What your airline staff is really doing behind the counter

What your airline staff is really doing behind the counter

Ever wondered what really goes on behind the airline counter?

It involves more than just tapping on the keyboard and making some calls, said a travel writer who went undercover at one of the biggest air carriers in the US.

Frequent flyer and writer George Hobica volunteered to take up the role of a Delta Airlines counter staff to understand what actually goes on during a work day.

In an article posted on News.au.com, Mr Hobica shared the amount of flight and passenger information the employees have to cover ranging from seat assignment to clearing stand-bys.

Next time you see an airline counter staff staring at the computer - don't worry, they are not watching a movie or updating their social media accounts.

According to Mr Hobica, he said most airlines use archaic codes to perform simple tasks. If there is a seat change, the employee has to enter a series of random symbols into the system to get it done.

In movies, airline staff are sometimes portrayed as being inattentive to passengers or chatting with their colleagues openly.

In real life, we do witness such scenes as well but the reason is not what we think.

With most flights being full these days, Mr Hobica said airline staff have to pass customised information on each passenger to their colleagues.

This information could range from unaccompanied minors to passengers with medical requirements or disabilities.

His "eye-opening" experience gave him an insight on just how demanding the job can be and helped him formulate tips to make our travel experience better.

wjeanne@sph.com.sg

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