Okay, gentleman, firstly the bad news: dating a flight attendant can be difficult, unpredictable and at times it may feel as if you are swirling in a world of chaos.
But the good news, the really good news, is that dating a flight attendant is interesting, charming, intense, the chaos can be exciting and it will be like no other relationship you have ever been in. We can be hard work, but trust me, we are worth it!
So if you’d like to think about dating a flight attendant (naughty fantasies aside) and you’d like some tips on how to start a relationship, how to maintain it and how to make the most of it, then you are exactly where you need to be right now.
As well as putting my own thoughts and experiences down, I have interviewed my boyfriend and got some insights from the other side of the relationship fence. His responses are at the end of this article and are well worth reading and thinking about.
So, what do you need to know?
#1 She has the power when it comes to dating
Yes, she holds all of the cards.
She will decide whether she wants to or not and when to meet you.
This is just the nature of her work and it is probably the first thing about her to get used to and to accept.
There will be conversations like, “I have a flight in the morning, sorry I can’t make it…” or “I’m sorry, I’ll be out of town on a 3-day trip, maybe next time”.
Don’t worry, if she truly likes/loves you she’ll make time to see you.
And if she does have dates in a city like Paris, San Francisco or Tokyo but she decides to fly up wherever you are to spend time with you, then value it, seriously value it.
#2 She is on her own time zone, she doesn’t follow a clock
Flight attendants can – and do – cross many times zones in a day.
This means that their body clocks are quite often set differently than ours, waaay differently.
So it can seem like they are beings apart from the rest of us, beings that live in a sort of twilight zone.
When they’re not working, they eat and sleep at whatever time they want or when they can, and they do the things that need to be done when they can fit them in.
Generally, flight attendants march to a different beat from the rest of us.
This strange existence may mean that they might forget special occasions in your life: that work dinner, the special anniversary or even (gasp) your birthday.
But look at her life this way: It’s really easy to remember a special date when it’s already 2nd March in the country you’re in, but a lot harder when it’s March the 1st in the country your partner is in.
Just relax and learn to accept these little hitches, there’s nothing that can’t be celebrated a day or two late, or even a day or two early.
#3 You’ll have to say goodbye to regular weekends, holidays and even family gatherings with your girlfriend
Again, this is just the demand of the incredible industry that she is involved with.
It’s not at all easy to come to grips with, but it’s really important that you try.
For instance, you’re at the movies and the best part is just coming up; the murderer’s going to named, the monster’s going to be killed, the heroine is going to be kissed and the phone beeps.
It’s Reserve calling, she’s needed for a flight immediately, right now.
So she has to dash to the airport to crew a plane that is going to a place that no-one really wants to go to with people that no-one wants to fly with.
Being a flight attendant is as strange a job as you are ever likely to come across.
But exciting to be involved with and to be near.
#4 Be prepared to handle uncomfortable questions like a pro
Some of your friends may keep asking you:
‘Do you trust her when she’s traveling?’
‘How can you stay calm when she’s mixing with all those pilots?’
‘Will she be able to make it for dinner/your birthday/Christmas this time?’
Just roll with the questions and the knowing looks and have an answer ready. Maybe something like :
“Dating a flight attendant isn’t for everyone. Flight attendants are special, which makes my lady special and that makes me special”.
#5 Be supportive. Understand flight attendant life and work together across distances
It’s not really a long-distance relationship, but you will be apart for a few nights at least, so at times it may well feel like one.
So if you’ve got a bad day at work and have a need to talk to her but she’s in a totally different country, don’t sit on the edge of the bed with your head in your hands feeling sorry for yourself, get on to social media.
Whatsapp and Skype and Messenger and the like were created for people exactly like you, people who are apart but need to be together. Use them. Often. No excuses.
#6 Communication might be a bit difficult due to the schedule: When you are at work, she calls you and when you call her, she is flying
And there is that body clock thing again.
She’ll be coming and going very early in the morning or late at night and you’ll be sleeping.
And when she’s not in the air flying, it may seem that all she wants to talk about is flying, everything will be about the plane and the passengers and to her, the world revolves around aviation.
#7 You’ll learn to speak “airline,” the convoluted jargon of air industry
It’s like learning a whole new language, a new way to twist the English language with acronyms, destinations, and euphemisms.
“Crew control called me on my day off requesting me to deadhead to LHR on day 6 of RSV and then operate LHR-CPH due to operational reasons. I said no and they asked why. Can you believe it? Due to personal reasons! I will never answer the call from Crew Control on my day off again!”
If you understood all of that, then you should congratulate yourself, you are officially a part of the aviation family.
Here’s a tip for learning how to be patient with your FA lady: Doesn’t your own work have its own language? To people who don’t share your industry skills, don’t you and your colleagues sound like you’re all talking Klingon?
#8 Never, never, and I repeat, never disturb her when she is sleeping
Read that heading again, and if you want your relationship to survive, engrave it on your soul.
Even if she has been sleeping for more than 17 hours, let her lie. Her jetlag can be worse than PMS (Pre Menstrual Syndrome).
Keep the peace.
Remember that flight attendants are sleep deprived.
So the only thing they think of after a long duty day is a shower and a sleep.
A long sleep.
As I say, let your lovely lady lie.
#9 And don’t take it personally if she is a bit moody after work
It’s just that 12-hour shift with no sleep.
Give her time to recuperate and she will be back to normal.
I know some people say MOODY is our last name, but it has everything to do with exhaustion and wanting to be alone after a long, bad day.
This part of things can be hard on relationships, but it is a fact that can’t be ignored.
I guess that this is where talking things through and working things out comes into play.
After all, a relationship is something you have to work at, it doesn’t come ready-packaged.
#10 Show an interest in her work
Even if you think you don’t know much about aviation, ask her about work.
Most flight attendants love to talk about their job.
She isn’t bragging when she tells you about the hairdresser in Paris or the coffee in Rome, it’s just part of her day to day job.
Let her introduce you to this world and share it with her.
#11 Your dinner conversations will never be boring
She has endless stories to tell.
They are always meeting new passengers so it’s no surprise that they have so many funny, interesting and bizarre stories to share.
The woman who lost her expensive ring, the man who sneaked mini bottles of alcohol on board in his backpack, the woman smoking in the toilet, a flight attendant’s work provides them with strange, amusing and sometimes sad stories to tell.
#12 Please never start a conversation with a flight attendant in a plane saying: “So you are a flight attendant…
“Are you in the Mile High Club?”,
“You must have a boyfriend in every city”,
“Can you fit me in your carry-on bag?”
If I had a dollar for every time we’ve heard one of those lines, I could afford to buy the damn plane!
If you want to ask an air hostess on a date just be yourself.
Don’t try to impress her, they prefer people with their feet on the ground (if you’ll forgive the pun).
Just be friendly, not pushy and don’t try to chat with her all the time, she has work to do.
Maybe ask her about her rotation, where’s her home base, ask her if she can recommend any places at the destination – just general chat that she can respond to and warm too.
Trust me, us flight attendants have heard every pick-up line in the book, and a few that haven’t been written down yet.
Look, if you think it’s going well and there is a spark there, you can hand her a folded up piece of paper with your contact details, Facebook or cell number and an interesting message.
That way she can respond in her own way and time. Or she can screw the paper up and throw it in the bin. It’s her call. Always.
#13 The best thing about dating a flight attendant: You’ll get plenty of free time to do whatever you want and you’ll get the opportunity to travel the world
So jump on a flight and go join her in her layover for free, or better yet, maybe head to Vegas together for a few days using Buddy passes.
Flight attendants love to travel, otherwise, they wouldn’t be in this profession and these trips can be a chance for you to spend more time together and see the world.
So, to sum all that up….
Dating a flight attendant is not for everyone, it takes a lot of patience, trust, and love to survive.
It’s hard, especially when you love someone and you want to spend all the time you can with them.
But isn’t that the same in many other jobs?
As long as both of you care about each other and set up your own schedules to spend time together and work hard at enjoying the good – sorry, the great bits – it’s all worth it.
INTERVIEWING MY BOYFRIEND
I thought it would be cute and a good idea to interview my boyfriend about our relationship, to get his perspective for this article. Who knows better than him what it’s like to date a flight attendant?
My boyfriend, D, and I have been together for 3 years now. He’s a freelance developer, who his job allows him to work anytime and from almost anywhere, which is pretty cool right? So in our case it has been quite easy to adjust our lives to fit with each other’s lifestyles.
We met in a bar while I was in a long layover in Bangkok. After 2 months, we traveled to Vietnam and we moved in together after knowing each other for only 4 months. Since then we are rock solid!
Is it hard to date a flight attendant?
– I guess it’s not a yes or no type of answer. It depends on your flight attendant’s girlfriend and her schedule. In our case, your schedule is what makes the most challenging thing to deal with in your lives.
What do you think are the dark sides of dating a flight attendant?
– One of the hardest things would be that, because of your schedule, you sometimes miss family events like Christmas or a birthday because of work. And there’s nothing to do about that.
You will also get your schedule for the following month just a couple of weeks in advance, so it makes it very hard to plan something for the mid/long term. In the end, most of the things we do are organized in a rush at the last minute.
Another thing is that you sometimes spend up to 12 hours straight working, which, by the way, seems insane to me. How can someone that woke up at 4 am can still do her job efficiently after 12 hours of duty?
Needless to say that after a few days of those in a row, you become like a zombie that can’t be disturbed too much. I know you need your time to rest but you can be grumpy! (Which is totally understandable)
– Thank you calling me grumpy!
What is your biggest pet peeve about me?
– *Laughs* ‘ you don’t want to hear this.’
– ‘Yes, I do.’
– ‘You are not going to like the answer… Your mood… swings!’
– ‘Whoops! You know… flying is not good for my mood swings. Too many ups and downs. But seriously, it’s getting better right?’
– ‘Yeah, and I’m learning to handle it!’
Do you trust me?
– One hundred percent. If your partner is a flight attendant and you don’t trust her it’s not gonna work. You trust me being at home by myself so why wouldn’t I trust you. It would not be a very healthy relationship if we didn’t trust each other, would it? I guess our personalities match in that sense.
What are the bright sides of dating a flight attendant?
– I was already a big traveler before we met (probably that’s just one more reason why we matched), but I get to travel even more than before, at a very cheap rate and to places I didn’t even consider traveling to before! Since we met, my passport stamps number has been going through the roof! So much fun!
You always know a colleague, a friend or a passenger that has been visiting a place on the other side of the world and can give you great tips on where to go and what to do.
And we easily make travel plans for the next day “Hey what about we go to Venice tomorrow for the weekend? All right, let’s go!”. Love it!
Another great thing is that I enjoy you at home quite a lot because you have more days off than ordinary people. So yes, you would work 50 hours in 5 days but then you’d have 4 days off. They would be like Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, but lucky me, I work at home, and I can arrange my own time!
I know I am also lucky because you sleep at home many days. But I know it’s not the case for many flight attendants.
Do you get to travel for free?
– Family and friends can get travel benefits. But it depends on the airline. I get Buddy Passes, which are tickets for a very cheap price on a standby basis, which means that you are only allowed to board if the flight is not full. It’s never for sure that you’ll make it on board. But still a great deal!
Where have we traveled so far?
– Seychelles, Oman, Mauritius, Philippines, Miami, Thailand, Aruba and all over Europe. And now we are looking forward to our next trip. Our next holiday plan is to go to Chile to rent a campervan for a road trip and explore the Atacama desert.
– But we always change at the very last minute.
– That’s mostly your fault *laughs*
– Hahaha guilty! So true. But it’s also depending on the availability of the flights, it’s not me.
Going back in time at the beginning of the relationship, would you date me again knowing all you know now about the flight attendant life?
– ‘Totally. It’s been awesome. I wouldn’t change a thing!’
– ‘Really? Wow!’
I think that the last word in that conversation pretty much sums up the experience of dating and having a relationship with a flight attendant.