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How To Become An Aviator In 2019?

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By Author: John Davies
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Once referred to as airline stewardesses and stewards, these airline employees are generally now called "flight attendants." They serve food and beverages, help passengers with special needs, make announcements, enforce safety regulations and assist in all types of emergencies. Flight attendants need at least a high school education plus special airline training and Federal Aviation Administration certification. Because competition for aviation jobs is keen, airlines often give preference to those who exceed the basic qualifications.

Basic Requirements

To become a flight attendant, you have to be at least 18 years old - and have a high school diploma or the equivalent. You also must qualify to work in the United States and have a valid passport. You'll need 20/40 vision or better with correction -- and will have to pass a medical exam and a background check. Airlines also have height requirements, as flight attendants must be able to reach the overhead bins.

Personality and Appearance

A flight attendant needs good communication and customer service skills to deal with passengers effectively. This means you'll need patience and attentiveness along with good listening skills. The airlines do not want applicants with piercings or tattoos that they cannot hide with clothing. They look for neat and conservative makeup, grooming and hairstyles. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, most airlines prefer candidates with weights proportionate to their heights.

Desirable Qualifications

Having a college degree can increase your chances of obtaining a flight attendant position with an airline. A degree in communication, tourism, hospitality or a related field can give you an advantage. The BLS notes that most airlines require at least one year of customer service experience. Further, airlines might require fluency in a second language if you work on international flights.

Training and Certification

The airlines give new hires three to six weeks of training at an airline training center. The topics of study include emergency procedures, first aid, work duties, regulations and airline company operations. At the end of training, student attendants take practice flights before passing a proficiency examination to receive the Federal Aviation Administration Certificate of Demonstrated Proficiency. This certification is good only on the specific equipment used in training. Flight attendants need to complete new training to work on any additional type of aircraft. To maintain FAA certification, you'll need to take periodic retraining throughout your time with the airline.

Outlook and Earnings

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects no change in the number of positions for flight attendants between 2010 and 2020. Regional and low-cost airlines may offer better opportunities than the major carriers. Some new positions will open up when older attendants retire, but the airlines may not replace all of them with new hires. As of 2011, the average flight attendant earned $41,720 per year, according to the BLS. Ten percent earned less than $24,990, while 10 percent earned more than $62,470.

More About the Author

Jobs in aviation might only sound as something "not for me", but the reality is that anyone gat get a basic job on board

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