To work for the cabin crew of reputed airlines, you need patience and a knack to serve people of all kinds. In this career guide, we’ll be taking a closer look at the career paths of an air hostess. This guide will cover every question you have about this profession. Let’s find out, how to become an air hostess.
Who is an air hostess?
An air hostess is a part of the cabin crew which are responsible for passengers’ comfort and safety on commercial flights. These cabin crews are employed by the airlines to offer a great service to their passengers.
Air hostesses are also referred to other synonyms such as flight attendants, cabin crew, flight stewardesses, etc. Even though the profession is dominated by females, men also have started joining the industry since 1980.
What does an air hostess do?
As a part of the cabin crew, air hostesses are required to perform multiple tasks. These roles can be divided into pre-flight, on the flight and post-flight duties.
Before the passengers are boarded on the plane, air hostesses along with the other members of cabin crew attend a safety briefing with the pilot and the lead flight attendant. This meeting discusses the safety and emergency checklists. From the amount of emergency gear, exclusive features of the aircraft to particulars of passengers such as special needs, children and VIPs are discussed.
Weather conditions and the possibility of turbulences are also discussed. Air hostesses are then required to check the flight to ensure that all the emergency gear such as life vests, torches, whistles and fire fighting equipment are in functioning condition on board. They are also responsible for monitoring the flight cabin for anything out of the ordinary such as smell or noises.
On the flight
Once the boarding begins, air hostesses help out passengers to get inside and settle down on their respective seats. Also, they are responsible for ensuring the people sitting on the seats next to emergency exits are willing to help in an evacuation, if not then they need to switch their seats with someone who will.
Once the passengers are settled, air hostesses perform a safety demonstration. After the demonstration is complete, air hostesses are required to secure the cabin. This means ensuring all the tray tables are stowed, window flaps are open and everyone is seated with their seats upright, armrests down and seatbelts fastened.
After the flight takes off, air hostesses serve food and drinks to the passengers using airline service trolleys. When they’re not catering to the passengers, air hostesses check cabin periodically to ensure everything within the cabin is okay.
Before landing, flight attendants check that all passengers are seated with their tray stowed, seats neutral and seatbelts locked. Air hostesses are required to be most attentive during the take-off and landing as most of the emergencies happen at the time. After landing, air hostesses are stationed at the exits and help passengers disembark from the plane.
Flight attendants are trained in first-aid and various other emergencies that may occur on a flight. Some of these emergencies can be listed out as below:
- Rejected take-offs
- Emergency landings
- In-flight medical situations
- Smoke in cabin
- Onboard births
- Water landings
Why build a career as an air hostess?
If you don’t want to spend your life on a desk every day then this is a job for you. If you love travelling and wish to see different cultures, meet new people and explore, then this job is for you. Along with a decent pay package, the job of an air hostess entails adventure.
Scope of becoming an air hostess
With over 20 airports, 26 domestic airlines and over 15 international airlines currently operating in India, says a lot about the scope of becoming an air hostess.
There are millions of flights taking off every year in India. This number is most likely to grow in the future. Also, air travel is the fastest mode of travelling and so, it’s here to stay.
Because of such astounding numbers in the civil aviation industry, the scope of air hostesses in the future and even now is huge!
The demand for becoming an air hostess
The demand for air hostesses is growing like never before. The way the airline business is growing, it is more than obvious that there will be an increased demand for people in the aviation industry. Following are some numbers that promise significant opportunities for air hostesses now and the future.
- Over 6000 flights take off every day in India.
- India’s air traffic has increased to 117 million passengers in 6 years.
- In 2015, Boeing predicted India’s need of aircraft to reach 1,740 over the next 20 years, which is valued at a whopping $240 billion.
Pros and cons of being an air hostess
|Career filled with travelling and exploring||Lengthy process to get a job|
|A well-paid job||Physical and mental stress|
|Great perks such as stays in lavishing hotels, medical insurance, etc.||Early retirement|
|Only 72 hours of flying in a month||Difficult passengers on a regular basis|
Qualification required for an air hostess
To become an air hostess, you would be required to meet the following eligibility criteria.
- 18-26 years of age
- Graduate degree (hospitality is preferred)
- Minimum height of 157.5 cm
- Perfect eyesight
- Eligible for Indian passport
- Weight proportionate to height
- Proven in Spoken English
If you fit the eligibility criteria, then you’re called for screening. Then, there are written tests, followed by a group discussion and personal interview.
If you clear all the rounds, then you’re put into a training program. Pass this training programme and you’re officially an air hostess!
Air hostess courses and certifications
Like mentioned in the qualification section, apart from a graduate degree, there’s are no specific courses needed to become an air hostess.
However, certain institutes offer 1-3 year diplomas in air hostess training and hospitality. So, if you don’t have a graduate degree then going for such courses can help you get a job as an air hostess.
Following are some of the most popular air hostess training institutes.
- JetAirways Training Academy
- IndiGo Training Centre
- Universal Aviation Academy
- Bombay Flying Club of Aviation
Job roles in air hostess industry
|Flight Attendant||Performs pre-flight, in-flight and post-flight duties as part of the cabin crew|
|Ground Attendant||Responsible for pre-flight preparations and handles onboarding of passengers|
|Customer Service Agent||Handles customer queries and issues on the reception desk via calls, emails and chats|
|Senior Air Hostess||Manages the cabin crew and operations in flight|
Air hostess salaries
|Job role||Average annual salary range|
|Flight Attendant||480,000 - 675,000|
|Ground Attendant||504,000 - 702,000|
|Customer Service Agent||360,000 - 462,000|
|Senior Air Hostess||550,000 - 825,000|
Air hostess skills
|Personality||Air hostesses need to have a pleasing personality as they interact with passengers every day.|
|Communication Skills||Attending to passengers require extremely good communication, especially in tricky situations.|
|Calm Nature||Passengers can get angry, agitated or even nervous, an air hostess needs to be calm in tackling such situations|
|Composure||A normal flight can quickly turn into an emergency, an air hostess needs to have the composure to deal with panicking passengers and perform her duties|
|Team Player||A cabin crew is a team of many people. An air hostess should hone the skills of working in a team|
Tips to get a job as an air hostess
If you’re eligible (as mentioned above) to apply for air hostess jobs, then there are a few things you should work on to increase the chances of being hired and stand out from the crowd.
Air hostesses are expected to be fit and good looking as they represent an airline. So, to become an air hostess, focus on your fitness. You can do this by joining a gym or even working out at home. The key here is the nutrition because, without it, no exercise will be able to help you out.
Another important tip will be to work on your personality. If you wish to become an air hostess, you need to have a pleasing personality but at the same time, you need to instil patience. Air hostess come across angry, frustrated, nervous and even perverted passengers on board. You must have the skills to tackle each kind with sheer diplomacy and professionalism. Taking personality classes can help in building a strong character.
Prepare before interviews
If you’re interviewing for an airline, it’s always going to help if you have researched about their history and some key numbers such as founding year, number of planes etc. This can be used as a tool to stand out among your competition.
Air hostesses are expected to have supreme communication skills. If you’re lacking this key characteristic, then you may not get your dream job. Enrol yourself in a communication class to get better.
Air hostess blogs
Here are some of the popular blogs related to air hostesses.
Air hostess books
Here's a list of popular books to read.
- The Essential Guide To Becoming A Flight Attendant
- The Complete Flight Attendant Interview Work Book
- Cruising Attitude: Tales of Crashpads, Crew Drama, and Crazy Passengers at 35,000 Feet
- Looking Skyward: Turn Your Flight Attendant Dream Into Reality
- 101 Questions and Answers for the Cabin Crew Interview
Air hostess YouTube videos and channels
Here's a list of YouTube channels to follow.
Top companies to follow
Here's a list of top companies that every aspiring air hostess should follow.