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June 29, 2017

If you think summer travel is the worst for passengers, think again.

Summer is a stressful time for anyone working the skies. An influx of passengers and long, hot days can make any airline employee dream of leaving it all behind to go lie on the beach.

A flight attendant going by the name of Brad Bernoulli (his name has been changed to protect anonymity), shared a few key reasons why summer is the worst season for cabin crews with The Independent.

As a brief disclaimer, Bernoulli states that he loves his job, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t come with a special set of challenges.

First up, Bernoulli notes the traveling family on vacation. But this isn’t just any type of family. “You typically have your father: a business traveler taking his family on their hols by using his points. Daddy dearest is in business class; his brood and (usually much more pleasant) wife in economy," he wrote.

Bernoulli recounts one such family he served on a flight where the father got drunk on gin and tonics in business class while sending champagne to his wife in coach, "because you know how women get."

The next terrible traveler type on the list is big groups of university and high school students.

“My personal favourites are the church groups who always seem to try to clasp hands and form a prayer circle in the cabin at the worst possible time,” Bernoulli wrote.

He also mentions college frat bros are particularly hard to handle. “I’m used to watching muscular meatheads and their arm candy board and immediately try to drink their own booze onboard, or worse – try to play beer pong across several rows of seats.” 

The last place you want to have a party foul is 30,000 feet in the air.

But middle schoolers, according to Bernoulli, can really make crews cringe. “Watching them – wherever they’re off to – the crew suffers from mortifying secondhand embarrassment as we watch the popular kids to try avoid sitting with the less popular, and remember our own school days,” he wrote.

But Bernoulli did have some sympathy for one passenger type: the unaccompanied minor, or UM for short. This young person is the type who typically needs to fly from one city to visit one parent and then back to another city for the other.

Bernoulli felt a personal connection with this type of passenger. “I spent my childhood doing that very commute,” he said.

Bernoulli says that he and his coworkers always try to accommodate a “UM” in the best possible manner. “I roll out the red carpet,” he said, giving them free snacks, meals, refills of soft drinks and anything else in his power to make the passenger (and their parents) feel like they’re being taken care of while in the air.

Bernoulli kept his list of terrible passengers short, because not everyone falls into these categories. However, if you are looking to keep yourself off a list like this, he has some simple, sage advice: “Just remember the next time you step on a plane to jet off on your summer hols [vacations] that your flight attendants are people too – and we’re looking forward to September even more than you.” 

Everyone wants to have a pleasant summer, even if they have to work through it.

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