Monday, April 22, 2019

Singapore Airlines Cabin Crew Interview process and stages - ( Updated Version 2019 )


I am so excited to share my recent Singapore Airlines cabin crew walk in interview back in March 2019.  I have read so many blogpost/video/article and all mention that it’s very hard to pass so I was still nervous despite the fact that I felt I was already fully prepared for it. I decided to come for this interview about one month ago and had been doing rigorous research since then especially reading all the tips at FlyGosh.

I gathered all questions that I found online and practiced them when I was driving, in the LRT, in the gym before my body combat class or whenever I was free. Yes I really want it that badly. This also makes me feel that this article will be one of the most comprehensive ones to be found online. The article will be divided into a few sections:

- Brief introduction of interview stages
- Tips and things to take note
- My extra preparation
- SIA interview Q&A’s cheat sheet
- Extra information

Brief introduction of interview stages

The number of stages and how it is conducted change over time but will be similar. Below is my SIA cabin crew interview process : -

Round 1: 2 interviewers, 10 interviewees sitting in a row, stand up one by one, introduce ourselves and answer a simple question. Those who passed were asked to wait outside another room for the next round. 

Round 2: 2 interviewers, 6 interviewees 

A) grouped in pairs according to sequence of number. A few minutes were given to know each other. Then stand up and introduce our partner. 
B) divided into 2 groups of 3. Given a statement. One group to agree and another to disagree. 1-3 was the group to agree. 4-6 was the group to disagree. Sequence to present is 1,4,2,5,3,6 

Round 3: 2 interviewers, 1 interviewee. This’s just like normal job interview. They just want to know more about you and see if you are suitable for the job as a SIA cabin crew. 

Round 4: Kebaya fitting and physical check. 1 interviewer and 1 assistant.

Tips and things to take note

1. Before anything, you should be very certain that you really want this job. In other words, you have to really understand this job and the difficulties you will be facing when working with SIA despite all the perks you have heard that spark your interest to go for this interview. E.g.: meeting 2 years bond contract if not SGD13800 will be penalized (also applies if you get kicked out), irregular working hours that will lead to health issues, being apart from family/close friends if you are not Singaporean, having to miss important dates like Christmas or weddings as leaves are hard to arrange, having to stay very humble and submissive at work (in other words, you may get bullied by seniors), having the risk to give up your professional degree as people may not hire you after 2 years working in unrelated field, hard to maintain relationship as you will be away for work most of the time, hard to find boyfriend, having to resign once you get pregnant etc.  

2. It’s very important to know what SIA is looking for in their cabin crews. Unlike Scoot or Air Asia, they don’t want someone who is too outgoing, loud and confident. You have to show that you are calm, humble and very polite. I think they want someone who is warm but elegant at the same time. 

3. For round 1, answers don’t matter. They are looking at how you speak, your posture, your overall appearance and complexion, body proportion and frame. Be presentable, keep your answer simple, sit and walk properly and always smile. I always put my bag and folder on the floor and never put it on my lap. I also always make sure I hold my hands at my lower belly and put my feet together when sitting or standing. You have to also show that you are listening when other people speak. But don’t nod your head too hard, just stay natural and smile. 

4. For round 2, I think they are looking at how you communicate with people. When discussing or listening to your group mates, always smile and remember to maintain good posture at all times. Don’t be too dominant but don’t be too quiet until you don’t say a word during discussion. Just smile and be friendly just like you are serving the passenger as a cabin crew. I think answers don’t have to be impressive too. Just something that makes sense will do. Don’t try to be funny cause not everyone will understand your joke and you may sound ‘too much’. Again, good posture and smile when presenting your points. 

5. Round 3, answer the questions in a way that the recruiter will know if you are a suitable candidate to be a Singapore Girl, e.g.: having a career plan that will lead you to commit long term with SIA, physically healthy to cope with their hectic working lifestyle, independent that you can live apart from your family/close friends, relevant experience, skills, personality etc. 

6. Round 4, there should be no visible tattoos, birthmarks or scars. They check legs too although the sarong is long enough to cover them but they are less strict on that compared to our face, neck and arm. 

7. The tough one for me is round 3. As the questions can be quite unpredictable and it will be a lot longer compared to the past rounds where I only had to say a few sentences. I got so nervous during this round because I got asked questions that are not in my “165 SIA interview Q&A’s cheat sheet”. However, the unexpected questions weren’t too hard and I kind of earned a bonus point here. The interviewer asked, “when do you want to stop being a cabin crew?” I said I have no idea now because I haven’t started and am still really excited to start working. He said, “there must be roughly something in your mind” then i answered “maybe after I have saved up enough money to retire (I am just being honest). Then he asked, “how much saving is considered a success for you?” “Hmmm, errr.... If I need to have 2k Malaysian Dollars, eh no Malaysian Ringgit to spend every month, I will need about 500k... if I put in FD!! if I didn’t remember wrongly.. *awkward smile” Of course I sounded quite not calm when answering this question and I actually knew that 500k only will have 1.7k monthly with 4% FD but I didn’t want to sound stupid to assume 1.7k is enough to cover my own expenses (like 2k makes a difference XD). But at least they know I wasn’t just bullshitting and really have my own planning.

8. Round 4 is the most anticipating Kebaya Fitting round but it was also where I was put into KIV due to weight issue. I am quite chubby with BMI 22+ (but still within healthy BMI range) and I was so worried that I couldn’t get in because of my weight. From the information I saw online, they only said we have to be within a healthy BMI range and I also saw one girl saying her BMI was 22+ and she passed. So I actually thought I was safe. But the lady told me I have to lose 4 more kgs in order to keep my BMI below 21. Maybe it depends on the interviewer or how you look in Kebaya. Because I also saw online a girl said she was asked to lose to 56 from 62 and her height is 169cm which is already less than BMI 20. Hereby another long month to go and one month longer before I can start my dream job (if I manage to lose 4 kgs).

9. Standards for skin check. For skin I think they are stricter on our face, neck and arms. One of the candidates I met told me that she got rejected last time during this round because she had a pimple on her face. But her skin looked very okay to me that day. I am not sure if it was the yellow lighting that made her skin look better or they are truly really strict. I heard that they don’t like oily skin too. I have a few mosquito scars on my calves that I got a few weeks ago. They are still visible even after I concealed them with makeup. When the interviewer asked if I have any scar, birthmark or tattoo. I lifted up my kebaya and showed her my legs. She asked, “where where?” I said, “all these small small dots” “Ohh, it doesn’t matter la. They are not obvious.” Phew, maybe the makeup did help! By the way, I also had a quite visible mole right at the middle above my lip. I thought it was okay because I always think the mole suits me a lot haha. But the lady asked maybe I can conceal it a little as it is a bit distracting. So sad that she doesn’t like my mole. I will try to conceal it when I go for review next month.

10. Always respect the interviewers. I saw many people said they got rejected (not even in KIV) because of very small problems like being underweight by 2kg, minor scars etc. I feel maybe it’s because the interviewers didn’t like them. I also feel it is possible that they didn’t behave properly when talking to the interviewers at round 4. Remember, as an SIA girl, we have to be always humble!!

11. About the kebaya. It is a 2-piece uniform, a front zip-up top and a maxi skirt with elastic waistband. It can be quite hard to find the right sizes for people who are not very thin like me. There was another girl who went in with me and she is even bigger than me (but she is very curvy, not like me having a child-like body). Both of us spent quite long finding the right sizes. She managed to squeeze in one kebaya and I can tell it is very tight. But she still looked good because she has nice curves. I ended up with a loose-fitting top but then was asked to change to a smaller one. The top was so tight and I think it exposed my ugly shape. I wasn’t very confident in the kebaya actually. I should’ve spent the past month to lose some weight.

12. If I would have to go for the interview again, I will still arrive 2 hours earlier. I arrived before 6.30am because I really wanted to be the first few one to go for the interview. And apparently, I was the first one there. The registration started on time at 8.30am and the whole interview ended before 11.30am. Only the first 2 hours to wait while sitting comfortably on the chair. After that, almost no waiting at all.

13. You can try but I can tell they are super strict on height check. Before registration we would have to get our heights measured. My height taken at other places is around 162-164cm but I just wrote 162 to be safe. But the measurement I got was only 161.5cm. They really pushed to measurement bar to your head to make sure they get the lowest possible measurement I think.

14. Maybe academic performance and working experience really matter. The second girl who came after me has worked 2 years with firefly and 4 years with Air Asia X. It was her 4th time trying. For the first 2 tries, she failed at round 2. Last and this time, she didn’t even get through the first round. She had good posture, was neatly groomed, the way she talked also had no problem to me. I really don’t get it if it’s not her working experience or academic result.  She started working right after STPM and I remember she told me her result was bad. And I heard airlines actually prefer fresh people because it is easier for them to train. However, I also saw people who has worked with Malindo went through the third round so maybe they don’t mind if you are really outstanding? I would say that if you are already in the airlines industry, just try your best!

15. You don’t have to be very pretty to be an SIA girl. I always heard people said that we have to be very pretty to be a Singapore Girl and I was quite worried because I am not one of those typical pretty girls because I am fat. But don’t worry. I stalked one of my friends who just started working with SIA and I found out her batchmates are not all super pretty type. But if you are not very pretty, make sure you have other qualities that make you stand out from other people.

16. Always practice your answers! I saw a YouTube video about a lady giving advices for SIA interview. She actually asked people to stop rehearsing which I think is not working for everyone. As for me, I am someone who will go totally blank when I am nervous. Preparing my answers definitely helps me to be an A from C. I think preparing answers doesn’t make me being any less of myself. In fact, I can fully express myself and give a more relevant answer. It is not about memorizing standard answers. It is to explore things that make myself a suitable candidate and be so familiar with that point that my sentences come out almost the same every time I talk about it.

17. Just like normal interview. Especially round 3, it is just like normal interview. There are things to take note: no bad-mouthing about other people, have clear aim and reason to take the job, stay honest and sincere, portray positive attitude by giving true example. When asked if there is any question for them, ask something that shows your interest in the company. 

My extra preparation

Despite the fact that I was put in KIV,  I am still very grateful that I passed all rounds considering that it was my first try. My hard work paid off and I really wish I can help people to get in too! However there are still uncertainties even after I pass my review in April. For example, some people didn’t pass their medical. There are also people who passed their medical in Malaysia but failed the one in Singapore (yes I heard we have to do medical check-up in our country and in Singapore). Although I haven’t heard before but maybe it’s also possible that we can’t get our working permit approved in Singapore. I think I really worry a lot and am really detail oriented. I have also done many extra things for this interview:

- As I lost my big toe nail one month ago and it’s only half grown back. I purposely bought a fake nail and used superglue to stick on it. Then painted them nicely. It really looked like real one. Hahaha
- As my high heels are about 9cm which are considered quite high. I actually googled about ways to prevent foot pain from wearing high heels because I feel it will make me more nervous. The trick I used is taping my 3rd and 4th toes together (counting from big toe). I thought I would have to stand a lot but not actually, I got to sit most of the time so my feet didn’t hurt at all.
- I brought my mouth spray and used it every time before I went into the interview room. It’s important to avoid any body odor!
- I didn’t opt for the typical white shirt + black pencil skirt office outfit. Instead, I chose an embroidered V-neck (not super V) top in beige color (kind of has that kebaya feel) and a midi skirt. Formal but with a little of style. 
- I gave up 3 helix piercings and one conch piercing for this interview. I really love my ear piercings but I don’t want to risk. Facial piercings are not allowed too.
- I painted my nails in nude color to suit my outfit while some people did red nails to resemble the Singapore Girl look. I also opted a metal strap watch and a pair of slightly decorative simple pearl earrings (which are not allowed when working as SIA girl) to look more elegant. I would say don’t go too crazy. To be safe, you can choose simple stud/pearl earrings.
- I woke up at 4am to work out as I heard working out before an interview helps to clear your mind, boost your energy and relieve interview stress.
- I have a trip to Japan this September. I have bought the flight tickets, hotels and travel insurance for all 12 days but I am ready to give up on that to get this job.

Extra information

- After we pass the interview, we will have to go for medical checkup at a clinic in KL assigned by SIA and it’s free. As I heard it will be on weekdays so you will have to take leave if you are still working. Sometimes we will have to do a follow-up checkup if any problem (normally scoliosis, they only accept up to 20 degree) is found in our medical report but for this we have to bear the cost.
- Things they will look out for in medical checkup according to a candidate’s reply posted in 2006:
1. Deafness 
2. Colour blindness 
3. Dry eyes (for those wearing contact lens) 
4. heart murmur 
5. HIV

There will be no blood test but they will check on your blood pressure, eyesight, hearing, heartbeat, breast (for lumps), joints, teeth and gums, throat, nostril, BMI and urine test. You will have to sign a declaration form on your past and present sickness such as asthma, motion sickness etc.

- I am not sure about what happens exactly after you pass the medical. I heard there will be second medical checkup in Singapore and we might fail at this stage too. I also heard you will get informed once you pass and then will have to wait to have your working permit approved. Anyways, they said if you have waited quite long and there is no rejection notification it will most probably be a positive news. All we need is patience.

- The management will confirm the training date with you to see when you are available. They will provide you air ticket to go to Singapore. One-week accommodation in hotel will be given for you to find a place to rent and to settle down before training starts. 

- Training will be 15 weeks long. There will roughly be 2 batches of training per month, about 20+ people. During this period, you will only be given the basic monthly salary which is SGD1380. According to a post back in 2006, there will be 4 training flights during this period of time and you will get paid for flying too.  

- Probation will be 6 months after you start flying. You can only start planning your annual leaves after that. According to a post in 2011, you have to submit your yearly leave application around September for the next year January to December. There will be 21 days of annual leave. Applications on public holidays and school holidays are hard to get approved. You have to plan your leave 4 to 15 months ahead but nothing is certain. 

- The salary will be around SGD3500-5000 depending on the monthly roster arranged by the management. According to a post on 2018, an ex-cabin crew commented that there is up to 6 months bonus (in July). Annual wage supplement of one month’s salary will be paid on 7th December.

- SGD13800 will be penalized for cabin crews who fail to complete 2 years bond contract with SIA. According to a post in 2013, a cabin crew on completion of the first 5-year contract is paid SGD10,000 and for the second contract is SGD25,000. Once promoted to a higher rank (chief stewardess/steward) we will be paid $65,000 in total after the 5th contract. Insurance coverage for cabin crew will be paid for by SIA too ($100,000 per crew).

SIA interview Q&A’s cheat sheet

1. Introduce yourself. 
2. What did you eat for breakfast?
3. Favorite local breakfast
4. Favorite food
5. Favorite book and lesson learned
6. Favorite movie and lesson learned
7. Favorite song
8. Favorite number
9. Favorite color
10. Favorite subject in school.
11. Favorite drink.
12. Black/white and why
13. One bad thing you heard about SIA
14. One good thing you heard about SIA
15. What makes you angry? 
16. What should a leader possess?
17. What do you think about teamwork?
18. Who has the greatest influence on you?
19. Who is the person you respect the most?
20. What is your career plan?
21. What is important in communication?
22. Why is communication important?
23. How do you overcome difficulties?
24. One personality you don’t like about yourself?
25. One personality that you don’t like?
26. Can you work under pressure? How?
27. Have you ever failed? How do you handle failures?
28. How do you handle change?
29. How do you motivate people?
30. Describe a time you resolved a conflict?
31. The hardest thing you did in your current job.
32. Do you consider yourself a loyal employee?
33. What have you learned in your current job?
34. What did you dislike about your last employer?
35. Describe your current coworker.
36. What would your coworker describe you?
37. What would you last employer say about you?
38. Are you satisfied with your performance in current company?
39. Do you consider yourself a success?
40. What kind of decisions are hardest to make?
41. How important is appearance?
42. What is your biggest regret?
43. Latest news you have read?
44. Hobby.
45. What is your source of motivation?
46. What makes you unique? Why should we choose you but not other candidates?
47. Do you think breakfast is important?
48. Why do you want to become a cabin crew?
49. What quality do you have as a cabin crew?
50. Nickname and why?
51. Do you prefer sunset of sunrise?
52. Do you prefer ice cream or cake?
53. How to be mentally and physically fit?
54. Relate study with cabin crew.
55. What do you know about the job as a cabin crew?
56. What is your aim as a cabin crew?
57. Where would you bring your foreign friend to (MY)?
58. Where would you bring your foreign friend to (SG)?
59. How to handle unsatisfied passenger?
60. What do you know about customer service?
61. How do you manage your anger and emotions?
62. Strength (prepare 2 just in case)
63. Weakness (prepare 2 just in case)
64. If you were given a free ticket, where in the world would you go and why?
65. What does your current company do?
66. What do you do in your current company?
67. Why do you want to leave your current company?
68. Why do you want to work with SIA but other airlines?
69. What do you see yourself in 5 years?
70. What can you bring to SIA?
71. Why didn’t you work in the field that is related to your degree?
72. Do you gain/lose weight fast?
73. Tell me about your family.
74. Do you do housework?
75. When do you plan to get married?
76. Is it ok to stay in Singapore?
77. What will be the sacrifice if you have to work with SIA?
78. How long do you want to be a cabin crew?
79. How well prepared are you for this interview?
80. Are you an achiever?
81. What is your biggest achievement?
82. What is the most achieving working experience?
83. Why is service important?
84. How about SIA inflight service?
85. Greatest obstacle if you get this job
86. How do you handle passengers?
87. How do you differentiate normal and exceptional customer service?
88. Describe your working style
89. Describe your communication style
90. What quality do you like in your friends/coworkers?
91. Are you a day/night person?
92. The first thing you notice about a cabin crew?
93. Describe yourself in 3 words
94. What if someone disagrees with you?
95. What u do when receive bad service?
96. Name 3 passenger expectations from cabin crew.
97. What types of passengers do you like to serve?
98. How do you anticipate passengers need?
99. What did you do the day before interview?
100. What to do if you pass?
101. What is your favorite type of article in newspaper?
102. Name one happiest moment.
103. Name one saddest moment.
104. What type of work do you like the most?
105. How do you handle stressful situation?
106. If you cannot get this job, what other job will you do?
107. Would you choose strong or weak person to work with you?
108. How to handle arguments between passengers?
109. How do you feel about the dress code and professional standard?
110. What to do after resignation as a cabin crew?
111. Where would you bring your first date?
112. What superhero do you want to be?
113. What is your biggest fear?
114. What have your learned in your degree?
115. How do you earn trust?
116. How to determine priority of task?
117. What makes coworker/boss difficult? How do you interact with them?
118. If you suffer from a setback, how does that affect you and your work?
119. Tell a time when communication becomes an issue when working as a team.
120. Rate your communication skill with example to back up your rating.
121. How do you get along with people at work?
122. When have you had to shift your priorities in response to sudden changes?
123. List the top 3 skills that will make you an ideal team member at SIA.
124. Are you comfortable with the policy of wearing uniform to work?
125. Employees of SIA are expected to be reliable, on time, and accessible when on shift. Do you consider yourself to be a dedicated employee?
126. What do you think you are lack of to work as a cabin crew?
127. As a cabin crew you will be asked to work a wide range of hours and a lot of overtime. Are you able to accommodate the unpredictable schedule associated with being a cabin crew?
128. Do you have any formal training in First Aid or CPR?
129. If you have to be a celebrity for a day, who do you want to be and why?
130. What do you usually have for lunch and why?
131. If you were stuck on a deserted island, who would you want to be stuck on there with?
132. How determine are you in wanting to be a cabin crew with SIA?
133. Why must a cabin crew smile a lot?
134. What types of people would SIA want as cabin crew?
135. What are your short-term and long-term goals?
136. What’s your name? Why?
137. What to improve on SIA?
138. Putting baggage to compartment is not a task of a cabin crew but what if a passenger asks?
139. Are you afraid of airplane accidents?
140. Why did you choose your current job?
141. What is the feedback from your client?
142. How to handle first nervous traveler?
143. Where is your hometown?
144. What if passenger snores?
145. SIA cabin crew uniform designer: Pierre Balmain
146. What if you spill water on a passenger?
147. Are you afraid of height/water?
148. What interests you?
149. What makes you think you will be happy being a cabin crew?
150. Do you have any question to ask?
151. Beauty vs brain
152. Ability vs opportunity
153. Man should be the breadwinner of family. 
154. Social media brings us closer. 
155. Abortion. 
156. Do you think human should sell organ just to get money?
157. Money/job satisfaction
158. Married couple lives with family
159. Beautiful make more money
160. Should senior be sent to old folk home?
161. Singapore is a fine city
162. Grab service is efficient
163. Money can buy happiness
164. Plastic surgery and pageant
165. An apple a day

Click here for the earlier version of the Singapore Airlines Cabin Crew interview process and stages  

You can view the cabin crew interview process of other airlines by clicking here 
  
Above article written by my PAID guest writer. If you are interested to contribute your experience to FlyGosh, please check out Get PAID to be a guest writer for FlyGosh.com 

 
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