This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
TPG’s favorite Flight Attendant Insider Carrie A. Trey is back, this time with a look at some of the ways you can make your in-flight meal experience even more enjoyable.
1. Lower Your Expectations
I know this sounds harsh, but I’m actually being quite serious here. Like anything else in life, if you come on board expecting restaurant-quality meals, the reality is that you’re going to be disappointed because that’s not something we’re physically capable of offering. We’re reheating meals that were prepared on the ground and doing our best to make the presentation palatable. Board the airplane with lower expectations however, and we might be able to pleasantly surprise you. Maybe we can even throw in a fresh egg (or two) or perhaps some nicely warmed-up croissants that are still light and fluffy. But if you expect a medium-rare steak or pasta that’s perfectly al dente, the reality is that you probably won’t be getting that, so why set yourself up for disappointment?
2. Keep Things Neat and Tidy
Please, for the love of all things above and below 35,000 feet, stop making a mess! Whatever we serve you has to go back into the same place it came from and piling trash on your tray only creates more work for your crew. Yes, I know we’re getting paid, but I don’t like picking up trash and cleaning up after you any more than you do, so please, stop making a mess. I don’t want to pick up your tray and find toenail clippings, dirty diapers, sneezed-on tissues, used sanitary products or cups that you’ve spat mouthwash in — all things I’ve found more than once on trays or tray tables. Really. Just stop.
3. Bring Your Own Food
We, your crew, bring food for ourselves all the time and won’t fault you at all for doing the same. A delicious burger from Shake Shack in New York, fresh sushi from that little market at Amsterdam Schiphol, filling fried rice from Changi in Singapore — whatever you bring with you, it’s something you picked out and had tailored to your tastes, so of course it’s going to be better than what I have to offer you on the plane. Just tell me what the perfect drink would be to accompany your self-catered delight is, and I’ll be happy to serve it to you.
4. Try New Things
We only have so many things to serve you on board, so when you turn your nose up at one of the limited items we have available, that further decreases your options and sets you up for disappointment. Why not take the opportunity to open up a little and try something new? I know, the quality won’t be the best, but just think — if you like it on a plane, imagine how much better it will be when you have it on the ground! Also, keep in mind your taste buds change drastically at altitude; you might find that something you’ve tried before and found to be distasteful on the ground is actually rather yummy up in the air, so give it a try!
5. Be Realistic
We will of course do whatever we can to make your in-flight culinary experience the best possible. That said, remember that we are working with limited resources. If I offer you chicken or beef, and you say. “But I’d really just like fish, or maybe some pasta,” then you’re putting me in an awkward position. We often joke among ourselves, saying, “This is a 777, not a 7-Eleven.” It’s funny because it’s true, yet so many passengers expect all the variety of a fully stocked convenience store. I only have so many things on board, and can only get so creative. I can’t manufacture things out of thin air. Check and recheck that your special meal was ordered directly through the airline — as opposed to through a travel agent — bring your own food if you have specific dietary needs or particular tastes and remember that your crew will do everything possible to make your experience the best it can be, but that in the end they can only do so much.
What tips and tricks do you have for making your in-flight meal experience better? Let us know in the comments below.
Featured image courtesy of .shock via Getty Images.
Know before you go.
News and deals straight to your inbox every day.
NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 Points
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel