CHICAGO Delta Air Lines (DAL.N) on Friday said it would begin recruiting furloughed flight attendants to support its growing international route network.
Speaking in a recorded message to employees, Chief Executive Richard Anderson said he did not know how many flight attendants the Atlanta-based airline would bring back.
But training is set to start in January with plans to have the employees in service by mid-2011, he said.
"We need a lot of folks with language skills," Anderson said.
The airline industry contracted in 2008 and 2009 amid volatile fuel prices and a global economic recession that drained travel demand. Carriers have slowly begun adding capacity.
A Delta spokeswoman said the carrier currently has about 700 flight attendants on voluntary furlough. All of those have been offered a chance to return, but many declined based on their location.
Shares of Delta were down 2.22 percent at $10.54 on the New York Stock Exchange.
(Reporting by Kyle Peterson, editing by Leslie Gevirtz)