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Phaeton
Topic Author
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F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 6:42 am

I was wondering what the language requirements for Flight Attendants were . If you are, say a F/A for Air France on a flight from Paris to Frankfurt - do you have to speak French, English and German?

What about F/A's on domestic USA routes? Only English?

Thanks for the replies,

Cheers!

Thomas
"History will be kind to me for I intend to write it.", Winston Churchill
 
AlekToronto
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 6:50 am

Generally F/A's only need to speak the official language of the Country where the airline is based and English. i.e AF attendants should only speak French/English, US attendants English only, etc...
However Airlines are always looking for f/a's that speak more languages. When i was at AC they were actively seeking people that spoke Asian languages. There are some in the field that speak several languages but i find that to be the exception (esp. in the US)
US Domestic I would say that over 90 percent of the attendants speak only English (NW,UA put foreign language speakers on overseas flights) but you can run into a lot of Spanish speakers out of MIA, JFK or LAX.

cheers!
Alek
 
aussieboggie
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 6:54 am

What about EK? There are many Non-Arab flight attendants working for Emirates. Is Arabic a requirement then? Believe me, Arabic is one of the most difficult language to learn on this planet.
Sekarang Sesiapapun Bisa Terbang
 
Sabena332
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 6:54 am

If you are, say a F/A for Air France on a flight from Paris to Frankfurt - do you have to speak French, English and German?

I noticed very often on AF flights that at least one member of the cabin crew can speak German, even on flights which do not originate in (or going to) Germany (e.g.: CDG-JFK).

My girlfriend is also F/A, she speaks fluent German (first language) and English but also a little bit French and Spanish.

Patrick
NZ1's mother is a disgusting crack-whore and his father is a worthless alcoholic!
 
ATL2CDG
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Language Requirements

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:00 am

Phaeton:

Language requirements vary from airline to airline. For example, although I work for EV, which despite serving YUL and MTY, has no guidelines, I speak French and Spanish in addition to my native English. My personal lingual abilities have helped me when working with non-anglophones, however, EV management does not recognize this qualification. Given that EV and sister airline OH serve connecting Skyteam passengers from outside the U.S., I find it interesting that a language program doesn't exist.

Most mainline carrier, such as DL, which operate to long-haul foreign markets, do have language programs. While it is not necessary to speak a second language in order to be hired at DL, if you do speak another language and pass a company test showing your ability, you receive preferential bidding for foreign routes where your language ability may play a factor and you receive an increase in hourly pay.

For another example, I know that AC requirements, on paper at least, require that flight attendants speak English and French, or one of the aforementioned and a foreign tongue. However, I would imagine that AC is pretty lax on this, because most anglophone Canadians couldn't survive in an all French environment more than a day.

TysV
Ignorantia juris neminem excusat.
 
AlekToronto
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:01 am

hey mate...
I said Generally...GENERALLY...there are always exceptions..
Some of the mid east airlines use English as their "business" language, so I am sure Emirates does well with that, even thou you would think they need some Arabic speakers.

cheers
Alek
 
Cory6188
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:04 am

So is English a requirement for basically every F/A worldwide, regardless of where you are flying, domestic or international?

Also, on a separate note, English must be an extremely difficult language to learn as well. Our verb conjugations are often very warped (go, went, have gone, for example), and we use "do/does" all over the place in our sentences.

Right now I'm taking Spanish and it's a whole lot easier in comparison. Its irregularities and collquial expressions pale in comparison to English.
 
aussieboggie
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:08 am

Errrr... thanks Alek.  Big grin
Sekarang Sesiapapun Bisa Terbang
 
AlekToronto
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:11 am

Since English is the "official" language of the sky, every Flight Attendant is supposed to speak English. On International routes this is never a problem, however I have been on domestic flights in Japan, Korea, China, Brazil and Russia where some F/A's spoke very poor to non existant English.
English is a very difficult language to learn for some people in Asia for example, so even on JAL there are language issues from time to time (at least they handle it with grace and a smile) unlike US and Canadian crews that treat non English speakers like mental retards. (Yes I have seen this happen many times).

cheers!
Alek
 
Kempa
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:11 am

I once knew a former flight attendant for EL AL who spoke fluently Hebrew, English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, and Yiddish.
 
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KaiGywer
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:17 am

When I jumpseated on WF, after the F/A did her cabin check, she would come up to the cockpit and say "X adults, Y children, all Norwegian". In that case, the flight crew knew that they would only have to do their announcements in Norwegian, but if the F/A would say that there were English or other speaking people on board, they would have to do announcements in both Norwegian and English.
“Once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, an
 
AF Cabin Crew
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:19 am

I speak 4 languages fluetly and 2 only the basics...

Happy Flying,

AF Cabin Crew
Ia Maitai to tatou tere !
 
cedarjet
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 8:37 am

I would say almost all the cabin crew on British low cost airlines only speak English, although easy and Ryanair probably serve markets speaking a total of about 20 languages. easy have pretaped safety announcements for the "other" language (ie French on Nice-Liverpool...and please insert your favourite Scouser gag here).

I don't think EK's non-Arab cabin crew (ie nearly all of them) speak Arabic. I find it hard to believe there are that many nice English girls from the Home Counties / blue-eyed Norwegian babes who speak Arabic. Arab airlines do deserve a special mention when it comes to offering languages, I once flew on a Gulf Air Tristar BOM-AUH-BAH where they announced all the languages spoken by the cabin crew, and it was (wait for it) twenty-two. Including Icelandic, Portuguese and something from SE Asia that started with a T (Talagon or sumfink).

Qantas cabin crew have little flags on their name tags to show what languages they speak (and on int'l flights it seems that almost all of them have a second language). Can't remember if English is showed as an Oz flag or a British flag. Does everyone know English is the national language of Australia? Not wishing to pick on one stereotype but I have been complimented by Americans on my excellent grasp of English when I tell them I'm Australian.
fly Saha Air 707s daily from Tehran's downtown Mehrabad to Mashhad, Kish Island and Ahwaz
 
MAH4546
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 8:44 am

FA's are usually only required to speak native tougne of the airline, though there will always be an FA speaking the native tounge of both countries/areas a flight is connecting. For example, on a Delta flight between New York City and Athens, there will be at least on Greek-speaking F/A, more often that not more than one.

In Miami, pretty every American Airlines and American Eagle flight has a Spanish-speaking F/A (usually more than one, with the majority of thier Miami-based FAs being bilingual) and most also have Portuguese speaking F/As. American Airlines also usually makes sure to put Creole and French speaking F/As on flights to Montreal, Paris, and Port-Au-Prince.

Speaking only English does not hurt, but speaking a second language is a huge advantage.
a.
 
airlinefreak1
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 8:51 am

Emirates are proud of their FA's , apprently , they can speak over 75 languages.

on a flight from DXB - LHR , 14 dif languages were spoken o board - including Tagalog (cederjet) , spanish, italian, russian ,africans, japanese and cantonese

EK has a policy that on every flight , there must be atleast 1-2 arabic speaking FA's .. who r mostly jordanian,persian, egyption and Lebanese .

regards,
 
HALFA
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 8:54 am

I speak Samoan, English, Spanish, French, Italian, German, Portuguese, and some Japanese and a little Greek.

Aloha
Hawaiian Airlines Since 1929...........
 
HNLFlyBoy
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 9:03 am

HALFA,

I take it you fly "worldwide" for HA and do the Pago Pago run...oh and also the PPT run. I see that you, "parle francais" and also, "nihongo skoshi desu ne" Je parle petit francais aussi and nihongo skoshi desu ne.

I also bet you are hapa. Very kewl!

HFB
 
HALFA
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:11 am

HFB,
Sim, Muito Bem!
I do occasionally fly our South Pac routes if I want to get my hours in quickly, as you probably know they are turnarounds for our flight crews.
Our flight attendants now have nametags with different country flags representing the languages that we speak. If I were to attach all of the flags to my name tag, I would need a much bigger nametag!  Smile

Aloha
Hawaiian Airlines Since 1929...........
 
HNLFlyBoy
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:24 am

HALFA,

I see that you just joined a.net! Welcome, i just joined last month and love it. Have you seen the thread on HNL Rarities? do a search for it. it's a great thread. Good reading and lots of interesting stuff.
 
GoAibusGo
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:27 am

I speak 4 languages : English, Dutch, Spanish and Papiamento ( Our language we speak on the ABC- island in the Caribbean; Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao. Sounds a bit like Portuguese, but is mix of many mainly the European colonial country languages.
With these languages we can pretty much get around in the Caribbean. With a bit of French it would much more complete.

J J V
(F/A BonairExel, Bonaire, Netherlands Antilles)
 
kalakaua
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:47 am

Namaste! Talofa! Massugu itte migigawa ni arimasu? Hindi, wala. Amok ti Ilokano la ta. Je parle en anglais aussi. Es si dificil. Mas não como duramente. Akzente sind ungewöhnlich. Jaijin! Annyonghi kyeseyo!
Gravity explains the motions of the planets, but it cannot explain who set the planets in motion.
 
FA4UA
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:50 am

When I was in training at UA they told us we only needed to speak english and if we ran into a non-english speaker to look at them with attitude and shout!  Wink/being sarcastic

JUST KIDDING!

There are dozens and dozens of languages spoken on UA. If a FA is working a flight where a specific language isn't deemed Language Incentive but end up using their language skills they can claim an additional $2/hr for "Lip Pay". An example would be SFO-LHR where there is no language flight attendants specifically staffed, but one might use German in a conversation with a German customer, that FA can claim the money for their expertise.

FA4UA
The debate continues... Starwood or Hyatt... which is better
 
B777FA
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:59 am

Eu falo portugues e eu trabalho para American Airlines baseado em Nova York. I learnt Portuguese when I lived in Rio for 7 years and now I go often on my off-time to my house in Buzios.Beautiful country and people. Smile/happy/getting dizzy
Here in NY we have many F/As that speak Portuguese,French,Dutch,German,Spanish and Japanese as these languages all correspond to the routes flown out of JFK.
 
AA767400
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 11:07 am

Many crew members speak what I call airplaneFrench, or airplaneSpanish. Meaning that they can get by with "chicken or beef?" in that language they say they speak. Most U.S. carriers could care less about crew members being
fluent in another language, this comes from the Americans thinking that English
is the only language that should be spoken in the world.
"The low fares airline."
 
kalakaua
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 11:38 am

Many crew members speak what I call airplaneFrench, or airplaneSpanish. Meaning that they can get by with "chicken or beef?" in that language they say they speak. Most U.S. carriers could care less about crew members being
fluent in another language, this comes from the Americans thinking that English
is the only language that should be spoken in the world.


Wow, what an attitude!! Is that how you see us Americans, in your view? It's sad that you can only see the bad people, and forget about the people who try hard to make this world a better place. There are many flight attendants, that I know, who'll take the time hire private tutors to teach them another foreign language. Hey, if it sounds like "airplaneFrench" or "airplaneSpanish," it's better than nothing. Some passengers do like to jest, and both passenger and flight attendants get a good laugh. No one's perfect. At least you know that certain FA had the time to learn.
Gravity explains the motions of the planets, but it cannot explain who set the planets in motion.
 
HNLFlyBoy
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 11:44 am

AA767400,

I speak retail Japanese, took a conversational class at a local college when I worked at a clothing store, hence I can actually get by and nihongo skoshi desu ne. It actually has come in quite handy, especially here in Honolulu with all of our Japanese visitors. I have often had to help out a store sales associate with a translation.

Is it not a regulation, International or FAA, that there must be at least one speaker of the language on board who speaks the national languate of the country of destination/origin if the national language of that country is not English? I'd be curious to know.
 
kalakaua
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 11:48 am

Isn't it "sukoshi" not "skoshi?" Hehe... Nihongo ga wakarimasu ka? Toire wa doko desu ka?
Gravity explains the motions of the planets, but it cannot explain who set the planets in motion.
 
Fly2HMO
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 11:57 am

Kalakaua:

es si dificil? more like ES DIFICIL.

Mas não como duramente <--- think that's wrong too

just for breaking the 60 post barrier sooner  Big thumbs up

 
HNLFlyBoy
Posts: 318
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 12:18 pm

nope Kalakaua, it's skoshi. SKO are pronounced together. Relating back to the post, I have heard it is easier to get hired by an airline as an F/A if you do speak more than one language. Just remember folks, Francais, es le langue d'amour! And if you ever visit PPT, you will know what I mean.
 
jeffrysky
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 2:11 pm

nope : HNLflyboy .. it's sukoshi .. "skoshi" is probably your teacher's way of telling you the "su" should be silent just like in "arigatoo gozaimasu" , but in actual romanji ( western alphabet ) , it's sukoshi. skoshi looks like some slavic word hahaha ..


hey when i fly JAL .. even though there's a Singaporean flight attendant onboard, the Japanese crew do both the japanese and english announcements, and the foreign crew does the mandarin annoucement. wouldn't it better to let the foreign crew do the english one as well, since english is our first language in singapore ? On UK-bound flights, does JAL ask the british crew to handle the english announcements ?
 
HNLFlyBoy
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 2:16 pm

Thank you JeffrySkY for the clarification. She probably did show it to us that way. I would love to fly JAL someday. I heard the service ie really good. FYI no one has yet to mention that English is the international language of aviation. Isn't that why on foreign flights, the announcements are always in english first....
 
kalakaua
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 2:53 pm

Haha! Mas não como duramente <--- think that's Portugese! My mistake Fly2hmo... You need to teach when you get here to ERAU.
I only know the basic. I really forgot everything when I graduated high school. Hey, but I manage to get around!!

-kalakaua... still learning.
Gravity explains the motions of the planets, but it cannot explain who set the planets in motion.
 
MAH4546
Posts: 26600
Joined: Wed Jan 24, 2001 1:44 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 3:24 pm

Most U.S. carriers could care less about crew members being
fluent in another language, this comes from the Americans thinking that English
is the only language that should be spoken in the world.


That is far from being the case. While I do agree with your latter statement that most American feel English is the only language that matters, airlines care very much that thier crew members speak a different language. It is especially important in multilingual markets like Miami (where seven languages - English, Spanish, Creole, French, Portuguese, Hebrew, and Russian - are spoken fluently by at least 100,000 residents), New York City (where the numbers are even more impressive), Toronto (ditto), Montreal (ditto), and Los Angeles (ditto). They can't allienate themselves from this part of the market.
a.
 
HALFA
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 4:38 pm

MAH4546,
I find it interesting how Europeans and others around the world are always knocking Americans lack of foreign language skills. I think in this case, Americans do indeed get a bad rap.
75% of Americans have never left our country and probably never will. Our country is huge and our official language is English. Why should the vast majority of Americans learn another language? Who would they speak to? When would they use it? They wont!
It's quite a different story if we were say, Swiss. Switzerland is a tiny country. They have 3 official languages (Italian, French and German) and are a day's train ride away from people speaking Flemish, Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese, Croatian, Yugoslavian, and so on and so on. It is necessary for Europeans to learn more than one language, not to mention it is mandatory in most schools there. Here in America, it's not necessary. If I lived in West Texas, I am a days train ride to the East of more Texans speaking English.
Europeans can argue the point all day that it's a global economy and Americans should learn to communicate with others and for the 20% of us that actually do have to leave our country and deal with others outside the US, most of us will attempt to learn another language. I am conversational in several languages and fluent in several others. I am not a typical American in that I travel internationally for a living.
It would be nice if Europeans could see this point of view.
Hawaiian Airlines Since 1929...........
 
HNLFlyBoy
Posts: 318
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2004 12:01 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 4:57 pm

HALFA,

YOU GO BOY!!!!! If you got it, flaunt it. If you can speak it, speak it. Heck you learned it, why not. And Europeans wonder why....
 
Joge
Posts: 1386
Joined: Tue Feb 22, 2000 3:26 am

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 9:45 pm

HALFA,

How come you speak Greek?  Smile

-Joge
Bula!
 
Regis
Posts: 281
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RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:02 pm

I speak 4 languages fluetly and 2 only the basics...

Happy Flying,

AF Cabin Crew


May I surmise that English is one of two languages that you speak only the basics instead of fluetly?
 
COAB767
Posts: 1313
Joined: Thu Nov 13, 2003 6:32 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 10:09 pm

most airlines have at least 2 attendants that speak a foreign language for instance at my airline, if i work the Guam-Tokyo flight there is 8 attendants 4 guamanian, 2 japansese & 1 filipino and 1 us based f/a...
Continental Micronesia: "Fly With The Warmth Of Paradise"
 
debonair
Posts: 4238
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2004 10:50 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Wed Feb 11, 2004 11:06 pm


well, I speak 2 languages GERMAN & ENGLISH, French only basic...

It is quite funny here in europe, I did for a german airline spanish domestic flights and had no clue, what most of the passengers were asking for... Big grin

I also worked for an english airline, offering german domestic flights and none of the crew (except me) could understand the (most elderly) passengers...

And also I was sub-leased to a Swiss airline, no clue at all. The best part, we had tapes with all the announcements, but nobody of the crew were able to understand what the tape was saying and many passengers refused to speak german or english...
 
AA767400
Posts: 1897
Joined: Tue Jan 23, 2001 2:04 am

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 3:10 am

I know many Crew members that speak horrible Spanish,French,etc.....And AA
pays them speaker pay. Most do not know how to man a evacuation in that
language, if it were to happen, And that is not cool. Also many Crew members
that don't speak any other language other then English, get very worked up
about the issue, making statements like "You are flying AMERICAN airlines, you
should speak English." These are things I here all the time, and not just from
DFW to TUL. We are talking about MIA-Latin America. I think that if you can't
speak it fluently, you should be getting paid for it.  Smile
"The low fares airline."
 
HALFA
Posts: 1070
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2004 8:24 am

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 4:40 am

Joge,
We had a flight attendant base in Athens several years ago, so while I was stationed there, I tried to learn as much as I could. I am not at all fluent in Greek but can read a menu, ask directions, carry on a short conversation. My Greek friends tell me I am fluent in "restaraunt" Greek.  Smile

Aloha
Hawaiian Airlines Since 1929...........
 
ANX4fishing
Posts: 161
Joined: Sun Nov 02, 2003 3:20 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 4:58 am

Many of the SK f/a whip up french, german, spanish in addition to english and the 3 scandinavian lingos. Quite impressive. I see it often hoping around europe on SAS.

ANX
 
Fly2HMO
Posts: 7184
Joined: Sat Jan 24, 2004 12:14 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 5:52 am

kalakaua

i think thats still wrong in portuguese, don't worry i'll teach you  Big thumbs up


to all the aspiring foreign language students:

Learn Spanish. Why? for a very good reason. If you speak Spanish, you can understand (starting with the easiest):

Portugese
Italian
French (pronounciation is not so easy)
Latin (who speaks it anyway? the local priest perhaps?)
+ all the other derivatives from original latin

Because if you only speak english... well... you speak only english  Nuts(maybe you can read a little bit of german, but nothing else)

It's a good idea to learn one of those languages that are related to many others. It really is an advantage.

vuelen rapido y furioso!!!  Big thumbs up
 
EMBTucano
Posts: 234
Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2004 1:34 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:17 am

I always fly from GRU to the U.S, using AA, CO and DL.
AA and CO has always someone that speaks Portuguese and
their "in flight" annoucements are always in English and Portuguese.
Sometimes their Portuguese is not that good. But at least they are
trying.
On both times I flew DL - GRU-ATL - None of the F/A spoke
Portuguese and there was no amusements in our language
either. And on DL I often see F/A trying to speak English with
people that does not speak the language and even get a little
annoyed with them because they could not understand.

It shows respect when you try to speak the language that
your client speaks.

So , thumbs up to CO and AA on that matter
and thumbs down for DL.

Cheers

EMBTucano
---- Use GNU/LINUX and be free! ----
 
B777FA
Posts: 235
Joined: Mon Aug 11, 2003 4:52 am

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:20 am

I understand what AA767400 is saying as do a lot of F/As here at AA.Not too long ago AA trained F/As at certain bases in portuguese.
The course was eight weeks at a language school in MSP.Quite a few F/As jumped at the chance to learn a new language but others took it as an opportunity to hold a good line with great days off at their seniority with the speaker qualification attached.After living 2 years in Brazil I decided to qualify in Portuguese but only when I was comfortable in doing so. (constantly quizzing myself if I could respond in the language in the event of an emergency etc.)
One time when I was commuting back to my home in Brazil from JFK I was seated in First class and the Purser happened to be from the eight week wonder school.She went there just to qualify in the language and hold the GIG route and it showed in her PA's.A passenger came up to the front and began asking her simple questions in portuguese to which she could not respond and after a while the passenger said do you speak portuguese? She looked around for a while and then pointed to me non reving and said "he does!!!!".
The point is she was recieving more pay because of the language qualification but she couldnt understand the basics,many a time she avoided making the PAs and threw the responsability on another speaker F/A.
I know (as AA767400 said) that this also is a problem with some french/german etc speakers........
Does this happen at other airlines?????????
 
panamair
Posts: 4433
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2001 2:24 am

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:22 am

On the whole, U.S. carriers do pretty darn well with language speakers on international flights. On all of my international flights with DL and UA, there have always been speakers of the destination's language (in addition to others). In addition, many of them are native speakers (with DL, mostly the ex-Pan Am crews based out of JFK and to some extent ATL; with UA, many of the LHR, CDG, and FRA-based crews are Europeans).

How come nobody yells at Singapore Airlines for not having any Danish or Dutch or Greek or Spanish speakers on their flights to those destinations? They only recently started having French and German speakers on flights to CDG and FRA (and they speak, at best, textbook or "airplane French/German"). Swiss does not have any Thai speakers on flights to BKK, TG does not have any who speak any of the European languages on flights to Europe, nor does CX...how come nobody is criticising them?
 
EMBTucano
Posts: 234
Joined: Tue Feb 03, 2004 1:34 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:33 am

Panamair:

As I said earlier, I think that it is always more respectful when you
speak with your client in their native language. I agree with you.
All these carriers you mention, should provide F/A that can speak
the language of the respective destination country.

Cheers

EMBTucano
---- Use GNU/LINUX and be free! ----
 
HNLFlyBoy
Posts: 318
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2004 12:01 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 6:45 am

B777AA,

isn't that typical of the world in general...? Go to training to get the extra pay, then when it comes time to put it into action, the pay is nice, but can't perform? All the glory, none of the finnese. I don't like people like that, also this can't come very naturally for this Purser. The least she could do is learn, in Portugese, "I only speak a little Portugese, let me get someone who can help you more" That is a much more professional and diplomatic approach to it.

 
HALFA
Posts: 1070
Joined: Sun Jan 18, 2004 8:24 am

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 9:36 am

EMBTucano,
I recently flew DL HNL-ATL-GRU roundtrip and on both legs to and from Sao Paulo, there were at least two FA's working the trip fluent in Portuguese. They were both in the cabin helping Brazilians with customs forms, and both were very proficient in the language.
In fact, I was much more impressed with Delta's service to and from GRU then I was on my CO flight a few months earlier. I flew CO HNL-IAH-GRU-GIG and back, and while I loved their entertainment system, and cabin configuration, I didn't find the flight crews to be very nice.

Aloha
Hawaiian Airlines Since 1929...........
 
JAFA
Posts: 740
Joined: Wed Aug 27, 2003 1:31 pm

RE: F/A's: How Many Languages Do You Speak?

Thu Feb 12, 2004 10:00 am

I agree with HALFA. We live in a very large country in the US and don't really have a need to learn another language. I work for NW and learned airplane spanish when I worked for another airline based in MIA. I have only used spanish once, on a flight to Miami. We don't fly to many spanish speaking destinations. I would be better off learning Japanese, but that would be difficult. I am already in school taking four classes. Maybe when I am senior enough and have the time I will take it up.

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