Being a flight attendant means doing all sorts of jobs while in the air. Although most associate good looks with being one, It’s not just about that. The most important responsibility they have is to make sure passengers have no troubles while inside the plane. Flight attendants keep them safe, explain how to use all safety equipment, and look after all security regulations.
Other tasks include making sure that all supplies are on board. On the other hand, attendants check tickets and whether everyone’s seated in their seats or cabins. But that’s not all. They also serve meals and drinks and assist anyone on board. All in all, they’re an integral part of any safe cross-country or international flight. So, what does it take to become one of them? Read on to find out.
Do They Require Good-Looking People?
It’s not uncommon for people to think about fashion models when someone mentions flight attendants. And there’s a reason for that. Most films and TV shows depict them as being beautiful golden gods. But that’s not always the case. Nowadays, you can see ordinary-looking folks as attendants on most flights. Of course, all of them are presentable, so you should think about your image.
But what does presentable mean? Well, firstly, you can’t have any visible tattoos or piercings. Sure, this might sound like too much, but those are the rules. When it comes to physical requirements, you need to be fit to stay on your feet for an extended period and to be able to kneel, bend, and stretch in tight spaces like airplanes are. But what about height? Does it play any part in being a flight attendant?
Is Height Really a Requirement?
Most FA facts rave on and on about the importance of being tall. But, that’s not the case. At least not for all flight companies. It mostly comes down to the type of planes that you’ll be working on. If they’re big air-buses, your height might play a major role during a job interview. This is because you need to be able to reach the bins over the passenger’s seat if they require any assistance.
How Much Do You Earn?
In the United States, flight attendants make around $56,000 a year. This is just above the average salary of all jobs in America. Nevertheless, the amount you make will vary depending on the state where you work. For example, if you’re based in Oregon and you’re an FA, you’ll earn $80,000 a year.
Just under Oregon, the second place belongs to Washington. Their average salary for FAs is just over $77,000. The third place goes to Pennsylvania with around $68,000, and the fourth is Arizona with $65,000. Barely above the $60k mark is Massachusetts with $61,000 and Indiana with $60,000. The last three in this top 10 are Texas with an average annual salary of flight attendants with $58,000, Nevada with $57,000, and Michigan with $55,000.
Is the Training Really Hard and Worth It?
The training course of airline companies differs. However, none of them are easy. In fact, some might find them quite hard and frustrating. Some training might last up to eight weeks, with eleven hours of work and one day of rest. As such, we can safely say that becoming a flight attendant is nowhere near easy. But what makes these tests and training so hard? Is it mental or physical work? Let’s find out.
Tests and training for most airline companies consist of four things: classes in an actual classroom, written exams, practice exams, and training in mock-up cabins. All these happen at a pretty fast pace, leaving some folks completely out in the blue. But that’s the main thing. FAs need to prepare themselves for all kinds of scenarios, including the worst ones, hence, the whole lengthy ordeal.
Do You Always Travel?
Depending on the airline, you might find yourself in a situation where you’re always flying around the country or the globe. One day you might be in New York, and the other, you might find yourself in an entirely different country and continent. Either way, you will travel a lot, which means that you won’t exactly have a normal social life. Your friends and family will constantly miss you, but that’s the hazard of your profession.
But that’s not inherently bad. Namely, being a flight attendant allows you to fly across the whole world and visit many countries. As such, you’ll witness many sights and cultures that your friends can only dream about. You’ll enrich yourself in numerous ways, aside from money. In other words, you’ll learn foreign languages and meet new people who will end up being your lifelong friends.
Isn’t It Dangerous to Be a Flight Attendant?
Any guide for an aspiring flight attendant needs to include risks that come along with the job. In essence, there are four main risks.
- The first one includes physical injuries. Due to many factors like turbulence, baggage handling, food carts, and other equipment, you can seriously injure yourself. For example, you can spill coffee or tea on yourself while carrying it to passengers, or some baggage might come falling from the overhead bins.
- The second risk includes stress. Like all jobs, being a flight attendant is stressful. From safety concerns to the fear of maybe losing the job, you won’t have an easy time.
- Thirdly, not all stress is mental. Working as an FA means that you won’t sleep like ordinary people. Due to long flights and schedules, it’s common to find yourself tired and exhausted when you finally return home.
- The last risk is only reserved for women. Namely, while you can work if you’re pregnant, that comes with a huge risk. Some airlines also won’t care if you’re carrying a child, while others will allow you to take a break.