Preconceived idea No. 1. You need at least a 5-year degree
Pilots, like doctors, are responsible for human lives. But they do not have the same level of education. Professional pilot training ab initio, i.e. without any flight experience, lasts… only 2 years! The first year of theory takes place alongside instructors on our campus with a view of the runways, which is quite motivating for the rest of the course! At the end of the 2nd year, the two wings are hung on the shirt: the student holds the ATPL, the professional pilot’s license. He then acquires “type ratings” depending on the company and the type of aircraft he will be flying. The dream is accessible from the age of 17 and with only a baccalaureate.
Preconceived idea No. 2. Having a good level of English
This is a preconceived notion which is true, the training is entirely carried out in English. Mastering English is an essential tool for pilots wishing to join a company. To fly an aircraft abroad, you must prove that you have obtained a specific linguistic aptitude for aeronautical English, known as FCL.055. This is your passport to flying abroad. To enter foreign airspace, you must have a sufficient level of expression and comprehension in English, used in aeronautical communications. This requirement applies to all pilots, whether professional or not.
Preconceived idea No. 3. I wear glasses, I can’t become a pilot
A pilot can wear glasses as long as the corrective lenses and contact lenses correct 100%. A medical certificate of fitness to fly, issued by an approved aeronautical medicine, is obviously required. But pilots with glasses do exist! The regulations require visual acuity of at least 7/10, with or without correction, for each eye separately and 10/10 with both eyes. There is no limit to visual acuity without correction. Keep an eye on the legislation, as it evolves with the progress of ophthalmology. If you are unable to become an airline pilot for medical reasons, hang on, aviation is full of exciting jobs that are close to the aircraft. We also train for the private pilot’s license, which is less restrictive.
Preconceived idea No. 4. Unemployed pilots
The health crisis has forced airlines to retire their senior pilots, but with the rapid recovery of air transport, it is necessary to replace them with a new generation. Instead, the first half of 2022 is the ideal time to start training. The health crisis has forced airlines to part with senior pilots who will have to be replaced. With travel demand picking up strongly, the aviation industry continuing its pre-crisis growth, manufacturers announcing record orders, and airlines launching massive recruitment plans, fearing a new shortage of pilots as early as 2023.
Preconceived idea No. 5. It’s a very routine job
An airline pilot never has the same day. Every day is a new adventure, with new landscapes and a different crew. In an airline, he is assigned to a short or long-distance network, which represents dozens of destinations. With varied weather and landscapes, a different crew on each flight, and stopover anecdotes that accumulate with the flight hours. If, however, the regular airline is not enough for your adventurous temperament, you should know that the commercial pilot’s license also leads to business aviation, to the transport of freight in hostile terrain or even to the profession of instructor.