How Much Do Flight Attendants Make?

Flight attendants have very dynamic and important roles. They are responsible for the safety and care of passengers upon a flight, and have to undergo extensive training in order to work as a flight attendant.

How Much Do Flight Attendants Make
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If this exciting job sounds interesting to you, then you will need to know how much flight attendants make, which airlines pay the best, and what the typical role and responsibilities of a flight attendant are. Read on to find out!

What Is The Role Of A Flight Attendant?

Flight attendants have a range of roles and responsibilities in their jobs. For instance, they will need to provide routine services, and be able to respond to emergencies to ensure that all passengers on board are safe at all times.

Flight attendants are also responsible for the comfort of the passengers, providing food, drinks, and other services to ensure that they have a great journey.

Not only this, but they will need to adhere to all aviation rules and regulations, guide and assist passengers, greet and communicate with passengers, monitor and manage the cabin, provide help to passengers with special needs, prepare and serve food and drinks, conduct safety checks, and provide instructions on how to use safety equipment.

They may also be required to submit reports about flight incidents or accidents. 

Most airlines will ensure that flight attendants are fluent in English, whereas some airlines will require flight attendants to be bilingual. Flight attendants will also need to be well-presented and professional, with great communication skills and customer service. 

How Much Do Flight Attendants Make?

Flight attendant wages vary drastically depending on the level of experience, and the airline that they work for. 

Flight attendants mostly get paid hourly for their jobs. The average pay is about $23.69 per hour, with the lowest earners taking home about $12.81 per hour and the highest earners taking around $43.80 per hour. 

According to Indeed, this equates to around $34,142 per year as the average base salary across the states. The highest earners can bring home around $63,129 per year, and the lowest earners take home around $18,465 per year. 

Which Airline Has The Highest Paid Flight Attendants In The US?

How much a flight attendant can earn really depends on the experience level and the airline that they work for (see also “How Much Does A Dental Assistant Make?“). American Express has some of the highest reported salaries with an average of around $94,766, whereas American Airline reports salaries of around $48,499 per year. 

Delta Airlines meet somewhere in the middle, with average salaries for flight attendants resting at around $50,289 per year. 

What States Pay Flight Attendants The Most?

The states with the highest reported wages on Indeed for flight attendants are California, New York, and New Jersey.  Locations such as San Francisco can offer salaries with an average of $42,081 per year, whereas New York offers around $40,768 per year, and Newark offers around $40,315 per year on average. 

That being said, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics maintains that the top paying states for Flight Attendants are Connecticut, Hawaii, New York, Massachusetts, and Oregan – in order of highest paid to lowest. 

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the states with the highest employment level for flight attendants are Texas, California, Florida, Illinois, and New York. 

Benefits For Flight Attendants

How Much Do Flight Attendants Make
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Working as a flight attendant can have lots of perks and benefits, it’s not just about the pay. Many people choose this role as it allows them to travel the world while earning a wage.

The flight is free of course, and you get paid for each trip. You may have layovers in certain countries, where you can explore the local area. 

If your trips are within your region, then layovers may be shorter, but you can still claim allowances for food and other expenses. You will also get to meet lots of new people, and interact with travelers from all over the world. 

Flight attendant roles tend to be very flexible, as the shift will depend on the flight time and duration. You can also swap with other flight attendants for more flexibility, it’s not really a 9-5 role. You will spend some nights or a few days away from home, depending on the airline and destination. 

Many airlines will also offer great health packages including medical, dental, life, and vision policies. One of the best perks is the discount you can get on flights, making travel a breeze.

You can also receive a 401K retirement plan, performance based bonuses, discounts, and advancement opportunities within the airline. 

How To Become A Flight Attendant

To become a flight attendant, a high school diploma or equivalent is required. A college degree is not required, but it can be beneficial. You will also need to be at least 18 years of age, but some airlines require attendants to be 21 years of age. 

You will need to undergo screening for drugs, and have a background check. You may also need to undergo an FBI fingerprint check before landing a role.

Once you go through pre-employment screening, airlines will  provide training and orientation upon their own aircrafts under FAA approved policies. Airlines will typically provide training for flight attendants, that could be 6 weeks long or more. 

Flight attendants will typically have on the job training, and will need to be certified by the Federal Aviation Administration. This is called a certificate of demonstrated proficiency. It is important to note that airlines also have their own set of guidelines that you must meet to be employed. 


To summarize, Flight Attendants have very flexible, exciting, and important roles. They are responsible for the comfort, safety, and wellbeing of the passengers, and the security of the aircraft during flight operations. 

The average salary for a flight attendant varies depending on the airline and experience level, but the typical salary is about $34,142 per year.

Jason Sullivan
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