Today’s guest post comes from the author of one of my favourite airline travel blogs … not that I want to play favourites. Gailen David, creator of Jetiquette and author of Dear Sky Steward has a knack of travel and airline etiquette. If there is an Emily Post for the travel industry, it most certainly would be Gailen.
For those of you not familiar with Jetiquette & Dear Sky Steward check it out at www.DearSkySteward.com
Without further delay … a message from Gailen David – The Jetiquette Message; Keep It Flying
This has been an excellent week for the Jetiquette movement. If you are unfamiliar with it; Jetiquette® is being led by a growing number of travelers who understand how important civility is to making travel more pleasant for themselves and others. There has been an amazing amount of reflection and discussion regarding how we treat front line employees and each other as we jet around the world. This heightened awareness of our own level of Jetiquette seems to have resulted from a single incident involving very frustrated flight attendant.
However, the tide seems to be quickly turning in the case of the flight attendant who escaped at the end of a tough day. Many passengers are coming forward with accounts of receiving unfriendly service from Mr. Slater well before the episode he had with the mystery lady, her luggage and the overhead bin. Some are even saying that the heated exchange never even took place. Regardless; it would be so disappointing to allow the message to be pushed aside as the story continues to unfold. We should not press the snooze button on the wakeup call alerting us to a lack of social graces in travel, the public’s abuse of front-line employees and even stress in the workplace.
As I listen and participate in all of the chatter, I think back on what led me onto the path of promoting Jetiquette on my blog www.skysteward.com , my podcast and in my talks. My Jetiquette passion was sprung from my growing frustration I was experiencing in the trenches as a flight attendant. I had become so very angry and disillusioned with situation I found myself in after nearly a decade of flying. With the level of service falling flight by flight, it seemed I had to say “no” and “we don’t have any” over and over again to more and more customers. Constantly disappointing them was also infuriating me and I eventually became unable to hide my displeasure as I walked the aisles and pushed my trolley. I am sure that many labeled me a “snippy flight attendant”. I must disclose that my irritation was exacerbated by a massive chip that had sprouted on my shoulder and my own problem with depression; but I’m finding types of factors to be common contributors. So if you were a passenger on my flight back then I know I may have been aloof and abrupt but it really was coming from a good place, plainly a defense mechanism of sorts; if that makes sense. You see, the Jetiquette movement began as a result of a need to express myself in a more positive way and make a difference
So hold the thought as the headlines fade and refuse to lose sight of an individual’s responsibility to show consideration and respect for each and every person encountered while traveling. Don’t undervalue the power of kindness or a helping hand. We can’t always be perfect, but the effort to make a difference in your own travel space can go a long, long way.