Joining Emirates – Hello Tomorrow
People often ask me about how it came to be that I went from studying marketing in Copenhagen to suddenly soaring the skies in a red hat, so I figured I would write a post about it.
In 2012 I embarked on my life’s biggest journey, I joined Emirates Airlines and moved to Dubai. It was probably one of the best decisions I have made so far. My 2 years with the company taught me so much about the world, different cultures and myself. It was a great experience and I think that anyone who has been bitten by the travelbug should join Emirates and see the world. So if you ever thought about applying keep reading about how I did it. Emirates holds Open Days all over the world, you can check out if there is an Open Day near you here.
So on a cold February morning in Copenhagen I went with my best friend to the Emirates Open Day. We didn’t really know what to expect and I was actually not thinking of applying just then, but wanted to wait. As the presentation rolled over the screen showing the glamorous cabin crew in their uniforms going to the amazing destinations the airline flies to and of course the sandy beaches, sunshine and sparkle of Dubai where all crew are based, I got goosebumps and thought to myself “This is perfect and I need to join right NOW!” so I submitted my application and was in the process to changing my entire life.
The first thing that happened was that we were divided in to groups and received different topics to discuss. There were clear instructions to just discuss the topics amongst ourselves and not pay attention to the Emirates representatives observing us. One thing I learned from the start is: follow the instructions given, even when the simple ones, actually especially the simple ones. One girl was too focused on looking at the representatives and talking extra loudly if they weren’t close to her, needless to say, she did not make it on to the next round. The representatives are looking for qualities in the applicants that will make for excellent cabin crew, so to name a few things: team-work and leadership skills, communication skills, empathy, attentiveness, situational awareness. They are observing who is listening and who is talking, who is leading and who is hiding behind the others. The point isn’t to impress them by doing exactly what they want, but being your self and working in a team and just make sure to follow the instructions given at the beginning.
About half of the applicants were asked to stay for the next round, which was a language proficiency test. This is probably one of the most important things to work on before-hand if you are not fluent in English. Learn it and practice it as much as you can, it will be very difficult to do the interview, the training and eventually the actual job if you can’t speak, read and write English properly. I am not saying that you have to be fluent, but it will make life easier for you the better your English is. That being said, this is the only language requirement for Emirates, extra languages help, but English is the only required.
The proficiency test was in two parts, one with a story and questions to test our understanding skills and the second part was to write an essay, in my test I had to write about a time I had made a mistake and what I learned from it. The tests are different from each Open Day to another.
After this stage we were about 10 applicants (50 to begin with) who were asked to come to a final interview the next day. We were asked to bring photos in business attire, hair tied back and red lipstick to submit, so it’s a good idea to have this prepared before.
The interview is like any other job interview they asked why I applied for the job, what I expected from the experience and why they should choose me. There was also a psychometric test at the end.
I received my “Golden Call” about 6 weeks later and after a lot of paperwork, doctor’s visits, vaccines and other preparations I packed about 70 kg of my belongings and got on an Emirates plane heading to my new adventure in the desert, but more about this later on. I will happily answer any questions, just ask them in the comments field, or through the contact form.