Flight Attendant training is something that so many people try for years to get to!
After going through the entire process to get hired with American Airlines, you still have to make it through a rigorous training period to be able to gain your Flight Attendant certification.
Considering this position is truly a safety position, each airline is regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
They are mandated to teach certain things, and at the end of the day, each Flight Attendant is put through training that could save lives.
Evacuating a plane, CPR, Conflict Resolution, etc. This article will give you an insight into what Flight Attendant training truly encompasses.
I can say for anyone who thinks it would be easy, you are very much mistaken.
Where is the training held?
Training is held in Dallas, TX at their headquarters
How long is training?
Currently training is six weeks.
Is training paid?
Training is not paid.
It is a conditional job offer, so you need to understand that not only are you not getting paid, but you could be let go at any time during this training period.
You may think that you already work for the company, but you do not.
You will find this across the industry.
Are food and accommodation provided?
Food is provided when it comes to breakfast and lunch.
Dinner is on your own.
They have their own café in the training building you could go to for these provided meals.
Accommodation was also provided.
They normally have a building that houses all of the trainee Flight Attendants, but this can fluctuate based on what is going on with the company at the time. If they are doing any remodeling etc.
They will always take care of your accommodations for you; you will never have to do this on your own.
What is the dress code? What to pack?
The dress code is business casual.
With certain stipulations on top of this:
- If you have tattoos, they must be covered at all times.
- If you are a female, your hair needs to be up at all times, no fly-aways.
- If you are a male, you need to be shaved and your hair also has certain parameters.
- Only natural colored hair.
- Nails need to be nicely done.
- High heels are required.
- They are essentially getting ready for what they call “being on the line.” What they expect you to look like when you are flying.
They will give you specific instructions on what to pack.
However, I would say that you should invest in a business casual wardrobe:
- High heels.
- Nice shoes for men.
- A lot of tights.
- Bring workout clothing so you can keep up with your health.
- Tennis shoes.
- Appropriate makeup.
- Lots of hair spray.
- Close-toed shoes.
If it is something that you would wear to an interview, you can usually assume that it will be good enough to wear during training.
However, they will give you an introduction packet, that will explain everything to you.
What are the food options?
The food options that you usually have to choose from: pizza, sandwiches, salads, soup, Ramen/Pho, Burgers, a meal of the day, desserts, soft drinks.
They do a good job of giving you options to choose from while you are in training.
For dinner, it is really up to you. They have places around the training center you can catch an uber ride to. Or, you could go to the grocery store and buy some food as well.
There was a mini-fridge in the room that you could utilize, and I also brought a hot mini logic, and a small rice cooker to make some of your own meals when I was in my room.
Since you aren’t getting paid during training, I highly suggest looking up ways to save money.
Going to the store and making my own food, really saved me a lot of money.
Going out to eat all the time, just wasn’t in my budget.
Also, there are apps such as: Uber eats, door dash, Grubhub, etc. that you can utilize to get food delivered to you as well. Plenty of options to choose from.
What’s an average scheduled day at training?
An average day at training would be starting around 8 am and going until sometimes 10 pm.
You should anticipate long days, six to seven days a week.
They have a lot of information to cram into a short six-week period of time.
You are either in class learning the ins-and-outs of being a Flight Attendant, or you are back in your room studying.
Each day is different, depending on what you are learning for the day.
One day you could be learning about the configuration of an Airbus 321. You need to know: how many people it holds, how many exits it has, door drills for each door, seat configuration, etc.
You need to not only know this information, but you have to test out on all of it as well. You are required to pass each and every test by a certain score, you have to do hands on drills in front of instructors to show your competency.
You need to learn how to do fire drills, CPR, different medical scenarios, what the Federal Aviation Administration expects of you while on duty, etc.
I would also highly suggest looking into YouTube videos that will go into Flight Attendant training as well.
How hard is training?
I can tell you that the first time you go through Flight Attendant training, it is very hard.
There is so much information to learn, in such a short amount of time.
You really need to focus, or you aren’t going to make it through.
Set up good study methods, limit the amount of time you socialize.
Remember, you are there for a career.
They are still evaluating you at all times, and can let you go for anything.
If you are struggling, ask for help.
I also suggest picking a study-partner, or a small group. You can help each other through this process and increase the likelihood that you will get all the way through.
If you haven’t been in a situation where you need to study, I would highly suggest also looking into study methods. Treat it as if you are at school, that you need to take the time to study and make everything they are teaching you a priority.
When you are on the line, you have very limited supervision. You need to know what you are doing, at all times.
You have three times to fail a test, when you do so, you have to be pulled away and you not only have to pass the test, but by a certain percentage.
If you don’t pass the second time, you are let go from the program.
Make sure you are taking it very seriously.
Do I need to prepare before training?
Simply put, yes!
They will send you a packet that will tell you what they expect of you when you arrive to the training facility.
Everything they have in this packet is information that you need.
Make sure you study your airport codes, general plane information, etc.
Most airlines will test you on this right away. They want to make sure you are taking this seriously.
If you didn’t even bother to study before arrival, why even bother having you in the program?
Everything else, they will teach you while in the training.
Just know that you will be tested on all of the information you are taught, including being able to demonstrate evacuation drills. Pay attention!
When do you get to choose your base, and what choices are you usually given?
They will usually tell you a few weeks in, which bases are open to choose from.
It seems that most people are usually sent to Miami or New York.
You will pick your top five, and they will let you know what you are getting towards the end of the program, when they know that almost everyone is going to graduate at that point.
It will really just depend on your age, the older you are-the more seniority they give you in the class and this will help determine which base you get.
It will also depend on where they need Flight Attendants, it changes every class.
So just assume that you could get sent anywhere, and it is not a guarantee you will get what you want.
After the training, what’s the time frame to start working at your assigned base?
You have to be willing to go wherever they send you.
When they give you your base assignments, I highly suggest you start looking for a place to live.
They only give you a few days to relocate, you have enough time to go home, pack, and move.
They will take into account where you are moving from, and determine the amount of days you have to be in base, based on miles.
You need to start getting this figured out during training.
Get family, friends, etc. lined up to help, you’ll need it.
How long is the probation period?
Your probation period will be an entire year.
During this time, they can still let you go at any point.
Make sure you are doing everything you are supposed to be doing.
A lot of people get let go during this time, you need to follow all policies and procedures.
Don’t be late, wear the uniform how you are supposed to be wearing it, make sure you’re doing service correctly, etc.
Make sure you take this training seriously.
It is hard, and it’s meant to be hard.
They are trusting you with lives every day you’re flying.
If you don’t know what you’re doing, as a safety professional, you are failing everyone who walks on that plane.
If there is an emergency, it’s you they are going to be looking at for help.
I hope this information helps!