• MW elephant blessing
  • MW at Tiger Fort, Jaipur
  • MW at Taj Mahal with friends
  • Mariellen Ward, Kumbh Mela, Haridwar, aarti, India

Leaving India on Emirates, too

Emirates flight India jet

Photo courtesy Emirates.

Leaving on a jet plane, don’t know when I’ll be back again …

Regular readers of Breathedreamgo will know that I was thrilled to be flown to India as a guest of Emirates back in October 2012. I wrote about my travel adventure in Flying Emirates to India.

On that flight, I was very lucky to have been treated to a business class seat — which was a first-class experience — but I understand that service aboard Emirates is stellar no matter where you sit, and that is largely because of the cabin crew. So I interviewed Senior Flight Stewardess Robbina Gurung (who is from India), and who has been with Emirates for nearly four years. I wanted to know from her point of view, as cabin crew, what makes Emirates special?

Senior flight stewardess talks about working for one of the world’s great airlines

Q1. What’s special about Emirates service?

Emirates flight to India: Flight stewardess

Robbina Gurung

Robbina: I believe that one of the elements that makes service on Emirates so special is our tailor-made approach to suit the diverse tastes of our cosmopolitan customers. From the food we serve on-board that is designed with the destination in mind, to the in-flight entertainment, there’s something to appeal to everyone. You will especially see this is the many languages spoken by crew who come from over 130 different nationalities. This is what really sets Emirates’ service apart and makes it so memorable.

An example of this would be on recent flight from Rio de Janeiro to Dubai, I noticed we had a customer from India who was travelling onwards to Mumbai, and I started chatting with him in Hindi, and he was so delighted to hear his language spoken so far away from home, that I think we really made his day.

Q2. What are the most rewarding experiences you’ve had? 

Robbina: No two flights are ever the same, and my experience as a crew member is broad and diverse. It’s particularly gratifying at the end of a flight to know you have delivered great service. On a recent flight from Bangladesh, we had an elderly customer who was also visually impaired, travelling alone to New York. She was daunted by the idea of travelling and more so, because she only spoke Bengali. I speak a little Bengali and was able to brief her on the safety aspects of the flight, helped her get comfortable and looked after her for the rest of her flight. She was greatly appreciative of being cared for and spoken to in her own language. She grasped my hands in gratitude – and this to me was extremely rewarding.

Another incident that sticks out in my memory was assisting a mother with her two kids on their flight to Glasgow. The kids were not settling in so we tried to make them feel a bit more comfortable by offering them toys, puzzles, and other things a child might enjoy, to make their flight a bit more enjoyable. We also took a photograph of the kids with the First Officer, wearing a hat, and that really made their day. We later learned that they had lost their father a month before and their mother really appreciated how much care the crew took care of her kids. We even got invited to the little girl’s birthday party the following week!

Emirates Airline flight to India

Photo courtesy of Emirates

Q3. Why do you enjoy working for Emirates?

Robbina: There are many things I enjoy about my job and working at Emirates – what I like most is that each day is different. I could wake up in one country and go to sleep in another! I’ve always liked the idea of travel, even as a little girl. Geography was my favourite subject and I would look at my atlas imagining all the wonderful places I could visit. And now, I have the opportunity to discover these places that had once only been dots on a globe, from Brazil to Argentina and Australia. I also like the fact that I work with people from all over the world — it makes my ‘office’ so much more interesting!

Q4. How can people get the most out of their Emirates flight? What do they need to know?

Robbina: We have great in-flight entertainment with over 1,400 channels so that’s a great way to enjoy your flight. We have a diverse menu so if you have specific tastes or health requirements, you should definitely request your meal ahead. Some of our aircraft are wifi enabled do that’s a great way to stay connected and up-to-date with your work. And if you are a premium customer travelling on one of our A380 aircraft, you may just want to enjoy the onboard lounge in Business Class or the shower spa if you are a First Class passenger.

Thanks Robbina. I have enjoyed the in-flight entertainment, a specialized meal and the lounge, plus the caring and attentive service aboard Emirates — so I can personally attest to your recommendations.

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9 Responses to Leaving India on Emirates, too

  1. Tiny Girl with Big Bag January 6, 2013 at 12:29 pm #

    Thanks for sharing this interview. It was surprising me to read how flexible a crew can be even when working for a prestigious airlines company.
    Tiny Girl with Big Bag recently posted..We peeped into the volcanoMy Profile

  2. Mariellen Ward January 6, 2013 at 12:34 pm #

    Oh, good point, TGBB, I didn’t think of that. They really do seem to have the authority to go that extra mile … if you pardon the pun :)

  3. Jeff @ GoTravelzing January 6, 2013 at 3:07 pm #

    Sound like a great airline to fly. I wish we had ones like them in the U.S. Flying has become a necessary evil if you want to travel…which I do.
    Jeff @ GoTravelzing recently posted..Antoni Gaudi’s Architecture in BarcelonaMy Profile

  4. Tushar January 6, 2013 at 11:19 pm #

    Have a nice journey. Visit again and keep writing.
    Best Wishes always.

  5. Shelley Seales January 7, 2013 at 10:53 am #

    Mariellen,
    I nominated you for the Beautiful Blogger Award!
    http://tradingplacesglobal.wordpress.com/2013/01/07/inspiring-and-beautiful-blog-awards/

    Keep up the great work!
    Shelley
    Shelley Seales recently posted..Inspiring and Beautiful Blog AwardsMy Profile

    • Sandy Seale January 7, 2013 at 12:37 pm #

      Excellent choice Shelley :) Mariellen, I had the opportunity to fly Emirates to India but there would have been a considerable layover so sadly opted for another flight. Hopefully I will have another opportunity in the future as I’ve heard wonderful things about Emirates & your piece here confirms I made the wrong choice in November. Safe travels always!

  6. Shalu Sharma January 9, 2013 at 6:42 am #

    I have used Emirates on many occasions from Dubai to Delhi and back. I have only good words about them. They have always been my favourite.
    Shalu Sharma recently posted..Seasons and climate of IndiaMy Profile

  7. Alana January 20, 2013 at 4:29 am #

    Hi there,

    I actually have a friend working as crew for this amazing company. The one thing I noted that was different with this company when compared to, say, Delta in the US is the fact that they really take care of their employees. I was surprised to learn that every apartment that houses crew had a rooftop pool, gym and sauna. Nothing beats that kind of lifestyle. Plus the flying perks, as well as multicultural environment just makes this airline one of the best in the world.

    Alana

  8. Vasu January 20, 2013 at 3:14 pm #

    Alana,

    I live in the US. Most american airlines are pretty awful. The stewards/hostesses are over-worked,under-paid. They are also down-right rude, hostile and the food in most american airlines ,domestic or international is just awful. I would recommend Virgin america/Atlantic, Singapore airlines and Lufthansa.

    Cheers

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