Are you caught in a dilemma of whether to choose international flight attendant or domestic flight attendant work? Try to decide what airline to apply to based on the work you will do and the conditions you’ll work under. Ultimately it’s about lifestyle and while the actual work is similar, the type of work differs and the lifestyle you’ll lead is in rather stark contrast between the two options.
One you get to see family and friends with predictable regularity, the other not so. One you have to learn to sleep on a plane, the other you’ll probably be sacked if you do. One you fight the clock, the other you’ll find that the clock fights you.Yes, international flight attendant and domestic flight attendant work has its differences. The basic requirements to be either an international or domestic flight attendant are of course the same.
You have to meet the same educational standards of leaving or GED equivalent, be of sound physical health with correctable vision, be able to swim 50 metres (150 ft) fully clothed and hold a first aid certificate. Of course you need to be a great people person with great customer service skills and preferably have significant past customer service experience in the ‘real world’. Then there’s the ability to study, be a team player and be able to adapt to flying requirements such work a 24/7 roster as well as the need or willingness to relocate to a base directed by the needs of the company if required.
For some however, the passion to experience either International flight attendant or domestic flight attendant work sees the requirements as mere incidentals or stepping stones to achieving their dream to fly.Domestic flight attendant work provides great challenges and will give you a lot of satisfaction provided you have the core attribute of a great flight attendant and that is, you really are a people person. You will be saying hello and goodbye to perhaps 1000 or more people in a days’ work depending on the aircraft size and type you happen to be operating on during your duty.
And while a typical working day would max out at 4 legs, some route structures or working hours may allow for 5 or even six leg days. ‘Legs’ are airline speak for describing a single flight from point A to point B and involving one take-off and one landing.This can be tiring work but the major benefit is that you maintain a normality of lifestyle and as an airline employee you of course reap the rewards of great holiday travel discounts and other airline employment benefits in your downtime.
International flight attendant work is starkly different to the status quo of domestic flight attendant work. Particularly with intercontinental and trans Atlantic work or in essence, anytime you have to do more than one service on board in one leg. Two or more services automatically mean that you will be a long time in the air and won’t be seeing a new lot of passengers until you’ve landed, said goodbye and gone to your hotel for a sleep and specified rest period, sometimes being several days.Yes international work is much more a lifestyle or rather, jet-setting option. It can play havoc on your personal home relationships although some wouldn’t have it any other way because they can make it work for them. And while North and South flying is relatively easy on the natural and normal circadian rhythm of your body, East and West flying exposes you to great time changes relative to your ‘home body clock’.
Again, this can be managed to a certain extent and for many, the sheer thrill of travelling to and seeing new places particularly in the first one or two years of flying overcomes much jet lag.Obviously there are pros and cons in the finer details of international or domestic flying such as the preference of flying on single or wide bodied aircraft, the willingness to live out of a suitcase or be home at the end of your shift, receive fantastic duty free allowances and for that matter travel allowances or simply forgo most of them and save them for your personal travel time. Largely however, it’s the type of work and lifestyle that you’ll lead that is the major difference between the two options.