A Day In The Life Of Cabin Crew

Each day for cabin crew (on a duty day) can be very different depending on the route you’re taking, but I thought I would write a post for anyone interested in crew life for what the average day at work entails.

Before I head to bed I make sure that all my uniform is ironed and ready to wear, that I have my pyjamas, waistcoat, cabin shoes, oven gloves, cardigan and anything else I want to take with me is in my cabin bag. I pack my bigger layover case after checking the weather forecast and finally head to bed hoping for a good rest before the flight.

I usually wake up around 4 hours before a flight departs. We have to be at work to go through our eGate 2 hours and 5 minutes before departure, and these gates are open for 20 minutes. So sometimes this means waking up at 3am, sometimes 5pm, it really does depend on your departure time. Prior to this I wake up, get ready and do my hair and make up which usually takes me around 20 minutes. I very rarely eat before a flight no matter what time it is but will often have a morocco mint tea before work to wake me up! I know breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but I’m rarely hungry as soon as I wake up and will eat something when we get on board out of our crew cart if I start to feel peckish.

Once I’m ready, I’m out the door and I jump on the bus to go to Emirates HQ. Emirates provides free transport to take us to and from work which depart every 20 minutes from each of the company provided accommodation around Dubai. Whilst I’m on the bus I usually read our safe talk. Before every flight we are asked a question which could be anything related to safety/security/medical and you have to answer correctly to show your knowledge is up to date and your prepared to fly. I read through this to refresh my memory and I’m more than ready for the day ahead of me. Most people think we are just there to serve you anything you may need, but we’re predominantly here for your safety and we’re efficiently trained in many different areas. See below my posts on our cabin crew training:

The Start of Training
Somewhere In The Middle Of SEP…
Three Weeks In
The Famous Red Hat
Group Medical Training + My Family Visit!!
From The Red Polo To The Emirates Uniform
Service Training (And A Trip To The Desert)
The End of Training, The Beginning Of Travelling The World

When I arrive at work, usually around 10 minutes before my eGate opens sometimes I need to collect or drop off any laundry (as Emirates clean all our uniform for us) before waiting for my eGate to open. Sometimes HQ is really busy depending on the time of day/night and there are many people wandering around or going through their gates.



As soon as it’s time, I grab my things and scan my ID and finger print and walk through to check in. Depending on whether it is a layover or a turn around, upon presenting my ID a luggage tag will be given to me for my layover case which I then drop off at the baggage drop off, or if it’s just a turn around it will accept my check in and I make my way over to security.

Just like anyone else heading on an aircraft, we go through rigorous security checks and have everything scanned. Shoes and jacket are off, and also my watch as it ALWAYS likes to beep, and they go through the machine before getting dressed again. Following from here are Image and Uniform checkers who are ensuring that everyone is meeting standards and representing the brand correctly before the flights. After this I usually grab a coffee (if I didn’t have time before hand) from Costa and make my way over to the designated briefing room. The life of a cabin crew member is one fuelled with coffee.

In our briefing room we meet everyone including the flight deck (pilots) prior to the flight. Majority of the time you will have never met these people before, so we get to know each other whilst conducting the legalities of pre departure. We have all our documents checked so that we’re legal to fly and then asked that all important question from safe talk! Once we’ve passed all that, we sit in our teams (Economy, Business and First Class) and discuss the upcoming flights and the services we are going to deliver with the passenger load.

The flight deck operating the aircraft which differs between 2 and 4 crew depending on how long we’re flying and they give us information on the flight time, the flying altitude and whether we’re to expect any turbulence over our route.

After this, its hats on and we make our way down to the buses which take us over to the designated aircraft we’ll be flying on that day; either a Boeing 777 or an Airbus A380. Fun fact, we’re the only airline in the world to solely operate on these two aircraft boasting a fleet of 238 with another 200 aircrafts on order. How incredible?


Once we get on board, we all take our assigned positions and complete our safety and security checks to make sure both we and the aircraft are ready to fly. When all this is completed, and boarding clearance has been given it’s hats on and smiles on ready to welcome our passengers and assist them with boarding to whichever one of the 141 destinations we’re flying to that day!

A busy start to the day and we haven’t even taken off yet! Depending on where we’re heading that day, we’ll deliver between one and three services and if the flight is longer than 9 and a half hours, we’ll also head to bed in crew rest to recharge those batteries.

I hope this gives a better insight to a day in the life of a crew member and if posts like these are what you want to read more about let me know, or of any other post suggestions! As always, feel free to follow me on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for more daily updates:


17 Comments Add yours

  1. Choi says:

    hehe is it frustrating to deal with customers sometimes?? thanks for sharing your experience!


    1. With any job there are frustrations, but there are a lot of positives with this one, so I just choose to look at those!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Chiara says:

    I loved it!!! Can you tell us more about life as a cabin crew? How is a typical flight??


    1. Hi Chiara, I’m glad you enjoyed the post. Maybe I’ll try a time line of one of my upcoming flights to tell you how that goes in the form of a blog post!


  3. I fly business from Bangalore to Dubai few times a year.I’ve to admit your airlines beats our own Air India.I fumbled across your and another Emirates crew blog while helping my niece who wants to become a crew.She is impressed with the number of destinations and quality of life.Hope she makes.Best wishes X

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Good luck to her Radika, glad you love Emirates too ☺️


  5. Abbey says:

    Good post. I’m impress too

    Liked by 1 person

  6. it was so detailed and nice writing

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Thank you so much for sharing to us the everyday life of a flight attendant. A seafarer by profession, I have flown with several airlines. Of course I have flown with Emirates and most recently was on April – Lisbon to Dubai and Manila.And that flight was the most memorable one because it was my very first flight where I was video chatting with my kids midair. Hope all airlines will have wifi onboard just like that Emirates flight….


    1. So glad you enjoyed Emirates and all that we have to offer on board, your kids must have loved skyping you at 40,000ft!


  8. Imogen says:

    Hi Jessica, what happens if a member of crew gets the safe talk question wrong?


    1. They’ll be asked another one and it be documented ☺️


  9. Paula Claire says:

    I love love love this! Thank you for sharing this 🙂


    1. Thanks Paula, glad you enjoyed it! 😊


  10. Annalisa says:

    Hi Jessica!
    I love reading your blog and it motivated me to apply to emirates as well. I have been accepted to assessment day and I am super excited. But, what I am worried most about is the reach test. I am a petite girl and I can only reach 212cm with my middle finger. I am on my tip toe, stable, with one hand. I read on many forums that you need to reach 212cm with all fingers across the mark. Some people are saying that just as long as you can reach it, even if it is just 1 finger, it is fine too. Could you pls clarify?


    1. Hi Annalisa, I’m really unsure. It was such a long time ago when I did my assessments and also I’m 5”10, so it really wasn’t a test for me to try and reach! Sorry I’m not much help, but good luck! 😊


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