How I Nailed My First Job Interview To Be A Cabin Crew Trainee

Recently, many people have interested in working as cabin crew as the job itself is glamorous and has many other benefits. Plus, aviation industry has become one of the booming businesses through out the globe; cabin crew has become a popular job. According to Inflight Institute, there are nearly 50,000 new cabin crew job annually (source).

I, myself, also am interested in the job. I applied for three airlines in Cambodia; namely Sky Angkor Airlines, Cambodia Airways and Cambodian MJ Airlines. However, I managed to be qualified for one airline only which is Cambodian MJ Airlines. For the other two, I didn’t even manage to pass when I dropped my CV. I was told it was too modern using my last updated CV, but I think I am more lacking of experience regarding the aviation industry than using too modern CV (lmao; I think it’s possible sometimes). Wanna see? Here you go:

Not so modern right? FYI, I may sound ridiculous to the other audiences beside Khmer people because there is a norm in our country. CV can’t be too modern or designed too much, becasue you are not applying to be a designer. …What???… I mean… How can this happen? Who invent this theory or norm? (De fuq) I’m offensive since I like to play around (I mean design) in my CV! lol Does it look informal? Or can somebody give me a good reason not to design his/her own CV and keep doing the same CV like everybody does? (You can google “Cambodian CV sample”, which ever come most often, that’s what everybody else’s CV looks like… lol. I’m kidding, but most, and it’s true).

Alright, without babbling around too much. Let’s get started on how I nailed my job interview instead.

Stage 1: Preparation

How did you prepare your CV?

Answer: I wrote my CV by stated only appropriate information for the position. Before writing my CV, I have done some researches on “some qualities and skills of a cabin crew member”, and “airlines company’s profiles”. I noted points and requirements which I can put on my CV. Besides, I looked back on my qualifications to see what should I include in my CV as well. Additionally, I have to make sure that my CV is short, but all the necessary information are there. Ah, also the Cover letter! Just write anything I haven’t mentioned in my CV. Apparently, the recruiter sure doesn’t wanna read the same things all over again. I wrote anything I think appropriate and always keep in mind that “Keep it short and simple”! Once I’ve finished it, I dropped it or sent to the respective companies.

What after you dropped your CV at the company?

Answer: There’s nothing I can do much before I got a call from any airlines I have applied. So just wait!  It can take days, weeks or months to received any call. I suggest, If there any chance you happen to see any other opportunity, chase after it! Maybe the later one give you an earlier call. That’s what I did back then.  Oh, there is another thing, I read a lots, lots and lots of topic regarding cabin crew and aviation. You should too! I suggest you read iheartcabincrew.

Stage 2: Received A Call for The Interview

What did you do after you have received a phone call for the interview?

Answer: Woohoo! Congrats! I’m surely congratulating myself. Lol! I remember the time I received the phone call from Cambodian MJ Airlines at the first time. I screamed, I shouted, I yelled alone in my room. However, it was not the time to celebrate yet. A journey through out the interviewing and testing process to become a cabin crew trainee is tough. So brace yourself! After the phone call, I reached out to my friends in aviation industry to ask for some information regarding the interviewing process, tips and tricks on how to impress the interviewer, so on and so forth. During this period, I spent so much effort to prepare my best. I suggest you should too. Don’t take it for granted! Be well-prepared for the interview.

Stage 3: Interviewing Day(s)

Can you describe how your interview day was like?

Answer: Well, before I answer this question, I suggest you not to expect the same thing will happen to you on your interviewing day(s). Just read and be well prepared. Okay! Let’s start! The first thing on my interviewing day is “Screening”. By “screening”, I was measured my height and weight. After that, I was interviewed by three people. They asked a lot of questions about me, and the job. That’s it for the first round. Later on, two weeks later, I was tested my English and Chinese proficiency since I stated those languages in my CV. For the last round, it was medical check. I was strictly tested to get to the final round, and it was tough.

FYI, for the other airlines, you may experience Team assessment, Individual and Group interview, Swimming test, and eyesight test in additional to what I have mentioned above.

What were asked in your interview?

Answer: The questions are: (Reminder! Every job interview will involve around these questions, so you’d better be well prepared answering the questions provided below. I was asked similar things also.)

  1. Tell me about yourself.
  2. Why do you want to be a cabin crew member?
  3. Why do you want to work for ABC Airlines?
  4. What skills and qualities will you bring to the job?
  5. What skills and qualities do you need to improve?
  6. Have you ever had to deal with an angry customer? What happened?
  7. Have you ever worked with someone from another culture? Did you learn anything?
  8. What do you think will be the most difficult part of the job?
  9. Would your current employer describe you as reliable?
  10. What would you do if an older lady passenger seemed upset and appeared to be crying?
  11. If we don’t hire you for this job, what will you do?

How was your individual interview proceed?

Answer: Before getting into the interviewing room, I was measured my height and weight. It was written on a piece of paper and stuck on my CV. I was also given a number – number 12. I waited in line thought people would be interviewed by the assigned number. However, it’s not. Someone from the company told me not to wait any longer since I waited so long and people went in and out randomly. Actually, I waited Mr. number 10 and 11 to be interviewed first; but Mr. number 11 (sorry for calling you that; lol) seemed a bit nervous and he let me go in first. The first thing I did back then was greeting them with a proper hand gesture (for Cambodian, we use Sampeah) and smile, then handed them my CV. They reviewed it for a little while then one of the interviewer said I wasn’t qualified since I am too short – 168 cm.  Tbh, my height is 172cm, but the one who measured me earlier used the device wrongly. I was about to cry, yet I tried to remain calm and informed them that my actual height is 172cm. They still refused to interview me. I still remember the interviewer line running in my head; say, “Sorry, your height does not meet our requirement standard. We thank you for interested in applying to our company.” She handed me my CV back. I didn’t answer or take it back. I cringed and was so sad inside; almost busted into tear at that moment. Because I was sitting still; she asked me to introduce myself, then I started talking. She also asked if I would like to apply for another position since there were some opening positions beside cabin crew position. I answered positively since I didn’t wanna walk back out and receiving nothing. Then she started asking more, I answered accordingly. She’s listening and checking through my CV simultaneously. Later on, she asked another question “You can speak Chinese?” – I replied “Yes, I do. I graduated from Duan Hua Chinese school.” Then, she asked her colleague who can speak Chinese to come in. He started asking me questions in Chinese. After a while, someone was walking in again – Mr. CEO. Oh! Gosh! Help me please! It’s kinda 5 Vs 1 interview back then. I was so panic; however, how I reacted was remaining calm and keep smiling all the time (even though I was crushing inside). They started interviewing me in Chinese instead of English. I answered all the questions nicely. Because of that, I build more confident and we start talking more and more. We talked, we laughed. It became relaxing and enjoyable later on. Finally, we discussed about the salary, since I was asked, and ended the interview by me asking back some questions.

What about your English and Chinese proficiency test?

Answer: The test was designed by the company. It consists of multiple choice questions (to test both Vocabulary and Grammar), and two essay writings (one English and one Chinese). The topic is related to Asian economic community and tourism in Cambodia.

How do you prepare for both interview and the proficiency test?

Answer: Just read a lot. Go through many articles and documents online. For me, I looked for everything suitable, relatable and interested me, then read them. For the proficiency test, I was so careful with my grammar! My tip for you would be reviewing before taking the test may help you build confident.

Lastly, what about the medical check up?

Answer: I normally go get myself tested once every six months. I know what is going on with myself, so I’ve got no worry about this. For the medical check, they were running some tests on my blood and urine. Besides, my physical body and also my eyesight were also tested. I’ve got all no problem. Thus, here I am! Pass the tough process to be selected to be a cabin crew trainee! Hooray!

Alright! That’s all for today! My journey to be a licensed cabin crew is still long to go. I’m determined to try my best and make this dream come true. Anyway, if you have any question regarding the process, please drop your question below. Thanks!

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