What is a Flight Attendant
Flight attendants typically are employed by airlines that are mandated by Federal law to ensure that safety instructions are provided for the flight and to give routine services for the comfort of the passengers. They greet passengers as they board the plane, direct them to their seats, ensure all carry-on items are stowed according to Federal law, and other services are provided for the safety and comfort of the passengers.
They normally have variable schedules which include, nights, weekends, and holidays, as well as spending several nights away from home.
How to Become a Flight Attendant
Flight attendants need a minimum of a high school diploma or the equivalent to obtain a job with an airline. However, many airlines are now preferring to hire candidates with some college background. Some employees look for applicants with a degree in tourism, business, public relations, communications, hospitality, and social science.
If one is hired to work on international flights, they may need to be fluent in a foreign language. An aspirant may also attend Flight Attendant academies. In addition to education requirements, a work experience of 1-2 years with a background in a service occupation (such as hotels or sales) is typically expected to gain employment as a flight attendant.
After a flight attendant is employed, airlines place the employee in their initial training program that lasts 6-8 weeks in their flight training center which is mandatory for certification by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Candidates complete training by going on practice flights and are then given the FAA Certificate of Demonstrated Proficiency. In addition, a candidate must pass the height and weight requirements and pass the medical and drug testing exams.
Job description of a Flight Attendant
A flight attendant typically has the duties of pre-flight briefings with the pilots and conducting inspections of safety equipment before take off. They educate passengers on the use of the airlines safety equipment and emergency equipment and procedures. He or she checks all passengers to ensure all seat belts are fastened and carry-on baggage is secured in it's proper place as required by Federal law.
A flight attendant serves or sells snacks, beverages, or meals during the flight and gathers up any trash afterwards. They are responsible to care for passengers with special needs. If the aircraft should encounter any turbulence during flight, he or she must reassure passengers. They administer emergency medical care if necessary and if an emergency should arise, they provide direction to the passengers, including the evacuation procedure of the aircraft.