A Cabin Crew work bag is not just part of the uniform but holds the bare essentials for your flight, whether it’s a quick turnaround flight or a 12 day trip - the elements inside stay the same. Of course, items in your suitcase will vary substantially, depending on your destination (and the weather…) and the trip length. A handy tip, is to always keep the suitcase and crew bag packed, just replacing washable items as necessary, this way you are always ready to go.
As well as all those normal items such as house/car keys, purse/wallet and mobile phone you will need to take:
- Your crew ID and license and passport if flying international routes, without them you cannot fly
- Cabin safety manual, first aid manual and quick reference handbook/checklist to meet airline regulations
- Public announcements book
- Spare hosiery
- Your ‘cabin shoes’ (flat shoes for in-flight service)
- Your service waistcoat or apron
These are all little extras that will just make the flight easier and you will be prepared for anything.
- A small torch/flashlight is handy for long haul flights and for security checks on each flight
- A freshen-up kit to keep your appearance up to standard (toothbrush and paste, deodorant, comb, makeup minis etc)
- A mini hotel sewing kit for sewing on uniform buttons
- A small notebook for taking orders and lots of spare pens, passengers always want pens!
- Mints for fresh breath (but no chewing gum!)
A quick lunch
Sometimes, it is good to have an emergency snack to hand or if you cannot eat another crew meal you can often find an alternative to take with you.
- Some dried fruit or nuts for a quick snack
- Instant powder soups for a cold overnight flight
- A bagged salad and sachet of dressing can replace a unhealthy crew meal for something fresh and you can always add the nuts or fruit for an added extra boost
Retail sales kit
For your in-flight retail service you will need:
- Wallet and float, retail paperwork
- Small samples of perfumes/aftershaves will increase sales – you can collect them from magazines or department stores if your airline doesn’t provide them
- Pen, sticky notes and a mini calculator for currency exchange rates
Some airlines ask you to carry your own bar kit or ‘plonky kit’ as we call it and some airlines already provide these items onboard.
- Ice tongs and service apron if not issued by the airline
- Garnish implement
- Anything that provides an added extra to your bar service, I sometimes take Tabasco minis!
If your airline supports a charity and you are the fundraiser on the flight you will have your own charity kit to upkeep:
- Donation envelopes
- Public announcement
- Collection bag
- Fundraiser lapel pin
It does sound like a lot of items to carry around but you do find your own way of packing light and efficiently for your flight and always having the right tools to make the job that bit easier. You will always find yourself looking for sample sizes of products in pharmacies, your hotel room and often for free!