Q. I’m looking at becoming a flight attendant, however I want to become a corporate flight attendant. Do you have to go for a special training to become one? Any direction would be great.
A. I am not a corporate flight attendant, but I have some friends who have amazing lifestyles as one. My friend Sara was gracious enough to share her knowledge and experience with us:
A corporate flight attendant is very different than a commercial flight attendant even though they are both primarily on board for the passengers safety, this pretty much is where the two similarities stop. You are responsible for preparing or obtaining all the catering, stocking the aircraft with bedding, snacks, newspapers, magazines, medicine and any other special request the clients or pilots might have. It helps to have a background as a chef, personal assistant or a fine dinning waiter/waitress. Some clients will hire a chef or nurse and then send them to training to learn the safety part. Being able to predict your clients needs before they even realize that they need something is invaluable.
In commercial aviation your training is paid for, but not usually in corporate. When you first start you will need to pay for your initial training yourself. There are many companies who advertise Corporate Flight Attendant training and are very glad to take your money, and will even promise you job placement at the end. Be very careful and wise on how you decide to spend your money, make sure that it is a company that is recognized and accepted industry wide, like FACTs or Flight Safety.
One downside to corporate aviation is the lack of job security, unlike commercial, there is no union and your job is only as good as today and many have found themselves jobless for many reasons, company stock went down and they sold the airplane, new CEO doesn’t want a flight attendant, the new wife feels jealous of the flight attendant, etc…
Many are attracted to corporate because of the many places you go and the time you are able to spend sight seeing and experiencing the culture, the pay is usually much higher than commercial, and you get to meet some amazing people from heads of state, leaders in the fortune 500 companies and celebrities.
If Corporate Aviation interests you, you might want to check out The NBAA (National Business Aviation Association) Flight Attendant conference, a great place to learn more about the industry, meet leaders in the field and network. It will be held in Washington DC this year, June 20-22nd. there is also a NBAA facebook page, NBAA Flight Attendant Committee as well as their website. with information.
Business aviation is very demanding, CFAs schedules are usually very unpredictable, if you are a contractor you are always looking for work, networking and flying as much as possible, you never want to say no, or you might not be called back, and that is only if you are lucky enough to get on a few companies list. If you fly full time for a corporation you might have a bit more of a schedule, but don’t count on it, as schedules often change. Many companies have soft days off and hard days off, you can be called in on your soft days so you always have to be ready. Usually when you first start you will have 18 hards days off a year, this includes sick time. Flying for one owner can be as diverse as the owners themselves, eccentric and only wants male model flight attendants or a family who wants a chef who cooks on board and watches the children. Again you will basically be on reserve for ever.
Thanks Sara! Hope that helps answer some of your questions about corporate flying! Have more questions for us? Post in the comments below. Have you had a recent interview with a commercial airline? We want to hear from you! Please fill out our quick survey, “here” and help those coming in behind you! Thanks!
Posted in How to Become a Flight Attendant
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