16 Mar Are flight attendants allowed to smoke?
You’ve probably asked yourselves, especially if you are smokers, if this might influence your chances of becoming a flight attendant. I remember our first Conference for Future Flight Attendants in Romania, which we organized in the fall of 2013. This was when two of our spokespersons, two flights attendants, asked me if there was any place where they could smoke a cigarette. I pointed out the hotel garden, but my option wasn’t good enough for them. They were looking for an ‘out-of-sight place’, where no one could see them smoking while wearing their uniform. Disappointed, they gave up on the idea and just imagined that the event was a long flight where smoking would not be permitted. The entire discussion made me really curious about the matter so I asked them more about it. Here’s what I found out:
If the airline’s rules allow it, flight attendants can smoke
Most of the airline companies out there have strict rules concerning smoking. Some of the companies that allow their employees to smoke, under certain conditions, are Etihad Airways, Emirates, Ryanair, FlyDubai and British Airways. These companies want to know if you are a smoker as soon as the interview, because they need make practical arrangements, like booking rooms and such.
However, if you work for one of the airlines just mentioned, there are some important rules you must never forget: do not smoke in public places, or have your packet of cigarettes in sight while wearing your flight attendant uniform. If you do not wear your uniform you are free to smoke wherever and whenever.
Qatar Airways Flight Attendants are NOT allowed to smoke
Qatar Airways strictly forbids their flight attendants to smoke. Their rules are pretty clear:
You are not allowed to smoke, not in the break, not in public places, etc.
You’re not allowed to have cigarettes at home.
There are no exceptions from the rules. If you are seen smoking during a layover, you are exposed and you can actually get fired if one of your colleagues reports it. We know it sounds farfetched but it’s the reality.
Even if you smoke in your room there’s a big chance for your employer to find out. They always book rooms for non-smokers, so it’s very easy for the hotel personnel to notice if someone has smoked. Besides, a couple of times a year, the airline company checks their employees’ apartments for cigarettes, pork meat, alcohol or other forbidden items.
Of course there are flight attendants who smoke, but they are very good at hiding it. If you choose to do this you must be aware of the risk you’re taking. These are the official rules of the company, so please don’t take them lightly.
When asked at the Qatar Airways interview regarding smoking, please know that your answer will decide whether you’ll go forward in the competition for the job or not.
My colleague, Nicoleta, gave me a very good example of such an event – Once in Doha, at a recruiting day, after the English test, the candidates were given a smoking break. However, everyone who was seen smoking was eliminated. The best piece of advice we can give you is that if you are a smoker and want to work for Qatar Airways, you should seriously consider stopping.