Are You Prepared For Post-COVID
The novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) has rocked the world in a way many of us have never seen, and the Aviation industry has been hit hardest. The traveler throughput was only 4% of the year prior on the same day at COVID’s peak. Since then airlines have been struggling to survive with many smaller carriers not able to keep their heads above water and filing for bankruptcy. To help fight that the American Government and many foreign governments have been pumping money into the airlines to help them stay alive; with the agreement in many cases that the airlines will not Furlough employees until a specified date. In the US that day, September 30th, is fast approaching with many airlines including the big three carriers announcing thousands of possible furloughs if things don’t get better soon.
All that reads grim especially for new airline pilots low on the seniority list, but this isn’t anything new and we’ve seen it before. The thing to remember is that the Aviation Industry is too important to not come back. Not even 8 months ago carriers couldn’t hire enough qualified pilots to keep up with growing demand, and that time more than likely will come again. The only question most people have is,
“When will the industry recover and how do I make sure I’m ready?”
While we may not be able to answer the first part yet, you can certainly make sure you’re ready. You should have the type rating and currency the airlines will need when travelers return.
Current predictions show that the B737 and A320 are going to be the first aircraft to come back 100% since they are so popular and require fewer PAX to be profitable. Many airlines have grounded most of their wide-body fleet and have stated they will be the last to return. Meaning Pilots who are the most current on the B737 and A320 are going to be the ones who are hired or rehired first.
Most pilots who have spent time in the airlines will already have one of those two types meaning all they will need is either a Recurrent PC or a Requalification in case of currency lapses. FTI makes it possible to complete these two courses in as little as a weekend. The most important thing is maintaining currency so that when the time does come you are ready and able to go at any time.
Not only previously typed pilots will be hired, pilots without these types can also complete type rating training in either of these aircraft. Many training centers have 2-week to month long type rating courses but at FTI, it’s a shorter and easier to manage 8-9 day course. Meaning you save time and money on both training, and hotels, food, and transportation.
These are trying times for the industry that most of us love, but as it was before, it’s not forever and pilot positions will come back. The most important thing to do now is make sure you are current and ready to go when it’s time.