Flight Attendant Salary
Flight Attendants in the United States pull down an average of $38K annually. In the world of Flight Attendants, overall income ranges from $23K near the bottom to $77K at the top; this can include more than $6K from bonuses and more than $10K from profit sharing in exceptional cases. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by geographic location, followed by experience level and the particular employer. Female Flight Attendants make up most of the survey respondents at 72 percent. Job satisfaction is reported as high by the vast majority of workers. Most enjoy medical while a strong majority get dental coverage. Vision coverage is also available to more than half. Participants in PayScale's salary questionnaire provided the particulars of this report.
Job Description for Flight Attendant
Flight attendants help assure the comfort and safety of airplane passengers. They provide food and beverage service on many flights. They also instruct passengers about safety measures before and during flight operations. Flight attendants act as customer service contacts with travelers, answering questions about rewards programs and handling complaints. Finally, the attendants serve an important security role by observing passenger behavior and reporting and handling any problems they encounter.Read More...
Much of a flight attendant's role is fairly visible to the air traveler. The attendants help welcome guests aboard a flight and assist them in finding assigned seating and storing carry-on luggage. They also handle the more complicated service involved with first-class passengers. They can assist with locating gate information for connecting fliers and other travel services as well. Flight attendants ensure that during turbulence, take-offs, and landings, all passengers are properly belted and secured in seats.
Most flight attendants seek out education and training from community colleges or vocational schools that offer specialized instruction in this career field. Many flight attendants have a college degree in hospitality or a related field. Many employers have specific height and weight requirements for attendants, due to the tight space within aircraft cabins. Flight attendants typically work in airports and on airplanes, so they travel on a daily basis.
Flight Attendant Tasks
- Serve and/or sell meals, beverages and in-flight entertainment.
- Provide safety overviews to all passengers, particularly the exit rows.
- Make announcements, answer questions, and resolve emergent problems.
- Greet fliers, accept tickets, assist with luggage, and direct passengers to their seats.
- Keep the passenger area hygienic and in keeping with appearance standards.
Flight Attendant Job Listings
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Popular Employer Salaries for Flight Attendant
Dominating the field, United Airlines, Inc., American Airlines, Delta Air Lines Inc, US Airways Group, Inc., and Southwest Airlines Co are top firms with a reputation for hiring a great number of Flight Attendants. Employees of Southwest Airlines Co can expect to make the most, with the company offering a median salary of $53K; however, pay is widely dispersed from bottom to top, ranging from $25K to $118K. American Airlines, JetBlue Airways Corporation, and Skywest Airlines, Inc. also offer top salaries for Flight Attendants. Workers at these firms can expect to earn about $52K, $51K, and $48K, respectively.
Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include US Airways Group, Inc. at $31K, and Delta Air Lines Inc where $38K is the norm, but it is worth noting that some Flight Attendants there earn up to $89K.
Pay by Experience Level for Flight Attendant
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
For many Flight Attendants, experience and pay levels seem to be correlated; more years in the business generally lead to more money. Survey participants with less than five years' experience pocket $38K on average, but those with five to 10 years of experience enjoy a much bigger median of $47K. For Flight Attendants, 10 to 20 years of experience on the job amounts to an average salary of $51K. Seasoned veterans with 20 years under their belts enjoy a median income of $61K.
Pay Difference by Location
Newark offers some of the highest pay in the country for Flight Attendants, 80 percent above the national average. Flight Attendants can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like San Francisco (+12 percent), Dallas (+12 percent), New York (+10 percent), and Houston (+7 percent). In Atlanta, salaries are 19 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market. Not at the bottom but still paying below the median are employers in Miami and Denver (13 percent lower and 2 percent lower, respectively).