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Do you love aviation and want to pursue a career in this field? If yes, then there are lots of areas where you can join as an aviation professional, and the flight attendant is one of them.

You can apply for a flight attendant on various airlines across the globe however, we will be dealing with how to become a Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant in this helpful article.

Before knowing the requirements, processes, salary, and other information on becoming a Southwest Airlines Flight attendant, let us explore some basic information about the airline.

About Southwest Airlines

Southwest Airlines is one of the major airline companies of the United States which is also known as the world’s largest low-cost carrier. The airline has its headquarters in Dallas, Texas, and operates flights to over 121 destinations from 11 different hub airports in the United States.

The airline was founded on 15th March 1967 as Air Southwest Co. by Herb Kelleher and Rollin King. The name ‘Southwest Airlines’ was implemented in 1971.

Southwest Airlines operates more than 700 Boeing 737 aircraft and is known as the largest operator of this jet worldwide. The airline operated Boeing 727-200 aircraft between 1979 and 1985 with a lease agreement otherwise it operates only the Boeing 737. The airline has already announced an order for 100 Boeing 737 MAX 7 jets and increased the order to 234 jets in June 2021.

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As a low-cost carrier, the airline features economy-class seats only. Having said that, the airline doesn’t compromise in offering amenities to its valuable passengers.

We have explored some information about the airline. Now, let’s move forward to know how to become a Southwest Airline Flight attendant.

How to Become a Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant?

Southwest Airlines currently employs over 15,000 flight attendants across 11 domiciles in the United States. The airline treats flight attendants as the heart of Southwest Hospitality. 

The airline currently operates scheduled commercial passenger flights to 101 destinations across the United States and 10 additional countries. With that, over 4,000 weekday departures are triggered.

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There is a great opportunity in pursuing your career as a Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant. You must be worrying about the requirements, process, salaries, and other essentials to become a flight attendant. But don’t worry, we got you covered with all the information in this article so, don’t hesitate to stay till the end.

First of all, let’s find out the minimum qualifications for the Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant job.

Minimum Qualifications Include

  • Candidate must have High School Diploma, GED, or equivalent education
  • College Coursework or degree would be a plus point
  • At the time of application, the candidate must be at least 20 years of age
  • Candidate must be authorized to work in the United States
  • A valid and unexpired passport is mandatory
  • Candidate must maintain a well-groomed appearance as per the airline standards
  • Candidate must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19

Physical Qualifications

  • BMI must be normal which means weight must be of such proportion to height
  • Candidate must be able to walk and fit comfortably down the aircraft aisle, fit quickly through the overwing window exit, and also fit into a jumpseat harness without modification including closure without a seatbelt extension.
  • Candidate must be able to lift items up to 50 pounds from the floor to shoulder level
  • Candidate must be able to assist Customers with carry-on items that include lifting carry-on items from floor to above shoulder level with assistance.
  • Visible body and facial piercings are strictly prohibited
  • Visible tattoos are also prohibited. Candidates need to cover their tattoos with pants, long sleeve shirts, hair, makeup, or a scarf.

How to apply for Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant?

You can visit careers.southwestair.com and apply for the Flight Attendant job. This is an open hiring window where you are required to apply for the open position to become eligible for an interview.

As per the information from Southwest Airlines, there is only one way to apply for the Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant job and it is via the official website. Also, there is no fee for the application and training. So, don’t get confused and apply through other unnecessary sources.

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Processes for Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant job

Below are the steps you need to go through to be selected for the Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant job.

  • First of all, you need to see the vacancy on the official website and submit the application form with your resume. The airline’s HR department will email you within the first week to confirm your application submission.
  • After the successful submission of the application form with the resume, the airline will conduct an online assessment in which each candidate will answer various questions regarding qualifications.
  • Candidates passing the online assessment for qualifications will be eligible for a phone screen. 
  • If you pass the phone screen then, you will get an opportunity for a virtual panel interview that is conducted by a Recruiter and a current Southwest Flight Attendant.
  • After succeeding in the virtual panel interview, candidates might be required to attend personal interviews at the airline’s headquarter in Dallas, Texas.
  • Physical Performance Standards Proficiency Assessment is conducted as a background process during the interview session.
  • Applicants passing all the above tests will go through a federal background check and drug test as part of the pre-employment process.
  • You will attend the Southwest Airlines initial Flight Attendant Training for four weeks in Dallas, Texas after passing all the tests mentioned above.

Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant Interview Process

After submitting your resume, it will undergo processing in the order it was received. Candidates are then required to answer online questions regarding their qualifications, and their responses will be evaluated to determine if they meet the minimum requirements. If their qualifications meet the minimum requirements, they will be contacted for a phone interview.

Successful candidates will then proceed to an in-person panel interview with a Recruiter and a current Southwest Flight Attendant, which may take place at the HDQ in Dallas, TX. Additionally, applicants will need to pass a Physical Performance Standards Test (PPST) during the background process.

If they are selected to move forward from the interview process, a federal background check and drug test will be necessary as part of the pre-employment procedure. The process can take some time, so please be patient.

IMPORTANT NOTE

Southwest Airlines strongly recommends thorough preparation for your Flight Attendant interview. We are excited to become acquainted with you and discover more about your background. To access the latest details about Southwest Airlines, including Purpose, Vision, and Company Values, please visit the Southwest careers page. While there are external services that offer assistance for your preparation, it’s important to note that Southwest Airlines is not associated with any of these services. Regrettably, Southwest has identified instances where the information they provide about their hiring process is inaccurate, outdated, and occasionally misleading.

Southwest Airlines Initial Flight Attendant Training

Southwest Airlines provides four weeks of initial flight attendant training to the selected applicants. The training is conducted in the company’s headquarters in Dallas, Texas.

The airline doesn’t pay you during the training phase however, you will receive US$1,200 as a bonus after working five days. Besides, you will also get a $425 meal stipend in the form of a pre-paid Visa card.

Following are the requirements for passing Initial Flight Attendant Training

  • You as a flight attendant trainee must obtain a minimum of 90 percent marks on each required exam.
  • You need to pass every proficiency or skill test that includes knowledge in a specific area. Frequent tests are conducted throughout the initial flight training.
  • If you fail to pass the tests during initial flight attendant training, you are required to wait 12 months to re-apply from the date of your last person in the interview.
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Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant Work Schedule

Newly hired Flight Attendants will be assigned a fixed-line schedule for the first month. The reserve status (also known as ‘on call’) and trips will be available to new flight attendants during the following five months of probation from the first month.

Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant Salary

As a new Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant, the airline will pay you $25.14 per trip if you pass the initial flight attendant training. A ‘trip’ is defined as a travel distance of 243 nautical miles or approximately 55 minutes of flight time.

The airline says its flight attendants are provided with an average of 72 trips per month. So, on average you will be making US$1,800 monthly as a fresh flight attendant.

As per the company policy, reserve flight attendants get an average of 72 trips per month whereas scheduled flight attendants get an average of 80 trips every month. Reserve flight attendants are those being on call for trips.

Southwest Airlines also pays a per diem allowance to flight attendants. This allowance is paid on an hourly basis for each hour the Flight Attendant is away from their assigned base. The time is calculated starting at the time of required check-in and ending 30 minutes after the arrival of the last trip.

The per diem allowance is paid as compensation for meals and the current allowance as per the company’s policy is $2.30 per hour.

Also, you will get a per diem rate of $2.85 per hour if you work on a Near International Flight t (near international is defined as destinations or flying located within the region of North America but outside of the contiguous 48 United States).

Watch this short video to get a sneak peek of the Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant job.

Some important information on Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant

  • If not selected, you need to wait 12 months from the date of your last interview to re-apply for the Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant.
  • Selected Applicants are mandatorily required to submit a valid and unexpired passport book from the country of origin on the first day of initial flight attendant training otherwise, they will be released from training class.
  • Applicants can contact the airline via email or phone to seek any assistance during the recruiting process.
  • Southwest Airlines currently has its flight attendant bases in Atlanta, Las Vegas, Baltimore, Houston, Dallas, Chicago, Denver, Orlando, Phoenix, Oakland, and Los Angeles. Flight attendants are assigned to any of these bases depending upon the airline’s operational needs.

How much do flight attendants make on Southwest?

Southwest Airlines pays $25.14 per trip to its flight attendants. You will cover almost 80 trips a month as a new flight attendant so, you will make approximately $2,000 monthly as a Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant.

What does it take to be a Southwest Flight Attendant?

To become a Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant, you need to be at least 20 years, must have High School Diploma, be physically fit, and have the authorization to work in the United States.

Is Southwest flight attendant training paid?

Although there isn’t a signing bonus, new Flight Attendant graduates will receive a $1,200 Initial Training stipend within five working days after graduation, which will be subject to taxes and benefit deductions. While undergoing training, they will also be provided with a meal stipend in the form of a pre-paid Visa card.

Is it hard to get hired at Southwest Airlines?

If you are passionate and fulfill all the requirements to become a Southwest Airlines Flight Attendant, you are just a step away from your dream job. You need to go through various tests as mentioned in the article above. Just keep believing in yourself and prepare well to achieve success.

What are Southwest Airlines Crew bases?

Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Orlando, Oakland, and Phoenix are the bases allocated for Southwest Airlines crews.

How long does it take to become a Southwest flight attendant?

The duration to become a Southwest Airlines flight attendant varies based on factors like meeting requirements, preparing for the application, and advancing through interviews. On average, the process spans four to six months, though individual circumstances may lead to shorter or longer timelines.

How many hours do Southwest flight attendants work?

Southwest Airlines flight attendants operate on flexible schedules, and their monthly hours are contingent on factors such as seniority, reserve status, and operational requirements. On average, flight attendants clock 65-85 hours per month, excluding overtime, which typically corresponds to 12-14 working days. Additionally, those on reserve status might log around 72 trips monthly. The variability in working hours accommodates the diverse needs of the airline and allows for adaptability within the flight attendant team.

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Suman Karki
Suman Karki is the founder of the AviaTech Channel blog and YouTube Channel. He is a passionate aviation enthusiast and holds experience working as a Ground Operations Officer for Swissport International. He is currently serving as a Flight Data Feeder for FlightAware (a US-based company for Flight Tracking). Besides, he has worked as an aviation content editor for various aviation media.

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