How to become a Flight Attendant? CareerBuilder Videos from funza Academy :
In 1914, the world’s first passenger airline
service began between 2 cities in Florida. The 34 km flight took 23 minutes to complete.
As commercial flights started getting popular a series of new job descriptions were born.
One key role was that of a flight attendant. The first flight attendant began HIS role
in the year 1912. The first female flight attendant only came
into the picture much later, in 1930. So after this broad introduction, let’s
return to our objective. What does a flight attendant actually do?
The number of flight attendants is determined by international safety regulations.
For flights of up to 19 passengers, no flight attendant is required.
For large planes, one flight attendant per 50 passengers is needed.
Flight attendants make the flying experience for each passenger a pleasant as well as a
safe one. They serve passengers refreshments, meals
and sell gifts and duty free items. They are also trained to deal with security
and emergency situations and can administer first aid to passengers.
A flight attendant generally reports for work 2 hours before a flight.
Punctuality and neatness are important points here.
A Pre-flight briefing is generally done before boarding the aircraft.
Once within the aircraft, the cabin crew check safety equipment.
They also check if the life jackets and first aid kits are in the proper stowage’s.
Once the aircraft is air borne, services commence at some point.
There could be an optional post flight debriefing where any incidents during the flight are
analysed. Now what does it take to become a flight attendant?
Airlines normally ask for good matric or grade 12 results.
A foundation in Tourism or hospitality management can also prove useful.
Being able to speak multiple languages is very useful and may put you at an advantage
over other candidates. I would like to list a few more things:
• Some airline companies require candidates to be at least a certain height. This allows
them to reach for the overhead lockers easily and thus help passengers.
You should also have excellent communication and interpersonal skills.
Lastly you should obviously be fond of travelling and should be flexible with your work hours. Now let us move into the future and imagine
you as a flight attendant. What are some of the joys of the craft?
As a flight attendant you get to see more of the world.
This could be more of your own country if you work on the domestic leg and more of other
countries if you work on the international one.
When at destinations, cabin crew are put up in good accommodation.
They may also spend time at the destination city which enables them to explore the place.
There are also other perks such as free luggage and free and discounted international and
domestic air tickets for the family. A flight attendant also enjoys a substantial
amount of FREE time. And this brings me to a very important point.
Many flight attendants utilize this free time to further enhance their skill set.
One flight attendant we spoke to is now a Human Resources manager in a large software
company. This was possible since he utilized his free
time when working as a flight attendant to pursue a course in Human Psychology. Now let us look at the other side of the coin.
Stress was number one on the list of most people we spoke to.
Each flight has a fixed time limit and flight attendants have duties to perform during this
period. In the rare case of an emergency, flight attendants
are put to the test and have to REALLY think on their feet.
With the unpredictable nature of the job making family plans tends to often be a tricky process.
You could also expect to be away from family for long durations.
This job also comes with a set of tasks that can be classified as repetitive such as checking
that passengers have seat belts buckled during take-off and landing. Now let us focus on the prospects of being
in this field. You start as a member of cabin crew and then
become a senior cabin crew member. From here you could become the on-board manager
and manage the work of other cabin crew. You could also diversify and join the admin
or ground staff. These individuals oversee a diverse set of
activities such as managing and regulating the airfield, managing the security of the
staff and passengers while at the airport, serving at airport business lounges and validating
passenger details before boarding flights. The last point I wish to mention is that some
jobs in this sector look for individuals as young as 18 years.
A teenager entering this line can be totally overwhelmed with the travel, freedom and perks
of the profession. A few years down the line, many a flight attendant
thinks of moving into another line that avoids the amount of travel.
Priorities change and individuals may wish to devote more time to family.
Thus it is always a good idea to make use of free time while in this profession to keep
enhancing your skill set.