 3 trips to the US City. All four day trips, I headed to San Francisco, explored the city and cycled across the Golden Gate Bridge. These followed my first ever flight on the 787 to Calgary, in which myself and Alisha headed to the zoo.

In May, my first trip to South America. On the 9th, we embarked on my company’s longest flight, the 14 hour flight out to Santiago de Chile. The night flight was basically empty, which made it ten times longer. When we arrived the weather was dreadful so a day on the tour bus was organised and off we went playing Heads Up as we went. Some short haul came and went then a 3 day trip to Las Vegas which turned into a lovely 4 day trip. I headed out into the Grand Canyon on board a Helicopter which turned out to be the highlight of the trip, the views teamed up with the music made it a completely unforgettable experience.

In June, it was time for my first “Recurrent Training”. My first yearly training, it did not go to plan. This was probably, the low point of my year. However another 3 trips to San Jose followed this into July and on the last one Mum came with me for the first time. This was a really great trip walking around San Francisco for a total of around 40km. Also in July, I headed to Baltimore (Twice) and also Abu Dhabi where the temperature peaked at 43 degrees Celsius. Far too hot for me!!

August was one of my quietist months of the year. The highlight was definitely a trip to the Baseball in Toronto, where the Toronto Blue Jays took on the Minnesota Twins. One of my favourite events this year.

September brought to an end the summer season, however all the flights continued to be busy and my schedules also very full on. I headed back to the USA, to Chicago and Houston. I also positioned for the first time, out to Lagos. In October I went on Holiday to Majorca for a long weekend which I absolutely needed. It was a perfect weekend, some sun, sea and great food. I headed back to Seattle, Home Of Boeing, and went up the Space Needle at Sunset, which was absolutely stunning. I went to Nairobi on another trip with the Sunburn Squad and then back to Cape Town which was just as good as ever. Also in October, was my favourite short haul trip I have EVER done, my two day 6 sector trip to Manchester, affectionately now known as MANC2017. This was one of the funniest trips I have ever done. I will never forget it!

November took me to South Korea twice and its border with the dangerous North. This was definitely an experience I will not forget for a long time. Then it was time for my standby luck to change. I survived all of 30 minutes before being called to go back to Chicago. In my next standby block, I survived even less time, around two minutes before jetting off to Miami.

Into this month, the last of the year and when Crewfie101 first took to the web. My month began with standby, from which I was called for Sao Paulo, something I did not expect and was probably the most unexpected thing to happen this year. Since Sao Paulo, I have been to Muscat in Oman, Abuja in Nigeria and then the last trip of 2017 to Cape Town with my Mum. The trip home was my 250th flight as crew, and I couldn’t have asked for a better friend to share it with.

SO in 2017:

165 FLIGHTS TO 47 AIRPORTS ON 92 ROUTES TO 30 COUNTRIES

655,523 KM FLOWN

897HRS AND 19MINS IN THE AIR

LONGEST FLIGHT: SANTIAGO DE CHILE

SHORTEST FLIGHT: MANCHESTER, UK

FAVOURITE LONGHAUL TRIPS: SAN JOSE, CAPE TOWN, SINGAPORE/SYDNEY AND TORONTO

FAVOURITE SHORTHAUL TRIPS: MANCHESTER (MANC2017), GIBRALTAR AND HAMBURG

LEAST FAVOURITE TRIPS: LAGOS AND MOSCOW

SO 2018 LETS HAVE YOU!

I’ll be starting 2018 with a there and back to Stuttgart followed by a 5 day Beijing trip, somewhere I haven’t been yet and am really looking forward to getting to explore. I am also going back to Singapore and Sydney, and heading to a lovely restaurant in Sydney!!

I can’t wait to spend another year in the skies and travelling the world taking Crewfie101 along with me!

My First Flight

Good morning and welcome back onboard Crewfie101. Today I’m heading home back to Edinburgh after one of the toughest weekends for myself and the company in a very long time. As the UK experienced a massive cold front, the airport struggled to cope with the de-icing required which left hundreds of cancellations including my commuting flights from both Aberdeen and Edinburgh. Not an overly enjoyable weekend which ended up with me doing absolutely no flying and just a lot of driving.. Anyhow.. Rant Over.

I thought today I would tell the story of Day 1, Flight 1. My first day as active Cabin Crew. I received my Wings on the 4th of August and after a celebratory dinner with friends from Training, I was due to operate the very next day. I was very lucky in that I had an afternoon report meaning that I had all morning to get myself prepared and also get nervous.. I had a brief lie in followed by a nice “healthy” breakfast of a bowl of cornflakes and a hot chocolate, whilst looking over my notes on the Airbus A319. My report was around 2pm so at 11am, I started to prepare my uniform and myself for the day ahead. I packed a night-stop kit, so fresh underwear and uniform, just in case we had to stay over for any particular reason and and made sure that by 12pm I was ready to go. I hopped on the bus to the airport feeling both nervous and excited. I also felt a sense of pride, a sense I still feel today whenever I put on the uniform, given the fact it had taken a lot of blood, sweat and tears to gain those wings.

So I arrived at the CRC (Crew Report Centre) in Terminal 5 with around 90 minutes before I was due to start briefing. This gave me enough time to catch up with a few of my course mates before they headed off on their inaugural flights, I say catch up, we only left training the day before.. We had coffee and chatted and one by one we headed off to the briefings.

My briefing was in Room 13, Unlucky..? I went in and 2 of the 4 crew were in there already, we just had to wait for the CSM (Customer Service Manager). A minute or two later the CSM walked in and the briefing started. This was the bit of the day I was most nervous about, would I remember all my training.. I did, it was a very chilled briefing and I was assigned position number 4 working alongside the CSM in our Business Class Cabin. I probably should mention where I went. I was operating the BA747 and BA746 to Stavanger, Norway then back to London Heathrow. We departed off Gate A1 (Perfect for Flight No1). My first aircraft was an Airbus A319, G-EUPW. The Aircraft was slightly delayed coming in from Inverness so we waited at the gate for it to arrive and as soon as it did, we got on, checked the aircraft and I welcomed my first passengers on-board. I did my first safety demonstration, pointing out the exits as I went. At my company on your first flight, you get to sit in the flight deck with the pilots for a take off and a landing, just to get that experience. So I sat in for the Take Off and Landing in and out of Heathrow. It was incredible. I could have stayed in there all flight! But I had thirteen hungry business class passengers to feed. I popped my service Gillet on and headed out into the cabin on the bar, and served my first customers. I didn’t spill anything, happy days! Time absolutely flew by, if you’ll excuse the pun and before I knew it we were securing the cabin for our arrival into Stavanger. I checked that all the tray tables were up, seatbelts were fastened and bags were safely put away. We landed in pretty hefty crosswinds and pulled onto stand. I opened an aircraft door for the first time and said hello to our Norwegian colleagues. We had a brief turnaround and headed for home on the BA746. I had to finish off the Business service on my own as the CSM had to deal with something in the economy cabin. I finished up and ate my first ever crew meal, Beef and Broccoli in Oyster Sauce. It’s still my favourite to this day. For the approach back into London’s Heathrow, I was once again in the flight deck and it was fascinating. We flew over the city of London at dusk, just as it was starting to light up. We landed into Heathrow and disembarked on a remote stand, meaning we had to get a crew bus back to the main terminal.

I had done it. 6 Weeks of hard work had totally paid off. I was so proud of myself for doing it. I arrived back at the house I was staying in and my housemates were all there with Prosecco and we had a little celebration! The perfect way to end a perfect day.

Well that’s the story of my first ever flight as international Cabin Crew. I hope you enjoy reading it. There will be another post at some point in the next couple of days.

Thanks for flying Crewfie101 and we look forward to welcoming you back again soon.

Trip Report: Sao Paulo

Hello everyone and welcome on board this Crewfie101 flight with destination Sao Paulo, Brazil. I can safely say I wasn’t expecting this one…

This Sunday morning (3/12/17) was the beginning of a 4 day block of standby, my 3rd in the past month. My luck had been extremely good, getting called for Chicago and Miami! However I didn’t expect to get called this block as my yearly hours were getting quite high. My standby begun at 11:20am at Heathrow so I was covering the 787 trip to San Jose, California. However lets get back to the start of the day..

My morning started at 4am back home in Dundee, Scotland. I got up and ready, and drove to the Airport in Edinburgh. I was on the 6:55am flight down to London getting me in at around 8:30am. When I book commuting flights I tend to play it safe when getting down and then leave it as tight as possible when going home. The flight was nearly empty and luckily managed to get a row of seats to myself, so I spread out and got some sleep. I arrived into Heathrow and had breakfast with one of the girls that I trained with last summer before she continued her short haul tour of Europe. I managed to catch up with some friends, who mentioned that my fleet of crew were taking out the Sao Paulo for one day and one day only, before going to pick up my Standby phone around 5-10 minutes before my block started. I ran into another friend as my block started and no less than 1 minute after 11:20 I was called to an immediate report. I assumed I was going to San Jose, but when I got to the desk they told me that I was going to Sao Paulo.. I couldn’t believe it.

Before I continue, I should explain why this is such a rare occurrence. In my company there are 3 fleets of Cabin Crew. One who only do Long haul, One who just do Short haul and my fleet who do a mix of both. My company fly a lot of routes and these have to be spread between the 3 fleets. So my fleet, currently, doesn’t have Sao Paulo and to my knowledge has never had it. This is why it was such a big deal.

I got into the briefing room and everyone was in the same state of shock and excitement. People had been called off Airport standby (like me) and off Home Standby, the Pilots had also been called off standby. The reason we ended up taking this flight out, was that the flight had been due to go out the previous evening but the aircraft had developed a technical issue and the crew had gone out of hours. Hence we took it out and I can guarantee we were not complaining. I was given my favourite position on the aircraft, the business class galley lead. On this variant of aircraft, the Boeing 777-300, the galley lead stays in the galley and runs the service from there. I had a great team of 4 working with me, we completed the service and headed to the crew bunks to get some sleep. I needed it. After a flight lasting almost 11 and a half hours we touched down at Guarulhos International Airport and taxied to our bussing stand. We landed at around 11:30 local time which was around 1:30am UK time, got all the passengers disembarked and headed into the terminal. Sadly two of the Cabin Crews bags didn’t turn up in Sao Paulo, meaning they had to go shopping later that morning. We got on to the bus and I slept all the way to the hotel, where we arrived around 40 minutes later. I got into bed and slept until around 6:30am which wasn’t quite as long as I had hoped for.

As a group of us met downstairs for breakfast, I noticed one of the pilots looking a bit frustrated at his bowl of cornflakes.. The waitress had poured boiling hot milk on them.. He was not amused! I caught up with the crew and discussed our plans for the day. The FO Rich suggested a bike ride round the Parque Ibirapuera which was just down the road from the hotel. Being someone who enjoys being active I thought I’d join him alongside 3 of the girls. He then mentioned tennis, which I really enjoy playing, and I initially didn’t fancy it. But by the time I had got to my room I had messaged him in the trip WhatsApp group asking if I could join. We headed down and for an hour in the 28 degree heat we played off against the hotel Tennis pro. What a workout. I was knackered. But what fun it was.

After Tennis I had around half an hour till we met to go cycling, I definitely needed a shower.. At midday I met Nicci, Sophia, Suhko and Rich downstairs, where we hired bikes and headed to the park. This bike ride was definitely my highlight of my trip. The park was absolutely beautiful, with huge trees, massive lakes full of wildlife and wonderfully decorated buildings. We cycled along and passed a vulture, one of the most horrible looking creatures on planet earth, I still had to try and take a picture. We kept cycling, taking pictures as we went plus having a really good laugh. We stopped to get some coconut water, which we had to drink out of the coconut. Of course. I have to say I wasn’t the biggest fan of it, Sophia however absolutely loved it. Once it was finished, we decided to try and smash our way into it. It didn’t quite got to plan. Sophia took on the first two tries and it didn’t so much smash as it did bounce. I tried twice and still couldn’t get anywhere near smashing this fruit. The shop vendor couldn’t take anymore of our ineptitude and came over and cut it open.. We cycled on and stopped again for ice cream mainly to cool off! We came across the Parks Christmas tree. This tree was huge and spectacular. We got lots of pictures of us in front of the tree and definitely got us in the Christmas spirit, despite it being so so hot!! On our way back to the hotel we decided to put some retro music on and having discussed this band earlier it was decided that S-Club7 should make an appearance. So there we were, 5 adults, cycling round a park in Brazil, singing a bit of Have You Ever.

We arrived back at the hotel, dropped off the bikes and headed for the supermarket to get some drinks and nibbles for the pool. The supermarket was around a 25 minute walk from the hotel so it took us a while.By the time we all got back the other half of the crew had headed for the beach and wouldn’t get back till late evening. We chilled out around the pool having a laugh about things we would put in Room 101. A British TV show where the panellists put there pet hates into an imaginary room. Boy did we have some laugh. We stayed by the pool for a couple of hours before getting ready to go out for dinner with the rest of the crew plus some of the crew who had arrived that morning. We headed to the Brazilian Steak house where the Salad bar was as big as my bedroom and the meat as good as I have tasted. They give you a map of a cow and come round with all the different cuts on a skewer. The Fillet Mignon and Rump Steak were phenomenal. But the time came all too soon, where we had to stop. We had eaten far too much. We got the bus back to the hotel and the guys who had been to the beach had only just got back. We caught up with them in the crew room before heading to bed.

The next morning Rich and I had arranged to meet at 8am for the Pilots Vs Crew Tennis match. We started off with a rally and then headed into games. I broke his serve in the first game to take an early lead however I only won one more game in the first set. Rich ran out a 6-2 winner, I went on to be leading 4-2 when our hour on court was up, so I had to give the title to Rich. It was such good fun and was definitely something different to do down route.

After breakfast, Suhko, Sophia and I headed to the Havaiana Shop. These are the traditional Brazilian Flip-Flops. I managed to get a few pairs that I like as I have very hot destinations coming up and will be needing to wear them.

When we got back I had to pack and relax for a couple of hours before getting picked up and heading back to the airport. The bus ride back to the Airport in Sao Paulo took well over an hour and once again slept most of the way. I felt very well rested before the 11 hour flight home. We boarded and headed for home, across the Atlantic and up the West Coast of Europe. We managed to get over 3 hours break and after we came back the girls had left us a little care package.

We all care about each other and have to look after each other on both the longest flights and even on a short flight. We arrived back at around 6:40am which was pretty much bang on time. We disembarked and headed back through the terminal, said our fond farewells and I headed back upstairs to departures. I headed home back up to Edinburgh and then drove back to Dundee.

However this trip did come at a price. In going to Sao Paulo, my yearly hours went above the maximum they could be, hence I lost my trip to Beijing. They gave me an extra day off plus 3 Available days. These availables can turn into either a day off (highly unlikely), a trip or standby. My 3 turned into the worst trip that my fleet operate, the night Moscow. An overnight there and back which isn’t hard but is just very tiring. Plus a Milan Linate there and back the following day. Not the best I could have hoped for, but its more flights so I am happy.

Well that brings this Trip Report to Sao Paulo to a close. This trip was one of my favourite I have done since I have been flying. It was a brilliantly unexpected surprise and one that I will remember for a very long time. There will be more posts next week covering another trip and ways to document your flying! 

Thanks for flying Crewfie101 and I hope you have enjoyed your trip with me.

A Day in the Life: Short Haul

6DCDE48B-388E-4897-8E8B-A0BE54A7B20AHello Everyone and welcome back on board Crewfie101! Today I am writing this from Miami, Florida. Another new destination! Once again I was called off standby, only surviving 1 minute.

So today I thought I’d write about a day in my life when I complete a short haul trip. I am going to discuss one of my favourite short hauls that I have done recently, a 2 day trip to Manchester. I will only go into the details of day 1 as day 2 is near enough identical to the first, other than the passengers and the laughs that we as the crew had.

Right, lets go.

Flight Number 1/6

I report at 5:55am for the first Manchester of the day so I set my alarm for around 3:55am in the hotel I was staying at near the airport. This gives me 40 minutes to get up and get ready and then an hour and twenty minutes to get to the airport. I get up, shower, shave and get dressed and head for the bus. I hop on and we are whisked to London Heathrow Terminal 5. I arrive at the Airport around thirty minutes later, head straight up to the report centre, where I “swipe” in and have enough time to get a hot chocolate plus a quick bite to eat. Today I am in briefing room 8 and with around fifteen minutes to the report I head there. In the briefing I meet my crew, who I would be spending the next two days and 6 flights with. I knew Phoebe really well having flown with her before and then met the Cabin Manager and Elle who was the fourth member of the crew. We discuss the latest safety and security information then discuss the passenger loads for both of the sectors, up to Manchester and then back to London’s Heathrow. We were nice and quiet on the way up and very busy on the way back. After the briefing we head to Security (Yes, we have to go through the same level of security as passengers) and down to the aircraft today an Airbus A319. Myself and Phoebe were working in the economy cabin, and boy did we have a laugh. We checked the aircraft all over and got the passengers on board. After a short taxi we headed out to Runway 27L and departed. Now on a Manchester, we have to crack on straight away, as soon as the wheels are up, this being due to the flight time being in the region of only 25-30 minutes. We sold a few coffees and teas, and then before we knew it we had to secure the cabin for our landing into Manchester Airport Terminal 3. We landed and Taxied in, disembarked and set the aircraft up for the return sector.

Flight 2/6

On the ground in Manchester, as one of our customers got off, he commented in the broadest of Northern accents, “That flight was proper lovely! Thank You.”. This would become one of the three standout words of this trip. The other two will be explained in due course. The flight back down was a lot busier, with the A319 nearly full in both cabins. However coming back into London Heathrow, you near enough always, get something called “Holding”. Holding is when you are placed into a stack of aircraft to split them up with enough time in between each aircraft for them to land safely. This meant our flight time was around 45 minutes rather than 25. Hence more time to serve the customers. We landed back into Heathrow early and were on stand bang on time, so the passengers were happy when they got off. After checking the aircraft for any lost property we headed back to the report centre, where we had ninety minutes before our next report for our next flight, again to Manchester. In this break, Phoebe and I had a tradition which was to play cards and for her to beat me quite convincingly. We played the game called “Spoons”. Word number two of this trip. Neither Elle or myself properly understood the rules, so Phoebe won pretty much every time.

Flight 3/6

On this flight back up to Manchester, our last of the day, we had an aircraft change. This time we would fly up to the north of England on the largest aircraft in the A320 Family , the A321. As this aircraft is larger than our earlier aircraft, we had to pick up some extra crew. We picked up two extra crew who would be returning to London on a there and back. This meant we had to re-brief and assign new positions. We then headed to our new aircraft and checked it over before departing back up to Manchester. The flight time was a tad less than 30 minutes and we had a lot of passengers to serve. The 30 Minute flight time felt like 10. The next second we were on the ground saying goodbye to our last load of customers for the day. After the customers disembarked, we greeted our colleagues who had night stopped in Manchester last night and then headed for the crew bus to the hotel.

Down route Time:

We arrived by around 3 in the afternoon. As we had started at 5am, we decided to take a nap before meeting downstairs around 6 to go for dinner in the city. We met the flight crew and headed to the Alchemist, a British Chain who serve cocktails that bubble and boil as if they were magic potions.. Although all we had to drink was some “Wawter..” (Word 3). We had dinner there and after many, many laughs we headed back to the hotel to get as much sleep as possible given the fact we had to do another 3 sectors. The next morning our wake up call was at 8am.

This brings us to the end of a day in the life of the Short Haul crew member. I really enjoy short haul, especially when you fly with some of the best crew in the business. It’s trips like these that make me realise how much I love my job and my colleagues.

My next post will be another Trip Report, coming tomorrow.. And believe me its a good one.. Another lucky Standby phone call.

Trip Report: Gibraltar and A Chicago off Standby. Lucky Me!

Hello everyone and thanks again for visiting Crewfie101. Its time for the 1st trip report of this blog. I write this post on-board my commuting sector from Edinburgh International to London Heathrow a couple of weeks after the trip I am writing about. The night before a 4 day block of work for me, including more standby!
We start on Monday 13th November where I had a busy two sector there and back to Gibraltar (GIB). This is notorious as one of the busiest there and backs we do, with one of the highest possibilities of a diversion due to the strong winds that come off the Rock of Gibraltar. This usually ends up with us and our passengers in Malaga, not exactly ideal. We departed London’s Heathrow on time on-board our Airbus A320 Aircraft off of Runway 27L. After the initial climb myself and the crew began our service selling our wares most of the way down over France and Spain and we eventually got finished around 40 minutes prior to landing into Gibraltar. So at 40 minutes we started to prepare the cabin for the arrival. This had been a busy sector but the way would be something else. After all the passengers had disembarked, I had asked the flight crew if I could join them for the exterior check of the aircraft. As a plane geek and trainee Pilot I always try to take any opportunity to learn more about the aircraft and aviation in general. They said I was more than welcome. This was a very cool experience and also allowed some very cool pictures of the aircraft plus the rock of Gibraltar. I hopped back on-board and got the aircraft ready for the departure back to London. A swift boarding process was followed by a very quick departure this mainly being due to the fact that we were the only aircraft on the ground in Gibraltar that was actually going anywhere. The sector back to London was a lot busier in terms of sales on the way down however the flight time was significantly longer as well so we had the time. We landed back into Heathrow on the same runway as we departed off, 27L. The 2 runways switch from arrivals to departures and vice-versa at 3pm and had switched whilst we were away. After checking nobody had left anything on-board, we headed on the crew bus back to the terminal.

I collected my suitcase from the crew centre and joined one of my colleagues who was staying in the same hotel as me, plus one of my best friends, who happened to tag along. We all had dinner, a good laugh and a catch up.
The next morning I started a 3 Day Standby block, my worst nightmare. I started at 09:50 and was covering the 787 flight to Austin, Texas, which would have been a new destination for me. However 09:50 rolled on by without a phone call, and whilst sat watching the Wonder Woman movie time ticked on until 10:35 when it rang. Now on standby when your phone rings, it creates a feeling of dread. I answered and was told I had an immediate report. I had a brief look at our report times, I was either going to Helsinki or Chicago. Helsinki would probably be a there and back, however Chicago would cover all my Standby. I was praying for Chicago. I get to the desk and I am handed my paper work.. this was it. I look and I saw ORD. I was off to Chicago! I was smiling from ear to ear. This was my first time I had ever been called off standby for a long haul ever. So now I had to gather myself for the flight across the pond.
I head into the pre-flight briefing and they are already midway through. So I find out my position which is the business class Galley Lead downstairs on the Boeing 747 with 66 business seats. My favourite position, when I am prepared. I was not. We all get on the aircraft and I try to get the galley set up the best I can before we start boarding and the mayhem begins. We set off and the flight goes off without a hitch, a really nice sector with a lovely crew.
After arriving into Chicago O’Hare International Airport we all pass through customs and immigration and I am sent down the corridor towards the exit. I get out and I wait for the rest of the crew. Around 10 minutes go by with no sign of the crew and I begin to panic.. Where are they? They eventually come out of another exit asking where I have been. I ask them the exact same question. We hop on the bus and get stuck in traditional Chicago traffic. We arrive at the hotel and one of the crew and I agree to meet back in reception around 30 minutes later to walk down North Michigan Avenue to see the Bean.
We head down and Chicago’s reputation of being the Windy City certainly did not disappoint. It was Baltic. However despite the cool temperature the city did look beautiful. As soon as Halloween is over, Christmas takes over and the decorations were out in full flow. We got down to the Bean, a giant, reflective metal “Bean” which reflects the Chicago Skyline. We took some pictures then headed back towards the hotel, fighting bracing winds.

I am making it far more dramatic than it actually was, but it was bitterly cold. We arrived back at the hotel and I had an hour until I was due to meet the crew for a Cheesecake Factory dinner. This proved to be far too long for me. I fell asleep within half an hour of getting back, waking up at 4am fully clothed, scarf and all.
The next day I didn’t really see any of the crew until our pick-up time, which can be pretty normal. Being a huge plane geek, I headed to the Boeing HQ building which is surprisingly in Chicago and not in Seattle where they build all of there aircraft. I hopped in a Uber and went down in the pouring rain. I went in to the shop and found Paradise. So much to choose from. I ended up buying quite a lot.
I bought: 2 Christmas Tree Decorations, 2 Notebooks, 10 Pens, A Watch and a 747 pin for my work bag. I did get 25% off however it still totalled around $80. Oops.. I don’t go often so when I do, I go big.

I wandered back up North Michigan Avenue and back to the hotel. I managed to get a couple of hours pre-pick-up sleep, which is crucial before a night flight. Even if you don’t sleep, it is still important to have a couple of hours down time. So around an hour before pick up, we receive our wake up call and that’s when I start to get ready for the way home.
We meet in the lobby of the hotel, hop on the bus back to the airport and get ready to do it all again. The flight home again ran smoothly with a quick time of just over 7 hours. After landing back into Heathrow, I pop upstairs to departures, hop on my much smaller aircraft (A320) and head back to Edinburgh for some time off.

Well that’s the first trip report done, I really hope you enjoyed it. There will be another post in the coming days, thanks for reading Crewfie101.

Roster Night: Joy and Despair

Hello Again everyone. I had to post about the despair but very occasional joy of “Roster Night”….

In any other job getting your schedule is really not all that special, its like YAY I’m working 9-5 AGAIN. However to Crew getting our roster brings a huge amount of excitement. Where am I off to this month? Anywhere new? How many earlies? Any Standby? And most importantly, Have I got what I bid for? The answer to the last question is probably not..

I am based at London Heathrow however I commute from the North East of Scotland, via Edinburgh. I primarily bid (I shall explain in a later post) for long haul which suits commuting more as it gives better report times and I don’t have to stay down in London in hotels, which I would have to do if I had there and backs. So for me a successful roster is minimal short haul, minimal standby and plenty of Long haul plus as a bonus new destinations.

In my company we receive our rosters for the next month at 10pm 12 days before the start of said month. I say 10pm. If you manage to get on at 10pm, you have been exceedingly fortunate. You usually get on between 10:30 and 11:00. This is due to the fact that there are thousands of people trying to get on at once.

On roster night, there is a build up of a combination of nerves and excitement. So far I have had 17 Roster Nights and bar 2 I have been on the ground either in London (where I stayed for my first 11 months in the job), back home in Scotland or down route. I think that I have only received my roster once down route and that was in San Diego in January. For the other two I was flying home or out to a destination so had no way of checking. On the plus side didn’t have to wait long the following morning!

I will always remember my first roster night, July 22nd 2016. I was still in the middle of training, and having spent the night studying the business class service, 10 o clock had rather snuck up on me. I was totally unprepared. So I got the laptop, iPad and phone all logged on to try and see where my first month of flying was going to take me. It took me all of 20 minutes to get on and what a shock I got. My first flight was to Stavanger in Norway on a there and back, the day after training finished. The following day I had San Diego, California and then another San Diego. Some more amazing trips followed that but those two will always stick in my mind. It couldn’t have been better. Since then I have had good rosters, I have had terrible rosters and some that have made me want to cry. But every month I still look forward to 10pm on Roster Night.

On November 17th 2017, we received our December Rosters. This is the one where people, including myself, get properly nervous as it effects Christmas and New Year. Last year I was lucky enough to get our Singapore and Sydney Trip leaving Christmas Day and returning the second of January, which meant New Years Eve in Singapore and what a night that was. However this is a story for another day..

Anyway back on track..

So my Dad and I had 4 devices all trying to get on to the roster at 10pm. I got the first glimpse at 10:13pm.. I saw a 4 day block of Standby beginning on the 3rd of December. Not overly enthusiastic about that. Then I saw PEK, which is Beijing, China. I was so excited, a new destination on the Boeing 787-9 plus the opportunity to visit the Great Wall of China, something I have always wanted to see. Next up a training day for our new Airbus A320Neo Aircraft which are arriving in the New Year straight into a 3 day MCT, Muscat, Oman. Another new destination, I was beginning to think this is shaping up to be a brilliant roster. Then a 3 day ABV, which translates to Abuja, Nigeria. A trip I have not heard too many good things about, however its another New Destination for me! 3 in one roster!

This got us up to the 23rd of December, and we got logged out. I was not amused. Eventually we got back in, and my dreams had come true. Leaving Christmas day to.. CAPE TOWN, South Africa. I couldn’t believe it. Cape Town was my top bid as I wanted to take my Mum away with me. It is the one place I had always said that my Mum would properly love and now I have the opportunity to take her. Plus this means I have New Years Eve off, not sure about New Years Day yet though!

So December 2017 has shaped up to be incredible!

Welcome Onboard

This is my very first post. I am Ray, a 21 year old Cabin Crew Member for an international airline based out of London Heathrow. I have wanted to make a blog for a very long time about my adventures across the world and after seeing Scotland defeat the Qantas Wallabies I have decided to do so.

It has been 478 days since I received my Wings which signify the completion of the 6 week training course, and what a 478 days it has been. I have travelled to 6 out of the 7 continents on 56 routes travelling over 530,000 miles spending almost 50 days in the air.

As I’m sure every crew member does, I have favourite destinations and least favourite destinations. My favourite would have to be Cape Town in South Africa where I have been lucky enough to go 3 times. The food out there is fantastic and there is so much to do. You can ascend Table Mountain and Lionshead, go and see the penguins at Boulders Beach and run along the shorefront of both Bantry and Camps Bay. My least favourite would have to be Lagos or Luanda, for no other reason than that you can’t actually do anything. You can’t leave the hotel for security reasons and as a person I like to be able to explore the cities that I visit.

Other notable entries for my favourite destinations would have to be Toronto, Canada and San Diego in the USA. San Diego is up there as it was both my first and second long haul flights, and as a city it is lovely with a very chilled out atmosphere. I have been to Toronto twice, admittedly both times in Summer when it was warm, not sure how much I’d like it right now when the temperature can get as low as -40 with wind chill. The city is very pleasant with a gorgeous coastline which gives gorgeous sunrises.

As crew we operate on a variety of different aircraft both the long haul Boeing and our short haul Airbus A320 family aircraft. As a bit of a plane geek, I do love this part of the job. I still get the thrill of the Take-Off and the sights out of the window never, ever,  get old. I am lucky enough to fly on both the old and the new, the Boeing 747,of which some of them are older than I am, to the Boeing 787, one of the new generation of aircraft taking to the skies.

My intension with this blog is to describe what we as crew get up to when we are down route and try to explain what life as crew is really like.

If anyone has any questions related to anything crew related, send me any questions below.