The world of aviation is a close-knit community. As such, flight attendants around the world have started their own new trend called mile-high selfies, which are nothing more than pictures of themselves in uniform on or around an aircraft; however, this latest craze is spreading like wildfire on Instagram among a network of attendants.
The flight attendants say that the mile-high selfies help create friendship and camaraderie allowing them to keep in touch across the miles, and talk about various issues they are having with relation to their work. One flight attendant named Kathleen has started the process of trademarking #crewlife, which is a phrase that will be used to communicate with other attendants about their life in the aviation industry.
In addition, Kathleen is using another phrase, #passengershaming to shame passengers who have given her a hard time or acted in a negative way during their flight. In addition, she has begun to encourage other flight attendants to vent their frustrations in much the same way using the same phrase. She explained that this is a good practice among flight attendants because they simply understand where each other is coming from due to the fact that they are living the same lifestyle, and it allows them to share stories and help each other deal with life as a flight attendant.
However, some flight attendants are fearful of the latest mile-high selfies craze, and say they would never get involved because among other things airline policies are very strict. One 18-year veteran flight attendant named Heather Poole said there is no way she would ever consider being part of the mile-high selfies craze because she would not want to take the risk of being fired in the event the airline thought her photo somehow tarnished their image. Poole would not even disclose which airline she is affiliated with for fear of revealing too much information.
Flight attendants deal with thousands of people every year, many of which are celebrities. Several airlines, such as Delta will not allow flight attendants to post any photos of themselves with a celebrity on the internet. However, Delta says selfies are acceptable as long as they depict the flight attendants in compliance with uniform rules, which are outlined in the Delta handbook.
Of the mile-high selfies posted on Instagram, most are done in good taste. While the flight attendants are trying to be sexy, they are not doing anything lewd that would represent the airlines they work for in a negative way. However, each airline may see things differently based on their policies of what is and is not acceptable for those in their employment.
Several of the photos posted on Instagram show attendants lying across the tops of airplane seats or standing between the rows, while others are nothing more than headshots. A few photos showed multiple flight attendants in the same photo and some were taken outside the airplanes by the engines.
Some attendants are skittish about getting involved with the new trend, but it is obvious that mile-high selfies is the latest craze among flight attendants and it does not show signs of going away any time soon. However, airlines may frown upon the attendants venting their frustrations about passengers for fear of losing customers. In the end, mile-high selfies may not be what gets the attendants in trouble; it may be negative comments about passengers.
Opinion By Donna W. Martin