Feeling Emotional about a Full Flight Amidst COVID-19 Outbreak
Full flights – which used to be a joking complaint among cabin crew members – have now transformed into gifts for the VNA Group, every flight crew member, and every employee, says Purser Vu Thi Cam Tu in earnest.
On the 21st of February, I served on Flight VN276, departing at 8:00 pm from Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi. I was pleasantly surprised to see 16 Business class and 168 Economy class passengers on the load sheet of the Airbus 321. “Let me ask the captain if there is anything wrong with this load sheet,” said the co-pilot in disbelief, leaving me touched.
“A full flight is, indeed, a luxury. But we have won back one, so let us go for two, and then more!” said Purser Cam Tu (Cre: Cam Tu).
Full flights, which used to be a joking complaint among cabin crew members, have now transformed into special gifts for the VNA Group, every flight crew member, and every employee.
Not only I, but also my colleagues, share the same concerns for VNA and are thrilled to have seen a sign of recovery from this full flight.
Only at a time like this can we fully understand and appreciate what we had – full flights and a busy schedule. Since the world and the aviation industry have been so deeply affected by the epidemic, a full flight is indeed a luxury. But we have won back one, so let us go for two, and then more!
I would like to quote what a colleague of mine said at a pre-flight briefing, “Flight attendants now look like cats longing for their fish.” It is a bitter joke that reflects how we feel about empty flights, halved frequency, e.g., from four flights per day to two flights per day, and reduced workload, e.g., from 70-80 hours to 50 hours or less. It has an adverse impact on not only our income but, more importantly, the development of the VNA Group.
I was anxious but mentally prepared for any decline in my seniority allowance before receiving my salary sheet a few days ago. Fortunately, I was able to breathe a sigh of relief because there was no change.
Hearing what inter-crew members and colleagues from other major airlines said, we can tell that we are being remunerated well by the VNA Group. In return, each of us must work harder, starting with the littlest of actions – greeting passengers with a smile, smiling at passengers with our eyes if wearing face masks, reminding passengers to fasten their seatbelts politely, offering passengers bottled water tactfully, or responding to any questions that passengers have to our best abilities. We – more than anyone – understand that passengers are our lifeblood.