Delta Air Lines has just reopened its flight attendant recruitment program and the Atlanta-based carrier could welcome thousands of new hire flight attendants over the next six months.
Along with reopening the application process for as many as 1,500 new hires, Delta is also set to rehire more than 1,600 candidates who were about to start work when the pandemic struck and bring back 1,300 flight attendants who took extended periods of absence.
The three largest airlines in the US are now on a hiring spree after United Airlines resumed flight attendant recruitment last week following a prolonged pandemic pause. American Airlines reopened applications several weeks ago with plans to hire as many as 800 flight attendants.
On top of the big three, a slew of other airlines are also on the hunt for new flight attendants as travel demand bounces back from the pandemic. JetBlue is looking for as many as 2,500 flight attendants in one of the biggest recruitment drives currently being run by the industry.
But despite the wave of flight attendants jobs that have suddenly become available, landing a job with the likes of Delta remains incredibly rare. In 2017, Delta famously hired less than 1 per cent of the 270,000 candidates that applied for the few available flight attendant jobs available.
The odds of landing a coveted job with Delta is said to be even smaller than securing a place at the prestigious Havard University.
Delta’s flight attendant training program takes place at the airline’s Atlanta headquarters and lasts for six weeks with new hire flight attendants training six days per week in order to earn their wings.
The decision to reopen flight attendant recruitment comes despite a slowdown in new flight bookings prompted by the delta variant (what Delta CEO Ed Bastian prefers to call the B.1.617.2 variant). Analysts, however, expect any dip to be much smaller than previous COVID-19 waves and recovery will come as soon as the current surge peaks
All new hire Delta employees must provide proof of being fully vaccinated against COVID-19, while the airline stopped short of issuing a vaccine mandate for existing employees. Instead, unvaccinated staffers will have to pay a $200 per month healthcare surcharge and take regular COVID-19 tests.
Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.