If You Could Change One Thing On An Airplane, What Would It Be?

This is becoming an increasingly popular interview question but one which might not immediately make sense – after all, you’re applying for the role of Cabin Crew, not an aircraft designer.  But recruiters have found that the best Cabin Crew are those who are absolutely passionate about aviation.

They live and breathe the airline industry and are keenly aware of all the latest developments in the business.  They can tell you the make and model of a plane flying in the sky above you, can identify the airline by glancing at the logo on the tailfin and know all the challenges the industry is facing at the moment.

The most engaged cabin crew – those who just ‘get it’ will know exactly what services their airline offers and what makes it different to the competitors.  They know where it fits in the market and what customers expect.

It’s these people that this question is trying to identify.  It challenges you to think about the airline you’re applying to work for and tests your knowledge of the airline industry.  Of course, the recruiter doesn’t expect you to come up with a groundbreaking idea that no one else has ever thought of but it’s an amazing opportunity to show off your passion and enthusiasm for the role.

The way you answer this question will very much depend on the airline you apply to work for.  Cleary, there’s no point in talking about luxurious First Class bars if you intend to work for a low-cost airline – the recruiter may well question your true desire to work for their airline.

So first, start off by demonstrating your knowledge of the airline you’re applying for:

  • What services do they already offer?
  • What awards have they won?
  • Who are their competitors and how do they stand out from the crowd?
  • What do you really like and admire about this airline?
  • How do you see yourself fitting into this airline?

Now think about what you could change that’s realistic in relation to this airline.  What are they already doing to improve or expand?

So, as a quick example, at flydubai, they’ve recently taken delivery of Boeing 737-MAX with an extended range – that will allow the airline to fly to new destinations that are further afield.

The same is true for Qantas, who will start new services between Perth and Europe, starting in 2018.

What could you change to make the experience even better – mood lighting, music, air quality, improved access for disabled people?  Or could you do something to improve ancillary revenue sales?

You can be very business-minded in your answer or you can let your imagination run wild.  After all, who would ever have thought of putting a shower and spa in a commercial passenger aircraft until Emirates did it?

But again, think how your idea applies to the airline you are applying to work for.  Show lots of enthusiasm and passion for the industry and you’ll be sure to do really well answering this question.

Mateusz Maszczynski

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.

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