The Truth About Flight Attendants’ Salary in South Africa


Flight attendants are often seen as glamorous figures, jet-setting around the world and living the dream. But the reality is that their salaries are not always as rosy as they appear. In this article, we will explore the average salary for flight attendants in South Africa, and dispel some of the myths surrounding their income.

Average Salary:

According to a report by the National Bargaining Council (NBC), the average salary for a flight attendant in South Africa is around R30,000 per month. This may seem like a good salary, but it’s important to note that this figure includes benefits such as overtime pay, medical aid, and pension contributions.

Factors Affecting Salary:

There are several factors that can affect a flight attendant’s salary in South Africa. These include the number of years of experience, the airline they work for, and their base salary. For example, flight attendants who have been with an airline for longer periods of time may receive higher salaries than those who are just starting out.

Case Studies:

One flight attendant we spoke to told us that she had been working in the industry for over 20 years and was earning around R45,000 per month. Another flight attendant, who had only been working for a few years, said that she was earning around R35,000 per month.

Expert Opinion:

According to Sipho Hlahla, the General Secretary of the National Union of Flight Attendants and Stewards (NUFAAS), flight attendants in South Africa are underpaid compared to their counterparts in other countries. He believes that the government should take steps to increase salaries for flight attendants, as they play a crucial role in ensuring the safety and comfort of passengers.

Real-Life Examples:

Flight attendant jobs can be physically demanding, with long hours and irregular schedules. This can make it difficult to maintain a work-life balance and provide for one’s family. One flight attendant we spoke to told us that she had to work multiple jobs in order to make ends meet.


  • Q: Do flight attendants receive free flights?
    A: While flight attendants do receive free flights within South Africa, they are not able to take their families on these flights for free. They also have to pay for their accommodation and meals while working abroad.
  • Q: How many hours do flight attendants work per day?
    A: Flight attendants typically work between 8 and 14 hours per day, depending on the airline and the length of the flight.


While flight attendants in South Africa are not as well paid as they could be, their jobs are still important for ensuring the safety and comfort of passengers. By understanding the factors that affect salaries and the real-life challenges faced by flight attendants, we can work towards creating a more equitable and supportive industry.

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