Category Archives: Travel Stories

Living The Dream One Day At A Time

What happens in a day in the life of a flight attendant?

Well, this morning my husband dropped me off at work (this is called Princess Parking!), I walked through the turnstile (also know as the people shredder and if you’ve ever tried to get through one with any luggage, you would know why) and off to where I check in (this is classified but I can tell you that it includes walking, a train, a people mover, some stairs and door codes, more walking and some more codes).

Now that I know you are really excited, there is some more walking. I can never figure out why so many flight attendants are on the chunky side with all of this activity. I guarantee you it’s the constant junk food that we are forced to stuff in our mouths as quickly as possible during the few seconds before or after the passengers are boarded or while walking to the next aircraft. Of course, I have learned to bring my own food. I have red pepper humus, Montgomery Inn pulled pork, Laughing Cow cheese and some gluten-free bread I made last night among other things. Of course, I did see that McDonald’s has a new Big Mac wrap if that’s your thing. *frowning*

I did have a really good flight from Cincinnati to NYC. I have a great flight crew that I am working with and the passengers were a lot of fun and very diverse, my favorite. Two particularly nice people were two young ladies from Germany. So sweet when they walked on the plane, telling me hello like they were actually happy to be there. I love that. Next, we are off to Chicago. Too bad I’m not there long enough to go into the city.

One thing that I do love about my job is that I consider myself PR for the company (lucky for them, I love my job and avoid the negative stuff), I would love to be able to speak 6 different language (now, I speak bits and pieces of 6 different languages), and I would love to have the room to have parties (now, I have guests a day that I get to cater to). I love staying in hotels, flying on aircraft and traveling all over so what a great job for me!

I don’t get paid a lot and it’s not always easy but last month, I got to go to Italy! I certainly cannot complain. Right now, I am sitting at Kennedy waiting for a late aircraft, which gives me time to sit and write this so again, I can’t complain.

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Travel and Still Save Money

Save Me Money!When I first started working for the airlines, I was too afraid to go anywhere. I didn’t have the time or money to go anywhere. It’s really expensive to travel, right? Well, it doesn’t have to be.
 
With the economy the way it is, that leaves room for traveling. Using sites like Priceline.com and vacationstogo.com (for some examples) are two such sites that can save you a fortune. I have personally used priceline for hotels and car rentals. I was able to secure a hotel in Charleston, WV that runs for around $100/nt for only $42 and a car rental in Cincinnati, Ohio for $12 a day!
 
I usually look for hotels that also offers at least continental breakfast and make PB&J sandwiches for later. Another blogger suggested purchasing one of those discount books for that city if you are going to be there long enough to save money on food, shopping and activities. The hotel in CRW is the Holiday Inn Express downtown. They offer a really nice breakfast, apples at the front desk, coffee and tea all day, free Internet and they are right there by the mall. There is also some low cost eats around the area, the Capital Building and public transportation. They will pick you up from the airport or train station so really, who needs a car?
 
I have not used vacationstogo.com however, they always have some really great deals on cruises if you can get away at the last minute! One being offered right now is a 7 day cruise on the 12th of September leaving Port Canaveral, Florida for $409 per person. It’s on Carnival and regularly runs at $1669.00 per person. That’s a 75% discount! 
 
One thing that I do since I travel for a living is bringing food with me. There are some things that you can and cannot bring with you so don’t forget or they will take them! Remember that you cannot bring more that 3oz each in any liquids that you may want to bring however, you can bring some milk and juice for your little ones through security at the airport. I wait for these small Organic milks to go on sale and buy some of those. They do not need to be refrigerated until opened and are really yummy. Powdered milk is great because it can be mixed up as needed and is, well, not liquid. Cereal in small boxes (grab an extra at breakfast) or separated in ‘ziplock’ bags is handy. I even use re-usable bowls with lids so that I #1, have a bowl and #2, do not crush my cereal. Some other examples are dried fruit and nuts, tuna fish or chicken breast packets and crackers (pick up mustard and mayo packs when you see them), a loaf of bread and jar of peanut butter and ready meals that do not need refrigeration to be heated later if your hotel has a microwave. If you do not want to bring a bulky loaf of bread, you can bring a package of tortillas. Laughing cow cheeses (the little triangle packages in the round container) do not need to be refrigerated until opened. If you do bring cold things or have left overs, some hotels have small refrigerators or you can bring ziplock bags to hold ice and put them on your food. I have been doing this for years and it works great.
 
Another thing that I do is spend a little more for lunch and take some for later. I like Ruby Tuesday’s where I get the salad bar with the mini Turkey Burger’s for only a $1 more. It’s a little more expensive but at least I know that I am eating healthy and it’s actually two meals for me. I eat a full salad bar and take the burgers with me for later. Some cities have a special ticket or card that you can get that allows you to visit more than one site for a low price and even offer coupons for food.
 
If you are planning on taking a cruise, you will want to remember to take all of the important stuff. At a hotel, there’s usually a corner store some where. If you are on a cruise…it’s a boat in the middle of the water! *laughing, and not sarcastically* You are at their mercy and they will not hesitate to charge you $20 for a $5 disposable camera. Bring your meds, camera and film if you need that, sunscreen, proper shoes, feminine items, and a bottle of “water” filled with vodka (or your clear liquid of choice). *again, laughing. win, wink* You will get all of the food you could possibly need. Water, coffee and tea are free. Soda, juice and liquor are NOT free. I hear that you can purchase a drink card for soda these days but I would ask your particular line of choice.
 
All inclusives are a good deal too, especially when you can find a great deal due to the economy. One price that may seem pricey up front but includes just about everything can save big bucks. All of your food, drinks, activities and more.
 
Check out http://littlemissknowitall.net/ for more discount ideas, even Disney World!

Are All Italians Nice?

Yesterday on the plane, I had a passenger that walked on with a piece of luggage that was too big for the aircraft so I pointed to the jetway for him to leave it there. When I began to tell him that he could pick it up when we got to our destination, he looked like he didn’t know what I was talking about. A brief interaction discovered that he was Italian and I was speaking too quickly.

TIP: I know from experience to learn hello, goodbye, thank you, where’s the…bathroom, food, museum, and “speak more slowly please”.

Immediately I was excited and determined to let he and his wife (?) know where to pick up their suitcase. Since my Italian is not that versed yet and I didn’t have use of my Google Translate, I got out my handy 4 language guide that I carry with me on the job at all times. (Comes in handy when you work NYC most of the time) I managed to write down: Buon gior no. Mi chiamo Christina. La valigia accanto la aero Detroit. Grazie!

If you don’t speak Italian either, it just says “Hello. My name is Christina. The suitcase next to plane Detroit. Thank you!” OK, not the best grammar but come on I wrote a brief not that they understood in less than two minutes using a tourist book and at least 4 different pages. Not bad, I think!P7162255

We were able to talk a little bit between my limited Italian and their English and they were so kind and gracious. I had time to show them some pictures of a trip that my husband and I took recently to Italy and they were so excited at the journey we took. They also asked if they could send me some pictures of their trip. Yeah! I love pictures.

Of course when they were getting off of the plane, I got a typical double kiss on the cheeks from the woman and a courteous handshake from the man. This is the same response that we got from everyone on our trip, which leads me to wonder if all Italians are this nice?