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How do I Become an Airline Customer Service Agent?

By D. Jeffress
Updated May 17, 2024
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An airline customer service agent provides assistance to travelers at an airport. Among other duties, an agent helps people set reservations, obtain their tickets, check in for flights, and find their way to their gates. A person who wants to become an airline customer service agent can put together a thorough resume and develop strong communication and computer skills. By applying to several different airlines and preparing well for interviews, he or she can often land a rewarding career with travel benefits and room for advancement.

A person can improve his or her chances of finding work as an airline customer service agent by developing important technical and personal skills. Agents are expected to be friendly and go out of their way to help travelers. An individual who has an outgoing personality and enjoys talking to others is likely best suited for the position. Most modern airline check-in desks are computerized, so a person should be comfortable learning new software systems and inputting data with a keyboard.

A high school diploma is typically the minimum educational requirement to become an airline customer service agent. Some prospective agents decide to pursue associate's degrees in travel technology from online schools or community colleges to improve their credentials and their understanding of the position. In a travel technology program, a student has the opportunity to become familiar with the standard software programs used in the field and online communication techniques for booking and managing reservations.

An individual who meets the educational requirements for the job can browse Internet job search sites and newspaper advertisements to find openings. It is usually worthwhile to visit an airport in person and inquire about available positions at different airlines. In addition to filling out applications, a prospective agent can submit a resume to explain his or her qualifications, relevant experience, and personal skills. Since employers conduct thorough background checks on applicants to preserve airport security, it is essential to supply honest information on the resume.

When an applicant is granted an interview, he or she should dress nicely, show up on time, and exhibit a friendly, confident attitude. A potential employer usually asks standard interview questions about personal strengths, experience, and career goals. A prepared interviewee will usually make a good impression and likely be offered a position at the airline.

Once an individual is hired as an airline customer service agent, he or she typically spends a few days in classroom training courses to master the computer software and learn about company policies. After training, a new agent usually works alongside an experienced professional to gain supervised practical experience. With time and proven skills, an agent may be able to advance within an airline to a managerial position.

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Discussion Comments
By suntan12 — On Mar 31, 2011

@Subway11 -I think working in the travel industry has got to be interesting. I know that with all of the regulations and the extended waits that the customers are now experiencing it must be even more challenging being a customer service rep for an airline.

I think that the benefits of free travel would definitely be fun though. I wonder though with all of the cut backs that many of these airlines have been experiencing if they also limited the amount of free trips their employees could take advantage of.

By subway11 — On Mar 29, 2011

@Cafe41 - I had a friend whose husband worked as a customer service agent for a major airline and he said that the airlines offered schedules based on seniority so if you start out you will have to work the second or third shift schedule and wait until you are eligible for a first shift schedule.

So many people that want to break into this field might have difficulty because the schedules are not flexible.

By cafe41 — On Mar 27, 2011

I remember when I was a kid; my mother had a job as a customer service representative for a major airline. She really enjoyed the job and loved the benefits.

We were able to fly for free anywhere we wanted but we would have to fly on a standby status which meant that we could only get on board if there were available seats on the plane.

I went to Florida once during Spring break and remembered missing about two days of school because I could not get a flight back because all of the available flights were all overbooked.

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