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Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant Salary – 2024 Complete Guide!

Alaska Airlines is known as one of the airlines in the USA that pays its Flight Attendants the highest – but just how much is the salary of an Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant?

This article will break everything down so we can see just how much a Flight Attendant makes in their salary at Alaska Airlines, and why so many people are keen to get a job as an Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant!

Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant Salary:

The Flight Attendant salary at Alaska Airlines is pre-determined and agreed by Alaska Airlines and the Union: Association of Flight Attendants (AFA) in a formal contract agreement.

How Much Do Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants Make?

Within Alaska Airlines, the salary for Flight Attendants varies vastly – from around $45,000 per year for new Flight Attendants to over $80,000 for the most experienced Flight Attendants! 

Flight Attendants earn an average of $26 per hour at Alaska Airlines when they start flying, which is a competitive rate and higher than the national average. 

As they get more senior their hourly rate increases, and they can earn more than $60 an hour if they have been working as an Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant for over 10 years!

It is important to remember however that this is just the basic hourly rate and you will earn more than this.

Many more factors however go into a Flight Attendant’s salary than just the basic hourly rate, such as the flights worked, whether the Flight Attendant was on reserve, bonuses etc – so that number is just a guide!

Interested in finding out the Flight Attendant salaries for other US Airlines? Check out:

American Airlines FA Salary

Southwest Airlines FA Salary

Delta FA Salary

United FA Salary

Hawaiian Airlines FA Salary

If you would like to see how the salary for Flight Attendants in one of the wealthy Gulf airlines compares, check out this article on Etihad Cabin Crew Salary.


Like in most jobs, Flight Attendants’ salaries at Alaska Airlines increase the more experience and seniority a Flight Attendant has in their role.

The hourly pay rate for Flight Attendants is based on the number of years they have worked as a Flight Attendant with Alaska Airlines. 

Alaska Airlines’ Standard Flight Hour Pay increases by approximately $2 per hour each year, which is a substantial raise. The hourly rate is tied directly to a Flight Attendant’s seniority level.

Besides the hourly rate, other factors, such as monthly flight hours, also affect Flight Attendant salaries at Alaska Airlines.


A Flight Attendant’s salary at Alaska Airlines is determined by the number of monthly flight hours worked. It’s important to note that payment begins only after the aircraft door closes, and stops once the door opens at the destination gate.

This means that time spent on pre-flight tasks, such as briefing and safety checks, delays before departure, and waiting for passengers to disembark at the destination, are unpaid.

While this may seem unfair, it’s common practice in the aviation industry. However, there are exceptions, as Flight Attendants receive per diem compensation during outstation periods when they are not working.

More information on per diem can be found later in the article.

How Many Hours Does A Flight Attendant Work Per Month?

On average, Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants work about 70 hours per month, but the number of hours can vary and impact their pay. Junior staff may work more hours, while senior staff may opt for part-time hours.

Flight Attendants can choose to pick up additional flights or give them away through an online system, giving them greater control over their work schedules and income.

This system provides flexibility and allows Flight Attendants to customize their work arrangements according to their preferences.


Calculating Flight Attendant salaries differs significantly from standard jobs. Monthly salaries for Flight Attendants working in commercial airlines can vary considerably.

Unlike regular jobs that offer fixed monthly salaries, Flight Attendants’ salaries depend not only on their standard flight hour pay and the number of hours flown each month but also on the destinations they visit, whether the flight is a layover or turnaround, and whether they have any on-call or available duties.

A Flight Attendant Salary is made up of:

  • Crew Duty Payment (the amount of hours flown that month multiplied by the Hourly Flight Pay)
  • Layover Payment (Per Diem)
  • Reserve payment
  • Incentives

Special Roles: pursers, language speakers etc.

These payments can vary considerably from month to month and crew member to crew member, depending on what the Cabin Crew Roster looks like that month. 

Also if a Flight Attendant has had vacation leave or been sick one month, or didn’t get called on their reserve days, their salary will be lower as they will have had more days off from flying. 

Crew Duty Payment

Hourly Rate x Hours Flown = Flight Attendant Salary

The Crew Duty Payment for a given month at Alaska Airlines is calculated by multiplying the total number of hours worked during that month with the Standard Flight Hour Pay rate.

Salaries are paid after the month worked because last-minute changes to rosters and flights make it difficult to predict the exact payment in advance.

For instance, a junior Flight Attendant at Alaska Airlines with an hourly rate of $26 and working a 5-hour flight would receive $130 ($26 x 5 = $130), while a Flight Attendant with 10+ years of experience and an hourly rate of $60 would receive $300 for the same flight.

No wonder why Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants tend to hold on to their jobs!

Layover Allowance (Per Diem)

The Per Diem Layover Allowance is an additional payment that Flight Attendants receive during layovers when stationed away from their base.

It is a non-taxable amount paid on top of their regular hourly rate and is meant to cover meal expenses during the layover. The allowance is automatically given by Alaska Airlines, so there is no need to keep receipts or submit anything.

The Per Diem rate is uniform for all Flight Attendants, regardless of seniority, and amounts to a couple of dollars per hour.

Flight Attendants receive the allowance for every hour spent away from their base, from the time the aircraft door closes at the base until it opens again. Though seemingly small, the allowance can add up quickly.

For instance, during a 24-hour layover where the total time away from the base is 40 hours, a Flight Attendant can earn an extra $80 or so in Per Diem Layover Allowance, in addition to their regular pay for flying hours.

This can translate into hundreds of dollars of added salary every month, making it a valuable benefit.

Reserve Whilst Working As An Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant

During the Reserve period, junior Flight Attendants are on standby, without any fixed flights scheduled on their roster.

They usually have to wait until the last minute to receive a call to operate a flight, which could be to any destination and could be a layover or a turnaround. However, there is a chance that they may not be called for a flight at all.

Reserve Flight Attendants are usually assigned flights that are less desirable, such as short there-and-backs, multi-sector days, red-eye flights, or flights with short layovers.

Although occasionally, they may get the opportunity to operate a great flight.

Alaska Airlines follows a straight reserve system, and new Flight Attendants are required to adhere to this system.

During their Reserve months, Flight Attendants receive a roster/schedule, which shows their off days and the days they are on standby.

While they are on Reserve, they are not on standby non-stop for the entire time and still get plenty of days off that they know in advance.

For instance, in a month, they could have 12 minimum days rostered off and approximately 18 days rostered on Reserve.

Special Roles

In addition to the hourly rate and per diem, some Flight Attendants can also earn extra money in special roles – for example when they are a language speaker or a purser on the flight.


The Purser is a Flight Attendant who is responsible for supervising the cabin. This includes completing safety and incident reports and handling any issues or challenging passengers, including other Flight Attendants.

Due to their added duties and accountability for the overall customer experience, Pursers receive extra compensation.

Becoming a Purser typically requires a minimum of 20 years of experience, so it may take a significant amount of time for Flight Attendants to achieve this role at Alaska Airlines.


There are several opportunities where Flight Attendants at Alaska Airlines can get extra pay.

They can include:

  • Double pay for flights on Christmas, Thanksgiving, Independence Day and New Years Day.
  • Commission on duty-free products sold
  • profit sharing (annual bonuses)
  • monthly bonuses
  • Individual performance bonuses

As an average, for Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants the base pay will make up about 80% of the pay Flight Attendants receive.

Bonuses, commissions, profit sharing and stocks can help to bring in another 20%, bringing in over $10k extra annually on average. Not bad right?!

If you’re looking for help on applying to become a Flight Attendant and the Application Process check out these guides:

How to write the perfect Flight Attendant CV/Resume
Attending A Flight Attendant Assessment Day
What to expect on a Flight Attendant Open Day
Flight Attendant School
Flight Attendant Background Check

Alaska Airlines Benefits

In addition to the good pay conditions, benefits for Alaska Airlines Flight Attendants include:

  • Unlimited free standby flights on Alaska Airways and Horizon Air for employees as well as their dependents and their parents
  • paid holidays
  • health insurance (medical, dental and dental plans)
  • Performance bonuses
  • Annual as well as monthly bonuses
  • retirement plans – 401K plan 
  • development opportunities

Alaska Airlines has generous benefits, bonuses and commissions for their Flight Attendants.

Salary Deductions For Flight Attendants At Alaska Airlines

Medicare, Social Security and other taxes are taken out of your paycheck. Remember that each state in the US has different levels of taxes.

What Factors Can Affect A Flight Attendant Salary?

As we can see, several factors can affect a Flight Attendant’s Salary:

1. Seniority Of The Flight Attendant

As mentioned earlier, a Flight Attendant’s level of seniority plays a vital role in determining their pay.

Seniority does not only impact their hourly wage but also determines the destinations and schedule they are assigned to, which in turn affects their overall income.

With more seniority comes a higher hourly pay and greater control over the schedule, making it a crucial factor in shaping a Flight Attendant’s salary and work schedule.

2. Hours Worked

The number of hours worked also has a significant impact on a Flight Attendant’s earnings. The more hours they work, the higher their monthly salary will be.

3. Per Diem

4. Special Roles

5. Benefits

Interested in becoming a Flight Attendant for another US airline?

Check out these articles:

American Airlines FA Requirements

Southwest Airlines FA Requirements

Delta FA Requirements

United FA Requirements

Is Alaska Airlines Currently Hiring Flight Attendants?

Click here to view the vacancies for Flight Attendants

It is advisable to apply promptly when job vacancies become available because often the job posting closes early due to an excessive number of applicants

How To Become A Flight Attendant At Alaska Airlines?

To become a Flight Attendant at Alaska Airlines, there are several requirements that must be met, similar to other airlines.

These prerequisites include meeting educational qualifications, maintaining a certain physical appearance, being eligible to work and reside in the United States, passing background checks, having English proficiency, and meeting the minimum age criteria, among other things.

After meeting these requirements, you can apply for the job. The application process involves multiple steps, including an assessment day with several high-energy tasks and group and one-on-one interviews.

The competition for the position is intense, and passing through all the stages can be challenging. Therefore, it is essential to apply as soon as possible when vacancies open up.

How Long Does The Whole Process To Become A Flight Attendant With Alaska Airlines Take?

The process of becoming a Flight Attendant at Alaska Airlines is thorough and consists of multiple stages that can take several months. This timeline can vary based on factors such as the volume of applicants and the airline’s hiring needs.

Once selected, candidates who receive a conditional job offer may need to wait several weeks or even months before commencing their 6-week Cabin Crew Training.

Despite the lengthy and sometimes challenging process, the reward of becoming a Flight Attendant at Alaska Airlines is well worth the effort.

Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant Training Program

Alaska Airlines conducts a 6-week long Flight Attendant training program in Seattle, Washington, which is offered at no cost to the trainees. The training also includes complimentary accommodation in a hotel.

Candidates are responsible for their food expenses and other expenses. Successful completion of the training program and background checks is required to obtain the flying license.

Upon completion of the training, candidates receive their wings, are assigned a base, and become a part of the Alaska Airlines Cabin Crew team.

The training program focuses on aircraft-specific training, safety procedures, and handling different scenarios that may arise during flights such as medical emergencies, fire, security, emergency landings, as well as customer service and Alaska Airlines culture.

Alaska Airlines Flight Attendant Salary Summary

In summary, Alaska Airlines is a very good airline to work for. It has one of the highest hourly salary rates in the US for Flight Attendants and has a great work culture.

Looking for more information on Flight Attendant Requirements? Check out these articles:

Flight Attendant Requirements

Age Limit For Flight Attendants

Height Requirements For Flight Attendants

Can A Flight Attendant Have Tattoos?

Can Flight Attendants Have Piercings?


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