If you are ready to become a flight attendant and earn your wings ASAP, one of the best strategies you can deploy is to apply everywhere! The more applications you fill out, the more control you have over your career, the better candidate you become, and the better your chances of success.
I mean, of course, your first application should be with your top choice (if they are currently accepting applications) but once that app is in, don’t wait by the phone! Continue to put yourself out there. The Airline Listing page on my website is the best resource out there to help you find out who’s hiring.
Now, if you’ve been around FACC for a minute, this probably isn’t news to you. You know that the best airline to work for is one of the airlines that offers you a job! And the fastest way to achieve your flight attendant goal is through multiple applications. But as you’ve researched all of your options, you may have debated as to whether or not you could really afford to work for a regional airline because of the low starting pay. Especially if working for one of these airlines would require commuting or relocation. If that's you, have I got some good news!
PSA Airlines, Envoy Air, and Piedmont Airlines all significantly raised the hourly rate they pay their new-hire flight attendants in the last year. All three regional airlines, which are wholly-owned subsidiaries of American Airlines Group, the parent company that also owns American Airlines, are now all paying new hires over $27 a flight hour.
All three of these airlines operate under the name American Eagle and they offer service to American Airlines passengers on less popular (not only shorter) routes.
Republic Airways recently accepted a new flight attendant contract with a new pay scale that's even higher than the three American Airlines owned regionals. (For a tutorial on flight attendant pay math, watch this video.)
Back in 2009, I had the opportunity to fly for PSA Airlines. I had left my mainline airline shortly after I got married in 2008. When I applied to PSA, I was heartsick missing my career as a flight attendant. PSA Airlines offered me a CJO that felt like a lifeline, and because of that, they will always hold a special place in my heart.
I truly enjoyed my time as a regional flight attendant. I liked getting to know my coworkers and flying with the same crewmembers more often, building seniority quickly, and working on only two types of aircraft helped me feel like an expert more quickly. It’s also easier to get involved in training or recruiting when you’re with a smaller airline. After I had been with PSA for a year, I was able to apply and interview for a special assignment in the inflight training department where I had the honor of teaching initial and recurrent training.
If pay was the main thing holding you back from applying with a regional, that barrier is quickly being removed.
If you’re concerned about whether or not working for a regional will hurt your chances of moving on to a legacy carrier, let me relieve those fears, too. Working for a regional (or any airline, really) won’t adversely affect your chances of moving to a different airline and spending the majority of your flight attendant career at your dream airline. I made a video that goes more into depth about how I know it won’t affect your future and you can watch it here.
There is nothing shady or disloyal about applying for an airline that you’re not in love with or isn’t your dream. Airlines need flight attendants now, and as long as you fully serve while you are employed, then you are operating in integrity. You don’t owe them anything else. Just serve those passengers and keep them safe while you’re representing your "right now" airline and then you can do the same with your forever airline.