Spending a Day at the United In-Flight Training Center

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If you love airplanes, airports, and all things #avgeek there are some cool events you need to tune your radars for in the future. One group that hosts some really great events in conjunction with United is the Frequent Flyer Giving (FFG) crew. FFG is a nonprofit group that raises money for the United We Care Employee Relief Fund while at the same time having a fantastic time at some pretty unique United events.


They have flown the island-hopper to Guam, met with United executives at Willis Tower in Chicago, taken hard hat airport tours, visited the Boeing factory, attended the United Family Day in San Francisco, and more. Today they hosted an event at the United In-Flight Training Center in Houston, and it was a great way to get a tiny behind the scenes peek at what flight attendants learn and practice in their 6.5 week training!

Checking out some retro flight attendant uniforms

Checking out some retro flight attendant uniforms

We learned a bit about how to stock beverage carts (they weight 300+ pounds fully loaded!), perform in-flight life support assistance, evacuate in event of a water landing, open emergency exit doors on a variety of aircraft types, and finally get in the simulator for a very realistic emergency landing.

This isn’t my first time going through a practice exercise of inflating a life vest and getting into a life raft, so let me tell you it is really hard when the raft is in the water…even with that water is a flat pool. It also isn’t simple or pleasant setting up and sitting under the canopy even in perfect indoor conditions. I can only imagine what that is like in a real life emergency…and I hope to never find out.



The emergency landing we experienced in the simulator complete with sound effects, hydraulics, smoke, and more is also very realistic and almost unnerving. The flight attendants were total pros at acting out the in-flight emergency and completing the landing and evacuation procedures. Obviously, I hope to never see them use those skills in action, but it is good to know how trained they are in the event it ever happens on one of their flights. You can see footage from the ’emergency’ and more in my Instastory before it disappears tomorrow!




It was an absolute pleasure to spend half a day with some United flight attendants/trainers who seemed to truly love what they do, and who also happened to be fantastic at their jobs. Of course after all of that ‘work’ there was a three-course lunch, charity auction of United memorabilia, and time with fellow frequent flyer friends.


If this sounds like your version of a solid Saturday, keep your ears tuned for future FFG events as well as those hosted by the MegaDo crew. I’ll also do my best to keep you in the loop on future events!

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  1. Good to see the faces of some of the former CO frequent fliers from the ‘DO’ days of the 2000s.

    Flyertalk was a lot more enjoyable back then.

    • Yeah I don’t spend too much time on Flyertalk these days, but the in person events are just as fun as ever.

  2. That sounds like it was a lot of fun! Your flotation device picture is hilarious. It looks like the device inflated you a little bit. Thanks for the great write up!

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