How to become an airline Pilot - Step by step, APC

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hi i'm andy o'shea

and welcome to apc's guide to becoming

an airline pilot

throughout this presentation we will

explore all the various pathways and

training options to become a

professional airline pilot

this will help you to decide which

training pathway you're best

suited to the presentation will also

provide tips on securing employment

after training

as well as outlining the apc process and

how it will benefit

your pathway to becoming an airline


in order to embark on becoming a

professional airline pilot

it is very important you take certain

steps these will help to ensure you are

suited to the career

and will be successful in your training

first and foremost it is vital that you

get a taste for flying small aircraft

the majority of flying training will be

conducted in light

single and multi-engine aircraft not all

individuals enjoy flying in small


therefore it is crucial that most people

considering flight training get some

experience in

light aircraft to ensure it is suited to


apc has negotiated discounts with its

partner atos to enable you to do this

the easiest way is by booking an

introductory flying lesson at your local


or one of our partner atos this will

help you to decide if a pilot career

and the training is really for you it is

also extremely important to undertake

pilot specific aptitude tests prior to


on flight training airline pilots must


high cognitive capacity and certain

personality traits

it is crucial that prospective flight

training students learn

how do they possess these traits prior

to beginning their training

otherwise the investment might be at

risk an excellent option

is the aeon indicative assessment which

you can find more about on the apc


one of the most important steps in

becoming an airline pilot is obtaining

an initial

class 1 medical this medical examination


whether or not you are fit and healthy

enough to fly professionally

while the majority of individuals have

no issue with obtaining this


failing this step unfortunately means

that you will

not be able to become a professional


it's highly recommended that you undergo

this assessment before handing over

money to a flight school

class 1 medicals can be booked at your

local aeromedical center

next you need to find a quality flying

school that you can trust

you should conduct extensive research

into prospective flight schools

or ato's approved training organizations

there is an abundance of certified atos

that are willing and ready to train


however not all flight schools offer the

same standard of flight training

therefore students should shortlist and


various flight schools and pick the

school that is the best fit for them

it's very important that you choose the

right flying school

as you and your family are about to

invest a large amount of time and money

into your training you can check out the

flying schools that we recommend in apc

and work with us on our website the

final step

is to secure funding for your training

this can cost over a hundred thousand


as possibly the hardest step to take

a very common route to an airline pilot

career is through an integrated

professional pilot training program

this course takes students from zero

flight hours all the way to an

airline transportation pilot license

this course is full time

and typically takes between 18 and 24

months to complete

all the flight training is conducted

with a single flying school

this particular training route usually

costs between 60

000 and 120 000 euros depending on the

school you train with

another very popular route to becoming

an airline pilot is the modular

professional pilot training program

this program can be considered as a

staged route into an airline pilot


students are required to complete all

the same stages

as in the integrated route but can do so

in a way that suits their own


this allows students to fund their

training at a pace that suits their

earning power and budget

training can be conducted in one flying

school or multiple flying schools

and training costs vary depending on

flight schools but are usually lower

than integrated training programs

the first stage of a modular student

must complete is the

private pilot's license this license

allows pilots to fly in visual

conditions for non-commercial purposes

once this is completed the student must

complete a night rating to enable them

to fly at night

modular students must then build their

total flying experience

students cannot progress to the

commercial aspect of their flight


until they have completed the required

flight hours

students must also complete the

theoretical knowledge training program

before progressing to commercial flight

training the atpl

theory as they're known these consists

of 14 subjects with a pass mark of 75

for each exam students can choose to

complete their atpl theory before

after or at the same time as their hour

building once students have completed

both their atpl theory

and have the required number of hours

they are able to begin training for

their commercial pilot's license

after this students go on to complete a

multi-engine rating

as well as an instrument rating the

final stage of training consists of the


which trains pilots to fly as part of a

crew we will discuss the aps-mcc in more

detail later on

once the aps-mcc is complete students

are issued

with a frozen atpl

mpl training programs the multi-crew

pilot license program is a relatively

new option compared to the traditional

atpl whereas the majority of training in

atpl programs is conducted

as single pilot operation in light

aircraft the mpl program places a larger

emphasis on multi-crew training in


this results in less single pilot

operation training

in light aircraft and more multi-crew

training in simulators

mpl programs must be conducted in

partnership with an airline therefore

students are unable to train

independently of an airline

the same way they can with a traditional


however there are many benefits to

undertaking the mpl

the increased focus on simulator

training allows students to be

introduced to airline specific

standard operating procedures much

earlier than in traditional training

this is very beneficial

to students when they undertake their

type rating

furthermore upon completion of the

program students are offered employment

with their partner airline

therefore students do not have to worry

about securing employment when they


airline cadet ships are a fantastic way

to become a commercial pilot

certain airlines offer fully or

partially sponsored courses to complete

your training these cadet ships have

conditional offers of employment upon

completion of training

and as the airline has sponsored your

training you will be bonded to the

airline for a fixed period

usually about five years therefore cadet

ships reduce the burden upon students

as both funding and employment is

secured before training commences

however as a result of this competition

for cadet ships is very high and places

are limited

airlines sponsoring their cadets are

taking major risks

and therefore will only pick the very

best candidates examples of airline

cadet programs include

aer lingus future pilot program and the

air france cadet program

another new and exciting way to become

an airline pilot is through a university

bachelor of science pathway a university


will increase career opportunity for you

as a pilot down the line if you opt to

pursue a management role

the qualification is very useful to fall

back on in case of downturns in the


or if you encounter medical related

problems nowadays many universities

are offered pilot specific degree

programs such degree programs

allow individuals to gain at bsc before

commencing their flight training

students on these programs undertake a

mix of specialized aviation modules

as well as general business management

modules in the final year of the program

students can then opt to begin their

flight training these programs provide

students with a solid

general management foundation alongside

an aviation management specialization

other combinations of university and

atpl study and qualification can deliver

a student both a bsc degree

and an airline pilot transport license

based only on the theoretical and

practical training of the atpl course

this combination requires on-the-job

experience either as an airline pilot

or a flight instructor in recent years

airlines have developed their own

mentored pilot training programs

these programs allow airlines to

pre-select suitable candidates prior to

the commencement of their pilot training

candidates must undertake an assessment

at their selected ato

which is then reviewed by both the ato

and the airline

successful students then embark on an

integrated or mpl pilot training course

the training is self-funded by the

student however students are guaranteed

an assessment

upon qualification with the selected ato

if successful candidates will be offered

further training and employment with the

airline throughout the training

students are taught airline specific

sops that's standard operating


in order to prepare them for their

assessment and future career with the

airline they are tagged with

this means that from day one students

are taught how to fly an aircraft

using the same procedures they will use

in the airline

mentored students also undertake an

airline specific

mcc we'll talk about that in a moment


alongside airline specific sops

throughout training

results in a very high pass rate at

airline assessments

finally pilots and personnel from the

airline meet regularly with the students

throughout the program this provides

good support network and a link to the

airline throughout the duration

of the course now let's talk about a

crucial part of your airline pilot


the final stage of training for any

airline pilot student is the multi-crew

cooperation course or mcc

as it is referred to until your mcc

all of your practical training will have

been conducted in a single pilot


this course is designed to teach you how

to function in a crew

a multi-pilot crew rather than as a solo


the traditional course is known as mcc


with the joc standing for jet

orientation course however this

combination is not the optimal way to

undergo multi-crew training

only 55 percent of candidates qualified

using mcc

jock are successful at airline


a newer version of this course has

recently been designed and is known as

the aps

mcc or airline pilot standard mcc

this course is an enhanced and updated

version of the mcc

jack it is designed to train students to

an airline pilot standard before they

reach an airline pilot assessment

the course has already proved to be a

major success as 75 percent of

candidates possessing an aps-mcc


are successful at airline assessments

therefore it is important that students

researching flight schools check whether

a school is offering a basic

mcc jock or an enhanced aps mcc

we in the airline pilot club would

really encourage you to seek out an


certified ato now let's talk about the

crucial aspect

of the whole process which is securing

that all-important first job

first of all it is important to note

that your medical and license must be

current when you apply for a job

these must be revalidated every year as

for any career it is essential to make

sure that your cv is strong so you

should get some advice on how to prepare

a cv

send it to as many airlines as possible

the airline selection

process involves two steps usually the

interview and the simulator assessment

to help you be successful do some

practice interviews with somebody who is

experienced in this area

in the interview you will be asked some

questions to confirm your technical

knowledge so make sure you prepare well

and know the detail of what your current

qualification requires

so this means that if you are flying say

a techno you should know about that

aircraft's flight controls

limitations and electrical systems for

example you should

also research the airline you are

interviewing for including their

aircraft type

fleet numbers and area of operation in

order to pass the simulator assessment

make sure you keep your flying skills

sharp and get some practice in a good


similar to the one you will be assessed

in in both stages of the selection

process it is important to be confident

and believe in your training also

remember that being

in an airline pilot assessment in a

simulator you are

assessed as a co-pilot and as a support

to the flying pilot

as well as in your own flying skills so


part of the assessment is to be a really

good co-pilot to your buddy or companion

during the simulator assessment

we in apc think and hope that we're the

perfect start to your airline pilot


i want to finish up by telling you how

we in the airline pilot club can help

you and your parents

make the right decisions about your

career these icons that you see on the

screen are like waypoints on your route

to being an airline pilot

we will be with you at each crucial




check out our videos in which mentor

pilot who is an apc founder

explains these stages and steps in much

more detail

from me good luck with your airline

pilot career