Cabin Crew Career Advice – July and August Topics

By MIHAELA MOISE, Crew Resource Specialist

I would like to start this article by thanking you all for the interest you show to our site http://worldclasscrew.com/. We are more than happy to answer your questions and hope our advice will help you a lot in obtaining the cabin crew job.

ALEX A. sent us the following message: “Hello. I am in a good shape, athletic one, but the problem is that I suffer from scoliosis. It is not visible, but if the aviation doctor carries out an X-ray, for sure this can be discovered. Is it going to affect my career as a future cabin crew? What about the sunburn signs on my face?”

Let’s clarify your problems: If the scoliosis is not visible, then you have chances to be hired by any airline. However, don’t forget that the flight attendant job includes a lot of physical effort: pushing full meal carts topped with alcohol bottles (30-40 kg), bending lots of time to bring out the meal trays when distributing and collecting them. If you are “lucky” and assigned to be a galley operator, taking care of the aircraft kitchen, then there’s more physical effort: you have to pull metallic containers (20-30 kg), move lots of boxes with juice and water in order to make space for other items, doing all these in a very fast pace. Plus, don’t forget that if you are responsible for an aircraft door, then you are the one opening and closing it, which can also put some pressure on your spine. You always have to be aware of your body posture, to bend and stand in a correct position. During my flying experience, I met lots of crew developing spinal problems in time, so I advise you to think twice before applying for this job. In case you get selected, bend your knees, lower your body weight and then stand up keeping your spine straight. Never bend from your waist! Regarding the sunburn signs, these can be covered with a bit of foundation cream, so it’s not a big issue.

From Kenya, NDUTA S. sent a nice message expressing her passion for being a cabin crew. She also wanted to know “how a CV should look like. I do not have any work experience since I am about to complete my university studies in December. I will really appreciate your response.”Thank you, Nduta, for trusting us and telling us about your concerns. I am happy to assist you in this process, to settle your future career. It is a very wise choice to finish your university studies and then apply for the cabin crew position (don’t forget to mention it on your CV). This will help you in your future career within Qatar Airways or any other airline. First of all, for this kind of job, you have to be a genuine friendly, smiley and positive person. Passengers want to see self-confident and friendly staff on board and more than any type of food they can ever see and eat. It would be an advantage to have some customer service experience, in order to have an idea about working in the field. For example receptionist in a hotel, waiter in a restaurant, or in the customers’ complaints department, etc. You need to specify in your resume, in the ”work experience” section, that you worked, even part time, in one of those positions or similar ones. This work experience can help you a lot during the interview when you are required to play a group game with a scenario about ”how to deal with a difficult customer and /or with a difficult situation”. As in real life, you can deal with different kinds of situations and different people, it can be easier to come up with several solutions. Also, your skills should be mentioned in your CV: personal skills, social skills, language skills, computer skills, etc. I hope I gave you some good tips on writing a successful CV. Even if you do not have work experience, you can mention that during your university studies you had a part time position in a restaurant or you were a volunteer in different projects or write any other experience you had. If you want, you can build up your CV and send it to us for a check up.

KIRAN P. is also concerned about the following: “Is it possible to apply in Belgium while living in Poland? And if yes what do I have to do for that?”

Kiran, yes, you can apply from another country since you are willing to travel at your own expense. Have you applied online for this position? Have they invited you for an interview in this country or is it an Open Day where you can go without an invitation? If yes, then do not forget your ID (passport or ID card). You must also take with you your CV, 2 photos (passport size and full body), choose business attire (wearing a tie) and be aware of your grooming. Good luck and please keep us updated!

DARYA N., from Lithuania, wanted to know if she can resign before starting the training, and others like “What do I do if I pass the final interview and I am relocated but I don’t like the place? Do I have to pay the company back? Is it possible to reapply if I leave on personal grounds?”

Well, you can always resign. Regarding the consequences, they differ from one company to another. You have to sign a contract before starting the training, where you can see all the conditions. Some of the airlines may ask the crew who leave earlier than 2 years to pay back the training costs. Other companies deduct a certain amount from your salary, each month for 2 years, in order to cover all training expenses. If you resign before or during the training with no reason, I am afraid that you will not be accepted again. But believe me, I know a few persons who resigned at the very beginning when they immediately realized it was not what they imagined. If you are a very motivated person, then it’s impossible not to enjoy this job. Many times I wanted to resign, but I was able to do it only after 10 years. So I wish you all the best!

From the far away Australia, CAITLIN, a 16 years old young lady expressed her desire of working as Cabin Crew. “What should I do before that, until finishing High School?”

J I am glad to hear that you already know what you want to do with your future. To be eligible to apply for this job you must be 18 or 21 years old (some airlines have this minimum age requirement). You do not have to do anything else than study, especially the languages. The more languages you speak (besides English), the better it will be for your future career and it will also help you interact with people on board or traveling around the world. My advice for you and for all the young gentlemen and ladies is the following: please graduate from high school and after that university. You have plenty of time to apply for this job when you are 21, 22 or even 23 years old. I am advising you this because during your flight attendant career you can be promoted as Performance Officer or even Performance Manager, Instructor, Recruiter and you do not want to miss these opportunities just because your studies are not finished. Enjoy your summer vacation!

ADY says: “I attended Qatar Airways interview twice, both times reaching the Final Interview. However one week later I got negative answers. Should I try one more time?

I am sorry to hear this but I am glad to hear that you have not given up. I am very proud of you! You can apply as many times as you want. I am sure the third time’s lucky. If you have any questions regarding the interview, our team would be happy to assist you during our workshops or private one-on-one coaching. I wish you a very good luck!

GIZELE K., originally from Brazil but living in the UK, asked us the following about British Airways: “If my height is 1.57m but I can’t reach 2.01m with my fingers, should I still apply?”

Well, in this situation I am afraid you do not match the company’s requirement regarding the physical condition from this point of view. The reason is that you are not able to open/close the overhead compartments. If you still want to try, you should do some yoga stretch before attending an interview. You never know!

DELIA V. would like to have a short term contract and was asking us about the “airlines offering a 1-year contract or less, as I have to get back to Romania to finish my studies.”

Most of the European airlines offer a temporary contract, from 6 months to 1 year. I advise you to apply for the low cost or charter airlines.

TIA is a former Singapore Airline cabin crew who is concerned about “having any chance to get hired by another airline as she is already 40 years old”.

Tia, why don’t you try to apply for Qatar Airways and I am sure other airlines would also be interested in your experience. Singapore Airline is very famous for their services and grooming. So I wish you all the best!

LAURA heard about a situation that was eager to clarify it with us. “What happens when a cabin crew hurts another crew by mistake during the service? Is the crew going to get a warning letter or termination letter?”

If it happens by mistake, s/he will not get any of the letters you mentioned. However, the crew can be given a verbal warning, to pay more attention in the future. I have a feeling you are working for Qatar Airways so if this is the case, the flight attendant file is updated and if it happens again, then a warning letter might be issued. Poor or irresponsible performance is never accepted.

IF YOU WANT TO FOLLOW YOUR DREAM AND BECOME A CABIN CREW, THEN WE INVITE YOU TO REGISTER IN OUR 3-DAYS “CABIN CREW MINDSET AND CUSTOMER SERVICE SKILLS” WORKSHOP OR ONE-ON-ONE INTERVIEW PREPARATION private sessions or ON SKYPE IN ORDER TO LEARN ABOUT THE CABIN CREW JOB, SERVICES, AND PRODUCTS OFFERED ON BOARD. THeSe courses WILL GIVE YOU THE CHANCE TO GET A NEW CAREER AS A CABIN CREW AND WILL OPEN YOUR WAY TO NEW HORIZONS. NEXT COURSES WILL BE ORGANIZED IN BUCHAREST, timisoara, iasi AND CLUJ-NAPOCA (ROMANIA). SKYPE SESSIONS ARE ALSO AVAILABLE. FOR MORE DETAILS, CHECK:  HTTP://WORLDCLASSCREW.COM/TRAININGS/

*Photo: Google images and personal album