I got some interesting feedback from my post a month ago titled “Where Blatant Rudeness is Fully Accepted“. Some people thought that people tuning out during the flight attendant safety spiel is not rude because it is not intentional rudeness – that is, they are just bored. Others wrote to me that rude or not, the safety spiel on airlines is not helpful and until they change it deserves to be ignored.
Well yesterday I was on a Southwest flight coming home from Southern California (I barely made it – I ended up running through the terminal without my shoes on after the X-Ray machine, it was one of those days) and the flight attendant did something I’ve never seen before. She said on the speaker “How many of you have never flown before?” No one raised a hand. “Good. Then you know all this.” Then she went into the 4 minute talk – there are no TVs on Southwest so the flight attendants do all the talking – at a million miles per hour. Literally, it was very very fast. Not only was it fast, it was hilarious. “The bottom cushion can be used as a flotation device. In the event of a water evacuation, kick paddle, kick paddle, kick paddle, until you are safely ashore…Oxygen masks will drop in front of you. Ladies, put yours on first and then assist the men and anyone acting like a child…Follow all directions from uniformed crewmembers, anyone acting like a crewmember but not uniformed is just plain stupid…If your shoes and socks do not match we will call the fashion police.” You get the point. At the end, everyone irrupted into applause and forgot about the 15 minute delay.
Now, there’s a way to build the brand “Airplane of LUV,” and communicate the safety information by engaging the passengers.