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A throwback to the GLAMOUR DAYS OF FLYING & Why a new generation of women WORK TO TRAVEL!

DO YOU DREAM OF TRAVELLING WHEN YOU ARE AT WORK? Are you career-oriented and ambitious? Transform your life and join the new force of women who WORK to TRAVEL!

Living within the Western world, women enjoy a sense of empowerment.

We are therefore the driving force behind equal opportunity in the workforce. As women, we are achieving greater success in our careers than ever before. But a successful career is also about our work-life balance. So savvy women work to travel and set their sights on building their career, whilst saving up to set off on their next travel adventure! Do you want to be one of these women?

In the modern era of gender liberation, many women pursue further study after graduating from high school.

We are therefore attaining a higher education, leading to a rise in employment of women in the workforce. Nowadays, digital fluency is bridging the gap in gender equalityin developing countries, as well as Westernized regions. Until the 1960’s, though, this was not the case. Men were the primary breadwinners, whilst women stayed home to tend the household chores and raise their children.

Fast-forward to the social revolution and women are now taking on the world! And as ambitious women, we work to travel!

Empowered by education and a strong skill set, women are breaking through the glass ceilings at work! Women are able to effectively use the resources at our disposable and technology is enabling greater flexibility in work arrangements. But as we progress up the corporate ladder, self-development is becoming just as important in driving in our career path.

Are you prepared to work to travel more often? Do want to obtain a sense of fulfilment from your job and be rewarded with a career that you love?

Many of us aspire to leave our current career path to pursue our passion! If this is you, what are you waiting for? You absolutely should pursue the autonomy of freedom and choice in your work life! In fact, you may not know if it is actually a passion or not until you give it a go. Your dream role could end up being a dead-end job that you hate. But either way, you might as well try it out. You may find something that you absolutely fall in love with like I did! (Read my story on Why I Quit My Corporate Job to Become a Flight Attendant).

Managing your career path can be challenging. Once upon a time you chose a job and stuck it out for the long haul.

Our parents pursued careers that have spanned over ten years and for many, over several decades. Today, the average person is expected to have approximately ten different job titles by the age of 40. We live in an ever-changing world and job loyalty in the workforce is quickly becoming a thing of the past.

Thinking of making a move, but fear failure? Want to work to travel! How do you figure out what direction is right in your career path?

Personally, I’ve always been career-driven. I enjoy the challenge and love working on a project that I am passionate about! But nine years into my career as a Marketing Manager, I was feeling the pressure to progress to a new workplace. I had the desire for a new challenge and wanted to travel the world. But I struggled for a while when making a decision to move on and follow my heart! I’d already landed my dream job. So I wondered if I was actually making the right choice to leave an industry I loved to work in.

So, when making the decision to change my career path, I sat down and wrote a list of my life goals.

I took note, firstly, of my achievements to date. As well as the current skills that I possessed and what I enjoyed doing in life. Then, I wrote down all of the things that made me happy and possible career paths that I could pursue. It then became clear to me that I wanted to work to travel and visit more amazing places in my lifetime! This enabled me to formulate a ten-year plan, which set me on the path to happiness and success!

At this point, I also knew that motherhood would also weigh heavily on my career decisions in my 30s. In the end, this is what helped me to set new goals, which shaped my next career move. Setting my sights on the sky, I took the leap, intending flying to be a gap year interest. Four years later, I’m still working as a Flight Attendant and funnily enough I’ve never looked back!

Yet, ironically, in the 1950’s my career would have been over by now as air hostesses were forced to retire at 32!

During the 50’s it was a pre-requisite that stewardesses were not married. So many stewardesses would leave their jobs after finding love, to become a wife and start a family. In truth, this is still something that weighs heavily on my mind. Ironically I left my corporate job, worried that I would never meet someone whilst chained to my work desk!

Flying is alluring as it enables me to interact with the public face-to-face. I still find the idea of meeting so many new faces exciting!

In fact, the freedom of flying is something that I have grown to love over the years. But it also has a lot of challenges and if anything my social life has suffered as a result. Not to mention the job also comes with the misconception that all Flight Attendants have a lover in every port. (I can assure you that this is not the always the case. Personally, I’m always exhausted after a busy flight and couldn’t think of anything worse!)

In fact, I’ve actually found dating rather difficult since I began working a Flight Attendant, as I’m rarely home.

Most men tell me they are looking for a girl that they can settle down with. So, in fact, they find my work a turn off! (I disagree, as I feel that it’s the perfect arrangement. I’m very independent and enjoy the ‘me time’ I get when I’m away! This would give me a chance to miss my partner – if I had one. But hey, I’m not dating myself so I guess I don’t get to make up the rules!) Obviously, it’s not for everyone and for me, it’s probably not forever! I’d like to settle down, start a family and work from home on my own business by the time I’m forty. But first, I want to see the world and flying allows me to do that!

In the early days of first-class flying, stewardesses were the stars of the sky. But women still faced many of the same challenges at work. Job opportunities for women were limited, so stewardesses were the adventure seekers of their era!

Stewardesses worked to travel the world! Many came from small country towns and were seeking an adventure.

It was a highly coveted role and the airlines were extremely discerning in their selection of stewardesses. The competition was fierce and enrolment was even more competitive than entry into university! Vanity Fair reported, “In 1958, the dawn of the jet age, only 3 to 5 of every 100 aspiring stewardesses got the job; nine years later, TWA boasted that it hired fewer than 3 percent of its applicants—meaning it was easier for the class of 2006 to get into Harvard this year (the college’s acceptance rate was 10.5 percent) than it was to serve martinis over the Atlantic during the Johnson administration.”

Airline recruitment was stringent and the rules didn’t relate specifically to the uniform or grooming either.

In the golden era of flying, airlines stipulated height and weight requirements to which flight attendants must conform. In 1936, The New York Times published an article, which stated, “The girls who qualify for hostesses must be petite; weight 100 to 118 pounds; height 5 feet to 5 feet 4 inches; age 20 to 26 years. Add to that the rigid physical examination each must undergo four times every year, and you are assured of the bloom that goes with perfect health”.

The job title, ‘stewardess’, is, therefore, controversial in the modern aviation industry.

Many feel it is retrograde to times in aviation history when hostesses were considered to be nothing more than eye-candy! The flirty overtone of the stewardess title conjures imagery of a time in history when the Cabin Crew were an integral part of the image of the aviation industry.

The airline business was heavily regulated at the time. This made it difficult for brands to create a point of difference in their service offering. Flight Attendants were, therefore, a fundamental part of many airline’s marketing strategies.

Stewardesses brought the glamour and romance to flying. They were trained on how to walk, stand and carry themselves, deportment, etiquette and delivering silver service in their workplace.

“We were almost on the same level as a movie star,” says Sonnie Sims. “People admired us when we walked through the terminal. I remember our uniforms—they were all custom-fitted. They were just sculpted to your body, so everybody looked fabulous. We were all thin and had these great figures and wore white gloves and hats. You walked through the terminals with your head really high and you knew everybody was staring at you,” she said in an article titled “The Golden Age of the Stewardess” written by Bruce Handy and published in Vanity Fair in May 2014 (which is a very interesting read by the way!).

During the golden era of aviation, Flight Attendants were pretty, popular girls who got invited to all of the parties!

Stewardesses socialised with celebrities and fraternised with the flight crew. They were single and many had their sights set on seeking a husband!

Flying was only for the wealthy and passengers dressed up for the occasion. Fashion designers were commissioned to dress the crew and the atmosphere on board the aircraft reflected the five-star silver service. Unlike the women who stayed home to raise a family, stewardesses were living the high life!

Stewardesses of the 60’s set off to see the world, just as women today work to travel!

Many of us are putting off marriage and choosing to settle down later in life. Which ultimately means that we have more freedom to travel. In our crazy busy modern world, creating a work-life balance is especially important. Almost like therapy, we slave away at our desks, dreaming of our next adventure! And when we are not at work, we spend hours browsing Pinterest. Or, scrolling through social media, adding more and more destinations to our bucket list! Some of us have even given up our day job seeking to escape the 9-5 and travel whilst working full time. And why the hell not! The world is an amazing place and there are so many beautiful places to explore!

My advice? If you want to change careers then do it! Or, if you want to break free of your dead-end job and set off on a trip, then go for it!

Your desk job will still be waiting for you when you get back. And even if you ditch your day job, chances are you’ll find another one eventually, if and when you return! Oh, and if you’ve ever thought of becoming a stewardess, you should definitely submit an application! It may not be the highly coveted role of yesteryear. But it does allow you to travel for work (or work to travel as I prefer to put it) and you’ll see the world from a new perspective at 38,000 feet!

Have I motivated you to pursue your passion and work to travel? I hope so! Please leave a comment below.

1 Response
  • Paula Maree
    25 . 07 . 2017

    Be the first to leave a comment! I’d love to hear from you! x

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