When it comes to getting hired as a flight attendant, one of the most important parts of the process the interview. Since airlines look at flight attendants as the key group of people that interact with passengers they heavily focus on how you’ll present yourself.
This is a comprehensive guide to doing a great job at your interview and give you the greatest possible chance of getting hired. These questions represent many of the common interview questions that both major airlines and small regional airlines will ask.
This guide also covers some of the other things you need to know before the interview and will help you prepare so you can be at 100%.
This includes Delta Airlines, United Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Alaskan Airlines, American Airlines and more If you plan to become a flight attendant, then this guide is for you.
Presentation Is Everything
One of the most important parts of the flight attendant interview is your presentation. This can mean a lot of different things to different people, so in this section I’ll cover some of the keys to success you should keep in mind.
Here is a list of ways you can make sure you’re getting an “A” in the presentation department.
Neat Appearance: You must make sure to look the part of a flight attendant while interviewing for the job. They have to be able to picture you doing the job. As such, make sure you have a very neat and clean appearence at the interview. Your clothes should be clean, ironed and fit well.
Make-up: Make sure you do your make-up before the interview. You want to look nice but don’t overdo it. You want to go for a natural look.
Smile: Flight Attendants need to come across as personable, warm, and friendly to passengers. One of the best ways to do this is to make sure you smile a lot, especially first first meeting someone. You want to impress upon people that you are happy and excited.
Eye Contact: This is very important for any role that includes interacting with a lot of different people. At the interview, show them you’re good at eye contact by making sure to look the interviewer and anyone you are introduced to in eye. If you are interviewed by a panel, make sure to make contact with each person as you listen to and answer their questions.
Professionalism: During any job interview you are expected to have a high level of professionalism. This is twice as true when interviewing to become a flight attendant. Make sure you are careful to not come across as too casual. Use proper language (not slang!) and don’t tell any inappropriate stories.
Tattoos: Most airlines do not allow you to have any visible tattoos. Make sure that at the interview you don’t wear anything that shows a tattoo that you would have to cover if you’re hired.
Piercings: Most airlines allow for only a single ear piercing in each ear. Please do not show up to the interview with eyebrow, nose, or lip piercings. This will put you at a disadvantage (if not eliminate) your chances of getting hired.
Interview Questions and Answers
There are many websites that have compiled lists of questions you might be asked at your interview. While this is a great start, we’ve gone a step further. We have also written out some great answers and explain what you should include in your answer. Most tests are much easier when you know both what is going to be on it and the answers, so please take the time to read through these questions and answers.
Also, while this is a great list of the most common questions you might be asked, we have also put together a comprehensive list of commonly asked and very important questions and made an entire page around them. Again, we’ve also created sample answers and explanations to show you exactly what the airline is looking for each of them.
Make sure to look at our comprehensive list of flight attendant interview questions here.
Here is our guide to the most commonly asked interview questions and an explanation on what to include in your answer.
Tell us about yourself/Tell me a little bit about you
In this question they are trying to get a sense of what kind of person you are and if you have an outgoing personality. I would recommend you prepare for this question by being able to tell them some basic things about you and what you enjoy outside of work.
Keep it somewhat short, but strategically choose things about your life that you think would show them you’re a good fit for the role of a flight attendant. This includes things like you love people, love to travel, and have a lot of energy.
Make sure to leave out ANYTHING that can come across as being negative. Do not mention tings needing a job, money problems, how much you hated your last boss, etc. Keep it positive and use the opportunity to tell them a little bit about yourself.
Why do you want to be a flight attendant?
To answer this question you should make sure you’ve taken the time to read about not only the flight attendant position, but the airline itself.
Have a couple of reasons why the job appeals to you. This should include things you would like about actually doing the job everyday. Examples include that you like to interact with and meet people, you enjoy helping others, and that you enjoy being part of a team.
Do not mention things that only benefit yourself. This includes things like having a flexible schedule, being able to travel for free, and making more money than your last job. These are great perks to being a flight attendant, but don’t focus on them at the interview.
Instead, make sure to list the things you would like about the job itself.
Also, make sure to do your research and look at what I important to the airline when it comes to their flight attendants.
Their website will often list things that are key to their culture. You should then link those things back to what you like.
For example, let’s say that the airline lists that passengers having the best service is important to them. You can then mention that making sure passengers have a great experience makes you happy and that is something you look forward to if you get the job.
Tell me about a time you had to deal with a difficult customer and how you handled it
A big part of being a flight attendant is dealing with passengers who are tired, frustrated, and sometime even angry. They might have had flights cancelled or delayed, they might be missing their family, or they might have been travelling for an assortment of reasons that has them less than excited to be on a plane.
Airlines know this and expect it. So, when hiring a light attendant they want to make sure you can keep your cool when dealing with a difficult passenger.
The best answer you can give is to first tell them that you can empathize with how hard it is for average people to be passengers and that you can stay professtional in these scenarios.
Just telling them is not enough – you also need to come prepared with examples of how you have done this in the past. I can almost guarantee you that you will have this question or one just like it at your interview, so make sure to take the time before the interview to prepare.
Think back to specific examples of difficult passengers you’ve had to deal with. If you’ve never been a flight attendant you can use examples of customers from retail jobs, bartending, sales, etc. Just think of examples of difficult customers.
Then, think through what you did to remedy the situation while staying polite and professional. Being able to keep your cool is very important, so make sure to include this in the story.
Tell me about a time you had a difficult co-worker? How did you work past your differences?
This is very similar to the previous question about having a difficult customer. The airlines know that sometime flight attendants don’t get along with each other and other members of the flight crew. Part of working as a team in any job is having differences to work through.
To be prepared for this interview question, make sure you think back to some specific examples of difficult co-workers you’ve had in the past and how you worked with them effectively.
The key here is to not be negative about the co-worker. Do not focus on why you couldn’t stand the person. Focus instead on how you went above and beyond to get along with them and have a productive relationship on the job. This should include how regardless of your differences you got along well and customers/management never had to get involved.
How do you go about providing excellent customer service?
This is another question just asking for you to not only tell the interviewer how you do something, but to show with a specific example.
I would strongly recommend that you have some specific examples of things you have done to provide great service in the past. This allows you to be prepared and communicate without having to think on the spot. The last thing you would ever want is to be caught off guard and freeze.
How I would answer this question is by first replying with 2 or 3 principles I live by when it comes to customer service followed by 1 or 2 very specific things you’ve done in the past.
How do you feel about having to deal with a very specific set of rules/procedures while at work?
Although many people outside of the aviation industry think of flight attendants as glorified bartenders, this is not the case. Being a flight attendant requires not only excellent people skills but the ability to ensure passengers are safe by following all of the safety procedures.
The airline will train you on these specific procedures, but you need to be able to communicate to the interviewer that you will take these procedures seriously and adhere to them 100% of the time.
I would prepare for this question by making sure to think of specific examples from previous jobs where you had to follow instructions and do things by a predetermined set of steps. They are looking to make sure you aren’t someone that will cut corners and get lazy on the job.
The best way to make it 100% clear to them that you will follow these procedures is to first tell them that you intend to do so since the safety of the crew and passengers is very important to you. Then follow up with “at my previous job we had to….” and give some specifics how how you did it.
How do you handle having to multi-task? Give us some examples?
The job of a flight attendant requires quite a bit of multi-tasking. One moment you are making sure that the passengers are getting the help they need to store carry on luggage, the next minute making sure everything is secure for take-off.
Like many of the previous questions, it’s not enough to simply tell them that multi-tasking is something you’re good at. You will have to give very specific examples of times at previous jobs you had to multi-task.
You should prepare for this question by making a list of all the duties/responsibilities at your most recent job and explain to the interviewer how you had to make sure ALL the items on the list were done every shift as well as how your organized your time to get it all done without lowering the quality of the work you did.
In addition, one way to really hit this question out of the park is to make it clear how staying busy and multi-tasking is something you enjoy rather than something you deal with because you have to. Make it very clear that working hard is something you enjoy and look forward to.
That’s the kind of work ethic they are looking for.
As you can see, much of the interview will be you selling them on your ability to work well with colleagues and passengers and your ability to follow protocols.
It’s very important that before your interview you prepare by not only looking at the airlines website to get a perspective on what they are looking for, but also take the time to think of very specific examples for all the questions.
Taking an hour to prepare these specific examples and having them ready to go at the interview will make you come across as better prepared, more articulate, and more professional that other people who interview for the job.
Do your homework, get the job!
After you have your interview, it is very important that you take the time to follow up with the person that interviewed you. This follow up is all but expected by many hiring managers and it shows a lot about your professionalism.
There are two simple ways to do this.
E-mail: This is my preferred method of follow up after an interview. I send the person who interviewed me an e-mail thanking them for taking the time to interview me. If I was interviewed by more than one person (many places do panel interviews) I make sure to send each person a separate e-mail.
This take just a few moments to type up and send but it really shows that you go the extra mile and that you care about the long term relationships you build with people. I have actually met several hiring managers that expect this type of follow up and would be skeptical to hire someone who doesn’t do it.
Hand Written Thank You: This is the other option which requires you actually write out a note thanking someone for taking the time to interview you. I think this is a great touch and shows that you are willing to go above and beyond.
Personally, I don’t use this method because I think it can potentially create other issues. For one thing, if it takes several days for your note to get to the person, they might have already made a decision on who they are or are not hiring. The other issue is that I would worry about the note not getting to the right person. Many time at large companies the mail can be unpredictable.
I like sure things, so I make sure to send an e-mail to thank the interviewer for their time.
While the job interview for a first time flight attendant can be stressful, it’s also very predictable. This is a good thing because it gives you the opportunity to prepare for it. It also give you the chance to improve on things you might not have expected by having a general sense of what they’ll ask.
Now go out there and Wow them!!