« AMR CEO Horton says creditors should get more stock in merged airline than what US Airways has proposed | Main | APA board sends tentative agreement to members for a ratification vote »

November 15, 2012

Over 20,000 apply for flight attendant positions at American in less than a week

American Airlines had over 20,000 people apply for flight attendant positions in less than week.

The Fort Worth-based carrier had opened up its application process on November 5 and is still looking for foreign-language candidates to apply, American spokeswoman Missy Cousino said on Thursday.

"We're thrilled with the overwhelming response to our regular flight attendant job postings, and believe we now have enough qualified candidates to consider for these openings," Cousino said. "In the meantime, job postings for several language speakers, including Korean, Mandarin, Finnish and Japanese will remain open."

Last month, American announced plans to hire 1,500 new flight attendants over the next year. With over 2,200 flight attendants taking a voluntary buy-out that included a $40,000 severance payment, American said it needed to hire new crew members to maintain adequate staffing levels.

It's the first time that American has hired new flight attendants in over a decade. Applicants will be processed this month with training scheduled to begin in January.

As part of the new contract it negotiated with the Association of Professional Flight Attendants while American is in bankruptcy, flight attendants will be trained to work on both domestic and international routes. Next year, they will also be trained on the Boeing 777-300 and Airbus aircraft that will enter American's fleet.

American currently has 16,000 flight attendants, at an average age of 51, according to the union. Their average annual salary is $45,000, American has said, which is higher than the national average of $37,740 for flight attendants in 2010, according to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

-Andrea Ahles


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Over 20,000 apply for flight attendant positions at American in less than a week:


casual observer

Guess that flight attendant job ain't so bad after all! After all of the APFA bluster, you would think AA tortures its people. Apparently 20,000 don't buy it.

Sky Lover

Maybe one of these 20k will know how to smile...

elissa dodge

There are a lot of people on this site who just hate unions, and that's not me. But this article did make me think about that expression "you don't know what you got until its gone." Everyone has complained SO much the bankruptcy at AA and that people had to take cuts, but put in perspective there are a lot of people who are happy for any job. Imagine if AA had just shut down instead of try to cut costs. At least those thousands of jobs are still there, even if they pay less


What do they have to look forward to if hired? Working all hours of the day, most, if not all holidays - for no extra pay either. Many will be asked to relocate to high cost of living areas like New York or Los Angeles. Kinda hard to do while making about 20K per year to start with an almost 10 year pay progression. When the pay and benefits were considered decent, it was tough to get by. Now, these new recruits better be living with mom and dad, or an understanding spouse.

Aircraft Test Equipment

Acquiring 1,500 new flight attendants means that the Aviation Company is growing bigger, this brings good news to the unemployed Americans. An annual salary of $45,000 isn’t bad for an attendant. Good luck to the applicants!

Karen Sanchez

I was very interested in applying for a flight attendant position but was never able to find anywhere to apply, on line. I looked everywhere, on AA web-site for a place to apply. Now it sounds as if they closed the applications for now. Where should I look to apply, in the future? Thank you.
Karen Sanchez, RN


No new hires in a decade! Looks like the union had a stranglehold on AA.


20.000 Walmart employees looking for a .50 cent raise.

Kerry Simmons

I have been an AA flight attendant for 25 years and have NEVER come even close to making $45,000! Love to know where they get those numbers!


I am a 26 year flight attendant and fly a normal schedule. This year I will make $42,000. The new hires will make half the hourly salary I make starting out. The figures from AA are very misleading......but would you expect anything different?

Oh Miss

As a 28 yr FA I am laughing hysterically... I want to see what these 20k candidates look like... BTW AA has a policy of no tattoos, no body piercings and only 1 earring in each ear. Thinking this will eliminate about 90%... off the top. OH Yes.. young, idealist, entitled youth... your "freedom of expression" will have NO PLACE at AA.. And AA will not give you holidays, weekends or your birthday off either.. If you look like a nice, squeaky clean, conservative person who just stepped out of a J Crew catalog... you have a chance... Of course if you are that sharp looking... why on earth would you work a job that barely pays 20k?? Most of us on the "top tier" pay can barely afford to survive after working 20 years with this company...and don't let them fool you... 45k is no where near the avg. pay... more like about 37K and we had to put in 15 years to get there...BTW YOUR new pay schedule will NEVER SEE that tier!... Fair warning and Good Luck!

That's just not true.

I have been flying for 21 years. There is no way the average salary of an AA flight attendant is 45k. That would only be possible if you work overtime. But let's just say its true-try living in NYC on 45k after taxes. It's impossible. And those who believe that unions have caused the airline to lose money are obtuse. AA flight attendants earn less money now than they did in 1993. That means we haven't had a raise in 19 years. Yeah, we've really had a stronghold on AA....


New hire flight attendants expecting to make $45,000 a year will be in for an unpleasant surprise. That figure is taking into consideration the fact that almost all AA flight attendants are at the top (15 year) pay scale. Those that fly overtime averaged with regular-scheduled fliers based on an hourly wage bring that yearly average up. New hires on an regular schedule can expect $18,000- $20,000 a year.


In reply to That's just not true, maybe the unions haven't caused the airline to lose money but your comment has just proven they haven't helped you either.

Sky Lover

Oh Miss, you are being very judgemental.

I've yet to see an AA flight attendant look anything like a J Crew magazine. Most FAs on my flights look like they gave up on appearances years ago.

Of course by your post I'm guessing you are that average surly FA that adds no personal touch to flying.

casual observer

Hmmmm...all of these flight attendants weighing in apparently cannot read or arithmetic. When the airline says the average age of an AA attendant is 51 years old, one can pretty easily estimate that the median years of experience is around 30 years, give or take a few. After 30 years, the $45,000 average salary sounds about right, especially for around 80 hours a month of work.

The funny part is that those eager and maybe desperate for a job are being berated by their potential colleagues even before they start. No wonder AA flight attendants have a sulky and rude reputation. I'm sure the fresh faces and attitudes will be quite welcome.


totally agree with Sky Lover, Casual Observer, and Teresa.

I have not seen a AA flight attendant looking like this for years:

So please don't flatter yourself. If you flew with international airlines such as any asian airlines, any middle east airlines, any south american airlines,...actually any airlines that is not America based the flight attendants are much more attractive and attentive to the guests' needs. They actually look like JCrew models. =)

Trust me you guys will never make it because they actually have a workout workshop for all flight attendants (like military boot camp) to get them in shape. Service, well...people in those other countries care about service...American based airline flight attendants do not or they are impossible to train. I do not blame you flight attendants (although you should take some accountability) but the fault mainly due to Unions, they make people lazy and fat. People working for the Unions believe they have job security so they do not care and when employees do not care the company goes down. Look at all our car manufactures, airline industry, and or any Union organizations...all crap compared to international firms that are not unionized.

Unions are in trouble nowadays because new companies understand the dangers of Unions and trying all they can to block them out of their "PRODUCTIVE" environment and current Unionized companies are failing so the Union income is going down...which means...wait for it...wait for it...the top guys in the Union no longer get the big fat checks!!! BOOOMMM!! So what does this mean!!!?? it means you been had, you thought you worked for AA? guess what, you work for the Union guy that does nothing and just take you money and destroy your job security. How you like them apples, pretty good scam huh? There are no benefits of being in a Union, they are dirty underhanded, lowly educated cheats and leeches of society that contributes nothing but blocking free markets and destroying American wealth.


Just in case you want something to think about:

United Airlines Flight Attendant pay:

American Airlines Flight Attendant pay:

This should put thing one apples to apples comparison. If you want to Quit AA, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE DO IT!!!! I really dislike you flight attendants in AA keep bitching about your pay at ear shot of the cabin, rude to people do not speak English, and pissed off looks during anytime that you actually need to perform you job, a sorry unprofessional bunch. I much rather deal with some young blood that loves to fly and has a passion for her/his job.

Just for laughs and giggles below you will find actual picture of some other flight attendants from other countries:

Korean Air

China Airlines:

Singapore Airlines:

Finn Airlines


Lan Airlines:

Had enough? Some are marketing picture but I flew with all of them before and trust me they are very similar to their marketing brochures. So stop making me feel bad as an American because fist thing people from other country see before they land are you guys and frankly you make us all look pretty bad.


so much misinformation! AA shed 2200 F/A' to take on 1500(-700!) new at much lower pay... they are not growing!. that $37K average.. includes regional carriers. AA is currently rnked lowest among legacy carriers. Yes 20,000 aplicants., that shows you that ANY job in this economy is better than none. I feel sorry for the new-hires, $14k or less take home pay for 12-14 hour days and 10 hour layovers..and no benefits...

The comments to this entry are closed.