Flight attendant shares their high flying ideas and tips

At TPG, we delight ourselves on with the ability to commonly provide you with an insider’s information on one of the best methods to journey. Nonetheless, if there’s one explicit group of people that know much more than us, it is flight attendants.

Lezah Cooper has been a flight attendant with Virgin Atlantic for the final 29 years and has labored with each type of passenger, from A-list celebrities to probably the most nervous flyers. In the case of the do’s and don’ts of taking a long-haul flight, she is a bona fide knowledgeable.

Associated: Key journey ideas it’s worthwhile to know — whether or not you are a first-time or frequent traveler

TPG caught up with Cooper to get her high flying ideas, together with the place one of the best seats on the aircraft are, her methods to beat jet lag and whether or not or not it actually is feasible to attain an improve.

Here is what she needed to say.

The very best place to take a seat on the aircraft

“Clearly, I will say Virgin Atlantic’s Higher Class,” Cooper mentioned. “But it surely is dependent upon which plane you are flying on, and I do know not all people can afford that.”

If you’re a nervous flyer, Cooper suggests sitting in any seat behind the wings. She explains that the journey will doubtless be smoother and fewer bumpy in case you encounter turbulence.

“Then there’s additionally the window seat,” Cooper shared. “When you get by these clouds on a day flight, you have received that vitamin D coming in with the sunshine, and it makes you are feeling higher.


“However in case you’re hungry, go nearer to the entrance. Very often, we begin the companies on the entrance of the plane, particularly in economic system. Generally we do run out of meal selections; you will nonetheless get a meal elsewhere, however the farther ahead you sit, the higher likelihood you are gonna need to get your first [preference].”

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Is there a secret to getting an improve?

In line with Cooper, no. She shares that years in the past, passengers celebrating a honeymoon or special day may need been capable of rating an improve, however not anymore.

“All people’s received social media and see the identical ideas, so everybody says it is their honeymoon or their birthday. I will take down some Champagne, and I will make a fuss of them, however most of our flights replenish now. The possibilities of having a cheeky improve on the day simply do not actually occur.

“A bit of recommendation on how to not get an improve: I’ve had passengers say they’ve medical issues, which they hadn’t declared. When you declare a medical drawback, I’ve to have that checked out. Sadly, I as soon as had a passenger I needed to offload as a result of he wasn’t match to fly. Be very cautious of what you say in case you’re making an attempt to get an improve.”


Associated: Unlock unimaginable worth with Virgin Atlantic factors

Checked bag or carry-on?

“It is dependent upon your journey. If I am on an evening cease, I can do it with only a weekend bag,” Cooper shared. “Clearly, for a vacation, you are gonna take a checked bag, [but] in case you simply do a brief in a single day or a few nights someplace like New York, do it like Joey in ‘Buddies’ when he layers all of his garments on.

“For those who layer up, you may simply take a carry-on bag with you. Simply keep in mind to take layers off on board the plane. I do a Joey each time I’m going snowboarding. When do you ever put on the identical coat for seven days? You do not, do you? So I will have one in my bag. I will have one on high of my wheelie bag, and I will put on one.”

Cooper additionally suggests you may all the time pay for a checked bag at check-in, even on the final minute, in case you resolve you need to take a bigger suitcase.

Roll or fold — what’s higher for packing?

“After 29 years [as a flight attendant], I nonetheless cannot pack. Even once we go on vacation, I take an excessive amount of. I simply need to take my entire wardrobe with me. So I do a mix of packing and rolling after which shove bras, swimming costumes and sneakers in any nook and cranny I can discover. However, rolling is healthier for [avoiding] creases.”

Is it OK to swap seats?

“I imply, I’d do it. It is simply human nature, is not it? If there’s an empty plane, all we ask is that when you’ve got a particular meal ordered, you tell us as a result of all people will get their meals to their seats. For those who go and sit farther ahead within the cabin, then we discover it tough to ship your particular meal.

“However actually, if we have got a light-weight load or there is a spare seat, go forward and do it, after which simply let a crew member know in case you’ve received a particular meal or that you have completed it.”

Cooper explains that solely sure passengers can sit by an exit, and the crew may want to maneuver a passenger to a different row. Nonetheless, she says the vast majority of the time, it is superb.

“For those who transfer to seats with further legroom and there are different individuals sitting round there that paid, I’d say I will want you to pay or transfer you to a unique seat. However aside from that, it isn’t a biggie. [Likewise], in case you’re sitting in economic system and improve your self to Higher Class, we might transfer you. That is not honest on the total, fair-paying passengers, is it?”

Do not drink an excessive amount of

“The [effects of] alcohol double whenever you’re within the air. So we’ve to maintain a extremely shut eye on individuals consuming. And you’ll’t drink your personal alcohol on board.

“For those who’ve received a liter of vodka from duty-free, we would actually carefully monitor that. And if we discovered you consuming it, we would take it away from you and provides it again to you on the vacation spot.”

Additionally, in case you are drunk whenever you get off the plane, customs or immigration usually will not allow you to in, in response to Cooper.


Don’t go barefoot

Going to the lavatory with out sneakers is a no-no, in response to Cooper, as you would not go barefoot in a public restroom.

“We’re meticulous and examine these bathrooms each 20 to half-hour. We clear them, however not all people is as cautious. I’ve a really bizarre secret superstar crush. I will not point out his identify, however he was on one in every of my good friend’s flights and went within the toilet barefoot. It put me off for all times.”

Cooper suggests bringing socks, flip-flops or disposable slippers to put on on the aircraft (and to the lavatory).

The trick to getting 40 winks

“I all the time say put on one thing cozy. I prefer to carry my very own pillow with me. However simply have one thing comfy, some joggers or one thing. I do know lots of people prefer to take like a sleeping pill, however as crew, I counsel our prospects not to do this as a result of if there’s an emergency, we might actually wrestle to get these passengers to come back round.”

Lavender-scented pillow sprays and rest teas are different methods that will help you sleep, in response to Cooper.


Beat jet lag

Cooper recommends consuming loads of water, avoiding alcohol throughout your flight and staying in your last vacation spot’s time zone to assist keep away from jet lag.

“They are saying it is best to keep in your departure zone time,” Cooper shared. “Personally, I’m going with the time of the nation that I am in. That is nice for me; I am actually fortunate I type of sleep wherever and all over the place. However I do know not all people’s like that.”

Verify your passport, cellphone and duty-free objects whenever you depart

In line with Cooper, passengers usually depart behind their passports, telephones or duty-free purchases within the overhead bin or entrance seat pocket of the aircraft.

“When you’re off the plane, you may’t get again on,” Cooper mentioned. “Nonetheless, we’re all the time there for a great 5 minutes after all people’s off, and we do scan the cabin and hand something over to the safety agent as we get off.”

“Often, by the point the passengers get to the jet bridge, they will have realized they’ve forgotten one thing, and it’ll nonetheless be on board. They’ll inform us their seat quantity, and we’ll return, and we’ll seek for it till we discover it.”

Backside line

The times of getting a free improve are lengthy behind us, and regardless of us all frowning upon it, manner too many individuals nonetheless stroll round on flights barefoot. However you may nonetheless relax and fly in consolation. For those who’re a nervous flyer, choose a seat towards the rear of the aircraft. It is also acceptable to swap seats (simply let the crew know you have completed it).

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