Gestures of Goodwill aren’t just to be received – Be sure to show your Gratitude too

Recently, I shared some tips for requesting a Gesture of Goodwill, and many folks shared their experiences which was awesome. I think it’s a great story when an airline stands by their promise to deliver you from point a to point b, in a particular level of service.

I thought today, as I shared via twitter, some great advice from John Walton and Gary Leff (see below), that I’d expand on that.

Travel Advice

Gestures of Gratitude Go Both ways

Obviously airlines are more apt to share a gesture of goodwill or gratitude. I use the two interchangeably, maybe I shouldn’t, but I do. I say that because goodwill and gratitude, to me, imply the similar emotions. Not the same, but similar. But let me cut to the chase.

Whenever I travel on a long-haul flight. Whether its on revenue or award travel, regardless of airline, I make it a point to pick up something to give to the flight crew. Most often, it is something I can find locally, whether I’m starting out in Maryland (and looking at Salt Water Taffy), or overseas (where chocolate might be an option, or Tim Tams if starting in Australia). I try to give it to the purser or the individual that looks like they are the lead in the particular cabin I’m flying in. I do this primarily because these folks are working, in some cases, long hours, and while chocolates, or taffy, or tim tams are not much, they might represent just that little bit that could brighten their day.

When it really comes down to it, these folks are working hard while we’re “playing” or at the very least relaxing. Before I started doing this, I experienced many times when cabin crew went above and beyond. I remember dozing off on a Lufthansa flight once, and waking up just about tucked in. Now a days, I try to do what I can to show my appreciation for the crew before we even depart. Let me be clear though, I don’t do this with any expectations, and neither should you.

Wrapping Up

For those of you who don’t fly often, I would encourage you even more. For those of you who do fly, I would assume that you probably already do this to some extent. But I think we all have to remember, most often when we fly, we don’t have to be “on”, whereas the crew are always “on”, even when they are in crew rest, I suspect it is hard to turn off. And they are “on” for our safety, and to a lesser extent to provide a great passenger experience. I think those reasons alone, are enough to show them a small token of our appreciation. And that’s not even considering irregular operations, whether they be delays due to weather or mechanical. Remember, what you as a traveler experience, is likely experienced by the crew as well.

2 thoughts on “Gestures of Goodwill aren’t just to be received – Be sure to show your Gratitude too

  1. Great advice. I’ve only done this once (don’t fly as much as you, so it’s not a habit yet), but the crew seem to appreciate any gesture that indicates you’re recognizing them as fellow human beings rather than just people there to do their jobs and take care of you. It’s kind of like being friendly and chatting with a FA about how their day is going, but just taking that one step further.
    I’ve got a ton of pens at home, partly because I can’t resist picking up free stuff at tech shows. I brought a bag of them to an international flight and gave it to the FA, because I heard that people always ask for pens and they don’t have that many on the flight. The guy seemed genuinely, pleasantly surprised by the gesture. I remember being struck by how easy it was for me and that it had a small but very positive impact on this guy’s day. That’s just going to make the flight better for everyone.

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