One of the most common subjects that readers, friends, or acquaintances ask Meghan, Celessa, or I is a spin off of the question, “Is this airline better than that airline?” or “Which one should I apply to?” or “Where should I work?” A�Due to the fact that these questions are so important to address, I wanted to write a blog sharing advice on what airline you should apply to and work for. A�I guarantee that the answer will not be what you expect, but isn’t that typical of flight attendant life anyway? A�It’s never what you expect…
The simple, straight forward, and short answer to your question of, “Which airline is the best to work for?” is- There is no ‘best.’ Yes, you read that right. A�I just told you one airline is not better than another. A�An airline cannot claim title to “The Best” until you evaluate WHO YOU ARE AND WHAT YOU WANT out of the experience. A�Until then, there is no way to determine which airline is better than another. A�One person can work at the shittiest airline out there and have the BEST experience, and another person can have an awful time at the same airline. A�As I said, the simple answer is there is no ‘best airline,’ but there are places that I would rather work over others, and places I know that you would rather work than others.
So now that we have that established, let’s move on and cover 5 points that will help you determine what the best airline is for you to work for.
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Which airline is the best to work for?
1. A�Why and what do you want out of being a flight attendant? A�Do you want to become a flight attendant or cabin crew member for the layovers, the free flight benefits, the camaraderieA�with colleagues, the uniform, the pay (haha…just kidding. None of us do this for the pay). A�But really, figure out why you want to be a flight attendant and what your goals are through becoming a flight attendant. A�I now fly only international, long-haul flights, which most would think to be better than domestic, but my previous airline was better than what I have now for quite a few reasons. A�It was the best airline for me at the time and could still have been, but I wanted another experience.
Quite honestly, I switched airlines for this blog. A�I wanted to be able to share a broader perspective with all of you. A�What I am saying is that my goals with flying changed, so instead of day trips and Hawaii life, I took a HUGE pay cut to grow as a cabin crew member and as an individual. A�Through all of the disappointments and challenges of this past year, I am so glad I followed my heart and did what was best for me. A�I didn’t work for “the best” airline then, and I don’t work for “the best” airline now, but I am in the best place for me. A�Figure out the best place for you.
2. A�Do you have responsibilities at home that demand a lot of your attention? It is a misunderstood fact that all flight attendants are gone for long periods of time. A�Many airlines operate turns which means the crews fly day trips. A�This is how my flight attendant life started, then moving into two and three day trips, and now, I fly on average 10-15 day trips. A�The weeks away would be so difficult if I had a family, pets, or a boyfriend even, but honestly, I really love the weeks and weeks away. A�That could simply be because I feel like I belong more in Scandinavia than Florida though. A�You need to evaluate your current home life and determine what is feasible for you to manage as far as days away. A�If you require a lot of work flexibility, an airline like the one I work for or private aviation is probably not for you. A�But a domestically based carrier or regional could be the perfect fit.
3. A�Do you want to work on a small/large crew or small/big planes? A�Some flight attendants like working alone or with only one other flight attendant. Celessa and my mom both actually enjoy this aspect a lot. A�They don’t have anyone looking over their shoulder in the cabin. A�I on the other hand, might go crazy with only 30-70 passengers on my flights and only the pilots to talk with. A�I LOVE having twelve to sixteen crew on my flights. A�I get to rotate through work stations as there are at least eight or nine positions to work on the aircraft. A�I can momentarily escape the hard-to-deal with passengers or hard-to-deal with colleagues. A�I like the plane I work on too. A�A small regional would not be for me, although there are SO many benefits they have that I do not, one being…
4. A�How important is travel during or outside of work to you? A�Do you even care about travel? A�Do you consider layovers “travel?” A�Or is travel to you adventuring out on your own? A�If travel to you is adventuring out on your own, then pick a place that has great schedule flexibility, with an opportunity to gain seniority fairly quickly. A�Find an airline that has great flight benefits. A�Celessa and my mom have both incredible schedule flexibility and some of the best flight benefits in the industry. A�Most airlines based in The United States have decent flight benefits for you to be able to travel inexpensively in your free time. A�The major issue that most come across is this: A�When you have the time, you don’t have the money. A�And when you have the money, you don’t have the time. A�Now, I am constantly working trips to Europe, but I have no flight benefits like I once had. A�I really miss flight benefits, but the flight attendant life I live now is an absolutely, almost unreal adventure. A�I know I am lucky to be where I am and so thankful for the job and the adventures. A�It’s not necessarily better or worse than what I had before. A�It’s just different. A�Know what differences you are willing to put up with.
5. Are you considering flight attendant life as a lifetime career?A�You may be in the space that I was when I started flying and only saw being a flight attendant as a year or two gig until I figured out what I really wanted to do with my life. A�Six years later, I’m still in the career, and although I have been struggling with staying or leaving recently,A�I really love this career and will stay. A�I don’t know if there is a better job in the world than being a flight attendant. A�It gets you. A�It’s not just a job, it’s one’s entire life, and that can be a wonderful thing. A�Because of where I am in my life personally and as an entrepreneur, I don’t see flying as a career where I need to pick a “career airline”, soA�I haven’t pursued airlines like Delta or United because those don’t fit with what I want, who I am, or where I want to be (remember point 1). A�Both of those airlines I consider to be GREAT career choices (along with Southwest, JetBlue, Alaska, Hawaiian, etc), but it’s not me right now. A�Being a flight attendant isn’t my main goal in life, which is great because what that means, is when a job or life situation is no longer working for me, it’s easier to move on to what fits better. A�It’s like shoes guys. A�When you’re two, you have your favorite shoes and they fit so well. A�When you are ten, you have a new pair of shoes that fit you for this age. A�You don’t jam, cram, or stuff your toesies into your toddler kicks. A�THAT’S RIDICULOUS! A�So NEVER do that with your life! A�We do things like this due to fear ofA�the unknown, but we are like feet and grow You grow. A�Buy newA�shoes when you need them, and move into what fits.
There are more points that I can add about airlines and places to work, but this will help you get started. A�I also want to mention that sometimes, you just need to start somewhere. A�Start at the airline that isn’t viewed as glamorous or isn’t well-known if you must. A�It can actually be the best place for you to start. A�You will learn and it can prepare you for the next place. A�Meghan has written about how here start made her ready for a mainline, and from my own experience, I needed my domestic carrier, all of the travel, all of the moving, and all of the writing to prepare me for where I am now and where I am going tomorrow.
Know you will get to where you need to be when you need to be there.
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