What Happens at a British Airways Cabin Crew Assessment Day?

British Airways mixed fleet training

I have recently had several e-mails asking about the assessment day I experienced when applying for Cabin Crew, so in response to this I have decided to write a post so that all prospective crew have an idea what to expect!

The structure of the assessment day

1)      I arrived at 9am and everyone was sat around tables in the lobby area. They called us through one at a time and measured our height. Those that were not quite tall enough were sent home. They made us stand against a wall, and then grab a handle and twist our wrists to show that we could reach the required height. Being exactly 5’4’’ (the minimum height) I found it very stretching-quite literally! They also made us sit in a jump seat and fasten the seatbelt to show that we were an appropriate physical size.

2)      We had a presentation about the job and what to expect. They explained the structure of the company, gave examples of typical rosters, discussed route movements, pay etc. Here we had the chance to ask any questions we had.

3)      Next we were taken through to a room where we had to sit a test. But don’t worry, the test wasn’t difficult, just common sense questions! They were multiple choice and asked things such as ‘if you caught somebody smoking in the toilet what would you do?’

4)      We were then taken back into the lobby area where we would sit and wait to be called through to complete the various parts of the assessment.

5)      The first part of the assessment I did (and everybody did the assessment tasks in different orders) was the group task. We sat around a table with a sheet in the middle explaining what we should do. Our task was to design a uniform for a hotel business. There was a sheet with items of uniform, in different colours, materials etc with costs. We had to decide how many of each item we would like and which items would be most appropriate within the budget. After a while they gave an additional piece of information about the task, of which we would then need to re-think the design we had chosen.

6)      Next I had to do the role-play task. They gave me the task and left me for 5 minutes in a quiet room to read over it and make any notes. I had to play the role of a waitress and serve the assessor. Within the information I had previously read it stated some special offers and the menu, of which I would need to refer to during the role-play. She had several questions and dilemmas that I needed to resolve, for example she asked if she could swap the meat starter for a vegetarian option that was not on the menu.

7)      The final part of the assessment day was the 2:1 interview. This lasted around 30 minutes and consisted of a huge amount of ‘give me an example of when…’ type questions. The interviewers were very nice and kind, but it was also quite intimidating. They asked things such as ‘give me an example of when you felt you offered excellent customer service’ or ‘tell me about a time when you had to work with a difficult colleague’.

Tips for how to be successful

  • First off, be on time! Time keeping is essential when working as Cabin Crew, I was 20 seconds late once and they had already called a standby!
  • Never let your guard down-they are watching you ALL of the time! They will be observing how you interact with other people when you are not undertaking interview tasks, so make sure that you smile lots, that you are approachable and that you are friendly with the other interviewees.
  • Look the part. This is something that would come up all the time as Crew, it’s one of the ‘brand behaviours’. Most people at my interview had a pencil skirt/dress on with a shirt, or trousers and a shirt and tie for men, lots of people had suit jackets. Girls wore high heels and tights and had their hair put back, mostly in a bum using a bun ring. Make up was all neat and natural. No big earrings or jewellery. No over powering perfume. Men were all cleanly shaved. Appearance is VERY important when working as Cabin Crew, so make sure this is immaculate for your interview!

  • Come prepared with lots of examples! During my 2:1 interview I was probably asked to give more than 20 customer service examples, so make sure you have lots prepared. It might be an idea to make some notes before hand and then memorise some of them.
  • Smile! Most airlines want their Cabin Crew to be friendly, helpful and smiley. So make sure you appear happy and smiley at all times!
  • Enjoy yourself! Most people come out of their assessment day having really enjoyed themselves. It might sound like a lot, but actually it is really enjoyable and a great experience. Even if you’re not successful, take it as good experience and try again! Cabin Crew assessment days are some of the most intense, but are also some of the most fun!


Hopefully that will help anybody with an assessment day coming up and to all prospective Cabin Crew, good luck!!

For more information on what’s it’s like to be Cabin Crew read about why it can be your dream job, and top tips for your assessment day.  You can also purchase my book Becoming Cabin Crew which provides comprehensive details on everything from securing a job to undertaking your training.