While it may sound like a cliche to some, when Kristal stepped onto the plane for her first flight back on service, she felt like she was returning home.
“When I first got on the plane, I immediately knew what to do from pre-boarding and in-flight service to post-landing duties and also where the things are stowed,” she said. “I felt like I had never left.”
The computer engineering graduate, from Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, had left the Airline in 2007 after serving for 18 months. She had wanted to apply what she had learnt in university, she said.
“After five years in the corporate world, I realised I enjoyed my time flying with SIA, as compared to a desk-bound job.” That’s when she decided to re-join the Airline.
The 34-year-old, who is also a keen competitive runner and an active member of Air Runners Circle (SIA running club), shares why flying is an enduring love affair:
What do you love most about flying as cabin crew?
I am a people person. I love to interact with people from various backgrounds, countries, and cultures.
And when I stopped flying, I missed the four seasons. Change marks the passing of a year. The beauty of what each season has to offer was what I loved the most.
What have been the most memorable experiences for you?
To name a few, the Swiss Alpine Marathon in Davos, which I took part in on July 30 2016, was certainly memorable. It was my first mountain marathon. S42, where runners crossed both sides of the Dischma and Sertig Valleys and overcame the Sertig and Scaletta Passes. The altitude difference of about 1,450m was challenging. But I enjoyed every moment of it and soaked in the magnificent view throughout the entire run. The experience was just priceless.
I have also participated in the 2017 Santos Tour Down Under cycling race in Adelaide, Australia, where I rode the same Bupa Stage 4 route as the pro cyclists, from Birdwood to Campbelltown. The view riding through the scenic Adelaide Hills was breathtaking. There is no better way to see the beauty in this world than from the saddle of a bicycle!
What valuable life lessons have you gained on the job?
I learnt to be more appreciative of the time spent with my family when I’m in Singapore.
Flying has also taught me to be more patient and empathetic towards people. There are so many different people on every flight, and everyone is unique. Everyone has a story to tell and their reasons for travelling are different.
You’ve travelled a lot in the course of work. What is your best advice for travellers?
Have a flexible and positive attitude when travelling! Things may not always go as planned, such as flight delays or a change in weather. By maintaining a positive mindset, it helps us to better adapt to the situation and improve our overall travelling experience.
Experience a career beyond the ordinary! Visit singaporeair.com/cabincrewcareers to find out how you can join us as a cabin crew member.
– TEXT BY ESTHER AU YONG
PHOTOGRAPHY: VERONICA TAY
STYLING: GRACE LIM
HAIR & MAKEUP: HONGLING
OUTFIT: TRIATHLON OUTFIT FROM 2XU
This article was originally published by Singapore Press Holdings.