Event Report: The European Pilot Shortage Is Real

Pilot Shortage

The European Pilot Shortage Is Real – Our Event Report From The Visit To Pilot Careers Live In Berlin

A sunny Saturday in Germany’s capital Berlin, Aviation people, flight schools and young people, looking into one of the worlds most esteemed career fields, working towards becoming Airline Transport Pilot’s. Thanks to our PCL Event Sponsor sky[nav]pro™ we made the trip to report from the event. Here is how the current state of the industry looks from the perspective of flight school owners and professional pilot training providers. Please Visit Our Event Sponsor!

The event is put on by Seager Publishing in no less than 7 cities in Europe, affording countless pilot academies the opportunity to inform and educate young people about the career. Tickets for the upcoming event in London are available at pilotcareernews.com. Our special thanks to Paul Yates & Victoria Smith for inviting us to this event! We used the opportunity to speak with the heads and presenters of various outfits.

Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com

TFC Käufer’s owner and CEO Christian Käufer reports that placement rates for graduates are frequently reaching  100%, meaning someone finishing their ATPL training successfully has a near 100% chance to land in the cockpit of an airliner. Käufer who has strategic partnerships with Air Berlin, Aerolocic and Condor can lead students throughout the whole labyrinth as a veteran in the airline and training industry. Operating out of Essen TFC offers ATPL, MCC, MPL, Type Rating and JOC’s as well as Instructor & Language Proficiency Training. Educational partnerships exist with FOM University, which leads students to a B.S. in Aviation Management.

Friendly, upbeat and highly informative talks with interested people at the TFC booth. (Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com)

A statement fully confirmed by  Udo & Jonas Harter, who run FFH Aviation Training with locations in Stuttgart, Freiburg, Augsburg and Karlsruhe, as well as the United States, finishing about 50 Students per year with full placement and a constant pool of 100 students in training. The long- standing and highly regarded school offers a modular ATPL as well as ATPL + Bachelor Degree program  and looks positively into the near and intermediate future.

Udo Harter from FFH with interested visitors. (Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com)

A very interesting conversation was had with European Institute of Aviation and Business (EIAB) offering a completely integrated B.S. in Aviation Management in unison with the ATP License. In this program students will complete basic pilot training (PPL) in a conventional cockpit in Germany, before moving on to glass cockpits with their cooperation partner FFTC in Florida to build time and gain the instrument rating. Commercial & Multi (in Tecnam P2006T) happen in Germany. Finishing both, degree and pilot certification with ~ 200 hours of which a true 120 hours are instrument flying in the aircraft. Some unique selling points include a basic 10 hours in simulators to learn basic instrument flying prior to leaving for the U.S. and 2-5 hours of Upset Recovery Training, which continues to remain a high emphasis area on FAA & EASA’s.

EIAB Booth during PCL in Berlin (Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com)

Following, we met and talked with Sabine Baumgarten, presenting for European Flight Academy, part of Lufthansa Aviation Training. Foreseeing a tremendous demand for highly qualified pilots, we learn that in some cases employers are joining waiting lists for graduates and that several airlines are pulling from previously “parked” pilots who went on to do other jobs in the industry, while recruitment rates were much worse.

Sabine Baumgarten (r) of European Flight Academy listens to prospects questions. (Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com)

Lets not think for a second that the demand for pilots is only affecting fixed wing operations. We will soon be bringing a featured article from Helicentre Aviation Academy, which is recruiting students for highly increased demand in commercial, corporate and off-shore rotary wing operations, but is also looking to add staff to its own team in Leicester, U.K. as well as Winterhaven, FL. At least 15-20 pilots are needed to begin covering demand, according to Cpt. Sarah Bowen, who is Managing Director, Head of Training & Chief Flight Instructor and Cpt. Callum Tinnion who was there to present the school. Check their current vacancies.

Cpt. Sarah Bowen (r) and Cpt. Callum Tinnion of Helicentre (Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com)

Visiting the Young Pilots was rather refreshing, seeing a club of young people dedicated to providing guidance and tips to the young generation of prospects. Existing since 2003, they do very good work in providing an behind the curtain look into the career fields in aviation and guidance along the way. Young individuals are certainly encouraged to check them out and to sign up, previous members are flying for reputable airlines and even work for Deutsche Flugsicherung.

YoungPilots.de Booth (Picture via Facebook)

Training Management System provider Flight Logger® was present with a booth manned by Jonas Vognsen, who is an investor and part of the team. The company just recently surpassed 14.000 users in 21 countries by providing a digital online flight management system to the industry.

FlightLogger’s Booth at the Pilot Careers Live Event In Berlin (Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com)

A short talk (mainly due to being surrounded constantly) with Oliver Thiemke, CEO of SIM4U in Berlin was positive with reporting good use of their FNPT II simulator, based at the  LAT Lufthansa Aviation Training Berlin GmbH location. The company offers screening preparation, MCC training, JOC’s and refresher training on a EASA certified simulator emulating the exact flight dynamics of a Boeing 737-800. Sharing the booth with partner company SKY4U.com creates a perfect way to combine the worlds of training, recruitment, networking and scholarships and placement screenings for young applicants looking to get into the industry.

Sim4U & Sky4U Booth at the PCL (Picture: Seaplanemagazine.com)

Seager’s events in Germany are supported by AERO International & fliegermagazin which also had print magazines available for interested readers. AERO Editor Christof Brenner  was there to present the print publications and also announced and introduced the five seminars which took place between 11AM and 3PM.

There is a real pilot shortage and with airlines grounding aluminum, it remains a big hope for us that the industry will adjust salary and income opportunities for pilots, rather than hoping for cockpit automation and manufacturers to produce the pilot-less cockpit. Young pilots with intentions to become airline pilots stand excellent chances to get hired upon successful completion of training. We’d still like those with an interest to note that the foundation of successful airline recruitment is made possible by GENERAL AVIATION and that basic training happens primarily in General Aviation aircraft. Its these people who make the future of airlines possible and its the people you meet at events like Pilot Careers Live!

Thanks again to our sponsor sky[nav]pro™ for allowing us to be there and bring this report!

About sky[nav]pro™

Through sky[nav]pro™, modern technology has entered the cockpit via a future-oriented pay-per-use model. The mobile box ensures availability worldwide using satellite technology and can be brought onto every airplane. In connection with a free online “fly portal” pilots may plan and perform VFR flights. Access to the following functions is possible via powerful app: In-flight weather, visualized Wind (by Windy) Planning and Navigation, Collision avoidance as well as tracking + monitoring, mostly of interest to flight schools and charter companies. sky[nav]pro™ follows an open standard to integrate future applications. The companies goal is to offer comprehensive and system-integrated cockpit architecture based on mobile devices. Please check them out via www.skynavpro.aero

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