The Airline Flight Attendant’s Guide to Packing Light

Flight attendant program

If you pursue an exciting, dynamic and fast-paced career as an airline flight attendant, you’ll be jet-setting your way around the world every single workday.

Airline flight attendant training will give you everything you need to know to secure an air hospitality job and succeed within it—from effective communication skills to industry-specific techniques and beyond. But it’ll be up to you to keep your personal belongings in check, so you can focus on providing the specialized customer service flight attendants are known for.

For those unskilled in packing luggage lightly, this can present some difficulties.

Read on for the airline flight attendant’s quick guide to packing light.

Airline Flight Attendant Essentials: Personal Care Products

Airline flight attendants are known for being clean, neat and well put-together, from their hair-styling to their uniforms to their footwear.

The confidence and respect this image brings is important to all hospitality professions. Once you have earned your diploma, you’ll need certain essentials on-hand to help you maintain a professional, confident image at all times.

Flight attendants keep toiletry bags or wrist satchels easily accessible in their luggage, which generally contain (depending on gender/personal preference):

  • Eye-drops and under-eye concealer (to keep them looking alert)
  • Lipstick
  • Deodorant
  • Hair fixative
  • Toothbrush/paste
  • Antibacterial wipes

And remember, changes in cabin pressure can result in leaky or bursting products. Flight attendants pack liquids in secure, screw-top containers and ensure their toiletry bags are well insulated and sealed.

Squeezing Clothes Into Your Suitcase? Just Roll With It

Rolling your clothing items is the best way to fit them into small spaces. This is important when your suitcase itself will need to fit into a small space—a cabin’s overhead carrier.

Try folding your pants or skirts in half width-wise and rolling them from top to bottom (zipper to hem), and rolling your tops from neck to hip-seam after folding their sleeves in. Professionals in flight attendant careers know firsthand how this compresses excess air out of their clothes, saving them space.

An Airline Flight Attendant Limits Luggage to the Essentials

A little-known fact: flight attendants often don’t pack shoes. The shoes they wear onboard can become the shoes they wear throughout their stays around the world, because shoes can be heavy, bulky, and impractical for fitting into small pieces of luggage.

When you have to pack as an airline flight attendant, consider evaluating every item for its usefulness. Is an item worth the amount of space it takes up in your bag? If not, leave it at home or plan to buy it when you get to your destination.

This can also open up space in your luggage for any souvenirs you’ll collect on your travels—one of many perks of a flight attendant’s international lifestyle!

Bonus Airline Flight Attendant Tip: Add Items by Order of Weight

If you pack your suitcase with the heaviest items at the bottom near the wheels (wheeling suitcases are largely preferred by today’s flight attendants), your items are easier to transport, and less likely to get rattled around during your travels.

When you become a flight attendant, try stacking items on top of heavier ones, with the lightest items always at the top by your suitcase’s handle. Professional flight attendant Nicole Gretchen says this small consideration “makes a surprising difference.”

With the right training and the tips outlined above, nothing can stop you from the smooth and easy storage of your beloved essentials when you become a world-travelling airline flight attendant.

Are you interested in enrolling in a flight attendant program? Visit CTC for more information or to speak with an advisor.

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