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Foreign Language Speakers

A Speaker is a designated Flight Attendant awarded or assigned to a flight requiring one or more foreign language qualified Flight Attendant(s), who has successfully passed a Company-approved proficiency test in the language used at the point of destination/origin.

For example, on a PHL-FRA flight, the Speaker Flight Attendant would be German qualified.

As an exception, in the event a charter or scheduled segment with group bookings where the majority of customers have been identified as foreign speaking, the Company may require Speakers with a specific language qualification. (i.e., Spanish qualified Speakers may be utilized on a flight from CLT to LGA or from PIT to LAX transporting Spanish speaking passengers).

Speakers per Aircraft

Narrowbody

Up to 1 speaker per flight

Widebody <200 Main Cabin

Up to 1 speaker per per class (Ex. 787-8, 787-8T)

Widebody >200 Main Cabin

Up to 1 speaker per per each premium cabin and 2 / main cabin (Ex. 777-200, 777-300, 787-9)

Initial Language Qualification

Education

For foreign language tuition reimbursement in an amount up to one thousand dollars ($1,000.00) per year provided the following requirements are met:

  1. Courses must be taken at an accredited educational institution or any other educational institution approved in advance by Management;
  2. The Flight Attendant must:
    • Successfully complete the course,
    • Pass the language proficiency test, and
    • Be awarded a foreign language speaking position.

Form for reimbursement

Attach the following to the reimbursement form and submit to your Base Coordinator:

  • Fax/Scanned or copied version of original receipt.
  • Photocopy of successful completion of the course.
  • Copy of the HI*9 to verify language indicator.
  • Photocopy of email, HI6 or HI1 showing foreign language speaking position awarded.

Interview

ALTA Language Services, Inc. administers the foreign language proficiency interviews for all new hire and line flight attendants who wish to become qualified in a foreign language.

Steps for Qualification

To schedule your test: complete the Initial Language Qualification form and email it to [email protected]. The administrator will reply to your email request with the next steps to take. Your company aa.com email will be used for all correspondence.  It may take several business days for you to be tested.

All testing must be completed at a Flight Service operations area at base.  Each base has a local Language Coordinator who will meet with you on the day of your assessment.  It is a requirement to bring a government issued photo I.D. and your AA crew badge to the assessment.

Parking – Plan to park at your designated employee parking location on the day of the language assessment.  It is necessary for you to pay your own expenses if you choose to park at the airport outside of the designated employee parking area.

No overnight accommodations will be provided.

What to Expect on the Test

ALTA will provide you with a phone number and an access code or pin number to access the test. The test can be accessed 5 minutes before the start time of the test and up to 10 minutes after. Candidates who do not call within the time window will be reported as no shows.

The evaluation, which is a conversation over the telephone, will access your ability to communicate in the language you are requesting to be tested. Your evaluator will be a native speaker of the language and the test will last between 15 -25 minutes depending on your skill level.
On the day of the test, you will report to the chosen location. Before the test begins, the evaluator will ask you:

  • Do I have permission to record our conversation?
  • Please say your full name for the record.

Additionally, one other identity question may be asked. The evaluator will then proceed with the test which consists of:

  • 2 warm up questions
  • 4 general questions
  • 3 role-play situations
  • 2 readings
  • 2 announcements to interpret: prepare to take notes while the evaluator reads the text.

Passing Score

You are scored in the categories of:

  • communication
  • comprehension
  • grammar
  • vocabulary
  • reading
  • interpretation

An overall score will be assigned and your results will be sent to American Airlines. Your evaluator cannot share your score with you. The language coordinator at American Airlines will email you at your company aa.com email regarding your results within 10 business days.

The minimum successful score is a 10 Advanced Plus rating.

Passing result - Score of 10-12
Failed result- Score of 0-9.

If you fail the test, you are responsible for the retesting cost which is currently $66. You will need to reach out to the Language Administrator at [email protected]. You will be provided with a payment portal to make a payment online prior to testing.

If you scored a 9 (1 below passing), you have one opportunity to retake the test within 60 days of the test date at American’s expense.

Timeline

  • In order to be considered qualified for the upcoming PBS bid period, all qualifying steps must be completed by the 26th.
  • In addition, after the Training Department updates your HI9, if you are qualified in 2 or more languages you must go into DECS and enter your language preferences and order using the HI-LANG Entry.

Language Resignation Proffers

A system-wide notice of proffer for language resignations happens yearly in September and awards will be in seniority order, by base, considering operational need.

  • Opens: September 1st.
  • Closes: September 30th.
  • Resignation effective date - November contractual month.

Management will establish the number of language qualified Flight Attendants who will be permitted to resign a language qualification according to operational needs; however, the number will be between two and one half percent (2.5%) and five percent (5%) of the qualified Flight Attendants in each language at each base unless a shortage exists.  Refer to Section 15.L for conditions.

Eligible Flight Attendants desiring to resign a language must:

  • Have 10 or more years of occupational seniority.
  • May not be currently serving a language lock-in.

The Language Qualification Drop Proffer form is found in Comply365.

Language resignation proffer awards are posted on the Flight Service page of Jetnet -> Bidding & Resources -> Planning -> Language Drop Proffer Awards and Information

Additional Speaker Resources

Mutual Transfers

Everything you need to know about Mutual Transfers for Speakers

Vacancy Transfers

Everything you need to know about Vacancy Transfers for Speakers

Pay

Details on Foreign Language Speaker Premium Pay

UBL/TTS

How Speakers are processed in UBL/TTS

ROTD

Everything you need to know about how Reserve Speakers are processed in ROTD (daily) bidding

ROTA

Everything you need to know about how Reserve Speakers are processed in ROTA (Future) bidding.

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APFA Headquarters
1004 West Euless Boulevard
Euless, Texas 76040

M-F: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Call APFA

Contract & Scheduling Desk
M-F: 7:00AM - 7:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Chat APFA

After-Hours Live Chat
M-F: 3:00PM - 11:00 PM (CT)
Sat-Sun: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)

APFA Events

Virtual Quarterly Membership Meeting – July 11

July 11 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

APFA Headquarters
1004 West Euless Boulevard
Euless, Texas 76040

M-F: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Call APFA

Contract & Scheduling Desk
M-F: 7:00AM - 7:00PM (CT)
Phone: (817) 540-0108

Chat APFA

After-Hours Live Chat
M-F: 3:00PM - 11:00 PM (CT)
Sat-Sun: 9:00AM - 5:00PM (CT)

APFA Events

Virtual Quarterly Membership Meeting – July 11

July 11 @ 11:00 am - 12:30 pm
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