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Do F/As Have To Be Good-looking?  
User currently offlineDuke From Canada, joined Sep 1999, 1187 posts, RR: 2
Posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 4943 times:

In the "golden age of aviation" (I.E. mid-20th century), F/As were apparently uniformly females and seem to have often been selected for being good looking, correct me if I'm wrong. Today, guys can also be F/As. So I was wondering, how important is it to F/A hiring for people to be good looking?

20 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineFA4UA From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 812 posts, RR: 18
Reply 1, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 4927 times:

Hiring standards at UA are pretty strict. One must be proportional weight to height and be of a pleasant disposition. My training group was a pretty good looking lot, and the more I fly around the system the more I'm impressed.

As time takes it's toll on us though....

It's been proven time and time again that more attractive people are often given preferential treatment in almost every circumstance, whether job interviews or otherwise. The year I was hired, UA chose 1,200 out of an applicant pool of 35,000 people... so my guess is the attractive one's definately had an upper hand!


The debate continues... Starwood or Hyatt... which is better
User currently offlineTWISTEDWHISPER From Sweden, joined Aug 2003, 716 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 4897 times:

I understand if the airline wants it's F/A:s to be good looking, as it could attract more people traveling with them, but then again, I believe that looks is nothing in an emergency situation, and in many other situations for that matter, that's when experienced F/A:s is important...

Coming to think of it, I wonder if good looking F/A could be a security risk. Let me explain:
A good looking F/A could be a security risk if:
1. She's been hired only because of her looks, and she lacks common sense, experience and the capability of keeping her head cool in situations that might occur on a flight.

2. If there's alcohol being served onboard. Some people (men) feel that if there is a attractive woman in his immediate proximity, and he has alcohol in his blood, those cursed breeding thoughts comes in to his head, which could very well lead to harassments of the F/A. And when he (this alpha male) has no success with his "prayer" he might get upset, and people that are upset could do things that maybe is not so dangerous at a bar, but at 35,000 Ft they might be fatal... Leaving, for instance...  Wow!

I don't really care whether the F/A is good looking or not, they are there to provide pax with service, and to enhance the chances of the pax being able to walk away for any kind of emergency.

Read between the lines.
User currently offlineNwfltattendant From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 341 posts, RR: 3
Reply 3, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 4863 times:

Absolutely not...!!!! FAs do not need to be good looking.

The year I was hired at NWA, people in their 50s and even 1 i know in her 60s got hired in 2000. The bottom line with FAs is that if you can do your job, including manipulating the doors, emergency management, fussing with carts, theres nothing to talk about. As far as good looking FAs being a security risk, no. No matter how good looking an FA is, they are required to maintain the same high standards and score %s on tests. This is established and monitored by the FAA, AND IS NOT NEGOTIABLE. At NWA, if you failed a test, you were given a retake. If you failed that retake, you were walking out the door. If you failed 3 tests, and did OK on the retake, your 4th fail would also send you out the door. Good looks would not be ANY asset in any of the above

Go yakkin !!!!!!
User currently offlineUshermittwoch From Germany, joined Jan 2004, 2999 posts, RR: 14
Reply 4, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 4860 times:

Most F/A's aren't good looking!

I have been flying around the world all my life and I have only seen ONE!!!! really attractive F/A. That was in 1996 LGW-TPA on British Caledonian.
What a sweetheart she was....

Where have all the tri-jets gone...
User currently offlineCALMSP From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 4190 posts, RR: 8
Reply 5, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 4848 times:
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they should be, like 5'7, 120lbs, blonde hair blue eyes right?

User currently offlineAlcregular From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 4797 times:

At VS you have to have model looks before they will consider you, wheres a gir I know went to work for BY looked as if she had been dragged through a hedge backwards every day,

User currently onlinePe@rson From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 19600 posts, RR: 51
Reply 7, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 4770 times:

My opinion is simple: I do not care what they look like. The only areas which I deem 'essential' are: friendly, courteous, kind, happy, professional, caring and generally motivated to do their job properly. Who gives a sh!t whether someone's good-looking or not? Not me. Professionalism is much, much more important. Then again, I'm not a person who believes that facial or bodily beauty means they're special.

"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
User currently offlineTokolosh From Netherlands, joined Sep 2001, 366 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 4766 times:

My guess is that any serious airline hires on the basis of professionalism. If good looks come with it, that's bonus air miles!  Smile

By the way, where is Piedmontgirl these days? Suddenly disappeared.

Did the chicken or the egg get laid first?
User currently offlineMozart From Luxembourg, joined Aug 2003, 2393 posts, RR: 21
Reply 9, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 12 hours ago) and read 4580 times:

As one member of this forum who sometimes rants about the vulgarity of some FAs, let me add: from a pax point of view it is NOT important. First of all I want to be sure they know what they are doing and they would be able to handle a safety issue calmly and intellegently. For example (but just an example) I have the impression that FAs on airlines in the US are very well trained on safety issues. Always felt in good hands safety-wise.

Now, when it comes to judging the "classiness" of an airline, yes, then I think good looking FAs contribute to that. However, having said that, "good looks" are a very subjective thing, differing from one culture to another and from one person to the next. For instance, I think that Air France FAs are very classy - they are not always model types (but often are), but they all have a lot of elegance in their way of grooming, talking, moving, their manners, their politeness, their attentiveness... But the prove that looks may be deceiving also comes from Air France: the ladies at the "Salon" lounge at Paris CDG typically look very good as well, but they can be the biggest b***ches (forgive my French). All in all I find European FAs more attractive, but then, as I said, that is just of secondary importance. It's as if I cared whether a plane got an outside bath before I board it.

User currently offlineJafa From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 782 posts, RR: 3
Reply 10, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4539 times:

Air travel used to be percieved as dangerous at first. Then later on when it became more main stream the airlines used sex appeal to market to men. Today airlines in the US have gone corporate, just take a look at the uniforms. FA's don't have to be good looking, but they have to be well groomed and polished. In reality this may not always be the case. Besides just how do you describe good-looking? Its different for all of us.

User currently offlinePiedmontGirl From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 1124 posts, RR: 12
Reply 11, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 4500 times:

Airlines look for a whole bunch of attributes in their employees, flight attendants included. They want someone who is intelligent, motivated and able to do the job, dependable, reliable, honest, and a variety of other things. If that person is also attractive, it's a plus.

It doesn't matter how good looking someone is if s/he is rude, lazy, dishonest, unreliable and a variety of other negative things. Airlines are hiring someone to perform a job not take part in a beauty contest.

Years ago when I was interviewed there was a woman in that group who was just absolutely beautiful. Tall, blond, had legs that went up to Idaho. She wasn't with the interviewer more then ten minutes. While we were waiting to be called in, I saw a man literally run into a wall he was so engrossed in staring at her.

Many years later, I asked the man who was doing the initial interviews that day if he remembered her. He said he sure did -- that she was one of the most beautiful women he had ever seen. When I asked why he didn't hire her, he said that good looks aside "......she was a self absorbed, whiny bitch --- dumb, too." All of her good looks did not overcome her personality and character flaws.

User currently offlineNIKV69 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 4409 times:

I would say that years ago FAs were more expected to be attractive. These days there are more male FAs and females aren't expected to be great looking. I find that brunettes that are attractive and professional on flights to be the best, really don't need to see the barbie doll type. Varig has some really nice ones, on my trip back last year I had one who absoultely gorgeous. Brazilian women are the best in the world. I also have to say Continental has some great FAs, male and female. Very good at what they do and always look great and they have a nice uniform..

User currently offlineAirbust From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 49 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 4337 times:

...Apparently not on US major carriers!!!  Big grin

User currently offlineGreg From United Kingdom, joined May 2005, 0 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 4244 times:

Being attractive is not a bona fide occupational requirement for f/a's as it would be for modeling or acting (where you can freely discriminate for not having the 'right' look). So no, airlines can't discriminate on beauty.

That being said, there are any number of other reasons any company can (if they choose) to disqualify those that do not fit the profile they seek.

As any real traveller will affirm...who gives a shit what they look like..as long as the attitude and professionalism is right. I'd much rather have a group of 40 or 50 year old attendants..than some 21+ that doesn't have a clue how to handle herself...or passengers.

User currently offlineBubbinski From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 159 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4199 times:

I would much rather have a kind, gentle, smiling, attentive 300 pound transsexual F/A with hair that was combed with an eggbeater serving me rather than a mean, icy, snarly porn star/model.


"Simplify" - Thoreau
User currently offlineHNLFlyboy From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 321 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 4163 times:

Ok folks, let's keep in mind first and foremost why we have flight attendants on a/c anyway...for the safety of the passengers! If I may quote most a/c safety videos/speeches, "in the unlikely event of an emergency...". Yes it's true, despite the stereotype of them being flying waiters/waitresses, they really are there for our safety. They are highly trained individuals, in many aspects, trained for safety being number one as well as to serve the needs of the passengers.

Looks to me aren't as important as their functionality and professionalism. I mean, how many people can say their office is at FL35,000 and that they start their day in LAX and end up in LHR or somewhere like that? Not many right? Think about it, how would you like to be stuck on a tube for ten and half hours with 350-400 people? Ok, now think about if you had to do two food services and who knows how many beverage services to serve all of those people? Yeah, I thought so.

I have a lot of respect for F/A's as my oldest sister was one. I saw what she went through as I had a chance to fly on numerous flights with her. The infamous HNL turns from LAX....LAX-HNL-LAX in the same day. Start at like 8am LAX time and back into LAX at like 9pm that night. That's a long day.

Anyway, I know I went a little off subject, but I will state again, looks aren't so much important to me as to the fact that they can do their jobs. I would appreciate reading other views on this...

User currently offlineNIKV69 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 4113 times:

Transsexuals? Let's be honest, men prefer attractive women, I myself prefer the Lara Flynn Boyle look, nice slim brunette. 28-32 with a nice disposition who knows her job. I must be lucky I have flown alot and have never had a nasty FA. Once again my vote to Continental, 4 flights last fall and every FA was nice and professional..I even remember a nasty passenger who had a problem with a man who had a dog on board, it wasn't a seeing eye dog but he was allowed on in the passenger compartment, he had something on his body but I forget, he was so adorable, the FA handled it great. You go Mr. Bethune!! Great job..

User currently offlineRareBear From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 553 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4083 times:


I hope you meant 5'7'.


Illegitimus non carborundum
User currently offlineRareBear From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 553 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4080 times:


I hope you meant 5'-7".


Illegitimus non carborundum
User currently offlineRareBear From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 553 posts, RR: 0
Reply 20, posted (12 years 3 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 4074 times:

Sorry for the double post. Mouse has a hair trigger.


Illegitimus non carborundum
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