Ask the BA Staffer and Heathrow ATC

Old Nov 20, 11, 1:04 am
  #1  
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Ask the BA Staffer and Heathrow ATC

After a few chats with staff members who frequent the forum, we agreed it would be a good idea to have a thread where you could ask them any questions. Much more their idea than mine. I decided to wait until all the folderol over the change to Avios had calmed down.

All questions are allowed with one exception. No questions about security please. And as it's my thread I'm going to ban some words - devaluation, winging, 97%, Boston Harbour and Easter Island . Remember we have ground crew, cabin crew and deck crew (I hope I got the terminology right) as well as customer services (although there's a separate thread for Avios questions) and lounge staff (not strictly BA). A member of Heathrow ATC has also offered to answer questions.

So, me first. One for cabin and deck crew. You've all done the safety courses. You have a far better idea what it would be like to try and get out of a smoke filled, wrecked cabin. We all hope it will never happen of course, but based on your training what would your top tips be to make us one of the ones that survives?

Last edited by ColdWalker; Nov 20, 11 at 1:52 pm
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Old Nov 20, 11, 2:11 am
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I have a couple of questions, mainly for flight deck crew:
  1. When you are flying long haul e.g. LHR-SIN, LHR-HKG, how much of the time are you actually "flying" and not sitting watching the clouds or reading a newspaper?
  2. What are your favourite things to do downroute?
  3. For all cabin crew and flight crew - if you could fly any one route in the world continuously for the rest of your career, what would it be and on which aircraft?
  4. Do you ever get annoyed with passengers asking where you have just come in from if you are travelling home, on say a domestic sector?

I like the idea of this thread
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Old Nov 20, 11, 3:19 am
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What a great idea ColdWalker.
Firstly the correct terminology is flightcrew, I am tempted to use your terminology but change one letter but I jest.
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Old Nov 20, 11, 3:30 am
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I find it very difficult coming to terms with turbulence, so much so that even with a flat bed I am reluctant to lie down, as I feel I would feel disorientated if turbulence struck.

Have you any tips on dealing with / understanding turbulence and which, if any routes, are more likely to be subject to this phenomenon?
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Old Nov 20, 11, 3:37 am
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One for Cabin Crew: what is the one question you are sick of being asked by passengers?
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Old Nov 20, 11, 3:38 am
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To get it out of the way, I'll start by winging 97% of the Easter Island devaluation near Boston Harbour :-). Now that that's done...

On long-haul flights - how do you guys deal with jet lag? I mean, if you're hopping time-zones all over the place all of the time, surely there comes a point at which you end up functioning in your own personal individual timezone, ignoring the world around you :-). I have trouble enough after one or two changes per week! Do you have any particular strategies or methods that you use?

-simon
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Old Nov 20, 11, 3:46 am
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Originally Posted by Can I help you View Post
What a great idea ColdWalker.
Firstly the correct terminology is flightcrew, I am tempted to use your terminology but change one letter but I jest.
Agreed - great idea. ^

I suspect it'll be all questions for crew - be they cabin or flight deck - but I'm happy to answer anything related to check in and some of the ground functions.
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Old Nov 20, 11, 3:48 am
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Originally Posted by sunrisegirl View Post
Agreed - great idea. ^

I suspect it'll be all questions for crew - be they cabin or flight deck - but I'm happy to answer anything related to check in and some of the ground functions.
What's the best way to blag an upgrade?

Does being good looking help? That could explain why I never get one ^
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Old Nov 20, 11, 3:56 am
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Originally Posted by DYKWIA View Post

Does being good looking help? That could explain why I never get one ^
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Old Nov 20, 11, 4:02 am
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Originally Posted by CatchThePigeon View Post
One for Cabin Crew: what is the one question you are sick of being asked by passengers?
I don't really get asked this, being on Short Haul, but I know it is one silly question that Long Haul crew get asked... After flying LHR-BKK for instance... "Do you go straight back again?"...
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Old Nov 20, 11, 4:07 am
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Originally Posted by rossmacd View Post
I have a couple of questions, mainly for flight deck crew:
  1. When you are flying long haul e.g. LHR-SIN, LHR-HKG, how much of the time are you actually "flying" and not sitting watching the clouds or reading a newspaper?
  2. What are your favourite things to do downroute?
  3. For all cabin crew and flight crew - if you could fly any one route in the world continuously for the rest of your career, what would it be and on which aircraft?
  4. Do you ever get annoyed with passengers asking where you have just come in from if you are travelling home, on say a domestic sector?

I like the idea of this thread
1 - I am Short Haul, and never read a paper, but do watch clouds sometimes... So, I can't really say on how much time my Long Haul colleagues spend navel gazing...

2 - I love history and architecture... So, cities in them self I find fascinating. I love to wander around, looking at buildings and visiting exhibitions and museums, even if most of the stuff is in a language I don't speak or read, you can still get an idea from looking. Places like Lyon I adore... Wander down a street and come to a junction that looks like it has not changed since the Second World War with the old green fountain in the middle, like a scene from Allo Allo!

3 - If I were to remain on Short Haul, probably Lyon, if they could just move the airport a bit closer to the town, that drive would kill me all the time though!
If I was on Long Haul, San Francisco.

4 - Not really. I like to chat and like it when passengers take an interest, instead of us just being invisible.
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Old Nov 20, 11, 4:11 am
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Originally Posted by ColdWalker View Post
So, me first. One for cabin and deck crew. You've all done the safety courses. You have a far better idea what it would be like to try and get out of a smoke filled, wrecked cabin. We all hope it will never happen of course, but based on your training what would your top tips be to make us one of the ones that survives?


My top tip for survival is communication.
Watch, listen and read everything that is about your safety whether it is in a hotel at the airport or on the aircraft.
Communicate anything you are not happy about to at least one other person.
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Old Nov 20, 11, 4:13 am
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Originally Posted by ColdWalker View Post

All questions are allowed with one exception. No questions about security please. And as it's my thread I'm going to ban some words - devaluation, winging, 97%, Boston Harbour and Easter Island . Remember we have ground crew, cabin crew and deck crew (I hope I got the terminology right) as well as customer services (although there's a separate thread for Avios questions) and lounge staff (not strictly BA).

survives?
Nice idea, can you also ban the word "whinge"?
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Old Nov 20, 11, 4:13 am
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Originally Posted by DYKWIA View Post
What's the best way to blag an upgrade?

Does being good looking help? That could explain why I never get one ^
NEVER ask!!! Bring the agent chocolates, wine and flowers and look like George Clooney

Seems like that explains your bad luck in that area.



Seriously though if cabins at the rear of the aircraft are overbooked, we have a note in the page for that flight which asks us to comment passengers who are SFU.

Those who get the comment tend to be dressed nicely, (ie. nice trousers/smart jeans and top/jacket. Trainers and trackies, or a Rooney shirt don't qualify!), sociable and friendly on check in, if you ask to pay for an upgrade, no special meal requested, etc. It tends to be a bit of a gut instinct and we all approach it slightly differently. Most colleagues get annoyed when asked for a free upgrade and won't put SFU but a few don't mind at all and will put the comment in

Last edited by sunrisegirl; Nov 20, 11 at 4:24 am
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Old Nov 20, 11, 4:15 am
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Originally Posted by Can I help you View Post
My top tip for survival is communication.
Watch, listen and read everything that is about your safety whether it is in a hotel at the airport or on the aircraft.
Communicate anything you are not happy about to at least one other person.
Yep... I would go along the same lines. Obviously, everything we train for and show passengers is in a "perfect world", not that you would want any sort of incident in a perfect world, but if the aircraft ditched, that it would stay together and we would float. But, we all know that is not going to be the case 99% of the time. So, being prepared is the best information. As they say, forewarned is forearmed.
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