Flight Attendant Salary: How Much Do Flight Attendants Make? (2022)

Flight attendants have an exciting and challenging job. Not only do they get to travel to different places around the globe, but they also get paid just for ensuring the safety of passengers and their comfort.

Being a flight attendant allows you the opportunity to explore and meet different kinds of people from different countries in the world.

Flight Attendants rank #4 in Highest Paying Jobs Without a Degree. And though, Being a flight attendant may seem like a glamorous job, does it pay well? Does their salary compensation for the challenges that they sometimes face?

In this article, you’ll find out what being a flight attendant means. The average pay for a flight attendant, how to become a flight steward, requirements, and school costs for flight attendant schools. You’ll also discover the duties of a flight steward and several job opportunities.

Table of Contents

(Video) HOW MUCH DO FLIGHT ATTENDANTS MAKE?!

Who Is A Flight Attendant?

Flight attendants also known as flight stewards are the members of the flight personnel that passengers mostly interact with. They see to it that passengers are pleased, and they are always ready to respond to security issues that may occur during the flight.

Flight stewards work for private and commercial airlines to ensure passengers’ safety and comfortability. They help passengers find their seats, illustrate how to utilize the plane’s safety materials. They also deliver food, drinks, and other services to needy passengers. By law, all airlines must have flight attendants on the crew to guarantee passengers’ safety.

How To Become A Flight Attendant

To be a flight steward or attendant, the path is moderately simple and includes the following steps:

  • Obtain a high school diploma: The least education prerequisite for flight attendants is a high school diploma.
  • Get a degree: Though most airlines will employ flight attendants without degrees, an associate or bachelor’s degree in hospitality and human relation related fields can make you more outstanding.
  • Develop customer service skills: Take a job at a hospitality or service job to improve your customer relation skills. The knowledge will put you in a better stance when applying for flight stewards jobs. You might work at a restaurant or a hotel.
  • Apply for a job: If you are 18 years and above and have fair health and vision, you can apply for flight attendant positions with various airlines.
  • Undergo Training: if an airline engages you, you will spend several weeks in training. Training classes include safety, first aid, reacting to challenging flight or passenger situations, evacuation, putting out fires, survival techniques, self-defense and personal health, among others
  • Get certified: After training, you must pass the FAA’s exam to be certified and legally authorized to work as a flight steward.
  • Attain reserve status: New flight attendants begin on reserve status. During this duration, you will be on standby to fill in for other flight attendants or supplements. This period typically lasts one year
  • Grow in your career: After gaining years of experience as a flight steward, you will possibly have the privilege of choosing your base, routes and schedule. You might also coach, recruit, instruct or supervise other flight attendants and help with undertakings such as scheduling.

Requirements To Be A Flight Attendant

In addition to training and education, there are a few other requirements to keep in mind when it comes to being a flight attendant. They are

  • Height: Some airlines have conditions related to height. This is to make sure all flight stewards are sufficiently tall enough to help passengers with overhead compartments.
  • Medical Screening: Airlines hope to try and avoid having flight attendants battling medical issues during flights. So there will be a medical examination as part of the employment process.

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Listing of Flight Attendant Schools

Below is a shortlist of some of the flight schools presently accepting students.

Flight Attendant School Cost

Flight attendant schools offer different courses that can take as short as a few days and as long as 16 weeks. The depth of the topics to be taught can vary. Thus, putting in more time implies you’ll be able to know more.

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Although flight attendant school is not compulsory, it will be very useful to someone joining the aviation industry for the first time without having some of these skills.

As of 2019, the average cost of flight attendant school programs is $3,500 to $5,000. However, Flight attendant schools can cost as little as $1,000 and as much as $25,000 depending on the duration and what is content. Some will even propose that you pay room and board since you’ll be residing near the school as you train.

Duties Of A Flight Attendant

Primarily, all airlines have flight attendants onboard to ensure passengers’ safety. Other flight attendant responsibilities include:

  • Going to preflight briefings with the pilots to obtain flight details for each journey.
  • Examining emergency equipment before each flight takes off.
  • Ensuring the plane’s cabin is tidy and well-stocked with food and drinks
  • Ensuring all passengers are readied for takeoff and landing.
  • Assisting passengers with personal needs, little children or requiring medical services.
  • Managing disruptive passengers and monitoring the plane for skeptical behavior.
  • In case of an emergency, assisting passengers locate and employ safety equipment, putting out fires outbreaks and supervising evacuations.
  • Reporting any safety or medical problems that occurred on a flight

Flight Attendant Jobs

Below is a list of the best 20 flight steward jobs

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, flight attendant employment is expected to grow at least 17 percent from 2019 to 2029, which is much faster than the national average for all occupations.

Starting Salary For Flight Attendant

By Oct 2021, the average yearly pay for an Entry Level Flight Attendant is $44,081 a year. This is approximately $21.19 an hour and is equal to $848/week or $3,673/month.

While the salary of a flight attendant can be as high as $78,500 and as low as $18,000 annually. The majority of starting salaries of Flight Attendants currently range between $31,000 (25th percentile) to $46,000 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) earning $60,000 annually.

(Video) Flight Attendant Pay - How and when we get paid

The average pay range varies greatly by as much as $15,000 which indicates there may be many chances for improvement and increased pay based on skill, setting, and years of experience.

Average Flight Attendant Salary

Unfortunately, there is no exact Flight attendant pay.

The average flight attendant’s salary can be between €20,001 and €45,001 ($22,001 to $49,000) in their first year.

The fact is, some people will make more than others, regardless of how you start working for an airline. But you can calculate your earnings per month depending on the number of flights you take.

Private Flight Attendant Salary

As of August 2021, an average private flight attendant’s salary is expected to be about ​$47,000​ per year while high-earning private flight attendants make a salary of about $​78,000​ yearly.

Flight Attendant Salary Hourly

Because by default, all airlines must employ flight attendants. There is always a need for qualified prospects. Flight attendants with years of experience and college degrees in airlines or human relations might be able to receive a higher hourly wage than others.

A typical average salary for a flight attendant in the U.S. is $25.61 per hour but some salaries range from $7.25 to $42.80 per hour.

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How Much Does A Flight Attendant Make Per Year?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary of flight attendants is around $56,000 per year. Nevertheless, Flight attendants’ pay can vary, with the lowest 10% earning less than $28,000, and the highest 10% earning more than $80,000.

Aside from their salaries, flight stewards also receive a stipend to cover their meal and hotel expenses when traveling. Additional benefits for some positions might include free travel or upgrades.

Conclusion

As little as it may seem, a flight attendant’s pay is one of the most handsome paychecks for jobs without a degree. This job also comes with a few other benefits highlighted in this reading. Some job opportunities have also been listed with the salary structure for flight attendants, hourly, yearly, and on average.

Frequently Asked Questions On Flight Attendant Salary

How are flight attendants paid?

A flight attendant’s pay is calculated from the time the aircraft door closes until the time it is reopened (also called “block time”).

How hard is it to become a flight attendant?

The process can be time-consuming and challenging as competition is always fierce. There are nearly 1 million applications to fill 5,000 – 10,000 flight attendant jobs.

(Video) HOW MUCH DO FLIGHT ATTENDANTS MAKE IN 2018/2019?!

Is Flight Attendant School Required?

FAQs

How much do new flight attendants get paid? ›

Flight Attendants earned an average salary of $59,150 in 2020.

What airline do flight attendants get paid the most? ›

Which Airlines Pay Flight Attendants the Most?
Average Annual PayAdditional Annual Pay
American Airlines$43,460$2,825
Delta Airlines$40,236$6,400
Southwest Airlines$42,000$4,800
United Airlines$44,219$5,200
6 more rows

What is the lowest paid flight attendant? ›

While ZipRecruiter is seeing annual salaries as high as $123,500 and as low as $19,000, the majority of Entry Level Flight Attendant salaries currently range between $30,500 (25th percentile) to $62,000 (75th percentile) with top earners (90th percentile) making $80,000 annually across the United States.

How long does it take to be a flight attendant? ›

Summary
Quick Facts: Flight Attendants
Typical Entry-Level EducationHigh school diploma or equivalent
Work Experience in a Related OccupationLess than 5 years
On-the-job TrainingModerate-term on-the-job training
Number of Jobs, 2021106,300
3 more rows
13 Sept 2022

Do flight attendants get free housing? ›

Another awesome thing about being a flight attendant is free food and housing. Traveling in between jobs can be grueling so having a few basic things off your mind can do wonders.

Do flight attendants get paid hourly? ›

Hourly vs.

Some flight attendants start out at $15 per hour, others at $19 – or higher. When the airlines are scrambling to add flight crews, starting pay can be $21 to $27 per hour. By their 14th year, they can be making as much as $41 per hour. Flight attendants are only paid for their flight time.

What is the hardest airline to get a job with? ›

For aspiring flight attendants, Delta Air Lines, ranked by its employees as one of the best places to work, is also one of the most difficult places to get a job.

Is it hard to become a flight attendant? ›

Is it hard to become a flight attendant? Yes, the process of becoming a flight attendant is challenging. There are up to 1.5 million job applications for 5,000 to 10,000 jobs hiring. It's very competitive and the training process is long, sometimes taking up to 3 to 6 months for the entire process.

Do flight attendants get paid during boarding? ›

Typically, flight attendants aren't paid for boarding — they're only paid for their time in the air, not on the ground.

How often are flight attendants home? ›

The number of days a flight attendant gets to go home depends on their contract, the airline, and type of operation. Some flight attendants almost live in hotels and have “a life outside of work” of less than 10 days a month, while others go to work and come home every night like anybody else.

Do you need a degree to be a flight attendant? ›

A high-school diploma or GED is the minimum education level required to become a flight attendant. However, some airlines may prefer candidates who have taken college courses or have an associate's or bachelor's degree. Classes in hospitality, communication, tourism, and public relations could be especially useful.

Is it worth it to be a flight attendant? ›

Conclusion. Being a flight attendant is one of the most worthwhile career decisions a person can make. It's a rewarding career that gives you access to a lifestyle most people would love to have. It has adventure, great pay, human interaction, and provides you with amazing memories.

What disqualifies you from being a flight attendant? ›

Aviation Authority Background Check: (FAA / CAA etc)

Certain previous convictions such as crimes involving an aircraft or any violent crime, felony or time spent in jail would prevent you from being able to work as a Flight Attendant.

Do you need math to be a flight attendant? ›

What qualifications do you need to be a Flight Attendant? It can be a lot of studying to become a Flight Attendant, but it's worth it. To start, most airlines require a minimum of four GCSEs (A-C) including English and maths, and applicants who speak a foreign language will be at an advantage.

How much does it cost to become a flight attendant? ›

How Much does Flight Attendant School Cost? The average cost of flight attendant school programs in 2019 is $3,500 to $5,000. Flight attendant schools can cost as little as a $1,000 and as much as $25,000 depending on how long they are and what is covered.

Do flight attendants work 40 hours a week? ›

Despite being paid for a full-time job, the hours are significantly less than 40 hours per week. Flight attendants often fly a two to four day trip and then, have the rest of the week off. This means that a full-time, salaried job includes 10 to 20 days off, per month.

How many days per week do flight attendants work? ›

Typically, flight attendants work 12-14 days and log 65-85 flight hours each month, not including overtime. Flight attendant schedules can change month-to-month and some attendants may work more weeks than others.

Can flight attendants have two jobs? ›

Flight attendant side hustles are not uncommon at all stages of the flight attendant career. The flight attendant job is so flexible that you can have a business or second job while you are working as a full time flight attendant.

Do flight attendants get paid monthly? ›

As of Sep 22, 2022, the average monthly pay for a Flight Attendant in the United States is $6,439 a month.

Do flight attendants make good money? ›

Flight attendants make an average annual wage of $62,680, according to May 2021 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Pay saw about a 10% bump from pre-pandemic levels. In May 2019, the BLS reported an average national wage of $56,230.

Do flight attendants get paid weekly? ›

Flight Attendants are paid based on the flights they work each month. They can choose to be paid monthly, or bi-weekly.

What is the maximum age limit for flight attendants? ›

Flight Attendant Age Requirements

After all, it does seems like most flight attendants are young. There is no maximum age to become a flight attendant. If you're in your 40's or 50's and want to be a flight attendant, go ahead and apply! As long as you meet the other requirements, your age won't be a problem.

Why do flight attendants wear heels? ›

Airlines that require flight attendants to wear heels while in uniform do it in order to preserve a specific image of a flight attendant they are trying to achieve. The downside of this policy is that often time flight attendants have to walk very long distances in the airport to get to their flight.

Do all airline employees fly for free? ›

The most important point to clear up is that airline employees do pay for their travel unless they are commuting for work. Even though they may not be responsible for covering the airfare that you would normally pay to fly, they are responsible for paying the taxes and fees on their tickets.

Do flight attendants get paid during training? ›

And as you might expect, training to become a flight attendant isn't an overnight process. AA's training program lasts around six weeks during which time trainee flight attendants won't receive a wage.

How do you get hired as a flight attendant? ›

To get hired as a flight attendant, you must be at least 18 years old, have a current passport, have at least 20/40 vision and pass a drug test and background check. You might also need to pass a medical examination and meet an airline's height requirements.

Where do flight attendants live? ›

Many flight attendants live together in large apartments or houses called "crash pads" located very close to the airport in the particular city where their airline's regional hub is located.

Do flight attendants only get paid when doors close? ›

And it's a big deal. “Traditionally, neither pilots nor flight attendants are paid until the doors of the plane are closed and the brakes are released,” said Henry Harteveldt, a travel industry analyst at Atmosphere Research Group. “And that pay only lasts until the plane arrives at the gate.”

What is the best airline to work for? ›

Best Airline Staff in North America 2022
  • Delta Air Lines.
  • WestJet.
  • Southwest Airlines.
  • Alaska Airlines.
  • Hawaiian Airlines.
  • JetBlue Airways.
  • Sun Country Airlines.
  • Breeze Airways.

How is the life of a flight attendant? ›

A job as a flight attendant can be difficult, and you have to work long hours and often have to be on standby. Starting salary is usually low, and while you get to travel and meet new people, it might be difficult to maintain relationships. There are also chances of burnout and disrupted sleep cycles.

How much do first class flight attendants make? ›

Flight attendants get a base pay depending on experience, with an hourly rate stacked on top. Starting out, that equals about $32,000 a year.

Do flight attendants get paid before take off? ›

And it's a big deal. “Traditionally, neither pilots nor flight attendants are paid until the doors of the plane are closed and the brakes are released,” said Henry Harteveldt, a travel industry analyst at Atmosphere Research Group. “And that pay only lasts until the plane arrives at the gate.”

Do flight attendants make good money? ›

Flight attendants make an average annual wage of $62,680, according to May 2021 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Pay saw about a 10% bump from pre-pandemic levels. In May 2019, the BLS reported an average national wage of $56,230.

Do flight attendants get paid during boarding? ›

Typically, flight attendants aren't paid for boarding — they're only paid for their time in the air, not on the ground.

Is flight attendant school Hard? ›

But the training is hard. As in, really hard. Training can last anywhere from 4 to 8 weeks, 11 hours a day with just one day rest a week. Written exams every day, practical exams, long days spent in the classroom and aircraft cabin mock-ups, it's pretty fast-paced and relentless.

Is it hard to become a flight attendant? ›

Is it hard to become a flight attendant? Yes, the process of becoming a flight attendant is challenging. There are up to 1.5 million job applications for 5,000 to 10,000 jobs hiring. It's very competitive and the training process is long, sometimes taking up to 3 to 6 months for the entire process.

How often are flight attendants home? ›

The number of days a flight attendant gets to go home depends on their contract, the airline, and type of operation. Some flight attendants almost live in hotels and have “a life outside of work” of less than 10 days a month, while others go to work and come home every night like anybody else.

Where do flight attendants live? ›

Many flight attendants live together in large apartments or houses called "crash pads" located very close to the airport in the particular city where their airline's regional hub is located.

Do flight attendants get paid weekly? ›

Flight Attendants are paid based on the flights they work each month. They can choose to be paid monthly, or bi-weekly.

What is the best airline to work for? ›

Best Airline Staff in North America 2022
  • Delta Air Lines.
  • WestJet.
  • Southwest Airlines.
  • Alaska Airlines.
  • Hawaiian Airlines.
  • JetBlue Airways.
  • Sun Country Airlines.
  • Breeze Airways.

Do flight attendants need a degree? ›

Flight attendants must have at least a high school diploma and preferably an associate's or bachelor's degree. Instead of going to college, some people enroll in flight attendant school. If you want to work on international flights, you might need to take foreign language classes.

Do flight attendants get paid overtime? ›

Picking up overtime shifts is always an option. If you're on your day off when the airline's desperate for people, it'll offer overtime and say, "Hey, if you work this trip, we will pay you time and a half." That's been much more prevalent in the past six months.

How much do pilots get paid? ›

In the May 2020 report, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports the range of salaries for airline pilots, copilots, and flight engineers from less than $80,920 a year, to the highest 10 percent earning more than $208,000.

How is the life of a flight attendant? ›

A job as a flight attendant can be difficult, and you have to work long hours and often have to be on standby. Starting salary is usually low, and while you get to travel and meet new people, it might be difficult to maintain relationships. There are also chances of burnout and disrupted sleep cycles.

Do flight attendants get tips? ›

Most major airlines have policies against flight attendants accepting tips. Other airlines (like Southwest) discourage tips, but state that if a passenger insists on it, a flight attendant is allowed to accept a tip.

Do all airline employees fly for free? ›

The most important point to clear up is that airline employees do pay for their travel unless they are commuting for work. Even though they may not be responsible for covering the airfare that you would normally pay to fly, they are responsible for paying the taxes and fees on their tickets.

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