Every airline is different and has a unique brand, but in general they all desire the same type of candidate to represent their company. Let’s break down the interview process into two parts. Here in part one we will talk about the basic requirements and skills you’ll want to consider before applying for your flight attendant position. In part two you’ll find more about what to expect from the application and interview process.
General Requirements and Tips
Height: The average requirements are between 5’2″ and 6’1″. If you’re outside of this range, you can read this article for additional thoughts on the topic.
Weight: The general rule here is to have a healthy BMI and be in good enough physical condition to perform your job duties. You’ll need to move easily about the cabin. You’ll need to lift, reach, keep your balance during turbulence, and swim in case of a water evacuation. You’ll also need to keep a good posture without slouching and be on your feet for up to 16 hours. And if you’re a female…you may need to do that while wearing heals.
Swimming Skills: You’ll need to be able to swim 50 meters within 2 minutes with a uniform on. You’ll also need to be able to perform life saving swimming drills. If you’re not a strong swimmer, you can train for this with a little research online and a couple trips to the local pool.
Tattoos and Piercings: Some airlines don’t mind if you have these as long as you show that you can properly cover exposed tattoos with makeup so they are not visible and remove extra piercings during your shift. If you have tattoos that would be visible in a uniform, make sure you check the company’s policy before applying.
Hearing and Vision: You’ll need to pass hearing and vision tests. As long as you have corrective lenses or hearing aids you’ll do just fine, but there are some limitations so make sure you check with the airline before applying.
Health Testing: You’ll need to provide information about your medical history. They will have your blood, blood pressure, heart, lungs, and urine checked. This expense is usually covered by the airline, but sometimes you’ll need to cover the costs of these tests.
Drug Testing: All drugs are a no-no. You’ll have to provide a urine sample to prove this, as working under the influence of alcohol or drugs while you’re on the job is grounds for termination. This is very important since you’ll need all of your wits about you to keep your crew and passengers safe.
Dress, Makeup, and Appearance: The best way to describe this would be simple, neat, and clean. Neutral colors, simple jewelry and makeup. If you have long hair, you’ll want to wear it pulled back neatly since (when you’re on a shift) you’ll need to have your hair out of your face. If you’re a female you’ll want to wear 2-3 inch heels and red lipstick to any interview. Don’t forget to stand up straight and smile.
Personality and Attitude: One of the most important things about this job is customer service. Airlines are looking for people who can be around lots of different personalities. They will want to see that you’re easy to work with. They also want to see that you can be a leader and confident in asking passengers to comply with safety standards. You’ll want to learn to do this with confidence while being professional and respectful to all customers. A good way to prepare for this is practicing these traits during your everyday interactions with others.
Demeanor: Smile. Talk to others. Ask Questions. Take the lead when you see an opportunity.
Knowledge: Study common interview questions so you can answer them with confidence. You can also research more questions online or watch videos of other flight attendants who can give you tips.
The main question you’ll want to make sure you can answer at any time during the application and interview process is:
“Why should we hire you for this job?”
Application Process, Interview and Tips
- The application process might take a while. Airlines can take anywhere from weeks up to 6-months to get back to you. Just remember that it’s normal and to be patient.
- By the time you’re ready to apply, you’ll probably have an airline in mind. Make sure you apply to all kinds of airlines. Don’t put all of your eggs in one basket so you don’t miss out on the opportunity to gain experience. To help you figure out what which airlines would be a good fit for you, try looking into airline hubs and where you are want to live. You can also look at airline staff requirements to make sure they will be a good fit for you and vice versa. For example, at the time of this writing, PSA airlines is hiring and you can find information about their requirements here. Endeavor Air is also hiring and you can find their requirements here to compare.
- After you apply, you may be asked to complete a personality assessment prior to any interviews.
- Most invitations to interview come via email, so make sure you keep an eye out.
- Some airlines like their first interview to be over the phone. Even though your interviewer can not see you, make sure you are dressed for the part as if you were meeting in person. This will help you get you have confidence in your ability to be a professional in the airline industry.
- Some airlines will have you complete a video interview. This often looks like a Zoom or FaceTime meeting but it’s not that at all. They may have you log into a system that has pop up interview questions. As the questions pop up, you’ll be recorded answering them. Some airlines give you a few tries so you can submit something you feel good about. This can be awkward, but practice makes perfect! If you feel really nervous about this part, you could find some standard interview questions and record your answers ahead of time for practice. Don’t forget to dress the part and be sure to smile!
- At some point there will be an in-person interview. This is usually hosted at the location of the airline’s choice, which means you might have some travel expenses. However, there are some airlines that will cover the costs of this expense. Don’t forget to dress the part; remember, the interview begins the moment you arrive on the property. Women may wear 2-3 inch heels and lipstick; everyone may cover tattoos, put a smile on, and just be themselves. You’re about to make a lot of new friends. Your interview will either be in a group setting, or it could be with just you and a couple of recruiters. The group setting usually starts with an introductory presentation of the airline and its vision/goals. This will usually end with time to ask questions, which you should definitely do. Afterwards they might have you participate in a group scenario. Be friendly and take the lead if you can. It’s all about balance. Show leadership, but don’t be bossy. Be friendly and easy to talk to, but not overly chatty and distracting. Finally, you’ll have an interview where they will ask you why they should hire you. Know the answer to this like the back of your hand. Be able to spout off all the reasons you would be better fit than any other applicants.
- Now the moment you are waiting for. Did you get the job? Sometimes they will tell you on the spot if you’re hired. Other times it could take a few days to 2-weeks to have a response. No matter what the results, every interview is great practice. And if you’re reading this, you are already ahead of the game. You are taking time to prepare and be professional.
- Once you are hired, the airline will start the process of doing a background check, your health screening, and scheduling your company training. Usually the airline pays for the health screening, but sometimes it’s an additional out-of-pocket cost. Information on some of the health screening and physical requirements can be found above in part one of Preparing For Your Flight Attendant Interview.
Congratulations! You are on your way to meet lots of new people and explore this amazing world.
“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all” – Helen Keller
International Air and Hospitality Academy trains students to become flight attendants. As part of our training, we ensure that our students are prepared for the interview process. Additionally, our career services team works with students and graduates by connecting them with hiring employers in the travel industry. For more information about our 20-week program, please contact us or fill out the form below to get some more information.