I found it quite interesting. But not awfully shocking :)
Well some of it was interesting, some of it is simply not true. My friend works for WestJet.
I'm pretty sure most of it is rubbish, or ridiculously embellished. "The Week" appears to have their very own Phillipa Space, who happens to be trying to sell a book.
>> 9. Seniority means shorter skirts <<
Give me a break .... (from even thinking about it).
Yes it was pretty dumb.
1) True.. most carriers have it in their FA's union contract that the pay rate is based on block time, and that doesn't start until the brakes are released-- but... the pay rate does also take into account the the time that's before and after "the blocks; though both 'sides'; that's labor and management, naturally disagree on how much time that really is, and to what degree it should be added into the block pay rate..
2) True.. It's a numbers game-- I know SQ gets north of 3,000 qualified applicants for each position-- and that's 3,000 that have already been screened and have proven to have met their initial qualifications.. Thai gets a similar response rate.
3) True. North American carriers now fall very much under current US Labor laws which prevent age and other factors as a basis for termination.. Folks really only get fired for: a) proven disciplinary records, b) serious or major rules infractions [ex: theft, major safety matters], c) criminal convictions that impact their ability to hold an DHS/TSA issued air-side security credential, d) failure of a FAA drug test or e) Failure to meet a FAA recurrent certification testing.
4) Yes, during probation, there are a LOT of ways to get fired.. and largely the union can't do anything about it.. So long as none of the reasons violate labor laws, you're pretty much an 'at will' employee until your probationary period ends.
5) True.. but smart crews know this and as a pro-active method always try to keep at least one can already open so that when you need to pour it, you don't have fizz-over to deal with.
6) true.. People try to sneak the oddest things into the plane-- less now in the post 9/11 world, but pre- 9/11 we'd see all kinds of animals-- snakes, rats, mice, rabbits, fish.. You name it, we've probably seen it.
7) Hey, if that's your thing, well.. but I'd sure take note of the size of the lav, and it's overall hygienic condition before I was to do anything in there.. Have I ever caught folks doing this? Yes, twice.. but that's twice over many years.. I think this one is somewhat of an old myth that sounds better in theory than in actual application.
8) Kind of true.. Depends on where and what you fly.. As example. Into Narita you tend to see a fair number of immigration frauds.. These are folks that have started their trip from a country whose nationals do not require a visa just to *transit* Japan, but do require a visa to enter their destination country.
Often they'll have or use fraudulent passports obtained before travel to do so and/or have someone assist them at the origin in bypassing the required visa check before boarding their first flight.
What happens is that once they board, they'll try to destroy any evidence of their true identity or nationality and claim a protected status (like refugee or otherwise) to Japan immigration.. Other times they'll just transit Japan and do the same thing upon arrival in Europe to the US, the two most common places this occurs ex. Narita.
Japan Immigration is very good at "scrubbing" their inbound APIS data.. If you've ever been in Narita sitting at a gate and seen a groups of passengers all walking side by side with a few Japan national police right behind them and with a black cloth band wrapped around each passenger's body and/or hands,. that's a case of someone being repatriated after being caught by Japan Immigration.., the black cloth only attempts to cover the handcuffs and body shackles that are used until they're boarded for their return home.
9) False.. What this should say is that once you've gained seniority it's hard for an airline to really fire you for dress code matters.. They can (and often do) write you up if you're non-compliant, but until and unless you get a number of these write-ups, they're not enough for the airline to fire you-- discipline is a very contractually controlled matter. This matter-- skirt length and overall dress code- tends to be a somewhat self-policing thing in that the Senior FA's or Pursers, who have a level of added responsibility on-board will often address it..
10) True.. The odds you'll be injured in an in-flight turbulence matter while belted in, is just so small it's near zero.. If you're standing or not belted goes up dramatically.. and true, not everything that happens on the plane to a crew member-- even if you're "on the clock" can or will be accepted as an 'on the job' injury and therefore eligible for workers comp, and other employer or employee-funded programs.... For US folks, workplace injuries are mostly a state-level matter, therefore it kind of depends on what state you or your carrier claim the injury falls under.. rules here are complex.
Thanks GOPBI, your input is always so worth reading.
I found it quite amusing.
Forgot to thank GOPBI, your posts are always well balanced and keep us on the right road.
How can you take an article like that seriously? With the exception of item 8, I found the rest tiresome!
I am sure all stewards/esses wouldn't write articles like that. More the way it came across and was written rather than the actual information.Edited: 8:35 am, March 22, 2013
Well some may be true, but I have a feeling American airlines operate a little differently then Canadian ones, and the day of the 20 person bunked crash pad, seriously, not true. At least not for Canadian FAs.. The height of skirts, not true, period.. on my friends airline its a set length for everyone period, the uniform is not allowed to be altered.. frankly I notice that to be true of most airlines I have flown on, uniforms are uniform!
A very interesting article.