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Take five with Jamie: Behind the scenes onboard

 

We had a chat with our General Manager of Cabin Crew Training to ask him all about what it’s like to work onboard our flights right now.

Here at the Jet2Blog, we’ve always wanted to know what goes on behind the scenes onboard our planes – it looks like such a glamorous job! And we thought now was a good time to do some digging, especially as things are a little different these days. So we got our General Manager of Cabin Crew Training, Jamie Leggett, to take five with us over a cuppa (well, Diet Coke for Jamie!) to get all the gossip. What exactly has changed, how are Crew finding things and what do our customers think about it all? Over to Jamie…

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Hey Jamie! How are you?

“Hello, I’m good thanks. I’m just so excited that we’re back flying and doing what we love! For Cabin Crew, it’s the best job in the world to take people on holiday, so I feel very lucky we’re taking off again.”

So, can you tell us how it feels to be onboard these days?

“You might be surprised to hear, but it’s actually not that different – it’s just like before but with face masks and even cleaner hands!”

That’s good to hear! So, what exactly has changed then?

“So aside from the masks, which is just the norm everywhere now, we’ve made lots of small tweaks to our style of service to make it extra safe.

But it’s all subtle stuff, as we don’t want to draw attention to things. After all, our customers are here to relax and have a lovely flight. We still want people to get that normal buzz of going on holiday and we don’t want any of these new procedures to get in the way of that, so we do what needs to be done without anyone really noticing. I like to think of it like a cleverly choreographed show – Strictly in the sky, ha!

All the procedural changes centre around increased cleanliness and a low-contact experience really. So we’ll still interact with our customers in our usual friendly way, but we just keep as safe a distance as possible. And we’re cleaning much more thoroughly throughout the flight. Every time we handle cash, we sanitise our hands too. We’ll also wipe the card machines after each use, but away from the customer so they don’t have to focus on all this – they just need to feel the friendliness of our famous in-flight service and that’s it.”

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Have Cabin Crew had new training on all this then?

“Absolutely! And we have a new manual to cover all the changes, which every Cabin Crew member has. All procedures have had official risk assessments – right from Crew leaving their homes to moving through the airports and stepping onboard. The Crew are on the front line experiencing these changes every day, and they often have great ideas on how we can improve things going forward, which is exactly what we want.”

What can our customers do to help?

“We’re asking everyone to stay seated as much as possible now, just to lessen the contact with other people and surfaces onboard. And that means no queueing for the toilet. It also means less traffic jams with our trollies which is fab!

But the biggest thing is wearing a mask at all times, which is what we all have to do now to keep each other safe. Of course, you can take your mask off to eat and drink, but you need to pop it on again straight away once you’re done. If everyone can get into this new mindset, that would really help our Cabin Crew so they don’t have to remind people. And it would stop other passengers feeling uncomfortable too. I just think we’re all in this together and we should all pull together to get through it – and right now, that means wearing a mask.”

And what’s the customer feedback about the onboard experience been like so far?

“We’ve had really good feedback on our service since we started flying again, which is amazing as that’s what we’re all about and it’s the one thing we didn’t want to change. And it’s more important than ever that our customers feel safe, reassured and well looked after. That really is what sets our company apart from our competitors. The positive comments come through in the feedback our customers give us when they get back from their holiday too, so it looks like we’re getting things right which is fab!”

How do you and the Crew find wearing a mask for long periods of time?

“For me, it’s fine to start with, but after a few hours it can get a bit uncomfortable and I have to go clean my hands and then carefully readjust. For some of the other Crew, it doesn’t bother them at all. But we’re all really good at keeping each other going with stuff like this – and we’re role models to our customers so we just get on with it.”

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Do you have any top tips for wearing a face mask?

“Masks can rub my ears after a while, so I keep the area around them well moisturised. But I think the best tip is to make sure your mask fits you correctly – try before you fly! Practise wearing it for a few hours in a row before you take off on holiday, just so you can get used to it.

And why not have a little fun? If you love polka dots, then buy a polka dot mask to show off your style. I’ve even heard customers say bright white masks make their tan look better! And with Christmas coming up, who knows what novelty ones will be on sale. Overall though, I think it helps to stop focusing so much on it, so try to distract yourself if it starts to bother you.”

So, if you’re ready and raring for take-off like Jamie, check out our tips on how to wear a face mask before you go so you’re well prepared.

Posted: 2nd Dec 2020.

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