- It has not been easy for flight attendants amid staffing shortages, flight delays, and cancelations.
- Some airlines have offered pay bumps or other incentives to alleviate the labor shortage.
- Flight attendant pay differs based on airline carrier and experience.
It has not been an easy couple of years for flight attendants.
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Current staffing shortages, flight delays, and cancelations have left some flight attendants feeling overworked and underpaid.
"This has been the most trying time in our entire history of our careers," said Sara Nelson, the international president of the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA union.
Airlines have canceled thousands of flights this summer as carriers cut back schedules to minimize disruptions and avoid long wait times, sometimes due to staffing shortages.
"Flight attendant pay is very wonky," Nelson said. Most airlines pay flight attendants based on a formula for each hour they're in the air. Flight attendants have pay protections, so they don't miss out when a flight is canceled, but "what it might mean is that you're away for longer for the same amount of pay," according to Nelson.
Recent chaos in air travel comes after a difficult two years for flight attendants, who have had to deal with an uptick in unruly passengers who resisted the federal mask mandates that were in place until April of this year.
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In some cases, airlines are providing bonuses or additional payments to recognize the added work flight attendants have had to contend with since the pandemic.
On June 2, Delta officially started paying flight attendants during the boarding process, which one Delta flight attendant told Insider is the "worst part" of their job.
Airlines like United and Spirit recently offered temporary pay bumps to flight attendants and pilots to alleviate labor shortages.
While the median salary for flight attendants in the US is about $62,280, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the pay can vary depending on the airline, and the flight attendant's level of experience, among other factors.
Some flight attendants have reported their salaries on job-listing sites like Glassdoor and PayScale to help prospective applicants get a better sense of their compensation. These salaries are self-reported to the websites and are an average of all flight attendants who chose to write in.
Here's how much flight attendants say they make working at 10 major carriers, according to data on Glassdoor and PayScale.
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