asianguy767
Topic Author
Posts: 247
Joined: Sun Oct 12, 2003 11:17 pm

Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 11:39 am

Just out of curiousity, is there a National retirement age for FAs in the USA? I recall reading about FAs who are even over 80 years old on legacy US carriers, something I don't really understand. If there is a general national retirement age, then should not FAs be subject to that too? I know in the US its illegal to discriminate against but what about discriminating for? No offense to anyone I am just trying to understand this sensitive issue. As I have also read that at some European airlines retirement for FAs ranges between 55-60.
 
GALLEYSTEW
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2007 7:25 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:37 pm

There is NO national "general" retirement age for most occupations in the US. Should there be?? I think , yes. That being said, I have a friend who is 67 and still one of the best flight attendants you could ever have on your airplane. She brings her own flowers, decorates up the first class cabin, and really goes all out to please her passengers. AND she looks pretty damn smart in her uniform.
All Posts are my opinions only.
 
jfk777
Posts: 5822
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:23 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 12:37 pm

In the USA there are some FA in their 80's, these ladies love what they do and as long as they pass their flight physicals they can keep their jobs.
 
saab2000
Posts: 1216
Joined: Thu Jun 21, 2001 6:19 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 1:59 pm

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
In the USA there are some FA in their 80's, these ladies love what they do and as long as they pass their flight physicals they can keep their jobs.


There is no flight physical for F/As and the recurrent training is not very physically demanding, if at all. I do not want an 80 year old F/A evacuating the airplane in an emergency. There should either be stringent physical exams or recurrent training or there should be a mandatory retirement age.

Just my opinion.
smrtrthnu
 
trent1000
Posts: 592
Joined: Tue Jan 30, 2007 3:55 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 2:17 pm

Quoting GALLEYSTEW (Reply 1):
AND she looks pretty damn smart in her uniform.

Well... she mustn't work for UA then...

Quoting GALLEYSTEW (Reply 1):
I have a friend who is 67

... hang on, maybe she does work for UA...

I've hardly ever experienced anything but OLD, frumpy, GRUMPY attendants on UA Aus vv US...
 
PacNWjet
Posts: 809
Joined: Thu Sep 14, 2000 1:18 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 4:03 pm

Quoting asianguy767 (Thread starter):
If there is a general national retirement age, then should not FAs be subject to that too?

When people speak about a "retirement age" in the United States, what they mean is eligibility for retirement benefits, e.g., Social Security, not an age when people are required to retire. Federal law does mandate a retirement age for certain professions where advancing age is alleged to be a safety issue, most notably the mandatory retirement age for commercial airline pilots. However, implementation of such rules require legislation and given all the other pressing issues in the U.S. today it seems unlikely anyone would make a priority out of the age of flight attendants although, as saab2000 points out, one could make the case that there are potential safety issues involved with the physical condition of flight attendants.
 
User avatar
Revelation
Posts: 13754
Joined: Wed Feb 09, 2005 9:37 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 5:34 pm

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
these ladies

... and gents ...  
Quoting PacNWjet (Reply 5):
one could make the case that there are potential safety issues involved with the physical condition of flight attendants

Personally I think there should be a mandatory retirement age for this reason.

However, realistically, there is still only one FA per 50 pax in general, so I'm not counting on one of them to chuck my ass out of a burning plane.
Inspiration, move me brightly!
 
PGNCS
Posts: 2249
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2007 5:07 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 6:32 pm

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
In the USA there are some FA in their 80's, these ladies love what they do and as long as they pass their flight physicals they can keep their jobs.

Some of them do and some of them don't. There are no required physical exams for flight attendants.

Quoting Revelation (Reply 6):
However, realistically, there is still only one FA per 50 pax in general, so I'm not counting on one of them to chuck my ass out of a burning plane.

The regulators are, though.
 
Pe@rson
Posts: 16001
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 6:29 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 6:33 pm

Quoting asianguy767 (Thread starter):
is there a National retirement age for FAs in the USA?

408.  
"Everyone writing for the Telegraph knows that the way to grab eyeballs is with Ryanair and/or sex."
 
flyby519
Posts: 1147
Joined: Tue Jul 24, 2007 3:31 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 6:37 pm

There is a mandatory retirement age for pilots, and air traffic controllers. I think FAs should also have more stringent physical fitness requirements and duty time regulations comparable to pilots. The last thing I want is to fly with an 80yr old FA who is working a 16+hr duty day and having to deal with an emergency situation.
These postings or comments are not a company-sponsored source of communication.
 
DFW36L
Posts: 78
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2010 6:19 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 6:39 pm

Valerie is 105 years old!
See! I knew American Eagle was First Class all along!
 
chrisair
Posts: 1771
Joined: Fri Sep 01, 2000 11:32 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 8:12 pm

I flew with one NWA FA who must have been with them 55+ years. She said when she started at NW, she was flying Stratocruisers and DC-6s across the Pacific to HNL and Asia.

She had some great stories. You can probably find her on the SEA-HNL route, unless she's retired.
 
PI4EVER
Posts: 617
Joined: Wed May 06, 2009 10:29 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:03 pm

I have a dear friend who is still flying, after being hired in 1959 at age 22. A widowed grandmother who is fit and attractive, she is one of the most professional and personable people you'll ever meet. She treats passengers like guest's in her home and if there is any question she can handle an emergency with fitness and agility.....she completed the Disney Marathon this year and recently BEAT ME competing in a beach race and obstacle course to win her age division. Don't underestimate the abilities based solely on an age....in recurrent she can toss an exit window across the floor!
It would be a shame to make this woman retire.........she loves her job, is proud of her Company and looks damn good in her uniform.....she is teased that walking behind her in a concourse, in her high heels and uniform, she looks like a hot young "hostess" from 1960!
watch what you want. you may get it.
 
sq_ek_freak
Posts: 1179
Joined: Fri Dec 15, 2000 4:48 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:14 pm

Quoting trent1000 (Reply 4):
I've hardly ever experienced anything but OLD, frumpy, GRUMPY attendants on UA Aus vv US...

Some of the best crews I've encountered in all my travels are NYC, SEA, HNL and LAX based crews on UA. The single worst flight I have encountered in terms of service was a horrible flight on SQ where literally every single cabin crew I dealt with spat such horrendous attitude at passengers. And this was in Business Class.

Point being, it's unfair to generalize an entire airline's crew contingent.
Keep Discovering
 
tommy767
Posts: 4658
Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 12:18 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:18 pm

Quoting PI4EVER (Reply 12):

I have a dear friend who is still flying, after being hired in 1959 at age 22. A widowed grandmother who is fit and attractive, she is one of the most professional and personable people you'll ever meet. She treats passengers like guest's in her home and if there is any question she can handle an emergency with fitness and agility.....she completed the Disney Marathon this year and recently BEAT ME competing in a beach race and obstacle course to win her age division. Don't underestimate the abilities based solely on an age....in recurrent she can toss an exit window across the floor!

Born in 1937? I mean, that's old but not like terribly old to be an f/a.

I flew EWR-SLC one time and was served dinner by an ex Pan Am f/a working the route. She had to be well into her 70s.
"KEEP CLIMBING" -- DELTA
 
chrisair
Posts: 1771
Joined: Fri Sep 01, 2000 11:32 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Thu Dec 01, 2011 9:29 pm

Quoting TOMMY767 (Reply 14):
I flew EWR-SLC one time and was served dinner by an ex Pan Am f/a working the route.

There was an ex-Pan Am FA on my DTW-MSP flight a few months ago. He said he worked for them for 8 years before going to NWA. He said he always wears his Pan Am tie clip.
 
User avatar
jetjack74
Posts: 6576
Joined: Sun Jul 27, 2003 6:35 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Fri Dec 02, 2011 7:44 am

Quoting chrisair (Reply 11):
I flew with one NWA FA who must have been with them 55+ years. She said when she started at NW, she was flying Stratocruisers and DC-6s across the Pacific to HNL and Asia.

She had some great stories. You can probably find her on the SEA-HNL route, unless she's retired.

if its who I'm thinking of, then she is still flying. She flies mostly SEA-PEK. There was only one FA from the Stratocruiser days who is still based here in SEA.
Made from jets!
 
delta2ual
Posts: 558
Joined: Mon Dec 03, 2007 11:18 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Fri Dec 02, 2011 1:59 pm

According to the newest seniority list, the #1 at NW was hired in 1951 and the #1 at DL was hired in 1959. In fact, the top 4 at the new DL are PMNW. Conversely, the most junior @ NW was hired in 2008, while DL hired in 2010-2011.
From the world's largest airline-to the world's largest airline. Delta2ual
 
User avatar
b727fa
Posts: 1042
Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2011 8:21 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Fri Dec 02, 2011 3:24 pm

Quoting DFW36L (Reply 10):
Valerie is 105 years old!

Who knew FA's could live to that age in captivity? (I got your reference!)
My comments/opinions are my own and are not to be construed as the opinion(s) of my employer.
 
tommy767
Posts: 4658
Joined: Sat Aug 09, 2003 12:18 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Fri Dec 02, 2011 5:18 pm

Quoting chrisair (Reply 15):
There was an ex-Pan Am FA on my DTW-MSP flight a few months ago. He said he worked for them for 8 years before going to NWA. He said he always wears his Pan Am tie clip.

There were a ton of ex- Pan Am f/a's that went to DL in the early 1990s. Going to NW from Pan Am seems a bit more rare. Great how he wears the tie clip!
"KEEP CLIMBING" -- DELTA
 
jfk777
Posts: 5822
Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 7:23 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Fri Dec 02, 2011 7:36 pm

Quoting TOMMY767 (Reply 19):
There were a ton of ex- Pan Am f/a's that went to DL in the early 1990s. Going to NW from Pan Am seems a bit more rare. Great how he wears the tie clip

The Pan Am FA's at Delta went with the sale of PA divisions DL purchased, so those numbers are large. NW never purchased any of PA business so that is one employee changing jobs of his/her own.
 
m11stephen
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2008 12:16 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:58 am

Quoting saab2000 (Reply 3):
There is no flight physical for F/As and the recurrent training is not very physically demanding, if at all. I do not want an 80 year old F/A evacuating the airplane in an emergency. There should either be stringent physical exams or recurrent training or there should be a mandatory retirement age.

Exactly... I don't expect F/As to have the physical abilities of Olympic athletes but they should be able to, and demonstrate the ability, to operate aircraft doors without power assist, lift life rafts, open, lift and throw overwing window exits weighing 50 pounds and perform self defense maneuvers. Most F/As don't even open or close aircraft doors during normal operations. The only time they operate them is once a year during recurrent and even then they don't experience the force required to open a door after a crash landing where the power assist has failed.

Now I don't expect F/As to be ninjas however F/As are required to physically block access and defend the flight deck during normal operations when the pilots need to enter or exit for things like crew rest or lavatory visits. How is an F/A, who wont help pax with their bags for fear of being injured, suppose to physically defend the flight deck against aggressive attackers?
My opinions, statements, etc. are my own and do not have any association with those of any employer.
 
Jackbr
Posts: 294
Joined: Wed Dec 09, 2009 4:14 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:11 am

This argument has been had over and over again.

Someone needs to point out how the young and agile SQ Flight Attendants reacted in the SQ006 crash.

Age doesn't really matter all that much - you can't judge what a Flight Attendant can do in an emergency until they are in an emergency - take the US1549 crew, they weren't spring chickens but did an amazing job.
 
m11stephen
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Aug 05, 2008 12:16 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:24 am

Quoting Jackbr (Reply 22):
Someone needs to point out how the young and agile SQ Flight Attendants reacted in the SQ006 crash.

Age doesn't really matter all that much - you can't judge what a Flight Attendant can do in an emergency until they are in an emergency - take the US1549 crew, they weren't spring chickens but did an amazing job.

  I don't think age should determine whether or not someone can be an F/A there just need to be stricter physical standards. I don't know if it's because of the unions or fear of a discrimination lawsuit but airlines seem to turn a blind eye to F/As who are clearly physically illequipped to handle an emergency.
My opinions, statements, etc. are my own and do not have any association with those of any employer.
 
YokoTsuno
Posts: 314
Joined: Tue Feb 01, 2011 1:21 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 3:15 am

Quoting asianguy767 (Thread starter):
I know in the US its illegal to discriminate against but what about discriminating for?

I work a lot in Europe and my experience is that institutional discrimination is much harder to pull off in 'Western countries' than it is here. In Singapore and probably the region in general you'll find a fair percentage of the population in favour of airlines hiring young good looking people as a justification for 'being competitive'.

Your question ultimately boils down to mentality differences in perception what is socially acceptable in the US /EU/AUS and here. A while ago I read a story in the Straits Times about miners earning a 6-figure salary that made me see red jealousy.
Ask yourself the question would such thing happen in Singapore?
 
AR385
Posts: 6735
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2003 8:25 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 5:43 am

Quoting jfk777 (Reply 2):
In the USA there are some FA in their 80's, these ladies love what they do and as long as they pass their flight physicals they can keep their jobs.

Exactly.


I do not care wether I have a nice looking, sexy, young FA working my section. Most of my flying is work related and is usually 12+hrs long haul in C and in F. In my experience, flying the usual Western carriers like AF, BA, LH, UA, AA and CO, the best FAs in terms of service and attitude are the ones that are middle age and above. They have the right combination of skill and experience to give you a pleasant flying experience without making it look that it´s part of their job.

They like their jobs, it´s noticeable, and they show their appreciation for having it and still being able to perform it. It´s usually those FAs that go out of their way to show their passengers they care. In my experience, in general, the young ones just don´t have that yet.

When you have a long work week ahead of you 10,000 km away from home, having a seamless flight both on the way and heading back, counts for a lot. FAs are a good part of that happening. Experienced FAs.

Regarding safety in the cockpit, well, I would thing the Air Marshalls are there for a reason. In emergencies, I'm going to rely on me if it´s survivable, if it isn´t, why should I care what age the FA was?
 
1stfl94
Posts: 1082
Joined: Fri May 12, 2006 12:33 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 3:53 pm

Quoting Jackbr (Reply 22):
Someone needs to point out how the young and agile SQ Flight Attendants reacted in the SQ006 crash.

Then again, apparently the most junior FA on US1549 had 15 years experience. In my experience in the US, it's actually the middle aged FAs, that have been the worst. On flights I've been on with UA, the oldest FA who looked around 65 was wearing full uniform (including hat) and was charming, the rest were usually mid 40s and had faces that could scare small children.
 
delta2ual
Posts: 558
Joined: Mon Dec 03, 2007 11:18 pm

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 5:29 pm

Quoting m11stephen (Reply 23):
 I don't think age should determine whether or not someone can be an F/A there just need to be stricter physical standards. I don't know if it's because of the unions or fear of a discrimination lawsuit but airlines seem to turn a blind eye to F/As who are clearly physically illequipped to handle an emergency.

I agree with you. It seems each year during recurrent training, we had F/A's who were "helped" through the training. I'm not being discriminatory, but if anyone (regardless of age) can't perform the basic functions of the job-they shouldn't be there. And, for the life of me, I can't understand why anyone who is in their 80's would want to.
From the world's largest airline-to the world's largest airline. Delta2ual
 
Flighty
Posts: 7649
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 3:07 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sat Dec 03, 2011 5:53 pm

In general, the goal of having "young and sexy" especially female F/As would reinforce the idea that women in the workplace are mainly valuable for their sex appeal. Since women are >50% of the vote, and many of those voters are over age 50, a different set of priorities governs the workplace. Being good-looking and/or well kept is still very beneficial in the workplace however, causing higher salary, more promotions, etc.

The union structure (with median voter getting ever more senior) similarly means that the oldest F/As have the best pay, the easiest job and the most voting power within the union. As they get older, their job package becomes sweeter and more secure (at least, relative to the FA group). If everyone had a flat payscale & layoff by job performance, in the FA position, you would not see anything near the seniority you see at US carriers. But, this is what drives the seniority IMO.
 
blueflyer
Posts: 3625
Joined: Tue Jan 31, 2006 4:17 am

RE: Retirement Age Of FAs In USA

Sun Dec 04, 2011 12:09 am

I've had some of my best domestic flying in the USA with well-aged crews from CO and US.
I had one of my worst TATL crossing last week with an entire C cabin complement of well-past-their-prime F/As who clearly didn't give a damn on UA. First flight in a long time on UA too... A colleague who was traveling with me said the service had sharply deteriorated since UA took over EWR-BRU from CO and both EWR-BRU and IAD-BRU suddenly went more senior than they used to.

Maybe it's UA, maybe it's international flights, maybe it's plain dumb luck. Take your pick.

Quoting Flighty (Reply 28):
In general, the goal of having "young and sexy" especially female F/As would reinforce the idea that women in the workplace are mainly valuable for their sex appeal. Since women are >50% of the vote, and many of those voters are over age 50, a different set of priorities governs the workplace.

Take away their right to vote then. Problem solved.

[Edited 2011-12-03 16:13:58]
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has no clothes.

Who is online