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US Airways Group Inc., the carrier seeking to merge with AMR Corp.’s American Airlines, received more than 16,500 applications for 450 flight-attendant positions in its biggest hiring push for the job since 2010.

About 700 applicants have advanced to the interview stage and 240 offers have been made, US Airways said today in its weekly employee newsletter. The first round of new hires started training this week, said Michelle Mohr, a spokeswoman.

“The interest around it has been astounding,” Mohr said in a telephone interview. She said the airline began accepting applications in November.

The influx echoes the rush for flight-attendant jobs at Delta Air Lines Inc., which said last month that its 300 openings attracted 22,000 candidates. Tempe, Arizona-based US Airways drew 14,000 applications for the 420 positions it posted two years ago.

In particular, US Airways is looking to hire speakers of Hebrew or Portuguese to work on its flights to Tel Aviv and Rio de Janeiro, and for service to Sao Paulo scheduled to begin in May, Mohr said.

The airline will accept applications through February and has no plans to hire more flight attendants beyond the 450 advertised positions, according to Mohr. Delta has said it may expand its latest round of hiring to as many as 400 positions.

U.S. passenger airlines employed 384,310 workers in October, down 1.3 percent from a year earlier, the U.S. Transportation Department’s Bureau of Transportation Statistics said in December. October’s total, the latest month for which federal figures are available, was the lowest since May 2011.

US Airways, the fifth-largest U.S. carrier by passenger traffic, is pursuing a tie-up with No. 3 American as that airline restructures in bankruptcy. A merger would create the world’s biggest airline.
–Editors: Ed Dufner, Bernard Kohn

To contact the reporter on this story: Brooke Sutherland in New York at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Ed Dufner at

Photo Credit: Applicants lining up for flight attendant jobs won't mind being on board US Airways A320s whether or not they become part of American Airlines. US Airways