Which Airline Is The Best To Work For?

One of the most common subjects that readers, friends, or acquaintances ask Meghan, Celessa, or I is a spin off of the question, “Is this airline better than that airline?” or “Which one should I apply to?” or “Where should I work?”  Due to the fact that these questions are so important to address, I wanted to write a blog sharing advice on what airline you should apply to and work for.  I guarantee that the answer will not be what you expect, but isn’t that typical of flight attendant life anyway?  It’s never what you expect…


The simple, straight forward, and short answer to your question of, “Which airline is the best to work for?” is- There is no ‘best.’ Yes, you read that right.  I just told you one airline is not better than another.  An airline cannot claim title to “The Best” until you evaluate WHO YOU ARE AND WHAT YOU WANT out of the experience.  Until then, there is no way to determine which airline is better than another.  One person can work at the shittiest airline out there and have the BEST experience, and another person can have an awful time at the same airline.  As I said, the simple answer is there is no ‘best airline,’ but there are places that I would rather work over others, and places I know that you would rather work than others.

So now that we have that established, let’s move on and cover 5 points that will help you determine what the best airline is for you to work for.

Which airline is the best to work for?

1.  Why and what do you want out of being a flight attendant?  Do you want to become a flight attendant or cabin crew member for the layovers, the free flight benefits, the camaraderie with colleagues, the uniform, the pay (haha…just kidding. None of us do this for the pay).  But really, figure out why you want to be a flight attendant and what your goals are through becoming a flight attendant.  I now fly only international, long-haul flights, which most would think to be better than domestic, but my previous airline was better than what I have now for quite a few reasons.  It was the best airline for me at the time and could still have been, but I wanted another experience.

Quite honestly, I switched airlines for this blog.  I wanted to be able to share a broader perspective with all of you.  What I am saying is that my goals with flying changed, so instead of day trips and Hawaii life, I took a HUGE pay cut to grow as a cabin crew member and as an individual.  Through all of the disappointments and challenges of this past year, I am so glad I followed my heart and did what was best for me.  I didn’t work for “the best” airline then, and I don’t work for “the best” airline now, but I am in the best place for me.  Figure out the best place for you.

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Kara Laughing

2.  Do you have responsibilities at home that demand a lot of your attention? It is a misunderstood fact that all flight attendants are gone for long periods of time.  Many airlines operate turns which means the crews fly day trips.  This is how my flight attendant life started, then moving into two and three day trips, and now, I fly on average 10-15 day trips.  The weeks away would be so difficult if I had a family, pets, or a boyfriend even, but honestly, I really love the weeks and weeks away.  That could simply be because I feel like I belong more in Scandinavia than Florida though.  You need to evaluate your current home life and determine what is feasible for you to manage as far as days away.  If you require a lot of work flexibility, an airline like the one I work for or private aviation is probably not for you.  But a domestically based carrier or regional could be the perfect fit.

allegiant airlines flight attendant job

3.  Do you want to work on a small/large crew or small/big planes?  Some flight attendants like working alone or with only one other flight attendant. Celessa and my mom both actually enjoy this aspect a lot.  They don’t have anyone looking over their shoulder in the cabin.  I on the other hand, might go crazy with only 30-70 passengers on my flights and only the pilots to talk with.  I LOVE having twelve to sixteen crew on my flights.  I get to rotate through work stations as there are at least eight or nine positions to work on the aircraft.  I can momentarily escape the hard-to-deal with passengers or hard-to-deal with colleagues.  I like the plane I work on too.  A small regional would not be for me, although there are SO many benefits they have that I do not, one being…

Best airline to work for

4.  How important is travel during or outside of work to you?  Do you even care about travel?  Do you consider layovers “travel?”  Or is travel to you adventuring out on your own?  If travel to you is adventuring out on your own, then pick a place that has great schedule flexibility, with an opportunity to gain seniority fairly quickly.  Find an airline that has great flight benefits.  Celessa and my mom have both incredible schedule flexibility and some of the best flight benefits in the industry.  Most airlines based in The United States have decent flight benefits for you to be able to travel inexpensively in your free time.  The major issue that most come across is this:  When you have the time, you don’t have the money.  And when you have the money, you don’t have the time.  Now, I am constantly working trips to Europe, but I have no flight benefits like I once had.  I really miss flight benefits, but the flight attendant life I live now is an absolutely, almost unreal adventure.  I know I am lucky to be where I am and so thankful for the job and the adventures.  It’s not necessarily better or worse than what I had before.  It’s just different.  Know what differences you are willing to put up with.

Halong Bay Vietnam

Traveling to Vietnam & Halong bay on days off- December 2012

5. Are you considering flight attendant life as a lifetime career? You may be in the space that I was when I started flying and only saw being a flight attendant as a year or two gig until I figured out what I really wanted to do with my life.  Six years later, I’m still in the career, and although I have been struggling with staying or leaving recently, I really love this career and will stay.  I don’t know if there is a better job in the world than being a flight attendant.  It gets you.  It’s not just a job, it’s one’s entire life, and that can be a wonderful thing.  Because of where I am in my life personally and as an entrepreneur, I don’t see flying as a career where I need to pick a “career airline”, so I haven’t pursued airlines like Delta or United because those don’t fit with what I want, who I am, or where I want to be (remember point 1).  Both of those airlines I consider to be GREAT career choices (along with Southwest, JetBlue, Alaska, Hawaiian, etc), but it’s not me right now.  Being a flight attendant isn’t my main goal in life, which is great because what that means, is when a job or life situation is no longer working for me, it’s easier to move on to what fits better.  It’s like shoes guys.  When you’re two, you have your favorite shoes and they fit so well.  When you are ten, you have a new pair of shoes that fit you for this age.  You don’t jam, cram, or stuff your toesies into your toddler kicks.  THAT’S RIDICULOUS!  So NEVER do that with your life!  We do things like this due to fear of the unknown, but we are like feet and grow You grow.  Buy new shoes when you need them, and move into what fits.


There are more points that I can add about airlines and places to work, but this will help you get started.  I also want to mention that sometimes, you just need to start somewhere.  Start at the airline that isn’t viewed as glamorous or isn’t well-known if you must.  It can actually be the best place for you to start.  You will learn and it can prepare you for the next place.  Meghan has written about how here start made her ready for a mainline, and from my own experience, I needed my domestic carrier, all of the travel, all of the moving, and all of the writing to prepare me for where I am now and where I am going tomorrow.

Know you will get to where you need to be when you need to be there.








About the Author Kara

Curious. Bubbly. Creative. Curating a life I don't need an escape from and inspiring you to do the same.

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Wellem says March 4, 2015

Im in love with this blog!!!! Safe trips!!!!

Rita says March 4, 2015

Thank you so much for this article. Im leaving for training April 20th w horizon. A client of mine, former FA was telling all the reasons why I should persue an international airline, which totally makes sense and honestly that’s the dream. But at this point of my life a smaller carrier is the best choice. Thanks again. This makes me feel at peace w my decision.

    Court says May 12, 2015

    You say I your blog not all sirlines have travel benefits. Do you have a list of ones that do and ones that don’t? That is important to me so I would like to find out before jumping too far down the rabbit hole. 😉

Andres V says May 23, 2015

Hi Kara! I’m in love with this blog already! I live in Arizona & are about a senior in high school. My question is: Is there any schooling or any training i need to go through to be a flight attendant?
It’s one of my aspirations to be one! I never flew on a plane before but im a huge people person & i just feel as though this is what i meant to do! ( I know thats weird to say but i cant help but smile when i think about being one!) If you can email me (when you’re free of course) or reply to this comment whenever that’d be great thank you! 🙂

    Rachel says October 13, 2016

    Hello Andres!

    To become a flight attendant you don’t need any official schooling, a college level education is welcomed, but is not necessary and a high school diploma will do just fine.
    Before making your decision make sure to inform yourself of the lifestyle of a flight attendant.
    The competition for flight attendant job is high, so you will need all the help you can get in order to find a job. Make sure to check for jobs online. There are great resources online that can help you find a job like http://www.flightattendantagency.com
    Don’t get discouraged if you don’t find a job right away, but keep trying!

    Good luck!

Shaleen says June 23, 2015

This blog is so great! I have been contemplating becoming a flight attendant for a couple of months now and I have gotten a lot of guidance from you . Thank you!

Ruth says August 26, 2015

Since I was a kid I wanted to be a flight attendant. But my goals and life perspective started to change at some point. That and the fear for flying made me think that this life wouldn’t be for me. This year I travelled to Amsterdam and somehow I started to imagine myself as the person who is allways in the air and has the opportunitty to meet new places, new cultures, new people. Right now I’m finishing my graduation as a Speech Therapist (as u can see my goals changed a lot), but I still have the need to have this type of professional experience. This need came along with the end of a relationship that didn’t went well. So my question is if I should make this decision now? Because I still have affraid of regret of it. And also don’t know if I could study and work as a flight attendant at the same time (I just have a part time job right now). So, there’s a lot of questions going on. But when you asked what we wanted as a flight attendant, I could fit in every aspect you mentioned. I’m thinking it’s my heart speaking for myself and maybe I should listen to it. Thank you! 🙂

Annalisa says September 13, 2015

May I ask which airline do you work for, Kara?
Thanks, Lisa

    Jond Ueland says March 10, 2016

    do you work for Norwegian? NIA

Sierra Kurt says January 6, 2016

Absolutely in love with your blog! Right now I’m considering being a flight attendant and am curious as to which airline you work for because my ideals and situation sound very similar to yours! I’m 20 years old with no restrictions holding me back to when I can and can’t work and wouldn’t mind weeks away like you mentioned. I also want to be a flight attendant for the traveling benefits, as in the layovers in various places! Any information you can give and help me with would be awesome. Thanks!! 🙂

Julia says July 25, 2016

I love this!

lucy beth says August 18, 2016

i love this blog! im 13 and reallllllly want to be a flight attendant x

Ruby says October 29, 2016

What airlines fly domestic only?Inspiring FA looking to get my feet wet before flying international.

Randolph says March 20, 2017

I recently left Norwegian as a flight attendant to return to a US carrier mainly because their training was terrible, you get no passes and no benefits . Plus I was not proud to work for them . Every US carrier from Delta to United is against them . It was the worst carrier I have ever worked for . I would recommend any US carrier over them .

Kennedy says April 4, 2017

I understand you probably can’t say too much about airline names, nor about the airlines you have worked for in particular, but I was hoping you could let me know some names of airlines that you think would be best for earning seniority quickly and international travel?
Just from your perspective as someone who has done this job for a while and knows reputations and stories better than someone interested in starting out.
Thanks in advance!

john doe says June 13, 2017

sooo what isthe best airline

Becky says June 13, 2017

Great article and very helpful! Thank you for this.

Comments are closed