Navigating the Skies of Opportunity: The Challenge of Landing a Flight Attendant Job

Navigating the Skies of Opportunity: The Challenge of Landing a Flight Attendant Job

Embarking on a career as a flight attendant is like reaching for the stars. However, the journey to don those coveted wings is often a challenging climb. In this blog post, let's explore the hurdles and trials that aspiring flight attendants face in the fiercely competitive world of aviation employment.


Setting the Scene: A Glamorous Dream with a Competitive Reality


In 1999 I was a bored college student majoring in English Literature ‘just because”. I really had no concrete plan for my future and my academic advisor took note of this in one of our scheduled meetings. She asked me what I would do for absolutely free if afforded the opportunity. I thought about it for a second and then replied-- “travel”. She looked at me curiously and then asked “Have you ever thought about becoming a flight attendant?”

 

I hadn’t.

However, now that she had brought this career to the forefront of my mind I had to admit, the allure of a flight attendant career seemed undeniable. Jet-setting across the globe, meeting new people, and experiencing diverse cultures are just a few of the perks that make it a dream job for many. However, what I wasn't aware of at the time was that the path to becoming a flight attendant is paved with challenges, beginning with the intense competition for a limited number of positions across various airlines. Nevertheless, I went home that day with a new career goal in mind!


Sky-High Competition: The Rigorous Selection Process


Getting hired as a flight attendant is no walk in the park. Airlines receive an overwhelming number of applications for each open position, and the selection process is meticulous. From initial online applications to rigorous interviews, group assessments, and, in some cases, language proficiency tests, aspiring flight attendants must prove they have the right blend of skills, personality, and adaptability.

 

In 1998 I applied to approximately 7-10 airlines. Back in those days we didn't have indeed.com or Linked in–we had the 'classifieds' in the employment section of the local newspaper. I applied to these airlines, one by one by attending what were called "Open houses" or as many jokingly called them back then "Cattle calls". Hundreds of flight attendants would show up to hotel ballrooms where the airlines hosted a preliminary interview of sorts with the hopes of being invited to the more in-depth 2nd interview.


The Waiting Game: Patience is a Virtue



Once the application process is complete, the waiting game begins. Airlines carefully scrutinize candidates, looking for individuals who not only meet the job's technical requirements but also embody the warmth, empathy, and professionalism expected of flight attendants. The competition is not just about skills but about standing out as an individual who can contribute to the unique atmosphere aboard an aircraft. 


The Elusive Offer: Celebrating the First Flight of a Dream Realized


For those fortunate enough to receive the coveted job offer, it's a moment of jubilation. After being rejected by a few airlines Miami Air International hired me in the beginning of January of 1999! The realization that you're about to embark on a career that promises adventure, personal growth, and extraordinary benefits is immensely gratifying. The years of preparation and perseverance suddenly coalesce into the beginning of an exciting journey.


 

 Soaring Beyond the Challenges


Becoming a flight attendant may be a challenge, but for those who make it through, the skies truly become their playground. The competition, though fierce, is a testament to the prestige of the profession. So, to all the dreamers reaching for the sky, remember that every challenge is a stepping stone, and once those wings are earned, the journey is nothing short of extraordinary. Here's to navigating the challenging skies and enjoying the view from the top!

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