- October 10, 2018
- Posted by: Michael Zuyus
- Category: Flight Attendant Profession, Getting Hired
The basic requirements of becoming a flight attendant
The aviation industry is awash with numerous career options. One of the most popular and indeed one of the most rewarding is becoming a flight attendant. Perhaps, much of its popularity is owed to the fact that there are no stringent education requirements. Most of the skills you need on the job can be acquired during an internal training that is usually organized by the airline or recruitment agency. However, this doesn’t mean everyone can train to become a flight attendant. Below is a highlight of the basic flight attendant requirements.
The minimum age requirement for a flight attendant is usually between 18 and 21 years old. The specific age may vary from one airline to another but it’s usually never above 21 years. The minimum age requirement is informed by two major reasons. The role requires a certain level of maturity and an ability to take charge in emergency situations. This might be too much to ask of a minor. Secondly, there’s a high chance you’ll be serving alcohol as a flight attendant. The law does not permit a minor to engage in such.
Is there age limit?
There is no maximum age requirement as long as you are still a few years away from the retirement age. However, the job could be physically demanding. You’ll want to be in tip-top shape in order to enjoy the long hours of traveling that’s usually associated with the job.
A high school diploma or it’s GED equivalent usually suffices for most airlines. Some others may state that a college degree is an added advantage but it is hardly ever a necessity. As mentioned earlier, airlines or their recruitment agencies organize a training programme for their flight attendants after they employ them. Thus, a formal training as a flight attendant is not a prerequisite although it could give you an edge over other applicants.
Related work experience
Working as a flight attendant involves dealing with passengers and helping them in various capacities. A role as an on-site customer service agent would qualify as related work experience. Some airlines may require specific experience working as a flight attendant. However, this is often not the case.
The physical requirements are in place to ensure flight attendants have the right physique to carry out their duties without posing any danger to themselves or others around them. Airlines usually tailor the physical requirement to match their fleet so you may find significant variations across the board. Here is a highlight of the basic physical requirements:
Your height could affect your performance as a flight attendant. Short people may not be able to reach the top compartments easily while the very tall people may be unable to make use of some equipment. Most postings require flight attendants that fall within the 5ft and 6ft 3’’ range. The height requirements may vary from one airline to another.
Airlines conduct a ‘reach test’ before they employ a flight attendant. This test measures your ability to access all the components of the plane with reasonable ease. Although your reach depends heavily on your height, there are other components involved. For some airlines, the reach and not the height is the gold standard. Most airlines are okay with a reach of at least 210 cm although the exact value may vary from one airline to another. Furthermore, some airlines allow you to stand on your tiptoes while taking the reach test while others do not.
Most airlines are not fastidious about the weight of their flight attendants. However, there appears to be a general consensus that your weight should be proportional to your height. You can calculate your BMI to know if you meet this requirement. A healthy further makes it easier to fit into the safety equipment.
Although there are some airlines that employ flight attendants with 20/40 vision, the most common minimum requirement is a 20/30 vision. Whatever the requirement, your vision must be correctable to 20/20 with the aid of glasses or contacts.
Airlines are all about image. So, you shouldn’t be surprised that there are strict grooming requirements for flight attendants. Although the specifics may vary from company to company, some of the basic requirements are provided below:
- Hair: conservative and professional style or cut, no flashy or unnatural color, moderate length
- Makeup: minimal and conservative
- Piercings: Lower ear piercing allowed for females. Some airlines may accept fine studs for males. Upper ear piercing or
- Tattoos: must be covered by clothing
- Jewelry: minimal and conservative
- Facial hair: clean-shaven, well-trimmed sideburns and mustache.
You would need a valid passport before you can work as a flight attendant. Although some airlines do not list this as a requirement, it is better to have one before applying as you may need it during the training. If you are not a citizen of the country, you must be able to provide documentation that proves that you are eligible to seek employment in the country.
Flight attendants must have excellent communication skills as it is vital to optimizing customer experience. Although the ability to communicate fluently in more than one language is hardly a prerequisite, it could give you an added advantage. Some listings would require that applicants should be able to communicate in a certain language.
As emphasized all through the article, there may be significant variations in the specific requirements from one airline to another. Before applying for a job with an airline, you should carefully scrutinize the specific requirements to ensure you are eligible. You should also try to tailor your CV to show you meet all these requirements. It would greatly increase your chances of getting your dream job as a flight attendant.