Volunteer Program

We’re here to help.

The JWA Volunteer Program was established to enhance the level of service our guests experience while traveling through the Thomas F. Riley Terminal. At JWA we serve more than 10 million passengers a year (approximately 28 thousand passengers each day), and we strive to provide a superior guest experience all along the way! Our two-part volunteer program consists of the Airport Ambassadors and Airport Tours.

Airport Ambassadors

Established in 1998, the JWA Ambassador program consists of a team of volunteers who provide Airport guests with enhanced, friendly service. Our team of Ambassadors are trained experts in customer service and Airport information. Located throughout the Terminal, they are ready and willing to assist guests with any questions they have about JWA’s facility or services, including helping them find a particular airline, gates, restaurants, restrooms, water refill stations, rental car counters and more. The next time you travel through JWA, feel free to ask an Ambassador for assistance - they are easily recognizable by their bright red blazers, vests and smiling faces.

Become a Volunteer Ambassador

The individuals who make up the JWA Ambassador team are an exceptional and dedicated group of people who generously offer their time, talents and energy to help enhance our guest’s experience. A JWA Ambassador is often the first person that our guests speak with when they arrive at the Airport and can always be counted on to greet the public, answer questions and provide helpful information.

Volunteer Benefits

  • Free parking in a secured employee parking lot with complimentary shuttle service.
  • Discounts on Airport retail and food items.
  • Volunteer recognition events and service awards.
  • Specialized training opportunities.
  • Participation in special Airport events.


  • Provide superior customer service while creating a courteous and welcoming presence for Airport guests.
  • Provide general Airport Terminal information.
  • Provide visitor/tourism information and directions to local venues and attractions.
  • Provide information on accessing Airport services and navigating the Terminal and Airport property.
  • Monitor and provide arriving and departing flight information.
  • Log and record statistical data and information such as questions, comments, complaints and suggestions.
  • Assist Airport staff with preparation, coordination and/or staffing of special Airport events and projects.


  • A commitment to serve a four (4) hour shift, every two weeks for a minimum of one year.
  • Volunteers are required to attend Airport customer service/volunteer training scheduled by JWA.
  • Must be able to clear background checks that include a Criminal History Records Check and a TSA Security Threat Assessment.
  • Must have the ability to stand and walk or be wheelchair mobile for up to four (4) hours.
  • Must report to work wearing tan/khaki colored pants/skirt and white collared shirt. (Red blazer/vest will be provided by the Airport).
  • Must be at least 18 years old.
  • Must be able to problem solve and work well with a variety of people and personalities, be an effective communicator, reliable, flexible, committed, and able to remain calm under pressure.


After one year of committed service as an Airport Ambassador, volunteers will have the opportunity to join our Airport Tour guide team, and receive additional Airport specific training.

If you are interested in volunteering as a John Wayne Airport Ambassador and you can commit to the above requirements and responsibilities, please complete and submit an online application, here. We look forward to speaking with you!

Airport Tours

At JWA – we’re proud of our Terminal. JWA is the only Airport in Orange County that provides commercial passenger service. The 730,505 square foot Terminal was designed to resemble an airplane fuselage, and includes 20 bridged commercial passenger gates, three security checkpoints, seven baggage carousels, an international arrivals area and an array of passenger services and amenities. The Thomas F. Riley Terminal has much to offer, and our volunteer tour guides are here to tell you all about it! We offer guided group tours of the Riley Terminal, free of charge to the public.

Tour Features

Tours begin at the John Wayne statue located on the Arrivals (lower) level between Terminals A and B. Groups receive information about Airport history, Terminal architecture, features and amenities, just to name a few. JWA tours conclude with a trip to an area of our parking structure where tour guests have a clear view of the airfield and witness aircrafts land and take off, is included. For security purposes, tour groups are NOT permitted to go beyond the security checkpoints, and tours to the Control Tower and Fire Station are not available.

Scheduling a Tour

Tours are scheduled in advance. To arrange a tour, please complete a JWA Tour Request Form at least two (2) weeks prior to your requested tour date. Tours are scheduled strictly on the availability of JWA Tour Guides and are offered at non-peak traffic hours, usually 10:30 a.m. or 2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday (call regarding other start times). Saturday tours may also be arranged. Tours last between 1 to 1-1/2 hours. A "Fun Guide," with educational pages and games, is available to children.

Group Size

Tour groups must meet a minimum of seven and no more than 25 participants, including chaperones. Larger groups (a maximum of 50 people on a given day) may be accommodated and are generally divided into two groups that will tour simultaneously. Children must be at least five years old and/or in first grade and must be accompanied by an appropriate number of adult chaperones.


For private cars, convenient short-term parking is available in all the lots at a cost of $2 per hour. This is the only cost involved for the tour.

For more information about the JWA Volunteer Program, please contact Cristina Magana at cmagana@ocair.com or (949) 252-5169.