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Flight simulators or flight training devices are vital tools for individuals who are training to become pilots. They mimic different flight sensations and conditions that pilots will most likely encounter. They then use these augmented simulations to practice instrument skills and challenging maneuvers.

A lot of flight schools use simulator training as part of their training programs. They typically have training facilities where simulators are housed. These flight simulators look like full-size cockpits, which are mounted on hydraulic actuators. During the training, flight instructors observe their students’ application of flight controls as well as the effects on the aircraft system.

To further understand the value of flight simulators, here are some other important points on how these tools contribute to training competent pilots.

They Are Safe

One of the main advantages of flight simulators is that they provide the safest way for pilots to train. Even if students practice flying with a certified flight instructor, they’ll be safer when on the ground than they are thousands of feet in the air. With this in mind, simulators allow students to learn and experiment with different aircraft controls and flight methods safely. They don’t need to worry about damaging the aircraft or making detrimental mistakes, which may risk their lives.

Cadets aren’t the only ones who can benefit from using a flight simulator. Even more seasoned pilots can use the simulator to improve their flying skills safely and become more proficient in unique flying situations before experiencing them in real life.

They Provide Real-Life Training Experience

AAG Flight Simulators

Simulators can provide students with a realistic learning environment. Many flight simulators are mounted on hydraulics that mimics startling and unexpected movement inside the cockpit. This provides students the opportunity to practice the diagnostic and troubleshooting process in life-like situations. So even if a student has few training hours on an actual aircraft, they are familiar with the common process they’ll likely encounter once they’re flying.

Pilots Experience Various Weather Conditions

Simulator training gives pilots a way to experience flying in different weather conditions at any time. The pilots won’t just get exposed to flying in local weather, they can also get familiarized with flying methods in other conditions like blizzards.

Also, the simulator can recreate any weather conditions over different terrains. So, students can practice the appropriate flying and landing techniques whether there’s rain, wind, or snow. Additionally, flight simulators can be a learning alternative in case an aerial lesson is grounded. Students can continue with their lessons and can stay on track with their learning progress.

They Prepare Pilots for In-Flight Emergencies

Pilots need to be prepared for anything, including emergencies. Since flight simulators can recreate various scenarios, they can provide a learning environment with similar in-air failures and risky circumstances without the real danger. These scenarios can include engine problems, electrical malfunctions, and maneuver mistakes.

While the proper procedures for these situations are already outlined in their flight manuals, students are given a first-person point of view of how to handle these emergencies in flight simulators. During the simulation, students can practice identifying, assessing, and responding to urgent situations. They also learn how to avoid dangerous scenarios.

They Offer a Stress-Free Learning Environment

Simulator

Being responsible for an aircraft, no matter the size can be nerve-wracking—especially for new students. Often, people make more mistakes because they are anxious and nervous. Since flight simulators recreate different flight scenarios, students can practice and hone their skills in a safe and controlled environment. By knowing that they are on the ground, students are also calmer and can focus more on their training. They also won’t be too worried about making mistakes and can have more time learning from them.

Using flight simulators is an effective way to train pilots. They augment real-life flying scenarios without the actual dangers. This helpful training tool allows pilots to practice flight skills and instrument controls in a safe and controlled environment. Students are able to calmly execute maneuvers and standard protocol in a flight simulator, and they have better chances of learning and becoming more confident in their skills.

As an aspiring aviator, one of your goals might include getting hired at a certain airline company. Perhaps, you know someone who previously worked in that company and had an excellent experience. Or maybe the airline company of your choice offers an excellent compensation package as well as the opportunity to move to another country.

While your reasons might differ from others, take note that you aren’t the only individual hoping to land a pilot job in certain airline companies. If you want to get hired at a highly sought-after company, the competition might be fierce. Fortunately, there are different ways you can stay ahead and successfully get hired.

Here are four tips on how to secure a job as a pilot at the airline company of your choice.

 

Enroll in a Reputable Flight School

Pilot Trainee in Flight Simulator

If you’re still at the beginning stage of your pilot career, choosing the best pilot school will help support your goal of becoming a successful aviator. The school must run an excellent pilot training program, employ highly qualified instructors, have excellent facilities, and house an adequate fleet of well-maintained aircraft and simulators. It’s also important to pick a flight school that keeps cadets up to date with the latest aviation technology. Make sure the pilot training school also has type rating courses that can prepare you to safely operate modern aircraft.

Additionally, see if the flight school offers networking opportunities to meet with other pilots and representatives from airline companies. This gives you a chance to connect with professionals in the industry and learn from them. It can also give you a peek at what airline companies are looking for when hiring pilots. By investing in your training, you can gain the necessary skills and knowledge to be competent and have a flourishing career.

 

Check the Job Requirements

Before applying as a pilot in a commercial airline, you need to check the job requirements and meet them. In the Philippines, for example, you’ll need an Airline Transport Pilot License to be the pilot in command of scheduled air carriers. If you want to acquire this license, you need to be a current Commercial Pilot License holder and complete your instrument rating. You must also obtain a Class 1 Medical Certificate from the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines. Also, you’ll need to log a total of at least 1,500 hours of flight time.

Depending on the airline company you’d like to apply to, they might also have physical requirements like a pilot’s height. Airline companies have a height requirement because they want to make sure their pilots can quickly manipulate the controls in the cockpit. If you plan to apply to Philippine Airlines, you need to be at least 5’4”. Some international airline companies require pilots to be at least 5’1”, while others accept pilots who are up to 6’2” tall.

Given that every airline company is different, you need to do your research before applying. It’s more helpful if you meet the general requirements first before sending your application so that you can be considered for the job.

 

Craft a Winning Resume

If you fit the airline company’s requirements, the next thing to do is create a resume that will help you stand out. This includes putting information about your education and work experience.

In the part about education, list all the courses you’ve taken even if they aren’t related to the aviation industry. If you completed a bachelor’s course before training to be a pilot, put that in as well—regardless of whether you finished an aviation-related course or studied something completely different like web design. Some airline companies value individuals who have vast knowledge and appreciate someone who has the discipline to learn. Also, remember to place your pilot school as this might give you the advantage of being hired. Many airline companies look for competent pilots who were trained in excellent institutions.

Under your work experience, place the complete list of your employment, if any. If you did some volunteer work, include them too. Plenty of companies appreciate pilots who are dedicated to enriching their skills.

 

Prepare for the Interview

Once you’ve submitted your resume and are considered for the job, you’ll be asked to come in for interviews. Typically, pilots applying for a job go through several interviews and tests. So if you want to ace every single one of them, you need to prepare.

Do Your Research about the Company

Before going to the initial interview, read about the airline company you’re applying for. Research their mission statement, corporate values, aircraft types, and any recent news articles. Learning about such information provides you with strong talking points about why the airline company should hire you. It will also help make you feel more confident, which can make you feel more at ease and possibly impress the interviewer or hiring manager.

Review Technical Information

Aside from researching the company you’re applying for, make sure to brush up on your technical knowledge of flying. Before the interview date, set aside ample time to review pilot techniques and aviation systems. You might want to read about the responsibilities of a pilot before and after a flight as well as analyze flight plans and weather conditions. The interviewer might ask about your recommended approach to certain flight conditions, and you want to make sure you can use the opportunity to show off your knowledge and skills. Remember, your answers to the interview questions can greatly influence the hiring manager’s decision whether to hire you or not.

Whether you’ve always wanted to become a pilot at a specific airline company or had a recent change of heart, you’ll need to prepare for it as you may share the same goals as many other individuals. Consider following these recommendations when planning your career. Hopefully, they will help land your dream job at the airline company of your choice.

Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga, Philippines – AAG Philippines (AAGP) signed on 30 September 2022 a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with Topflite Academy to facilitate the entry of the latter’s CPL/IR graduates into AAG’s First Officer Transition (FOT) Program or the Airbus A320 Type Rating Program.

L to R: Capt. Vincente Casibang II (AAGP Accountable Manager), Mr. Cristopher Magdangal (AAG Regional Director, Asia-Pacific), Capt. Sahl Andrew Onglatco (Topflite Academy Accountable Manager), and Ms. Maria Jesa Dasallas (Topflite Academy Admin Manager)

This is the fourth agreement formalized by AAG this year. Similar partnerships with other ATOs are being finalized according to AAG. “This is part of our ongoing advocacy not to compete but instead collaborate with our fellow industry players,” shares Capt. Vicente Casibang II (AAGP Accountable Manager).

Gracing the signing ceremony was AAG Regional Director, Asia-Pacific Mr. Cristopher Magdangal. “As the aviation industry continues to recover, we expect the demand for world-class pilots to reach, if not exceed pre-pandemic numbers. No single flight school can meet the industry requirements. We have to help each other,” underscores Mr. Magdangal. (AAG Corporate Affairs)

The commercial aviation industry is an important global business that helps connect different countries and cultures by providing an efficient method to travel while growing tourism industry. It has made transporting goods easier, making international trade possible and more efficient. It also creates plenty of job opportunities for people who want to be part of the coveted industry.

If you’re interested in a career in the commercial aviation industry, then you’ll be happy to know that you have various options to choose from, including being a pilot, a flight attendant, or an aircraft mechanic—all of which are valuable roles in the industry. Whether as part of the cabin crew or ground staff, here’s a quick look at some of the popular opportunities you can consider.

Captain

As a pilot, the captain is in complete command of the aircraft from departure to arrival. They’re responsible for the safety of the entire flight crew, passengers, and cargo. If you take your pilot training in the Philippines, you must obtain an Airline Transport Pilot License to apply as captain for an airline. The license is issued by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines (CAAP) and is the highest level of aircraft pilot certificate.

Before the flight, the captain reviews the weather, flight plan, and load manifest. They also work together with a co-pilot or a first officer (FO) to perform their communication and navigation duties. The captain also monitors the autopilot and makes inputs to ensure the aircraft is following its planned course.

In flight, the captain can take on the role of pilot flying (PF) or pilot monitoring (PM). As a PF, they handle the controls and perform takeoff and landing. When the captain is the PM, they’re in charge of everything else, such as the radio equipment and assisting the PF with decision-making. Another role captains take on is being a mentor. They provide a good example to the First Officer as to how to successfully lead a crew. This way, the FO becomes prepared once they take on a captain position themselves.

Even if they’re the PM, the captain remains in charge of all aspects of the flight. Due to their higher rank, the captain can override the decisions of their co-pilot or the PF. They may seek input from their co-pilot as well as the rest of the flight crew while making important decisions. But ultimately, it’s the captain’s call and their decision is obeyed and respected by the entire crew.

First Officer

Another pilot position is first officer. It’s the entry-level role when an aviator gets employed in a commercial airline. Primarily, their job is to support the Captain. They also share their valuable inputs when dealing with an ambiguous situation. Generally, the FO performs all tasks delegated by the flight’s captain and those required by airline company procedures. In most cases, these tasks include performing all the pre-flight inspections or the walk-around to improve flight safety. During the inspection, the FO checks the airplane’s airworthiness and visually inspects if the aircraft is in order according to the airplane flight manuals and the pilot’s operating handbook.

Once done with the pre-flight inspection, the first officer completes the weight-and-balance paperwork to ensure the aircraft isn’t too heavy or out of balance. If the plane is too heavy, it may never get off the ground. On the other hand, an out-of-balance aircraft may be uncontrollable or hard to maneuver. Then, the FO will join the rest of the crew to discuss the weather, flight plan, and contingency plans if necessary.

Similar to any pilot, a first officer must go through the necessary training to be qualified for a position in an airline company. They must also obtain a Commercial Pilot License from the CAAP to be compensated for their service.

Flight Attendant

Flight attendants (FA) are an important part of a flight crew. While they’re often associated with roles of serving food and drinks, offering assistance, and ensuring passengers are comfortable, flight attendants are valuable aviation professionals. Their main priority is the safety of all passengers. Flight attendants direct passengers to their seats and demonstrate the use of safety equipment before a flight. They’re also trained to administer first aid. In case of an emergency, the FA directs the passengers to the exits while pilots focus on the safe operation of the aircraft.

If you’re considering becoming an FA, you must be at least a high school graduate. However, some airline companies require applicants to have a higher level of education or a college degree in any course. The most sought-after majors are people-oriented disciplines such as communications, psychology, tourism, hospitality, nursing, and education.

Aircraft Mechanic

Aside from the cabin crew, the commercial aviation industry also has need of professionals who stay on the ground. For example, an aircraft mechanic ensures that an aircraft is in full working order before its flight. They perform the necessary repairs and preventive actions so that the aircraft remains functional and safe. In the Philippines, you’ll need to complete a relevant formal qualification to be employed as an aircraft mechanic. It includes a course in Aircraft Maintenance Technology, a bachelor’s degree in Aeronautical Engineering, or Aircraft Technology. Then, they must take and pass the licensure exam of the CAAP to become a licensed aircraft mechanic.

If you want a career in the commercial aviation industry, you have various options with some of the more popular and highly in-demand positions listed above. Once you’ve chosen a career, research its qualifications and requirements. Also, consider what airline companies are looking for in their employees so you can increase your chances of getting your dream job.

Typically, aspiring pilots enroll in the pilot training school to help themselves get the right qualifications. There, students equip themselves with substantial knowledge and train for months so they can safely operate a specific aircraft.

Apart from the time and effort, undergoing flight training requires a considerable investment. That’s because pilot training is a specialized course that isn’t readily available in many schools or universities. Many flight schools also hire excellent instructors and get the latest equipment to produce competent aviators. Not to mention, students will need to practice handling an actual aircraft. Given the financial requirements of flight training, some individuals struggle to fund their pilot training.

If you have a similar concern, take a look at these different ways how you can pay for your flight school training.

Save Up Money

Saving up enough money before enrolling in a flight training school is a traditional route and is also very popular among people who don’t want to pay off any debt. However, it would mean holding off on your training for a while until you’ve come up with a sufficient amount.

Alternatively, you can save up to cover the training costs to acquire your commercial pilot license and take additional type rating programs once you can afford them. While this may cause a bit of delay in your aviation career, it lets you complete your essential pilot training and work your way up as your finances will allow you.

Apply for Loans

Another way you can pay for your flight school training is by taking out a loan. But before you do, make sure to carefully consider this decision. Also, review the loan terms and see to it that you can manage the payments. The last thing you want to happen is getting a loan and having problems later on when it’s time to settle the required fees and interests.

If you’re aiming to become a pilot for a commercial airline company, it’s a good idea to enroll in a full-time program that you can complete quickly and help you get qualified for a position in an airline. This way, you’ll be able to earn upon graduation and be capable to pay off your loans.

Look for a Scholarship

Believe it or not, there are several scholarship programs for flight school students. For example, some commercial airlines take in individuals and train them to qualify as commercial pilots. Upon the completion of their training, the scholars become employed in the said airline company for a specific period.

If you apply and get approved for a scholarship, you won’t have to worry about taking out loans. However, you must take note that study grants have certain requirements. For example, students must meet and maintain a minimum general weighted average and must not have any failing grades to avail themselves of the free education program. In case this is something you can commit to, do your research and apply to as many promising scholarship programs as possible.

Study and Work at the Same Time

Many aviation students work while they’re training to ensure that they can continue to fund their education. Finishing an aviation-related course will help you get employed in jobs other than being a pilot, such as an aircraft mechanic or technician. If you work in the aviation industry, it will be beneficial for you because it lets you continue your learning while funding your pilot training.

Alternatively, you might want to check in with the flight school if they offer employee discounts on their pilot training courses. If so, keep an eye out for job opportunities in the school. This doesn’t mean you have to work for them as an aviator to receive a discount on your training. You can also work at the front desk, as an assistant instructor, or any other job in the flight school to receive discounted training.

Inquire about the Flight School’s Financial Assistance

Many flight training schools here in the Philippines understand the financial needs of their students. As such, they often offer assistance to ensure individuals who are struggling to fund their training have a similar opportunity as other aspiring pilots. Some flight schools provide financial assistance to their students, regardless of their course, while others only offer aid in specific pilot training programs. In some cases, pilot training schools partner with financial institutions to help facilitate student loans.

Becoming a pilot requires a substantial investment in time and money. Fortunately, even if you’re not ready to take on the financial requirements of pilot training, there are still different ways you can fund your training. Depending on your financial status or capability, you can employ one or combine any of the methods mentioned above.

In addition to these suggestions, consider taking advantage of the AAG Study Now, Pay Later program. The Alpha Aviation Group is a pilot training school located in Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga, dedicated to training competent pilots and aviators by providing world-class training solutions. AAG is also committed to excellence as it ensures all training methods are on par with international standards along with the latest technology in aviation.