How To Change Careers After Being A Flight Attendant - Need Ideas??

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Dianne in Camarillo, California

62 months ago

I have recently left a major airline after 23 years of flying. I'm 50 and have NOOO idea what to do now. This wan't my plan..as I thought I would just fly till I died.... Any wisdom you can give me would be welcomed. I feel like I'm going through a "breakup" with my airline. I had no idea it would be like this...awful. I miss flying. :( HELP?

Jeanne in Tucson, Arizona said: I am a former flight attendant with AA and was based in NY and BOS. If anyone is interested I will share with you what has been successful for me.

lawlorjm@aol.com

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CuriousFA in Nashville, Tennessee

54 months ago

Thought I would see how everyone is doing as a follow up to this post. I've been flying for almost 6 years - the first 3 with a regional, and the last with a semi-major airline. I am in my second bankruptcy, my airline is for sale and it has been completely unstable the whole time. I thought that I would fly forever and work my way into management. I did special projects at my current airline and realized that they didn't care about what was best for us - and just wanted yes-type pee-on people. I think the truth has been the hardest reality for me.

I am in my late 20's, and realize that I will never have the glamour life or schedules that those who have been in the industry for 20-30+ years have held. Contracts seem to be getting worse - we are usually at our 14 hour duty day followed by the minimum rest in hotels (9 hours), followed by our stay in an airport hotel. Passengers seem to be getting worse and I am beginning to feel like a low-paid slave (I made less than $20,000 last year flying my butt off).

I'm wondering if any of you have transitioned into nursing? I have been looking into this lately. I know starting pay for flight nurses is around $50/hr and nursing in general seems like a much more stable and rewarding career. I really wish I could say flight attending is a career (maybe at Southwest still?), but for someone my age I think I am just treading water.

I know if you go to LPN school a lot of hospitals will pay for you to get your RN (if you are employed with them). Just wondering what people's experiences are.

PS - Alaska does not pay for transportation to your interview or training.

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socalflyn in Renton, Washington

54 months ago

CuriousFA in Nashville, Tennessee said: Thought I would see how everyone is doing as a follow up to this post. I've been flying for almost 6 years - the first 3 with a regional, and the last with a semi-major airline. I am in my second bankruptcy, my airline is for sale and it has been completely unstable the whole time. I thought that I would fly forever and work my way into management. I did special projects at my current airline and realized that they didn't care about what was best for us - and just wanted yes-type pee-on people. I think the truth has been the hardest reality for me.

I am in my late 20's, and realize that I will never have the glamour life or schedules that those who have been in the industry for 20-30+ years have held. Contracts seem to be getting worse - we are usually at our 14 hour duty day followed by the minimum rest in hotels (9 hours), followed by our stay in an airport hotel. Passengers seem to be getting worse and I am beginning to feel like a low-paid slave (I made less than $20,000 last year flying my butt off).

I'm wondering if any of you have transitioned into nursing? I have been looking into this lately. I know starting pay for flight nurses is around $50/hr and nursing in general seems like a much more stable and rewarding career. I really wish I could say flight attending is a career (maybe at Southwest still?), but for someone my age I think I am just treading water.

I know if you go to LPN school a lot of hospitals will pay for you to get your RN (if you are employed with them). Just wondering what people's experiences are.

PS - Alaska does not pay for transportation to your interview or training.

Just to clarify, Alaska does not pay for transportation to the interview, but once you've been invited to training, they do pay to bring you to Seattle. They also pay $40 per day, per diem for each day of training, including weekends. Good luck everyone!

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Flyniah in Spring, Texas

51 months ago

Dianne in Camarillo, California said: I have recently left a major airline after 23 years of flying. I'm 50 and have NOOO idea what to do now. This wan't my plan..as I thought I would just fly till I died.... Any wisdom you can give me would be welcomed. I feel like I'm going through a "breakup" with my airline. I had no idea it would be like this...awful. I miss flying. :( HELP?

I am in the exact situation you are.... I'm 51 flying for 25 yrs... Started thinking its time for something new. How are you adjusting.? I'm with UAL former CAL

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nik in Falls Church, Virginia

48 months ago

BlueBlue in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates said: I am asking exactly the same question.. And as I see there is no answer in 5 months. Does it mean, that there is no hope for us? Do we have to keep our wings forever? :(

i totally get what ur saying. i can relate coz i flew with QR for 5 years and im now married and settled in US.. my biggest hurdle is my immigration status tht does not allow me to work anywhere. unlike most of the people here who flew for decades & are in the 50s.. i only flew for 5 years and 27 years of age but still cant find my way forward. my education is bachelor level but not equivalent to a US bachelor degree.

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STEVE QANTAS in Pennant Hills, Australia

47 months ago

HI everyone just left international flying with Qantas Airways the airline with the big kangaroo on the tail here in AUSTRALIA, after 28 years of flying prior to that i was snow ski instructor for many years have decided to go back again and do all the courses to teach snow sking,its now classified highly as a customer orientated service,maybe some ex flight attendants should give it a go if you can guess it depsnds on your circumstances, well i dont miss flying at all the late nights and feeling terrible after flying all night and the emergencey procedures exams, well anyway please say hello sometime or email me at steveqantas@hotmail.com take care Kind regards STEVE/SYDNEY AUSTRALIA

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MGaines in Modesto, California

33 months ago

BlueBlue in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates said: I am asking exactly the same question.. And as I see there is no answer in 5 months. Does it mean, that there is no hope for us? Do we have to keep our wings forever? :(

I know several Flight Attendants that have retired and opened their own Merle Norman Cosmetics Studio franchise. It's a great match due to the excellent customer service skills that you practiced everyday as a flight attendant. It's a fun change you are your own Boss. Go have a complementary facial and see for your self. Company is based in LA and made in USA.

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suztpa in Florida

33 months ago

tyksmith in Chicago, Illinois said: Hello, I have been reading this entire thread as I am considering becoming a flight attendant . I found some openings with two major airlines here in Chicago. I am in my early 30s and unemployed for the 2nd time within the last 3-4 years. My background is primarily in banking , which I have grown very tired of due to the lack of stability. Some years ago, I did obtain an associate degree with a major in travel and tourism, because of the interest and passion I have for traveling. However, the only drawback for me becoming a flight attendant is the PAY! I am use to making a significant amount of money ($70K+) and just can't imagine waiting for years to come to reach a certain salary. My understanding is that everything is done by senority with the airlines. Please feel free to give any advice or comments on this possible career move.

Thank you and I appreciate it!

Since you are in ORD use your education at the United Corporate office that way the pay will be a lot higher but you will still get all the travel benefits lots of women on the corporate team . I know this is a little late ( just found this )Hope this helps : )

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emlaxstar9 in East meadow, New York

33 months ago

CJA 5R in Anaheim, California said: I forgot to mention when a flight attendant decides to leave and returns back to flying, it is very difficult for some to make that adjustment because they're much older now and have more responsibilities compared to when they were in their 20's or 30's. Having to start all over to interview, train, make $20,000/yr, relocate and commute takes a toll. Here's a link I'd like for you to read. This flight attendant that posted speaks about the negatives of the job. He/She posts with humor, and the lifestyle as is written us very true of a flight attendant. It continues on to several more pages thereafter. Scroll through the page and you'll know which posts I speak of.

www.indeed.com/forum/job/flight-attendant/Continental-Airlines-Flight-Attendant-Group-Interview/t31418/p115

As far as choosing the right airline. I always advise the top 4 - American, Delta, United or Alaska. They have the means to pay for air fare to interviews and lodging during training. Their route system is comprehensive and offer more bases that will get you close to where you live now.

Right now i am currently 21 and am in a prodiciment in deciding if i should go with us airways/american or norwegian airlines. I find myself thninking this will be a thing to do for 3-4 years because i ultimatley want to be a police officer. What makes american/us one of the best to work for? I am debating because norwegian sounds like a great job to work for to

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Tom in Norwell, Massachusetts

30 months ago

Hello in Dallas, Texas said: Please share. Thank you.

I have been looking for a job after 24 years of being a FA...I'm too old to go back to school and I don't want to work for 12.00 hr....

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suztpa

30 months ago

Tom in Norwell, Massachusetts said: I have been looking for a job after 24 years of being a FA...I'm too old to go back to school and I don't want to work for 12.00 hr ....

Hi Tom : I was TWA for 6 years and ATA for 3 years and I am still looking for a stable job. I have had four layoffs the last one in a customer service position. So nothing is stable. It is so hard to transition from an F/A to regular work after doing it for 24 years and yes the pay down here in Florida is 10.00 to 12.00 an hour. And that's for office work. Good Luck to you Tom you make be able to get a job at a catering company due to the need for Managers service flow, staffing etc. just a thought that's what I am looking for now or Hotel Banquet Manager I know it is nothing even close to what we used to do. Take Care

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dianne in Frazier Park, California

29 months ago

Flyniah in Spring, Texas said: I am in the exact situation you are.... I'm 51 flying for 25 yrs... Started thinking its time for something new. How are you adjusting.? I'm with UAL former CAL

Flyniah, im sorry to report I am NOT doing well. I simply cannot adjust to being on the ground and finding a career that is rewarding to even think about pursuing. Ive been in counseling since I left and am now on meds as I just cant cope with loss and have major depression since my seperation with the airline. Some of my friends have left but they are married and have a life that is built around family.but I think if you are single like I was my whole life your social network your emotional support system your paycheck your flexible lifestyle basically your whole life is centered around the airline if you're single so it really is difficult to make a transition when do you have to build all those relationships that you had in the airline out of the airline. seriously at this point I'm thinking about moving to Ecuador and living meagerly on the funds that I have that's my idea for now if anyone else has any ideas out there I'd sure appreciate it

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dianne in Frazier Park, California

29 months ago

Flyniah, im sorry to report I am NOT doing well. I simply cannot adjust to being on the ground and finding a career that is rewarding to even think about pursuing. Ive been in counseling since I left and am now on meds as I just cant cope with loss and have major depression since my seperation with the airline. Some of my friends have left but they are married and have a life that is built around family.but I think if you are single like I was my whole life your social network your emotional support system your paycheck your flexible lifestyle basically your whole life is centered around the airline if you're single so it really is difficult to make a transition when do you have to build all those relationships that you had in the airline out of the airline. seriously at this point I'm thinking about moving to Ecuador and living meagerly on the funds that I have that's my idea for now if anyone else has any ideas out there I'd sure appreciate it

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carol carol23 in New York, New York

29 months ago

dianne in Frazier Park, California said: Flyniah, im sorry to report I am NOT doing well. I simply cannot adjust to being on the ground and finding a career that is rewarding to even think about pursuing. Ive been in counseling since I left and am now on meds as I just cant cope with loss and have major depression since my seperation with the airline . Some of my friends have left but they are married and have a life that is built around family.but I think if you are single like I was my whole life your social network your emotional support system your paycheck your flexible lifestyle basically your whole life is centered around the airline if you're single so it really is difficult to make a transition when do you have to build all those relationships that you had in the airline out of the airline. seriously at this point I'm thinking about moving to Ecuador and living meagerly on the funds that I have that's my idea for now if anyone else has any ideas out there I'd sure appreciate it

why not start flying again?

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fabwonder in Miami, Florida

25 months ago

Im so sorry to read you are not doing well and understand all too well your situation.
After resigning from an Intl airline which was my only adult job for almost thirty years. I find it difficult to adjust.
First thing we have to realize is that we gave up a lifestyle. Its not a 9to5 job its a lifestyle
you have to give it your all to get out of that slump and for crying out loud.. do not go to Ecuador
out of all the countries in the world that is one of the most corrupt, anti American no democratic
countries there is.. wait til Cuba opens up;-) lol completely
I have been looking around and like you sometimes the situation is the same but I have found that its all in Gods hands and he knows the road we just have to ask him to lead us..
I am keeping all my options available and try to network as much as I can .. be out there
go to happy hours, anywhere you are just throw your business cards out
one never knows.. please stay positive.. I believe we both had an amazing career and should be thankful for it..
ACCEPT WHAT IS
LE GO OF WHAT WAS
ADN HAVE FAITH IN WHAT WILL BE....

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susannawong in Darwin, Australia

16 months ago

CuriousFA in Nashville, Tennessee said: Thought I would see how everyone is doing as a follow up to this post. I've been flying for almost 6 years - the first 3 with a regional, and the last with a semi-major airline . I am in my second bankruptcy, my airline is for sale and it has been completely unstable the whole time. I thought that I would fly forever and work my way into management. I did special projects at my current airline and realized that they didn't care about what was best for us - and just wanted yes-type pee-on people. I think the truth has been the hardest reality for me.

I am in my late 20's, and realize that I will never have the glamour life or schedules that those who have been in the industry for 20-30+ years have held. Contracts seem to be getting worse - we are usually at our 14 hour duty day followed by the minimum rest in hotels (9 hours), followed by our stay in an airport hotel . Passengers seem to be getting worse and I am beginning to feel like a low-paid slave (I made less than $20,000 last year flying my butt off).

I'm wondering if any of you have transitioned into nursing? I have been looking into this lately. I know starting pay for flight nurses is around $50/ hr and nursing in general seems like a much more stable and rewarding career. I really wish I could say flight attending is a career (maybe at Southwest still?), but for someone my age I think I am just treading water.

I know if you go to LPN school a lot of hospitals will pay for you to get your RN (if you are employed with them). Just wondering what people's experiences are.

PS - Alaska does not pay for transportation to your interview or training.


Hi how are you? Just want to know whether u have become a nurse or not? Myself is a registered nurse, I'm 30 yo now, I want to take a year off to become a flight attendant as it was my dream job when I was little. But I am worry I might be too old for that. Any comment or suggestions for me ? Thx

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Soldier in the Sky in Saddle Brook, New Jersey

14 months ago

nik in Falls Church, Virginia said: i totally get what ur saying. i can relate coz i flew with QR for 5 years and im now married and settled in US.. my biggest hurdle is my immigration status tht does not allow me to work anywhere. unlike most of the people here who flew for decades & are in the 50s.. i only flew for 5 years and 27 years of age but still cant find my way forward. my education is bachelor level but not equivalent to a US bachelor degree.

Hi, how are you? I'm in the same position now. I need advise.... thank you

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Raymond Iocco in Arden, North Carolina

14 months ago

Dianne in Camarillo, California said: I have recently left a major airline after 23 years of flying. I'm 50 and have NOOO idea what to do now. This wan't my plan..as I thought I would just fly till I died.... Any wisdom you can give me would be welcomed. I feel like I'm going through a "breakup" with my airline. I had no idea it would be like this...awful. I miss flying. :( HELP?

Your skill base is one of "service"! Service skills are the most valued attribute in the field of sales. The ability to communicate information to help one arrive at a decision, is what sales is all about. You have the service skills based on your prior career to make it happen.

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noellegathergratitude in Los Angeles, California

13 months ago

Hello Diane,
I hope things are a better since you posted last! I am a life and career coach and my colleague and I are looking in to starting a program for FA's who are about to retire or who have retired. My collegue's brother has been an FA for 30 years and said that he is feeling that there is no system in place to help retiring FA's. So, we are hoping to build a program to create help and direction for those retiring or being forced to retire. Right now we don't have anything set up but I'm trying to find out if this kind of support would have been helpful to you or to your friends who are going through the same thing. I have heard from my FA friend that the transition from a life of flying to a life on the ground is very difficult as well as figuring out the next steps, purpose, sleep patterns...etc. If there was a support program in place and offered to you when you were about to retire would you have been open to it? Where would you have like to seen it advertised? It is a HUGE lifestyle change and there should be support offered!!! I want to be of service to this community after long standing FA's have been of great service to so many...and I know the industry is changing. I hope it is ok that I am writing here...just trying to get as much knowledge as possible to be of the greatest help.
Please let me know if you have any questions and hope to hear from you soon.
Thanks,

Noelle

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noellegathergratitude in Los Angeles, California

13 months ago

Hi! I am a life and career coach and my colleague and I are looking to start a program for FA's who are getting out of the industry, forced out, or retiring. After talking to her brother...FA for 30 years he let us know that there is a real need for help and support. Would love to know what would have been of the most benefit to you through your transition and where you would have seen this kind of service advertised. I know there is a huge huge need while dealing with this huge life transition...daily life...in all ways changes and finding that life purpose again is so important. Thanks for taking the time...and please know that I am not trying to gain knowledge so my colleague and I may best serve the community!

Many thanks,

Noelle

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Lets Fly in Colorado in Colorado

13 months ago

Hello Everyone, I just want to share a brief synopsis of my story. I had a very similar experience as Dianne in Camarillo, California. I left a major airline for about 10 years only to find myself stuck. I thought I could transition to a 9-5 job. I was very much down on life during this period of time. No one told me how difficult it would be. Later (after 10 years, I started to reapply as a flight attendant, because anything I did to get a job on the ground was not panning out. I did get employed with a start up airline that lasted 1 year. After this, I got rejected 11-12 times with American, United, Delta, Alaska, Virgin, Emirates. In 2014, I decided to reapply with Delta my fourth time. I got and was selected. I was the eldest in my group. Life is back the way it was. I am very happy. It took me that long to find my purpose. It was the worst time of my life.

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flyangel in Medford, Oregon

13 months ago

Thank you so much for your story, I too have been searching a way to get back into flying it has been a struggle, you r an inspiration to me, not to give up!

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Lets Fly in Colorado in Colorado

13 months ago

flyangel in Medford, Oregon said: Thank you so much for your story, I too have been searching a way to get back into flying it has been a struggle, you r an inspiration to me, not to give up!

You're very welcome. When I read that first post above, it struck a nerve. I lived that for 10 years. I was lost and had no direction. I went back to school to try nursing, but it was very difficult to get into a nursing program at the college I attended. Spots were limited and it was based on GPA. A 4.0 wasn't even a guarantee because of the limited spots. I decided to reapply as a flight attendant. I wasted so much time convincing myself that becoming a flight attendant would be difficult as I had to start over. Do not think this was. Believe me, It was in 2011 when I started to submit my application with the airlines, concentrating only on legacies. I was rejected over and over. I couldn't figure why? Every time I told myself it would be my last application, I picked myself up and submitted another application. I was rejected approximately eleven to twelve interviews. Even US Airways never gave me an interview. Every time I applied, US Airways would reject my application as soon as I submit.In 2014 my life changed. After applying with Delta four time each year 2011, 2012, 2013, I finally succeeded in 2014. I am so happy. Because of Delta's preferential bidding, everyone out of training is a lineholder except for six reserve days. I felt like I didn't loose seniority, because even those that are senior 15-20 years are flying similar trips as me. My advice is if you have nothing going on in terms of work or a career, please be resilient. It will happen. Now that I am a flight attendant, my outlook on life is very positive. I feel healthy physically and mentally. Life is great.

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Lets Fly in Colorado in Colorado

13 months ago

flyangel in Medford, Oregon said: Thank you so much for your story, I too have been searching a way to get back into flying it has been a struggle, you r an inspiration to me, not to give up!

My advice to you is learn about the airline you're applying with. Each airline looks for certain traits in people. I see you're from Medford. I applied with Alaska Airlines four times and was rejected every time. I gave up with Alaska. I was never going to see them happen for me. With Delta on the other hand, when I first interviewed with them, I knew I was a perfect fit, but I struggled to understand why I kept failing repeatedly in my interviews. I learned that Delta is a brand airline I became and lived that brand by focusing on my image and learning the STAR (behavioral) format, Delta's method of interviewing and selecting candidates. I wish you the best and I hope you find your path.

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surfsupal in NorCal, California

13 months ago

This is an incredible group of people here. Thank you for all of your honest and caring input. Like some here, trying to be an FA. Older now, but smarter than when I first applied in college. Trying to find the right airline to start this lifestyle. Thank you all again! Very much appreciated.

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Betsy

13 months ago

Lets Fly in Colorado in Colorado said: You're very welcome. When I read that first post above, it struck a nerve. I lived that for 10 years. I was lost and had no direction. I went back to school to try nursing, but it was very difficult to get into a nursing program at the college I attended. Spots were limited and it was based on GPA. A 4.0 wasn't even a guarantee because of the limited spots. I decided to reapply as a flight attendant . I wasted so much time convincing myself that becoming a flight attendant would be difficult as I had to start over. Do not think this was. Believe me, It was in 2011 when I started to submit my application with the airlines , concentrating only on legacies. I was rejected over and over. I couldn't figure why? Every time I told myself it would be my last application, I picked myself up and submitted another application. I was rejected approximately eleven to twelve interviews. Even US Airways never gave me an interview. Every time I applied, US Airways would reject my application as soon as I submit.In 2014 my life changed. After applying with Delta four time each year 2011, 2012, 2013, I finally succeeded in 2014. I am so happy. Because of Delta's preferential bidding, everyone out of training is a lineholder except for six reserve days. I felt like I didn't loose seniority, because even those that are senior 15-20 years are flying similar trips as me. My advice is if you have nothing going on in terms of work or a career, please be resilient. It will happen. Now that I am a flight attendant, my outlook on life is very positive. I feel healthy physically and mentally. Life is great.

Good for you! May I ask....how old were you when you were accepted by Delta?

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surfsupal in NorCal, California

13 months ago

I have a friend that will only fly Delta. He swears to being a "Delta Man." Does Delta have any crew domiciles in SFO or OAK? Thank you

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Lets Fly in Colorado in Colorado

12 months ago

Betsy said: Good for you! May I ask....how old were you when you were accepted by Delta?

Early 50's

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Lets Fly in Colorado in Colorado

12 months ago

surfsupal in NorCal, California said: I have a friend that will only fly Delta. He swears to being a "Delta Man." Does Delta have any crew domiciles in SFO or OAK? Thank you

SFO is one of Delta's west coast bases. It's small, but it did open to to 2015 seniority early this Jan. 2016.

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moxy in Tampa, Florida

9 months ago

noellegathergratitude in Los Angeles, California said: Hello Diane,
I hope things are a better since you posted last! I am a life and career coach and my colleague and I are looking in to starting a program for FA's who are about to retire or who have retired. My collegue's brother has been an FA for 30 years and said that he is feeling that there is no system in place to help retiring FA's. So, we are hoping to build a program to create help and direction for those retiring or being forced to retire. Right now we don't have anything set up but I'm trying to find out if this kind of support would have been helpful to you or to your friends who are going through the same thing. I have heard from my FA friend that the transition from a life of flying to a life on the ground is very difficult as well as figuring out the next steps, purpose, sleep patterns...etc. If there was a support program in place and offered to you when you were about to retire would you have been open to it? Where would you have like to seen it advertised? It is a HUGE lifestyle change and there should be support offered!!! I want to be of service to this community after long standing FA's have been of great service to so many...and I know the industry is changing. I hope it is ok that I am writing here...just trying to get as much knowledge as possible to be of the greatest help.
Please let me know if you have any questions and hope to hear from you soon.
Thanks,

Noelle

i've been a F/A for 31 years total..being forced into retirement over an injury on duty..i am scared to death! i still have 5 years until i can actually retire..i'm in the same boat as many..depression has set in and helplessness and hopelessness has become the only two feelings after being so numb...i would like to know more, i'm in florida and need guidance..nobody will help and the world is circling around me double speed being that i haven't had much training in anything else

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Stefania C. in Hollywood, Florida

9 months ago

Oh my god, I am not the only one. I flew a total of 12 years, 9 of which with American Airlines (the rest with Alitalia and British airways). I was based in Dallas, Chicago and lax international. I quit few years ago because I felt bad to have thrown away my education and I really wanted to be a designer. I also didn't like the idea of being a typical flying cat lady, old and bitter, unmarried. I didn't regret my decision at first because I was excited. I worked as a designer and I kept traveling for work. But now the fashion industry is going through a rough time, I cannot find work. I have been unemployed for 1.5 years, supported by my fiancé. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I am 41 and younger people get priority. I have been going through a major mid life crisis. I find myself regretting leaving my steady secure comfortable unionized job at AA for this. I miss being in a different country every week and talking to people. I don't dare try and reapply because the first years are brutal in terms of pay and schedule and choice of base. I would not get back my seniority. I feel so upset that I left it all for nothing. Now I am a leaf in the wind, with no prospects. I tried to apply in fields remotely related to my previous skills: I speak fluently 6 languages, I have a business degree, i tried perhaps they would want me in a travel agency, but I have been rejected everywhere I applied. I am so lost! Agencies have no advice, careers counselor a just say hang in there, I am a go getter, nothing seems to work. I feel like crying.

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Lovie in League City, Texas

9 months ago

Stefania C. in Hollywood, Florida said: Oh my god, I am not the only one. I flew a total of 12 years, 9 of which with American Airlines (the rest with Alitalia and British airways). I was based in Dallas, Chicago and lax international. I quit few years ago because I felt bad to have thrown away my education and I really wanted to be a designer. I also didn't like the idea of being a typical flying cat lady, old and bitter, unmarried. I didn't regret my decision at first because I was excited. I worked as a designer and I kept traveling for work. But now the fashion industry is going through a rough time, I cannot find work. I have been unemployed for 1.5 years, supported by my fiancé. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I am 41 and younger people get priority. I have been going through a major mid life crisis. I find myself regretting leaving my steady secure comfortable unionized job at AA for this. I miss being in a different country every week and talking to people. I don't dare try and reapply because the first years are brutal in terms of pay and schedule and choice of base. I would not get back my seniority. I feel so upset that I left it all for nothing. Now I am a leaf in the wind, with no prospects. I tried to apply in fields remotely related to my previous skills: I speak fluently 6 languages, I have a business degree, i tried perhaps they would want me in a travel agency, but I have been rejected everywhere I applied. I am so lost! Agencies have no advice, careers counselor a just say hang in there, I am a go getter, nothing seems to work. I feel like crying.

All of this regret because you didn't want to end up "old, bitter and unmarried". With all due respect, there are worse things in the world than being unmarried. And the fear of being unmarried should never be the reason to make a big decision. I hope that you find job that's a good match for you.

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Lovie in League City, Texas

9 months ago

You're still young enough to have at least 20 years in the sky as long as you take care of yourself. You'll probably be in your 50's before you can go to Paris, but who cares. There are enough interesting places right here in the US to keep things exciting. If you miss it that much, go back.

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Riotanga in Oxnard, California

9 months ago

Lovie....you missed her point...be kind

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Lovie in League City, Texas

8 months ago

Riotanga in Oxnard, California said: Lovie....you missed her point...be kind

I was very kind. I told her that she has plenty of good flying years left. What point did I miss? She was very clear about why she left her FA job. I was simply stating to her (and anyone else who might be reading this) that she shouldn't make major life decisions based on some "Old Maid" stigma.

Her exact words were, "I also didn't like the idea of being a typical flying cat lady, old and bitter, unmarried." When did getting older, not having a husband and owning a cat become such a horrible thing anyway? That seems to be the #1 fear of every woman over the age of 30. Seems like a pretty good life to me! The "cat lady" gets to do WHAT she wants, WHEN she wants. Some of the loneliest people I know are married. Yet the spinster stigma lives on. And bad decisions are born from it.

Best wishes for 2017. :)

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sandrade in Los Angeles, California

8 months ago

I flew in my twenties and transitioned into a non-aviation career in my thirties with the hope of having children, making more money, and living a more balanced life on the ground. I have a degree, but I feel I made the switch by being proactive- getting a part-time job on the side (with a local city government), and then transitioning full time to a consulting firm.

I make 2x as much money, but I have much less free time and flexibility. I work Monday-Friday at a desk, 8am-5pm. I have off: weekends, holidays, and 10 days paid vacation.

I still dream of flight attending. I miss my coworkers, the take-offs, the landings, gossiping in the galley, reading multiple books a week, soaking in deep hotel hot tubs with plush towels. I miss every day being completely different.

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Brian in Miami, Florida

8 months ago

Hey Guys, I see a lot of negative remarks of post flight attending. I am in my late twentys (single) and I am thinking in diving into this field. What do you recommend? Can you make decent money? Can you work enough hours? Is there time for rest? Can your base be your hometown?

Thank you!

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FlyinJJ in Sydney, Australia

6 months ago

I have been following this thread. I just want to say it's really important to get to know ourselves. We need to know who we are before making a job decision. I was lost in searching for the perfect job but really l was searching for who l was as a person. What my passion and dreams are, what makes me happy. Forget about money and other people, we need to go deeper to discover ourselves before showing others what we are capable of. I was a cabin crew for EK for 3 years in my early 20s, my very first full time job. I got hired in my very first application. I enjoyed it but had resign after 3 years when my mum had a major surgery and l wanted to stay with my family to look After her. so l went on to study a business degree while working as an airport checkin staff with an outsource company. After 2 years of passenger services, watching my previous airline colleague walking past in elegant uniforms while l was drenched in sweat pushing wheelchairs, my chance finally came when I got the airline representative role at the international airport for 2 years. Then, l was asked to Join the sales and ticketing team, which allowed me to learn all the ticketing systems (Seba, Amadeous, etc, airline platforms) and really understood how seats are sold in an airline. I then got promoted to a HR project role, responsible for setting a brand new CC base for this airline, from hiring to interviewing. I did this for 3 years then l left aviation altogether after 10 years of multiple aviaiton roles. What l have learned is that, I really enjoyed the people despite the pay was low. pay is fairly low in any airline roles in comparison to any banking industry roles. After had a taste of different roles within the airlines, I left and went back to study to become a teacher. I made more money working as a part time teacher than working as a full time cabin crew/ticketing officer/airline rep. I do get bored with teaching but nothing is perfect. Keep walking!

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Let's Fly in Houston, Texas

6 months ago

Stefania C. in Hollywood, Florida said: Oh my god, I cannot find work. I have been unemployed for 1.5 years, supported by my fiancé. Agencies have no advice, careers counselor a just say hang in there, I am a go getter, nothing seems to work. I feel like crying.

If you happen to read this as your post has been 3 months ago, my advice is to go back to flying. Forget about having to start over. Once you get yourself in a flight attendant uniform, you will forget about any past regrets you've made. You will make that starting salary work for you. And you will work your way to getting based at home with the right airline.

How do I know this. I lived what your are going through. I left a major airline after 18 years in hopes of a better future by transitioning to a different industry. Things didn't pan out. An employment agency told me since I never used my BA degree in anything and had no experience that it was best for me to return to flying. I didn't listen, because I wanted to prove myself. I had been unemployed for several years living off of my savings since I met with that agency. Finally a few years ago after multiple attempts, I finally got chosen by Delta. I wept when my name was called. That day when I received a CJO by Delta, my fears all went away and that feeling of being lost with no where to go also went away, because I knew then I had a purpose, a sense of belonging, and a window of opportunity. Training wasn't easy for me, but there were several people in my class in their 40's and 50's and we stuck together and helped each other out.

Start the process and apply as soon as the position opens. You have nothing to loose. See where it takes you. You don't have to commit, but if you're feeling anything like I was, you will be in a better place once you get yourself back as a flight attendant. I'm praying for you. I know how it feels. I was there.

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KJ in Saint Clair, Michigan

5 months ago

Oh thank you.
I flew mainline in Canada for eight years, and left it a year and a half ago to come to the US to live with my husband. I knew commuting to Canada was over, so I left the industry that I loved and hated at the same time, if that makes sense. I thought I was ready. I didn't realize how difficult the transition would be.
It just feels like nothing is working. Yesterday, I had a meltdown of sorts in my bathroom and all I heard in my head was "I just want to put on my uniform and go to work and know what is expected of me." I was so good at what I did, so confident. I have completely lost that confidence.
Now, to start over? I am in my mid-40s. Do I want to work with girls half my age? Do I want to be a junior? Do I want to be away from home again? So many questions, no answers, and I truly don't know what to do. Your story gives me hope, Houston. Maybe it isn't too late for me.

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Let's Fly in Houston, Texas

5 months ago

KJ in Saint Clair, Michigan said: Oh thank you.
I flew mainline in Canada for eight years, and left it a year and a half ago to come to the US to live with my husband. I knew commuting to Canada was over, so I left the industry that I loved and hated at the same time, if that makes sense. I thought I was ready. I didn't realize how difficult the transition would be.
It just feels like nothing is working. Yesterday, I had a meltdown of sorts in my bathroom and all I heard in my head was "I just want to put on my uniform and go to work and know what is expected of me." I was so good at what I did, so confident. I have completely lost that confidence.
Now, to start over? I am in my mid-40s. Do I want to work with girls half my age? Do I want to be a junior? Do I want to be away from home again? So many questions, no answers, and I truly don't know what to do. Your story gives me hope, Houston. Maybe it isn't too late for me.

I relate 100%. I also had those questions in my mind. I can relate to anyone who has given up a flying position only to find themselves feeling lost with no where to go. Please take the initiative to apply. Take those baby steps. If you get on with Delta, you will not be flying with just people half your age. I fly with all ages junior and senior. Also, you will be in-training with a group of people your age. Not all will be in their 20's. The only thing you would need to overcome is starting over in pay. All the issues you are thinking about in terms of what you listed above will becomes unimportant. Once you get yourself to flying, you will feel a sense of purpose, a sense of belonging, and your outlook of yourself and your future will change. Remember, this does not have to be a permanent decision. If you feel flying is not what you thought it would be the second time around, you can always make a decision to resign. I doubt that will happen. Apply once Delta reopens its need for flight attendants - fall 2017.

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KJ in Saint Clair, Michigan

5 months ago

Your comment about once you get yourself back in a flight attendant uniform your regrets will go away really hit home for me. Made me tear up, in fact. I tear up every time I get on a damn plane when I travel...I am not a cryer at all so those emotions are still there under the surface. I tried a new profession in the last year but there is no camaraderie, no feeling of shared experiences, just alone-ness. Thanks again for your comments and your reply. I thought all this time I was just crazy and now I know there are others who feel/felt like I do.

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Riotanga in Los Angeles, California

5 months ago

Hang in there...it's been years since I posted on this thread and I'm still struggling on land.......still hoping for some miracle. ..thinking of just starting flying all over again...at 56....

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Let's Fly in Houston, Texas

5 months ago

KJ in Saint Clair, Michigan said: Your comment about once you get yourself back in a flight attendant uniform your regrets will go away really hit home for me. Made me tear up, in fact. I tear up every time I get on a damn plane when I travel...I am not a cryer at all so those emotions are still there under the surface. I tried a new profession in the last year but there is no camaraderie, no feeling of shared experiences, just alone-ness. Thanks again for your comments and your reply. I thought all this time I was just crazy and now I know there are others who feel/felt like I do.

Training is not how it was back in the 80's. Interviewing was not how it was in the 80's as well. When I was in training, I kept telling myself, I can't go back to the way life was. I was finally given this door of opportunity and I applied myself to study hard. It was very stressful. But once I got my wings, I knew I had one more hurdle; probation. Probation wasn't bad. Commuting wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. In fact, commuting was easy. It just took days off to get to/from base. I guess what I'm trying to say is, don't let all those negative "what if's" consume your thoughts. I initially thought in my 50's I couldn't make it work and here I am happy I did it. Lastly, I don't want to give you the impression I got hired my first try. It took me 2 rejections and finally in my 3rd attempt, my name was called. Please take the initiative to at least apply and see how far it gets you. If you get rejected, pick yourself up and try again. These interviews, like me, took some practice. Good luck.

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Let's Fly in Houston, Texas

5 months ago

Riotanga in Los Angeles, California said: Hang in there...it's been years since I posted on this thread and I'm still struggling on land.......still hoping for some miracle. ..thinking of just starting flying all over again...at 56....

I didn't think I could manage starting over, especially in pay. You will be amazed that in the end, things always work itself out, financially or otherwise.

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KJ in Southfield, Michigan

5 months ago

I actually went to an open house for Skywest yesterday. Didn't make it through to the one on one interviews, but hey, it's been about 8 years since I interviewed for anything so I guess I am really out of practice. Time to sharpen up the interview skills and keep going, and maybe eventually something will come through.

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Katie123321 in Denver, Colorado

5 months ago

Lets Fly in Colorado in Colorado said: SFO is one of Delta's west coast bases. It's small, but it did open to to 2015 seniority early this Jan. 2016.

Hi
I don't know if you post anymore, but Thank you, this was very helpful. I very much understand as I am going through the same thing. Retired (57 y/o)from UA to start my masters in nursing in 2014. I think about going back all the time. I had an interview with Frontier Airlines and they lost my paper work after the first 2nd interview, we can't find it. I was upset(did not show it) before a series of 3 interviews. after the 2nd interview "cattle call", they said "its pending don't leave" and then I waited 45 min's for the recruiting to say sorry your paper work was behind another candidates, we are not going to make an offer today. I am not sure if there was too much on my resume,or that I had been a flight attendant before? so why did you retire. You are correct about the image "thing" as Frontier employs very down to earth, conservative individuals. As I am polished, suit, hair in a bun,lipstick gal.... One of the people they (management) hired came in a black sun dress with flip/flops on. Anyway, Yes flying is definitely a lifestyle and it is very, very hard for others to understand (9-5 job). Anyway your post was very inspirational. Thank you. Katlyn

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Let's Fly in Houston, Texas

5 months ago

Katie123321 in Denver, Colorado said: Hi
I don't know if you post anymore, but Thank you, this was very helpful. Thank you. Katlyn

Hi Katlyn, Yes, I understand your situation. You're not alone. Like me and others here, I really thought I could make a career change, but through the years of having left the industry, I really missed it. I did work for a very small charter airline that made me realize how much I wanted to fly again. It was a good friend of mine who suggested I apply for Delta. When I first interviewed with Delta, I knew they were the airline for me. But after two rejections, I felt, maybe, my age was a deterrent. However, in both my interviews, I sensed how much they wanted to offer me a CJO. What was preventing me from moving forward was understanding their STAR was of interviewing. By my 3rd attempt, I had an idea how to go about answering their interview questions. Anyway, if you constantly dwell on becoming a FA again, please make the efforts to apply. Choose which airline works best for you. I am biased to Delta. Try and figure out what types of people they are looking to recruit. I suggest you speak to only those that are offered a CJO by that airline to get a clear picture of the types of people they select.

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accune in Griffin, Georgia

4 months ago

moxy in Tampa, Florida said: i've been a F/A for 31 years total..being forced into retirement over an injury on duty..i am scared to death! i still have 5 years until i can actually retire..i'm in the same boat as many..depression has set in and helplessness and hopelessness has become the only two feelings after being so numb...i would like to know more, i'm in florida and need guidance..nobody will help and the world is circling around me double speed being that i haven't had much training in anything else

How is everything going for you now?

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KJ in Marine City, Michigan

4 months ago

Let's Fly in Houston, Texas said: I relate 100%. I also had those questions in my mind. I can relate to anyone who has given up a flying position only to find themselves feeling lost with no where to go. Please take the initiative to apply. Take those baby steps. If you get on with Delta, you will not be flying with just people half your age. I fly with all ages junior and senior. Also, you will be in-training with a group of people your age. Not all will be in their 20's. The only thing you would need to overcome is starting over in pay. All the issues you are thinking about in terms of what you listed above will becomes unimportant. Once you get yourself to flying, you will feel a sense of purpose, a sense of belonging, and your outlook of yourself and your future will change. Remember, this does not have to be a permanent decision. If you feel flying is not what you thought it would be the second time around, you can always make a decision to resign. I doubt that will happen. Apply once Delta reopens its need for flight attendants - fall 2017.

I am definitely watching for Delta in fall of 2017. I have seen some comments on here about how different airlines look for different "types." Because I flew in Canada, I don't think I have a grasp on the type that Delta would look for versus American, etc. Can anyone enlighten me?

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