CAREER DEVELOPMENT / JUL. 01, 2014
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How to Become a Passenger Service Agent

The Passenger Service Agent’s role is vital to the efficiency of airline and airport operations and they are very much in the frontline of customer service. They make sure that passengers and baggage are onboard the right aircraft safely and at the correct time. Passenger Service Agents are employed either directly by the airline or by a ground handling company at the airport. Their work can be demanding and the ability to work under pressure is essential. They may also typically have to deal with disruptive passengers.

What is the Role of a Passenger Service Agent?

The main duties of a Passenger Service Agent are:

  • Checking in passengers and their baggage
  • Printing  boarding passes
  • Dealing with passenger enquiries
  • Making passengers aware of restrictions and regulations
  • Weighing baggage
  • Helping passengers with reduced mobility and unaccompanied minors
  • Coordinating with the boarding gate staff

Some tasks that you will be required to do are:

  • Administration as appropriate
  • Providing luggage labels
  • Taking fees for excess baggage
  • Service recovery
  • Escort passengers through immigration and customs or those who have a connecting flight

Basic Requirements and Qualifications

Passenger Service Agents should be at least 21 years old and have a good high school education including Maths and English GCSE grade C or equivalent. Fluency in English is essential and one other language is preferred. Previous customer service experience is desired and IT skills are useful. A driving license is necessary. A certificate or diploma in customer service or aviation operations can be an advantage.

Good skills and qualities that a Passenger Service Agent should have are:

  • Customer service skills
  • Be calm under pressure
  • Teamwork
  • Cultural awareness and flexibility
  • Problem Solving skills
  • Motivation and enthusiasm
  • Patience and diplomacy

How to Apply

You can apply for a Passenger Service Agent position through an airline or airport careers website or vacancies are advertised locally and online.

Training

You will normally attend a 4 week training course covering the airport, security and the check in system as well as customer service essentials. Manual handling and first aid may also be included. Airport emergency procedures and dangerous goods will also be covered.

Hours, Salary and Benefits

Passenger Service Agents work shifts and can work any time day or night. Each shift is usually 8 hours, 5 days or nights a week and overtime is often available.

Salary is made up of basic plus overtime and bonuses based on performance.

 

Minimum P.A.

Maximum P.A

     

Passenger Service Agent – New

$12,000

$14,000

Passenger Service Agent –With Experience

$15,000

$20,000

 

Other benefits may include uniform and laundry expenses as well as annual leave of 30 days. If working for an airline, you may also receive reduced rate travel with the airline.

Future Opportunities

After gaining some experience in the role, you may wish to progress to Passenger Services Supervisor or Passenger Services Manager. You can also consider working as a Dispatcher or Cabin Crew.

Useful Websites

http://jobs.flightglobal.com/

http://www.aviationjobsearch.com/

http://jobs.cabincrew.com/

http://www.traveljobsearch.com/

http://www.iata.org/Pages/default.aspx

 

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