Etihad Airways Cabin Crew Recruiting Process & Assessment Days

etihad recruitment events
Photo credits: dorinaadriana

Being a cabin crew for Etihad Airways is a dream job for a lot of people around the world. Etihad Airways is one of the largest Middle Eastern airlines, and it has one of the best pay and benefits packages in the airline industry.

To work as a cabin crew member for Etihad Airways you must either attend a CV drop event or apply online. If selected you will be invited to an Assessment Day, which includes a reach test, group exercises, an English test, and multiple interviews.

Just like you, I was once also one of the many aspirants wanting to be part of the Etihad cabin crew team. It’s been 4 years since I started my journey as a crew member with the airline, and in this article I want to share with you my experience as well as my ideas and personal tips for applying for this job.

Etihad Airways Hiring Process

There are two ways to get the job at Etihad Airways:

  1. Either attending a CV Drop Event, which doesn’t require an invitation, such as this:
    etihad cv drop events

    1. Or applying online.   If your application is successful you’ll be invited to an Assessment Day next to where you live.

CV Drop (also called Open Day)

It’s important to note that Etihad prefers to do an advanced pre-screening of talent.

So there are only a few open days. These are also called CV Drop events, and they are available for walk-ins and for anyone who wants to hand their resume over to the recruiters.

A CV drop event is not a day where candidates go through the different stages and evaluations of a normal Assessment Day event.

You will only have the opportunity to drop your CV off and introduce yourself to the recruiter. If you are then shortlisted, you’ll be contacted and invited to an actual Assessment Day.

Assessment Day

This is a recruitment event where candidates are shortlisted and then invited to attend an evaluation.

In order to be taken into consideration, you must register yourself in advance through Etihad careers page via the Etihad website. You won’t be allowed to attend without this registration if you weren’t invited to the specific Assessment Day.

To find out about where in the world the airline holds these events go to the “Cabin Crew” section on their official website and you’ll find a list of cities/countries which they’ll be visiting to look for potential employees.

You should apply to the job posting for the specific location that you wish to attend, even if it’s not in your home country.

If you’re unable to attend any of the planned Assessment days, you can submit your application via the ‘Cabin Crew Worldwide’ job posting and outline your preferred location for the Assessment Day.

How to Fill in the Etihad Application Online?

  • Register with your email and create a password.
  • Upload an updated CV & cover letter (check our tips on the links).
  • Personal information, birthdate, nationality.
  • Qualifications and experience, your highest educational certificate, academic profile and languages spoken.
  • Upload full-length and passport-size photographs dressed in professional attire.
  • Video interview: You will have to introduce yourself, and answer a few easy questions: height, age, tattoos, and your education. Why do you want to be a flight attendant? What do you know about the company? What do you know about the cabin crew job?

What to Wear at an Etihad Open Day / Assessment Day?

The dress code for both males and females is Business Attire.

Keep in mind, that being a middle eastern airline, they represent the Muslim community so you will need to dress modestly.

Here is the dress code as described on their website. And no, we don’t have to stand like that! 😉

etihad interview dress code
Source: Etihad Career

What to Bring at an Etihad Open Day / Assessment Day?

1) For the Open Days, you only need your CV copy and passport photo.

If you are invited to the Assessment Day they will inform you what additional documents you will need to bring.

2) The Assessment Day is “the big day”. So make sure that you present yourself well and you are wearing your best smile.

You will need to  bring the following documents with you:

  • Registration form with Applicant ID
  • Copy of the Invitation email
  • Updated CV/Resume
  • Colored passport copy
  • A colored full length photograph and four colored passport sized photos (wearing business attire)

Full length photograph requirements:

  • Stand against a neutral background, such as a white wall
  • Wear business attire such as a pencil skirt, shirt, and blazer
  • Have your hair tied back or tucked behind your ears
  • Keep jewerly minimal
  • Have fresh looking makeup with a hint of lipstick
  • Stand with a neutral stance and look straight ahead into the camera

It’s recommended for the full length photograph that you get it done professionally. It may cost a little more but it will be worth it. The photographer will know how to make you look your very best!

What Happens at an Etihad CV Drop-off Day?

At a CV drop-off day (or Open Day), a recruiter will take your CV, evaluate it and ask you a number of questions based on what it contains.

The recruiters will also check your grooming and body to see if you meet their other standards and expectations.

For example, you could be asked to show your hands (front and back). Since the job of a flight attendant means that your hands are constantly in view of the customers, candidates must not have tattoos or any other standout marks, and your nails should be short and neat. For girls, it’s best if you have a subtle manicure with a neutral color or French style manicure.

This is a short mini-interview that lasts only for a few minutes, but you might have to wait a long time to get to it.

At the beginning of the process, you’ll be given a number for identification and you’ll have to wait throughout the day until you are called.

This can be a bit tedious, but it is well worth it.

What Happens at an Etihad Assessment Day?

If you are attending a full-on Assessment Day then you will have applied beforehand and you will have received an invitation.

Once you arrive at the Assessment Day location, you show that invitation and you’ll be given a number and a registration form to fill in. After this, you’ll be conducted to a conference room for a presentation.

Recruiter’s presentation

There will be a general presentation about the company, how it all began, the destinations they fly to, cabin crew life, as well as an introduction to Abu Dhabi.

Height/reach test

A standard practice amongst airlines in the Middle East.

You will have to be able to pass the 212cm test.

This consists of standing barefoot against a wall, then stretching up to try and reach a mark.

You are allowed to stand on your tiptoes, so there is no need to stress if you can’t quite reach it normally.

If you can find time, a good way to burn off some excess nerves is to go to the bathroom and limber up with some good quality stretches.

Individual questions and self-presentation

In this part of the assessment, you will stand in front of two recruiters.

You will then be given the option of 3 cards, you will have to choose one and speak for 2 minutes about the word written on it.

They want to know how well you can handle a conversation and how you speak. This is the part where they get to know your personality, and if you will be a good fit for the flight attendant position.

The topics are random: it could be healthy food, technology, or even the delights of recycling.

Make sure that you maintain eye contact, be aware of your body language and that you speak confidently.

You’ll also be asked to introduce yourself.

Start with your name, age, and your previous career or work experience.

Highlight your strengths, and keep it simple.

The best advice I can offer here is to practice before the interview. And then practice again, and after that… well, you get the idea.

English test

This test will be a dialogue with missing words and a comprehension text with questions in a  multiple-choice format.

It’s set at a basic level to simply assess your understanding of English.

There are a lot of different nationalities at Etihad Airways, and the airline is aware that English isn’t everyone’s first language, however, you must do well to pass this test. By well, I mean, you must understand at least 80% of everything asked of you. 

You will also have a time limit, so although you shouldn’t rush as per say, make sure you complete the test well ahead of time. A good tip is to skip the questions you aren’t sure of, and go back to them after you have finished all of the other ones.

Many people are eliminated at this stage, so if you have any doubts about your ability to handle it, then do what you did for the interview stage – practice.

There are free English tests you can do online in your spare time in the lead up to the interview, it’s advised that you do as many as required to make you confident to do the real one at the interview!

Group exercises

This sort of exercise is to see how each participant behaves in a team discussion. Each candidate will be placed into a group where everyone will have to contribute to find a solution to a given scenario.

For example: you will be given a city map and you will have to place different buildings – school, airport, hospital, etc. on it in order to make a town. That exercise can actually be quite good fun.

My tip: Always be polite, respectful of your team mates, and include them in whatever suggestion you are making. E.g. “What do you guys think, would you mind…?”

Keep in mind that recruiters will be circling each table to observe how the group behaves. Participate in the discussion, but don’t interrupt others or be overbearing when trying to make your point. This is all about how you communicate with the other team members. What matters is that you are a team player, so exactly the sort of person that they are looking for. This aspect of your personality is important because in the future you’ll have to work every day with many different people from many different countries.

After this part of the selection process is over, you will pass to the final interview, which is normally held on the following day.

Final interview

This is the last stage of the selection process. If you’ve made it this far give yourself a pat on the back! A lot of candidates are eliminated by this point, so the fact you’re still here is amazing news.

During this stage, successful candidates will sit with 1 or 2 recruiters.

You’ll  be asked personal and job-related questions, as well as common interview questions such as:

➡️ Why do you want to work for us?

Please, please, don’t answer something like “I love to travel”, but you can say something like “I enjoy meeting and talking to people of different cultures, nationalities, and backgrounds”.

This shows that you are a people person which will score you major brownie points!

➡️ What makes you the best fit for this job?

You can answer this question by talking about how your skills, whether it’s teamwork or communication, align with the airline’s requirements.

➡️ Describe a time you went above and beyond for a customer.

Think back to your previous/current role and what you did to exceed a customer’s expectations. It could be anything from solving a customer complaint to spending an extra 10 minutes helping a customer with a difficult problem.

It’s important that you describe in steps what you did, and the end result aka the customer walking away highly satisfied!

➡️ Why are you leaving your current role?

Do not, under any circumstance, say you were fired, even if that’s the truth.

It’s important to put yourself in a positive light when you answer this question.

For example, “I am ready for a change in career, and this opportunity will help me move in the right direction towards my dreams and goals”.

Tweak the answer in your own words, of course.


My tip: Be specific, direct, firm, and confident.

This is an airline that is proud of its record in the world of aviation and wants to know that its staff will share that pride.

The interview lasts between 30 to 40 minutes, but there is absolutely no need to stress as it’s more like an open conversation where you get to discuss your experience, dreams and skills.

And like most conversations, it will go well if you play your part.

Remember to be yourself, smile, and when in doubt just remind yourself that they will be lucky to have you working for them! This is a little trick that will boost your confidence and allow the interview to go smoothly.

Tips to Stand Out

If you really want to become a flight attendant for Etihad, you must do your research about what the job entails.

It’s not just about being a pretty face, you will have to deal with some pretty difficult situations.

In fact, your main duties will be service and safety-related.

Ask yourself if you’re willing to put yourself forward to save people’s lives in an accident or to provide CPR to a passenger at 35,000ft.

But if you have researched the hard bits as well as the glamorous ones, here are some tips for a successful Assessment Day:

  • Be yourself. Recruiters like naturally engaging people,  so don’t hold back. Shine!
  • SMILE! We like people who smile at us, it’s part of being human. And make sure that your smiles reach your eyes.
  • Prepare yourself in advance for the Assessment Day.
  • Don’t act over-confident and come across as a know it all. These people don’t have to give you a job, they are going to choose to if you come across with natural humility.
  • Dress to impress, but do so in a smart way. You know the drill – neat hair & makeup, professional business attire and a poised, positive attitude.
    When the time comes and you have to participate with others – be it recruiters or fellow team members – share your views, but don’t interrupt. Never, ever!
  • Show confidence. Act, walk and talk like a flight attendant.

These are only a few tips, but they are amongst the most important.

At the end of the day, no matter how much you read and prepare, it’s up to you to make a good lasting impression on the day and this is done with a combination of research, preparation and practice, mixed with a large serving of your personality.

Reasons Why People Fail at the Assessment Day / Open Day

Even though there is no magical formula as to why people are not successful at Assessment Days, I personally believe that it’s a mix of luck and personality.

Regardless of whether you have had flying experience before, if you don’t show that you are made for the role, you will be out.

  • In most Open Days or CV drop-off days, a weak CV is one of the main causes of not getting any further. If your CV doesn’t contain structured information and has spelling or grammatical errors, is written in broken English, or shows that you don’t meet the educational requirements or age requirements, then sadly, it will be all over for you. Check here how to make a good cabin crew CV following our advice.
  • No customer service experience. Even though some people get hired as flight attendants as a first job, this is the minority, as Etihad cherishes those who’ve previously worked in customer service.
  • Poor command of English. This is not being able to either write or speak it correctly.
  • Grooming is not appropriate. This airline is pretty strict when it comes to grooming. So pay close attention to your hair, makeup, attire and the way you conduct yourself.
  • The candidate has tattoos, piercings or bad acne.
  • Weight or height far from what is required.

In Summary

  1. Send your CV online or attend a CV drop event. Etihad Airways will review your CV, and if they think you would make a good addition to their team, you will be invited to participate in an Assessment Day.
  2. The Assessment Day includes a reach test, individual experience discussion, English test, and a group exercise to showcase your teamwork, collaboration and communication skills. It’s followed by a final interview.
  3. After the final interview, Etihad will review your application and the results from your assessment day. They will be in touch as soon as they know if you’ve been successful.

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About The Author


  1. Thanks so much for all this wonderful and inspiring, motivational and encouraging information and hoping to meet with Etihad staff at an interview soon.

    1. Hi Romola,
      As explained at the start of the article, to apply for a cabin crew job at Etihad you need to attend a CV drop event or submit your application online.

  2. Hi dear.
    Thank you so much for the information.
    And I would also like to ask you regarding the height, I’m 5.1
    Is that a complete No case?

  3. Thank you so much, I have a question about that, I passed all the stages completely but I didn’t receive the English test online after the final interview, but I got to know that some candidates got an email about doing an English test and some of them got rejected and accepted but for my situation I didn’t receive any email about the English test and even the email about “ your application is now under review by our team “ so what will happen?

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