Air hostess life in Dubai
Think the jet-set career of a flight attendant sounds glamorous? Time Out went behind the scenes to discover the reality 24 Comments
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Believe it or not, the first ‘air host’ was actually a man. Heinrich Kubis from Germany was chief steward aboard the nation’s zeppelins from 1912 onwards; women were only introduced to the role in the 1930s. At first, female flight attendants were compared to nurses: some airlines employed only those with previous nursing experience. It wasn’t until the ’60s and ’70s that companies such as Pan-Am began to use the looks and charisma of their flight attendants as a selling point. Singapore Airlines still promotes its ‘Singapore Girls’ today.
Post 9/11 and today’s in-flight staff receive specific anti-terrorism training, learning how to protect passengers from other passengers as much as from unexpected technical problems. But flight attendants still have one of the most unique lifestyles in the world, darting between continents at a moment’s notice, surviving constant jetlag, dealing with us at our most cramped and useless, all while trying to keep up steady friendships and family life.
Nearly 11,000 Emirates cabin crew, spanning 128 nationalities, are based in Dubai. They have their own club nights, fitness companies, apartment blocks and discounts for bars and salons. As a result, flight attendants have earned themselves a reputation: known for being attractive and outgoing, with a zest for life – the kind who work crazy hours travelling, yet still find time to socialise on their return. We asked two Emirates cabin crew flatmates to keep a diary for a week, to find out whether their lifestyle is truly fabulous – or super strenuous.
Time Out Dubai,
Dance at an intelligent house night or enjoy a night of live comedy
Check out the JESS Night Market or kayak tour of Palm Jumeirah
Festivities 24-hours a day at La Farine or see acoustic musicians