Patricia Reid is a Californian who fulfilled her dream of becoming a flight attendant — and eventually ended up with what many in the biz would consider the holy grail of aviation jobs: working with the stars on private jets. Over the course of two decades, she jet-setted all over the globe, from Canada to Cairo, with football players, billionaires, and other famous names. And now, Reid's dishing about some of the juicy details and perks of the job through her book, Flying with the Rich and Famous. She also chatted with us at Jet Set for even more exclusive scoop. Here's Reid, in her own words.
What's it like flying with celebrities?
"Actually really fun. Ninety percent of them are awesome. I mean, they are on a private jet and have amazing careers, why would they be in a bad mood? They are just like you and me, except for a few of them [with massive] egos. But most are gracious as can be and really easy to please. Plus, they can be extremely generous, giving us concert tickets, Broadway show tickets and the like. I usually couldn't wait to meet them and bestow my best possible service upon them."
Who brought the most fabulous stuff on board?
"Elizabeth Taylor, and her jewels." She let one of the flight attendants wear her Krup diamond the entire flight! And I wore Dionne Warwick's fur coat, except for during the meal service; it would not have been good to spill salad dressing on her $20,000 clothing."
Indeed. How about any common or weird requests?
"Caviar at 8 a.m. Also, wild goose chases for really strange requests, like one time someone had requested this unknown bottled water. I had to go to four stores to find it! Many times, they would ask that the catering come from their favorite restaurants in cities around the world — which is easier than looking for that one thing that nobody knows where to get."
How's the job pay?
"Very lucrative. Let's face it — private jets are a luxury and extremely expensive. They aren't going to be cheap with the flight crew. We are their safety. They don't want us to get sick in a foreign country, so we stay at fabulous hotels. [Pay is] depending on supply and demand; there is an ebb and flow to this business, which is directly affected by the economy. [But the] daily rate is about 10 times higher than that of a commercial flight attendant."
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