Melissa Porter is an Australian who loves to travel!  We met in a Vietnamese Noodle restaurant on Swanston Street in the heart of Melbourne, through a mutual friend.  We chatted over our Pho and I was excited to learn about how she had been a flight hostess for many years and had travelled all over the world.  We exchanged numbers at the train station and the rest is history!  I can never get enough of Melissa’s travel stories, so I decided it was high time to give her a feature on my blog.

Where was your first overseas trip?

I travelled to the U.K. and then Europe when I was 19.

When did you become a flight hostess and how did you get the job?

I became a cabin crew in 2009. I had wanted to be a cabin crew my since I was about 10 years old. I read up what experience I needed and made sure I met all the requirements. I applied online and got an interview a month or so after and then waited another 9 months to start training!

What was the most/least stimulating part of this profession?

The most stimulating part of the job was the safety element.  I really enjoyed being needed by the company and passengers.  I did eventually tire of the demands of passengers who could drink and eat unlimited amounts of food and drinks which, of course, were all complimentary. I also got tired from being away from family and friends, missing out on all their special occasions in life.

Have you had any other travel-related careers?

I have been a travel agent for 2 years, worked as Ground Staff for 1 year and I am now working for my third airline in the office.

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Melissa (left) working for Etihad Airways

What is your travel style and how has it changed over time?

My travel style is anything from a 2-star level of accommodation.  I love camping too, depending on the country. Africa was amazing and this was camping-based. I used to stay at hostels, but now I feel a little better and more comfy in hotels from 2-star. I love 5-star too, but most of the time I don’t like the price tag, unless its a special occasion!

Where has been your favourite destination and why?

My favourite destination would be Argentina. I loved the alfresco dining and outdoors, with the Alps in Bariloche to beautiful cities, like Buenos Aires and the Patagonian part down South.

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Bariloche, Argentina

What’s the most adventurous thing you have ever done?

The most adventurous thing I’ve ever done is go camping in Kenya (Africa), with no fences between me and the animals. I loved every part of that holiday and, although it was a big culture shock, that was part of why it was so amazing.

What still needs to be ticked off your bucket list?

Still to be ticked off the list is going from top to bottom of South America, the Inca Trail, Brazil, Sweden, Estonia and Macedonia.

What advice would you give anyone about to embark on their first overseas adventure?

My advice to anyone going on their first trip is to release all expectations, have fun, challenge yourself to try things you wouldn’t normally try and mix in with the locals by living how they do!

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Volunteering at a school in Kenya

Thank you for your inspiration Melissa!  Since our interview, I looked up some of these destinations in Argentina and had to add a few spots to my bucket list!  I look forward to hearing more about your travels in the future.

Note: All answers and photos supplied by Melissa Porter.

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