You should always be nice to everyone, but especially when you’re flying. Trip after trip I see how most passengers treat gate agents and flight attendants (not too kindly), so I’m always extra nice. In fact, I almost always bring two boxes of chocolates—one for the gate agents and one for the flight attendants because both can make or break your trip.
When you hand the chocolates over, do it with a big smile, be genuine and don’t look for anything in return. If there is a chance they can give you a better seat or service, they will. And if you don’t know what to say, just tell them Johnny Jet recommended it! BTW: It doesn’t have to be gourmet chocolates either—I usually bring Hershey Kisses, and sometimes three packs (the last one is for me!).
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I worked for an airline and the fight attendants and gate agents often made unkind comments about those who do this. And really, they aren’t stupid. They know why it was done.