Why does the Cabin Crew application process take so long?

Feeling like you've been left in limbo with your Cabin Crew Application? We explore the reasons behind the wait.

“Why is there so much waiting in the Cabin Crew application process?”

We get asked variations of this question a LOT here at Cabin Crew Wings.

There’s so much waiting involved for candidates. From waiting to hear if you’ve made it to the assessment day, to the agonising wait after interviews to find out if the job is yours!

Even after you’ve got that much longed-for call telling you you’ve been successful, it can still take some time before all the background checks have been completed and you’ve been given a date for your training to begin.

Unfortunately, the wait is usually unavoidable!

So why does the Cabin Crew Application Process take so long?

A big part of this is due to the sheer volume of candidates that airlines have applying to them. Being Cabin Crew is an incredibly popular career choice, and competition is tough.

There are hundreds, sometimes even thousands of applicants for each position.

This can cause delays while applications are processed, and the most promising candidates are selected to progress further.

There is new technology in place with many airlines to help with speeding up the screening process, such as software to scan applicant CVs, online psychometric testing, and video interview software. However this technology has not yet been adopted universally, and each airline will have their own preferred methods of recruitment.

After the interview

Following the final interview many candidates report feeling very stressed with the lengthy response time.

Airlines will try their best to let you know the outcome as soon as possible. But again, there may be a lot of candidates to consider.

The recruitment team will want to consider the merits of each candidate thoroughly, and make sure that they make the right choices for their airline.

You WILL hear back one way or another, and though its not a good ideal to continually phone the HR department badgering them for updates a polite phone call or email enquiring about the progress of your application is perfectly acceptable.

I got the job! Why am I STILL waiting?!

Once you’ve been told you’ve landed the job the airline will want to conduct a series of background checks on you, and you will have to undertake a medical exam to prove you’re fit to fly.

It makes sense that when an airline is having a recruitment drive and employing a large number of candidates at once, there could be a wait for the necessary appointments to be made (and for checks to be completed).

If there are no positions immediately available airlines will sometimes place successful candidates in a ‘talent’ or ‘holding’ pool. This means you and the other candidates will be waiting in line for the next vacant crew positions.

You might be lucky and be given a date to begin your Cabin Crew training straight away. However if there’s a backlog of candidates this could take a while, as only a certain amount of new crew are able to train at the same time.

Final Thoughts…

It’s a little bit of a grey area to be honest – there is no hard and fast answer as to how long you’ll actually have to wait.

This can be a little frustrating when you’re desperate to start your new career, but you’ll usually be given a contact in the recruitment team who will keep you updates.

Many airlines use this time to ask candidates to fill out any necessary paperwork that’s outstanding, and to complete any required e-learning – so don’t see it as wasted time! You could also use the waiting time to swot up on what you’ll need to know as crew – like aviation terminology or your full role responsibilities – or even do a little bit more research on your new airline!

Improve your chances of being recruited and landing your dream job by enrolling on our 2 day ‘Get a Cabin Crew Job’ course! This unique and recognised course gives you hands-on experience of the role, and is taught by experienced Cabin Crew – the reviews speak for themselves!


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Cabin Crew Wings Team

Our team of experts have the many years as Cabin Crew plus HR experience and are up to date with the latest selection news.

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