Nourhan Yehia worked in Marketing and Advertising for years and travel was always her passion. She quit her job and moved on to join Emirates’ cabin crew team, a dream come true for her. A career shift from the office to the sky isn’t something you see every day. We spoke to Nourhan to know more about her courageous decision against all odds!
When we think of cabin crew, we see traveling around the world, meeting new people and all that. Is it really as glamorous as we think?
This might be slightly true, but far from the full image. We have to be knowledgeable about the aircraft, countries we visit and the different backgrounds of the passengers. We are trained about safety and security measures, medical procedures that range from delivering a baby on board to complicated emergencies, technical aircraft information, advice on handling the toughest situations, maintaining our level of resilience and remaining calm under pressure.
“Learning about different cultures is one of the most glamorous parts of my job; body language, words, habits and beliefs.”
What’s the strangest place you have traveled to?
I believe that I haven’t even started visiting strange places yet, but I hope I would in the coming months. I am really excited to go to places that I never even heard of before.
How did your family react to your decision?
I was lucky to have a very understanding family that trusts me and demonstrated great support for my decision. I think that without my family’s enormous support, I wouldn’t have been able to go that far and overcome all the challenges. I am more solid on my decision. I realize how important my job is. It has made me a more independent person that can handle many situations that some people wouldn’t even face having never lived or traveled alone.
What’s your favorite part of your job?
Traveling to a lot of places and dealing with a lot of new diverse people over a very short period of time.
“I think people don’t even know what cabin crew do other than “offering chicken or beef” and traveling all around the world.”
You must meet interesting people, tell us about that.
Learning about different cultures is one of the most glamorous parts of my job; body language, words, habits and beliefs. I believe that each country, culture and person might be a hidden treasure, which keeps me interested to know and understand about them all the time.
What’s a piece of advice you would give to someone who wants to do something like that and is worried it wouldn’t be a step in the right direction?
I would say that they have nothing to lose. The privilege of being young is having the space to make mistakes. I would confidently say that regretting things you didn’t do is much worse than making mistakes.
Cabin crew are stereotyped in our society, did you face some de-motivation?
Actually this was a major source of de-motivation at some points, as I realized the stereotype that Egyptian people have about Cabin crew is going to always come up in discussions and social occasions.
“It has made me a more independent person that can handle many situations that some people wouldn’t even face having never lived or traveled alone.”
What’s the weirdest thing you have eaten since you started this job?
Thai Mango sticky rice, everyone who told me about it sounded obsessed with it. I tried it in Bangkok and now I know the reason behind their obsession because I am obsessed as well now that I have tried it.
How do you think we can shatter the misconceptions about working as cabin crew?
I think people don’t even know what cabin crew do other than “offering chicken or beef” and traveling all around the world. If people understand the process of selecting cabin crew and the extensive training we go through, it would drastically change those misconceptions.