Flight Attendant Job Description

The Flight Attendant makes sure that passengers are made comfortable while they are in flight.

Primary Objectives:

  • The Flight Attendant is responsible for the safety of the passengers while they are in flight.

  • The Flight Attendant is responsible to keep the passengers comfortable while they are in flight.

  • The Flight Attendant must have experience working with the public in order to keep them feeling good while in flight.

Most Flight Attendants work for commercial airlines and about 97,000 held jobs in 2006. A Flight Attendant must be at least 18 to 21 years old. While Flight Attendants can become employed with a high school diploma most airlines prefer that they go to a special college set up for Flight Attendants. A Flight Attendant who works with an International Airline must know one or more foreign languages. The Flight Attendant must be able to reach the overhead bins so there are height requirements. The Flight Attendant must have vision that is correctable to 20/30 or better. Before a Flight Attendant can be hired The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) does a thorough background check of all new hires. The Flight Attendant is often put in charge of valuable items by the passengers or the airlines. They are often called upon to help children reach their destination safely. Since the Flight Attendant is supposed to take care of safety for passengers on the flight they must be qualified as a person who takes charge in case of emergency situations.

The Flight Attendants are placed on reserve status where they remain for the first few years then they bid on jobs. In the mean time they are placed on a call status meaning that whenever necessary they can fill in for absent or vacationing flight attendants or on extra flights. The Flight Attendants bid on jobs in accordance to their seniority and usually get the position. Since Flight Attendants remain in their positions a longer period of time than in the past advancement takes more time. There are a lot of candidates for the job more than jobs available so it could take a lot of time before a position can become available. Many new candidates get discourage because of the long wait before they can get a position.

A typical day for a Flight Attendant

  • The Flight Attendant starts her day by getting briefed by the captain on emergency evacuation procedures, coordination of the crew, and the length of the flight, expected weather conditions, and special issues having to do with the passengers.

  • The Flight Attendant must make sure that first-aid kits and other emergency equipment are aboard and in working order. The Flight Attendant helps passengers in the event of an emergency. Also the Flight Attendant reassures passengers in the event of turbulence.

  • Then the Flight Attendant must assess the passenger cabin to make sure there are adequate supplies of food, beverages, and blankets.

  • The Flight Attendant greets passengers as they enter the plane, check their tickets, and tell them where to store their coats and carry-on bags.

  • The Flight Attendant instruct passengers in the use of emergency equipment, checks to see that passengers’ seat belts are fastened, seats are in the upright position, and property stowed prior to takeoff. The Flight Attendant directs passengers if they must evacuate the plane if there is an emergency landing.

  • The Flight Attendant is the one who answers questions about the flight, distributes blankets, pillows, and reading materials.

  • The Flight Attendant is the one who distributes beverages, snacks and sometimes heats and serves meals to the passengers who spend a long time in their flight.

  • The Flight Attendant helps those needing assistance, e.g. small children, or elderly or disabled passengers. They also administer first aid to ill patients whenever necessary.

  • The Flight Attendant is the one who takes inventory of headsets, alcoholic beverages, and money collected prior to landing.

  • The Flight Attendant reports passengers’ medical problem, lost and found articles, and condition of cabin equipment.

  • When the Flight Attendant is in the supervisory position, she oversees the work of the other Flight Attendants aboard the aircraft.

  • The Flight Attendant is in charge of the overall care of the passengers from take off until the plane lands and the passengers leave the plane.

Degrees and Training to Become a Flight Attendant

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