Former FA says airlines are hiring older people

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by lili, Feb 8, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. lili
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    lili Gold Member

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    Was introduced to her at a rather boring pre-dinner cocktail hour since my habits were well-known. (Cocktails and flying.)

    According to her, those aging FAs seen everywhere have not aged on the job, but are new hires brought in cheaply and expected to work less than 5 years so never vested. She said they are mostly women who always wanted to be a flight attendant, but raised families instead, and now are happy to sign up for low wages and a short career. She said the true old-timers tend to work rarely and work only the cushy routes.

    Any input? It rather makes sense to me from what I've seen.

    She loved her job, but said it was really physically difficult. (I believe Tommy, Reb and others said that after @MegaDO1 :) ) She left with several compressed vertebrae and other physical issues. She's very tall, and twice said she thinks she was just too big to work in such a small space.

    Anyway, her credentials were interesting. She looks a gorgeous 50, as does her husband - track coach at a local university. She went to work for Braniff and still has (and I'm sure could fit into) her Pucci outfit, which means she must be older than her looks. She remembers when people wore white gloves, when stews sliced Chateaubriand seatside - and the flight where the carving knife wasn't loaded. When Braniff left the skies she went to work for Southwest. What a change!

    Providing content, one inane post at a time.
     
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  2. TrueBlueFlyer
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    TrueBlueFlyer Silver Member

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    I have noticed many older FA's on domestic airlines, but other than hearing stories of how JetBlue hires people from any other industry who they find interesting... I haven't heard much about what the legacies do... I always assumed that they just stayed on as the airlines stopped hiring younger FA's.

    Then again, I have always noticed that regional airlines working as "express" service for the legacies always had very young FA's... this is true not just for the USA but Europe also... the youngest FA's across the board was in Australia on Virgin Blue... but they did also have a few older FA's added into the mix inconspicuously.
     
  3. violist
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    violist Gold Member

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    I once went to a reunion of Pan Am survivors, and some of them were darn cute.

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  4. Jim
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    Jim Silver Member

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    A whole new pool for Dovster!
     
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  5. Flyer_Esq
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    Flyer_Esq Silver Member

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    Very interesting post. I would have never thought that the older flight attendants were new hires.

    Re: the too tall comment - I remember way back during my undergrad years when I worked for an airline as a ticket agent there were height requirements/limitations for our flight attendants... something like you had to be between 5'3" and 5'11" in order to be able to adquately perform your duties on the plane.

    I also remember a specific pilot who used to always yell: "People used to dress up to fly! They wore white gloves! What the #@$% happened!" That always made me laugh. [​IMG]
     
  6. sendaiben
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    sendaiben Gold Member

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    Airplanes changed from chauffeur-driven limousines to cheap buses, is what [​IMG]
     
  7. IMGone
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    IMGone Silver Member

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    Since the legacies aren't doing much hiring or better to say, recall from layoff of their FAs, I think this might have been a discussion at cross-purposes. What airline is she referencing specifically as it can't be the industry as a whole. The other side of the fewer years to leaving and lower cost, is higher medical and workers comp type issues -- not sure where the balance would really be.

    I know I've seen new FAs on the express flights who are older (I've also seen those that look like they reached the age where they can get first driver's license!). Those are the airlines that have hiring activity along with the WN/B6s of the world. I recall a while back when UA finally started to hire and recall, and then within a month or so after graduation started talking layoff again. There seems to be a long while between classes for new FAs these days.
     
  8. sobore
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    sobore Gold Member

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    Airlines have been hiring older people. I had an FA on AA who I believe was King Tut's sister.
     
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  9. 2soonold
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    2soonold Gold Member

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    Oh joy! There's hope for me yet,
     
  10. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    IME Delta Express has a lot of middle aged (not ancient but certainly not young, I would guess 40s and 50s) FAs.

    Various foreign carriers have different rules about seniority and assignment to flights. For example, I've heard that one airline, I think it's NZ, guarantees everyone some desirable long-haul trips. NZ also schedules all of the FAs and cockpit crew together, which other carriers generally don't do; it's not unusual to have FAs from one base and pilots based elsewhere. Some carriers insist that all FAs be qualified on all plane types (most US carriers do this), while others encourage/require specialization in only a few aircraft. It's a tradeoff between training costs and flexibility, although I sympathize with the DL FAs being required to know so many different aircraft post merger.
     

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