Cabin crew members are historically known as air hostesses/hosts, flight attendants, or stewardesses/stewards.
In South Africa, to operate as a cabin crew member on a South African registered aircraft, you require a cabin crew member’s license which is issued by the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA). The astringent training program is undertaken prior to being eligible to write the SACAA licensing examination. On successful completion of all practical and theoretical training modules, you will receive your cabin crew member’s license.
Airline Operators have various requirements for their cabin crew members, however, the basic requirements remain the same. These include:
- Medically Fit – a Class 2 Medical Certificate conducted by an Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) is required prior to applying for a cabin crew member’s license. These medical checks include heart, lungs, eyes, ears, etc.
- The height requirements of airlines vary according to the aircraft type they operate. Height requirements are based on being able to access all emergency equipment on the aircraft. Some operators refer to this as a “reach test”.
- Height should be proportionate to weight. You need to be in good physical shape as the long hours could take their toll on you and you need the required strength to conduct certain duties such as opening aircraft doors etc.
- The majority of airline operators require a minimum education of a Grade 12 Certificate / NQF Level 4 Certificate.
- Minimum age of 18 years.
- Proficiency in English. As English is the internationally recognized aviation language, you are required to be proficient in English. Multilingual cabin crew members are also often in demand.
- No criminal record. When doing international flights many countries will not allow you entry into their territory if you have a criminal record.
- Etiquette and Manners – When attending interviews with operators you will need to display basic courteousness. A prerequisite for being an effective and successful flight attendant would be your ability to demonstrate an understanding of customer service and this will most certainly be to your advantage.
The above-mentioned requirements are the most prevalent requirements of Aviation Operators.
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