The Worst Service I’ve Had On A Flight. Ever.

Man, has this trip been eye opening when it comes to my expectations of new airline products.

I was expecting the China Eastern business class product to be quite solid, more in line with the likes of Hainan than China Southern. It wasn’t.

I was expecting Royal Air Maroc to have rather cold and sloppy service. Instead we received warm and hospitable service (though the seat was still damn weird).

For the Saudia flight I just took, I was expecting it would actually be uneventful, and better than the airline is perceived to be. It wasn’t…

Saudia Business Class: The Good

We were on a brand new 777-300 with fully flat business class seats.

Saudia-777-Business-Class-1

The food itself was actually quite tasty.

Saudia-777-Business-Class

The amenity kit they offered was one of the best I’ve seen in business class, with Salvatore Ferragamo goodies.

Saudia-Business-Class-Amenity-Kit

The flight had wifi.

Saudia-Wifi

Unfortunately that’s where I’m running out of positive things to say…

Saudia Business Class: The Bad

So upon boarding I first noticed the female flight attendants, given their distinctive uniforms. Both had very little personality and were borderline rude, though to be honest I didn’t really hold that against them. I can’t even imagine what it’s like to be a foreign worker in Saudi Arabia, where you have no rights.

As much as people like to think Emirates and Etihad treat their cabin crew poorly, that’s not the case, in my experience. I have plenty of friends who work there and are happy. Meanwhile I only know one person who worked at Saudia, and I wanted to cry when I heard her stories.

But in addition to the two female flight attendants, there were five male flight attendants, and they were all Saudi. I was a bit surprised, as I figured they’d have Arabic speaking men, perhaps from Egypt or the like. But they were actually from Saudi Arabia. They each had a varying number of stripes, which at first made me think they were pilots, but as it turns out the guy with 3.5 stripes was the senior cabin director, the guy with three 3 stripes the cabin director, etc.

During our taxi out all the male flight attendants sat in empty business class seats, except for the senior cabin director, who moved to his jumpseat right before takeoff. But they stayed in those seats for almost the entire flight eating, drinking (non-alcoholic beverages), napping, and even watching videos on their phones without headphones.

One of the flight attendants never got out of his business class seat. The others typically only got up in order to serve one of their colleagues something.

I was in disbelief. I figured maybe I was misinterpreting the situation, but I asked the senior cabin director, and he confirmed that all the crew were in fact “on duty.” Seriously?!

So the on duty flight attendants spent the flight watching movies, chatting loudly, and bossing around the female, foreign  flight attendants. They’d make the female flight attendants serve them food, get them bread, etc.

Saudia

When it came time for meal orders, I asked for the fish and Arabic mezze. “We’re out.”

Wanna guess who was eating Arabic mezze and fish? The flight attendants, in plain sight, while seated in business class seats.

For almost the entire five hour flight they sat in business class seats chatting loudly. They were basically having a party. On top of that, they seemed to be friends with someone in the cabin, and that led to an even louder party. I’ve certainly seen flight attendants misbehaving onboard, but never to that extent, for such a long time and with so many people.

I wonder what they would have done the entire flight if there weren’t empty business class seats, given that the flight got swapped from a plane with 14 business class seats to a plane with 30 business class seats last minute.

Most other aspects of the service were pathetic as well:

  • The entire meal was served on one tray with a glass of water, and no drinks were offered with it.
  • I don’t think the flight attendant once spoke a whole sentence to us, or even tried to smile.
  • I pushed the call button because I wanted a coffee. The call button went ignored. I pushed it again 30 minutes later, and this time the flight attendant turned it off on her end without checking on me. Eventually I had to walk up to the galley and said “I think my call button is broken.”

Bottom line

I felt like I was in the twilight zone. Never before have I seen on duty flight attendants get their meal choice ahead of revenue passengers, sit in business class seats watching movies, chatting loudly, and even watch videos without headphones. They did virtually nothing, and actually contributed negatively to the flight, as they were having the “imported” flight attendants serve them as well.

Sadly those two flight attendants weren’t friendly in the slightest, though I’m a bit more forgiving of that, given what I imagine they must go through.

Now I understand why a Saudi princess was on my Emirates flight from Los Angeles to Dubai a couple of years ago connecting to Jeddah, rather than flying home nonstop… what an embarrassment of an airline.

And it’s sad, because the hard product and food were actually quite good…

Matthew also wrote about the flight on his blog, for another perspective.

Comments

  1. While not to this extent I have heard that the male F/As on Saudia do not work that much. Next time I recommend trying IranAir (although I have never flown them) in have heard winners about their service and friendliness, although they business product is not flat bed not eben flat, think PA first class from the 1980s

  2. Hopefully this will be treated similarly to your flight in CZ first. And your Jeddah to Manchester flight is much better

  3. I was thinking for taking Saudi from Milan to Jakarta in business class for mileageRun next year. After reading this, I Changed my mind. I need soda with my meal, otherwise, I will pass out. Lol

  4. I doubt any of them would be fired, I bet its fairly typical on the airline or they would not be doing it. I mean if they were the only ones that did it they definitely had some balls to just do there and then without worrying about being fired.

  5. i would never ever fly with Saudi, considering what you’ve reported here. And I deeply feel sorry for the female flight attendants. Cut the culture crap already, it’s 21st century, treat everyone equally!

  6. From the crew perspective you were treated well. No one spit on your food, gave utensils picked from the floor, gave diabetic inducing concentrated sweets drinks, forced you to say the mandatory prayers or apologize for your life. Smiling only invites unwanted attention from pax seeking validation through sexual exploitation. The call light went unanswered to empower you to exercise and avoid high risk of thrombus formation. 😉

  7. I was thinking of purchasing a business seat out of Milan when there was a sale couple weeks back. So glad that I did not give into that temptation..

  8. I have had colleagues from Saudi Arabia in the company that I worked at and they were all millionaires to put it mildly…. They are not used to working even though they have to take up employment otherwise the unemployed citizen numbers go haywire….it’s a catch 22. Try staying at a hotel in Saudia Arabia with local management and see what happens if something is not working in your room…. It won’t work even when you check out…. Hope that soothes your nerves a bit….. You just have to accept it

  9. I once flew with LOT polish airline from poland to new york. The flight attendants were sleeping next to us and they had almost nothing to serve you for the entire 11 hour flight.

  10. Male FAs on Saudia must be Saudi — foreign men may not apply. And female FAs must be foreign — Saudi women may not apply. The women usually end up doing all of the work, but the men are not usually this unhelpful — they normally just don’t do anything, but aren’t normally an active nuisance. And while I have seen them sit in the cabin mid-flight, I’ve never seen them eat their meals ahead of the passengers.

    But, the women sometimes offer good service. It is never top-notch; during the meal in particular the service is usually very assembly line. And many of the female FAs don’t speak much English. But I have felt more “cared for” on a few Saudia flights than on almost any other airline: a flight attendant offering me some of her personal stash of cough drops when I had a coughing fit, and a flight attendant rushing me a tray of pastries as we were coming in to land because she was concerned I hadn’t eaten and would be hungry.

    The hard product is also surprisingly good, at least on the newest planes. Personally I would prefer an airline with decent food and indifferent service over one like China Eastern with bad food and mixed service, though I can imagine opinions might vary on that. Saudia’s older planes also have some truly terrible seats, but fortunately those are in the process of being replaced.

    Lucky, if you download the Saudi Connect app ahead of your next flight, you can get a code for a free 25MB wifi package by scanning your boarding pass or entering your PNR within 45 minutes of scheduled departure time (which, based on the early boarding of widebodies at JED, will probably be once you are already on the plane).

  11. I’m not surprised tbh. Saduia has no incentive to improve their service whatsoever, as there is very minimal competition and (I presume) all the passengers had no other options but to fly Saudia. The country doesn’t need to earn money by operating an airline. They are already swimming in pool of cash…

  12. For someone who lived there for a while, you haven’t seen shit. wait till you experiance the hell hole that is JED airport.

  13. The odds of Lucky getting them fired are 0.0%

    If the cabin crew is that entitled, imagine what’s going on in the cockpit.

    I only flew Saudia twice. Both times in an L1011 with about 10 pax. I thought the planes were going to fall apart.

  14. My company was looking into contracting with an airline for weekly business flights (in business class). I will show them this article to make sure that saudia does not make the cut.

  15. Now all you need is a horrible hard product with Chinese pilots and Saudi crew.

    !! Hello Pakistan Airlines !!

  16. I flew this airline on a round trip from USA-Asia about 2 years back in J class. I saw the exact same thing in all of those flights that the Saudi male attendants just took the J seats and slept while the Filipino women flight attendants who were doing all the work. These Saudi male flight attendants considered themselves as the owners of the airline and yes they were served food before me, even though I was on a revenue ticket and they should have been there to take care of my comfort.
    Also another thing that I noticed was that these flight attendants got their friends from economy to J and even F soon after the flight took off. For me no more travelling on Saudia any more.

  17. Hahahahaha, did you expect good service from a native Saudi male? They likely got their job via a distant royal connection. I’m surprised they even put on their uniform., though I suspect they did to get thru security more quickly. Zero percent chance these clowns are even reprimanded.
    As an aside, try living there. These self-entitled dooshbags even worse on the ground.
    Can’t wait to hear about that shithole at JED.

  18. Is it possible that Saudi subscribes to the theory that flight attendants are there for your safety, and not for your service – meaning that should there be no issues with the flight, the female flight attendants can take care of your needs (food, etc.), but in an emergency, that’s when the male flight attendants are called to action?

    Nah, probably not…

  19. what do you expect from a culture that finds it acceptable to stone and rape women. Seriously, look at the number of assaults on women in western europe (both pre and post the current migrant crisis), all from people of that background. Look at the cases of child grooming in the UK, all from middle eastern / south asian descent….

  20. This is the way the kingdom is trying to keep its growing population peaceful,giving them paid job with nothing to do but being present,Saudi is not interested in improving any service,the country is closed to tourist and those travelling or living there is for their business and livelyhood,Arab dictatorship em0loys some FA as security agent in case of hijack,specially Egyptair and Royal Jordanian.

  21. I recently flew domestic first on United, and was told they were out of the short rib and given the salmon instead; only to see the flight attendant eating the short rib in the galley when I went to the restroom.

  22. I never had anything like this happen on any of my SV flights; though, I’ve only flown Saudia from/to IAD. Service may have been lacking in personality but it was always cordial and efficient. Dining was consistently the best I ever had. Flying with Saudia was hardly glamorous but the worse I can say about my years worth of experiences is that I couldn’t indulge in my love for inflight bloody marys.

    I am so curious to see if the JED – MAN flight will be any better.

    Finally, there seems to be a lot of overly dramatic, paranoid reactions to Ben posting a negative review while still in the KSA. Please. No one is going to care if Ben didn’t like Saudia. Plenty of Saudis don’t like Saudia.

  23. Ben – Out of curiosity, how did you know, that the woman in your Emirates flight was a Saudi princess?

    Btw. very entertaining trip report so far! Great Work!

  24. Debit! Pakistan airlines are actually quite good. The crew is nice and don’t forget Pakistani airlines started emirates. The planes are good too. Air India however is quite bad.

    Getting back to the topic. In my experience Saudis don’t treat Pakistani, Indian and Filipino and other people from “poor” countries well. They are quite rude and I am not surprised that the foreign crew had to do all the work.

  25. I worked for Saudi royal family members, in Houston Texas, years ago. I worked for a princess who was very close to the throne, and her entourage. Lots of Filipino women servants, which she treated very well. Regarding flying on Saudi Airlines, they refused. Usually Air France or British Airways. Ironically, her one husband, the prince, was head of Saudi Arabian Airlines. Go figure…..

  26. Isn’t Saudia a state run airline? The same state who’s cash reserves are diminishing because oil prices have plummeted. The same state that will soon have to raise minimum gas prices and the like to support the nation?
    Not in the slightest am I surprised. When you got nothing more to lose, and have great competition from Gulf nation carriers and states that have much more financial security, I can see why Saudia doesn’t care, and why the employees will milk any little perk they can get while they have time.

  27. People went haywire over 1 anti-Semitic comment in a previous post, yet it seems everybody is ok with so many racist stereotypes over here.

    Here’s the thing, yes Saudia isn’t the best airline in the world, and yes a lot of its employees are incompetent, but that doesn’t mean the whole Saudi population is that way.

    Here I am, a Saudi neurosurgeon training at McGill University, something I’ve worked so hard to get to at 25 years of age. But of course to you I’m an anomaly, it’s just more convenient to bigoted minds.

    I’m very disappointed that the review turned out to be worse than I initially thought it would be, but that disappointment pales in comparison to the effect those racist comments had on me.

    Lucky, I hope that the rest of your experience is better than the above flight.
    And I really hope that you reconsider your passiveness in dealing with racist and bigoted comments, whether they are anti-Semitic, anti-Asian, anti-Arab or anti-whatever. This is getting too much.

  28. Not surprising considering Saudi Arabia likes to spoil their own citizens with easy oil money. If anything, foreign flight attendants may have provided better service since it’s either that or a beheading.

  29. @Aziz

    Once again, thank you for your very thoughtful comment. I, too, believe that travel blogs like OMAAT have, at times, been hijacked by bigots with horrendously blatant hatred of Muslims, Jews and gays.

  30. @Imperator

    It’s unfortunate to see that bigotry has the upper hand these days, and even worse that it has found itself in places it shouldn’t be.
    A lot of people here would be better off at a Trump rally than a travel blog, but I guess that’s the world we live in these days.

  31. Okies Lucky, you took one for the team. Thanks.

    *MU looks at they Skyteam counterpart, and say thanks for competing for first from bottom*

    I wonder what does the Skyteam CEO thinks when he reads Lucky’s reports on their team members.

  32. Tbh Skyteam does look like the most pathetic alliance on the planet – literally mostly dregs of the airline industry none of the other alliances wanted – it’s madness Garuda joined this rabble given how light years they’re ahead they are having travelled with them.

    Anyway least this is entertaining! I suspect unlike MU there won’t be Any follow up from SV as I doubt they really care and are not really trying to compete like most carriers do – this is a carrier mainly for their own residents.

    Oh and it is only going to get worse with PIA… Maybe you’ll be erm lucky though…:P

  33. Not a chance for me to fly Saudia anyways since I’ve got an Israeli visa sticker on my passport

  34. This is how they treat women in front of well educated well paying travelers. Think how they treat maids from phillipines, and India and Indonesia etc.

    Now think that the Saudi Arabians are the best friends of Americans.

    Fucking Americans.

  35. Ha, that’s just desserts for [you and Matthew] not tipping the breast belly dancer ever. 🙂

    Seriously, thanks for flying Saudia so that none of us ever have to.

  36. Yep, that’s a very Saudi story.

    One thing you have to understand is about “Saudization”. The government has a program whereby companies must employ a certain percentage of native Saudis. Each year the quota goes up, or so I’ve read.

    One problem is that Saudis don’t really want to work – they’re not used to it. My Saudi students readily admit this. So you still have all the foreigners doing all the work, but you have Saudis “employed” (really, to a Saudi having a job means showing up, not actually performing any work).

    I can’t actually help but feel your story was a little mild, Lucky. It gets much more surreal living in the country.

    And I also feel you missed out on one of the real positives. I’ve met hundreds of Saudis and find them to be by and large an incredibly polite and nice people. So it’s a shame you didn’t get to experience that.

  37. @Aziz, Imperator, and other whiners: You have made the charge of racism against commentors without any evidence. Saudi Arabian is not a race, but a nationality. Its brand is Islam is not a race, but a religion. If you are going to come out, pontificate about how smart and successful you are, and then level the charge of racism against people without any valid logic, well… you’re pretty much just providing yet another example of the cultural mess that has had light shed upon it by this post and the associated comments. If you feel badly about these things, that is understandable. What is not understandable is why you would choose to lash out at those who recount true experiences and have legitimate grievances by calling them horrible names. This instinctive cry of “racism” every time one is confronted with unpleasant truth is getting old, and it serves only to detract attention from true instances of racism, where attention is much needed.

  38. Having worked many years in KSA, I find your trip report to be rather “spot on”. Some of the higher classes of Saudi males can act arrogant and very entitled. OTOH, some are more worldly and can see and act beyond their various culturally-rigid predispositions. Could we not describe many of the “Western” FA’s of our US and BA airlines the same!?

  39. @ aziz
    Totally agree with you.
    Mention the ‘jew’ word and the conversation gets the anti semetic bullshit.
    Blah blah

    Whats a jew doing on a saudi airline?

  40. How is everyone missing the worst part of this– watching videos WITHOUT HEADPHONES on a freaking enclosed AIRPLANE. I cannot think of any human behavior lower than that. I would have murdered them.

  41. “Never before have I seen on duty flight attendants get their meal choice ahead of revenue passengers,”

    For the record: it happened to me flying F in AA EZE-MIA. FA said they run out of beef only to be caught eating beef an hour later…

  42. @Aziz
    With your higher education surely you realize that anti-semitic does not mean anti-Jew but it includes Arab as well.
    I should also remind you that, while I am impressed and honor your achievements you must admit that the Host Country is supporting the medical system to be able to educate medical doctors in their specialty.

  43. I have had over 30 flights on Saudia, never have I experienced what you experienced, maybe yours was an exception .. As you can tell i am Saudi, and i am not being defensive here, but your way of writing is quite intimidating and over exaggerated, i have tried British airlines, Qatar, Etihad and Turkish airlines, Saudia was the best in terms of comfort, i agree the crew are dickheads.

    Not a bad article though.

  44. Lucky, it’s reports like the last 3 that make me read your blog on a daily basis, it’s not your everyday airline reviews. Please keep on trying new airlines, e.g. El Al, Pakistan Airlines, Gulf Air, Air Tahiti Nui, Transat or Edelweiss to name a few. ‘Zugabe!’

  45. @Wes

    Further to what you state, albeit in a less agitated way: Modern science tells us that the notion of “race” itself is a social construct since biologically there are no different races of humans on earth. When I was in high school (back in the 1930s) we were taught that there were three races: caucasoid, mongoloid, and negroid. These teachings were wrong, as this stems from Darwin’s theories, which it turns out were also problematic, because they attributed (falsely) certain characteristics to different groups based on visual and behavioral perception and not actual biology. From this, conclusions were drawn which allowed for the “lesser” treatment of groups deemed less advanced than those with pale white skin. Take a look at the treatment of the Australian aboriginals (one of the living “missing links” according to early evolution) and the pygmies in zoos to see how well that worked out for them.

    Religion is religion, 100% correct.

    A different word that would have been closer to the mark would be “prejudiced,” which would be a suitable statement for Aziz and Imperator to make based on a few of the comments observed here.

    Additionally, Chas is also correct when he mentions Jews and Arabs being included in the Semitic grouping, which actually references languages and not religion.

    @Ben – Sorry for the unfortunate flight! Do let us know how the Manchester segment turns out, hey? See what I did here, staying on topic? 🙂

  46. Aha, finally. This whole exercise is to prove EK is better than others. Cabin crew behavior of any national carrier depends on who is on-board. A prince on board, it will be all smiles, smooth ride all the way.

    They may be surly or grumpy, but they are not overworked, hence they are happy and better treated than EK. EK’s busy schedule doesn’t permit them to treat employees better.

  47. Wow, lots of comments! Thanks for reviewing the more obscure carriers out there.

    A few thoughts. This is not surprising in the least. The service may have been marginally better out of Europe/US, but not by much. The Saudis have a major superiority complex when it comes to South Asians. Omanis aside, a majority of Gulf country ‘locals’ are not the most pleasant bunch. Just look at the recent news of 3 million Indians who have been unemployed and starving in Saudi.

    Also, I know for a fact Saudia have been desperately trying to better their service in order to compete with the ME3. Sounds like they have a long way to go.

    Just for kicks, Kuwait Airlines next?!

  48. I can’t explain the actions of these FA’s but why fly them? I know that many of the Middle Eastern airlines are, purportedly, excellent. I’m sorry but never will I knowingly fly any of them in spite of my love of good first class products. The governments in the countries they represent treat women like crap-misogenists at BEST, abusive at the norm. Yeah, yeah, yeah, some of them are private and “have nothing to do with government policy,” but we all know that women are exploited in their catchment areas. I have traveled to 100+ countries and I’d like to see the Middle East. I once had to cancel my only trip to Dubai because MY BLOOD PRESSURE MEDICINE was on the forbidden list. I’m a doctor and it’s not a narcotic or a controlled drug anywhere else. I respect these weirdos’ “right to do what they want” in their own habitats, but to me, it’s wrong and I ain’t going’-ever. Give me a good Hanoi massage..
    Allah, te ayuda, if you happen to be other than “straight.”

  49. @ Aziz

    Please, save the martyr complex for a more appropriate occasion.

    Your country is a*s-backwards when it comes to human rights. It’s not wrong to call a spade a spade.

  50. “Allah, te ayuda”

    That’s “God help you” in the familiar if I recall correctly(?)…

  51. What do you expect from an airline of Saudi Arabia – anti-progress and stuck in medieval and stone age times. intolerant, hateful and violent ideology.

  52. So much of service is people being obsequious, however. It seems that this staff takes the view that “hey, you’re not any better than us”.

  53. Hi sr maybe u understand the situation by mistake always in saudia flight almost of the crew is female maybe you found 2 male from 15 exmple but thé gouvernement send security on bord wearing saudia uniform like steward and they seat in the gest class if business is full like dead head cabin crew in operating they eat and watch movie like when we come back dead head as passenger and never ever the senior cabin leadr told any one that these guys are security is not allowed only cabin crew know i work for saudia and we live friendly male and female and never a male cabin crew make a hostess serve him maybe freindly she do it these is the mistake the security men on bord wear like stewards thank u for your opinion

  54. Great comment Wes !! You are spot on. The PC crap is getting old as is claiming racism every time someone makes a comment that is not liked. I believe in freedom of speech and if you don’t like what is being said then get off the damm blog!

  55. “Additionally, Chas is also correct when he mentions Jews and Arabs being included in the Semitic grouping, which actually references languages and not religion.”

    Well, I guess we can call all the racists here then anti-Semites instead, given the comments about Jews and Arabs that show up on here…bigotry is alive and well on OMAAT.

    As for the service Lucky experienced…it happens, though not always. There are trip reports out there on other sites, and the crew lounging around probably happens less than people here make it seem like it does. But even then, service isn’t as good as what you’ll find on other airlines. They’ll most like be politely indifferent or professional but emotionless unpolished robots.

  56. @Aziz Well said. Though I think it might be fair if people generalize this experience to state-run Saudi enterprises. I hope they don’t generalize to all Saudi people’s character, or worse, all Muslims, because obviously, one man’s experience on a Saudi airline does not a full picture paint. We live in troubled times, where divisive rhetoric is thrown around. While I agree with your statement that there are some people here who belong at Trump rallies instead of the comments section, I like to think they’re the vast minority and/or pathetic trolls who have nothing better to do.

  57. @TravelinWilly Wow, you attended high school in the 1930s?? If you’ve always been interested in travel (as I assume you might be, based off your participation in this blog!), I bet you have a lot of super interesting stories about how the air travel industry has developed over your lifetime. If you’ve got a blog, I’d love if you could share a link to it! If you don’t, you’re clearly tech savvy enough to be posting here, so you should consider starting one!

  58. For the commenter above about being in United First and the flight attendant was eating the short ribs so you got stuck with the salmon. If it makes you feel any better the short ribs suck… It was like a peice of fat w sauce.

    I never understand who comes up with the menus, but having a gob of fat or salmon isn’t a great option anyways. I ended up buying a Thai chicken wrap after a few bites.

  59. Fawwad,

    Seems you aren’t a regular OMAAT reader. Few months back Lucky reviewed Air India flights, from SFO-DEL (one of the longest in the world) and DEL-LHR. He mostly had positive things to say all around, and categorized ground service at Air India’s hub in DEL as one of the best in the world.

    So next time, do give it a thought before compating AI & PIA. Nonetheless, hope he has a pleasant experience on PIA as well.

  60. Not surprised at all by this. I’m a Saudi and I never fly SV internationally. I consider myself to be very lucky that I live in the eastern province of KSA; I have QR, EK and EY to choose from when it comes to flying abroad!

  61. If i could afford international travel, I would spend my money on middle eastern airlines and stick to Indian and Euro ones.

  62. I have never ever experienced what u have past 8 years. I usually travel in business class in Saudi airlines and everyone is so warm and well mannered there. I travelled last week and while I was sleeping one of the male staffs came and tried to comfort my child who was in the other seat. My husband witnessed all this. The male as well as female staff was extremely good, kind and doing there job perfectly. Keep it up

  63. Not surprising. Remember that this a government-owned carrier, and that the government tries to find any way possible to employ its people. Unfortunate truth is that all Gulf countries have lavishly wasted away their oil money by subsidizing an unsustainable lifestyle by their locals. Who think are entitled to everything they want. Comes a post-oil era and these countries will have a large populace with no skills, no education, no culture. If you think the Middle East is a mess today, check back in 80-90 years… What you experienced on your flight is just a small example of the societal malaise of these countries.

  64. @Aziz,
    I agree this is disappointing but this is Lucky’s bread and butter.
    He won’t shut down comments.
    and as bottom, passive is in his blood.

  65. Shakespeare wrote
    “There is nothing either good or bad,,,but thinking makes it so ”
    What he meant is that it is not what happens to you ..but you interpret what happens to you that determines whether you view it’s as a positive or negative experience….!!!

    Customers have more choices today and are under intense pressure to deliver results….!!!

    We have to face the truth
    I am proud to be flight attendant….!!!

  66. If they’re that lax on the airplane, what’s it like boarding the plane? “Oh, you with the suicide belt, welcome aboard”. OMG, I can hardly imagine.

  67. Why not report the whole
    Incident itself to the airline itself with your enclosed photo evidences so you would have had an explanation?

    And if no explanation was available, follow up for punishment for those who were on your flight number witn the date and destination, so that 1 group of rotten tomatoes don’t affect the others?

    I’m sure there are others who are hospitable enough. It’s just too bad it was not in your flight.

    There is not a thing too evil and not a thing too good. There will always be balance, but unluckily, it was when you were around.

  68. Which US-based flight attendants’ union did they hire these guys from? Sounds like some of the ones I’ve seen on UA.

  69. To the ones complaining about operating crew eating revenue pax meals, most airlines separately cater crew meals which have the same menu as passengers, she was probably eating the short ribs out of crew catering u glut

  70. As a person working in Saudia, just so you all know, those male crew you mentioned are from security. You will see them working on ground inspecting all the bags and the passengers for any suspicious items and/or dangerous goods.

    However, I’d like to apologize for the behavior of these crewmembers, there is no excuse for the discomfort it has caused you as a passenger.

  71. I’m a Saudi flight attendant. I feel sorry for those who changed the subject and started dropping names about us “Saudis”. The blogger have faced a situation that is unclear for him and he’s not even sure who were those flight attendants!! For ur info: 3 stripes and a half is the senior FAIC, and 3 stripes is the FAIC. Anyhow, they never fly together dude!!! We have only one FAIC (Flight Attendant In Charge). Whatsoever, I’ve met so many ppl from all around the world, and I still face the same issue “Racist Ppl”. This will never push us down. I feel sorry for some haters out there!

  72. I work for Saudia Airlines, I’m sorry to say you are wrong , the male FA’s seating with you in the ( J ) Class are not actually FA’s and they are normal passengers just like you …if you had enough experience with the way the airline oprates – on some roots only- you wouldn’t be surprised, there is an explanation for everything but some we are allowed to explain and others we are not allowed to.

    Saudia male FA’s oprating on your flight have the exact duties as femal FA’s and both work together, share the same responsibilities and help each other all the time, forget what the supervisor told you about the male FA’s in J Class being on duty 😉

    Operating FA’s are not allowed to set on any passenger seat during the flight what so ever ( ask your self why did the FA’s Supervisor set on a jump seat and not take a J class seat like the other five ) ?!!

  73. Salvatore Ferragamo amenity kits are standard on Alitalia Magnifica class. You probably better fly them from MXP to JFK the next time.

  74. Three “Saudia” employees commenting all on the same day! What a coincidence! Looks like someone’s trying to wage gorilla warfare.

  75. This is hilarious ha ha ha …..By the way I work in the middle east, not surprised at all….I am flying saudia very soon….

  76. Ben
    Your review is right on the money and reflects my personal experience after which I swore never to patronize anything Saudi.
    However, Matthew’s review is like of a different airline and just sugar coats everything, and even avoids talking about the Saudi airports and the rude Saudi cabin staff.
    I suspect either Matthew works in Saudi or has been paid by them to counter expected bad reviews.
    My recommendation: avoid Saudi Airlines and Saudi airports like the plague.

  77. “The root word Semite gives the false impression that antisemitism is directed against all Semitic people, e.g., including Arabs and Assyrians. The compound word antisemite was popularized in Germany in 1879 as a scientific-sounding term for Judenhass “Jew-hatred” and that has been its common use since then.”

    Just saying, all you experts should know this before you try to educate someone else on the term.

  78. @Re, your comments are not relevant to this topic. But since you started this: the root word “holocaust” means destruction or slaughter on a mass scale. However, it has wrongly been hijacked to refer to “shoah” only.

    That’s education for you.

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