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How To Become a Professional Pilot in India

  • Those who like to fly high up the sky and love the adventure; the career of Pilot is for them. The sky has opened its arm wider with the opening up of national and international sky routes. The demand for the Professional Pilot is growing with the increased number of airlines. It also attracts the youngsters as they also get the chance to travel round the world.     
  • The pilot is an important member of the aircraft. He is responsible for the passengers, the crew and the entire aircraft. It is a specialized job, which requires navigational knowledge, interpretation of meteorological reports, operating the various electronic and mechanical controls, flying the aircraft under different circumstances like climatic changes or any emergency situations. 
  • To become a Professional Pilot in India, the candidate must have a Student Pilot License (SPL). The candidate must clear their 10+2 examination in Science subjects. They must register themselves at a flying club which should be recognized by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), Government of India. The candidate must clear their oral examination in the subjects like Air Regulations, Aviation Meteorology, Air Navigation, Engine (technical and specific). Besides, this, they also need to have a medical certificate, security clearance and a bank guarantee. After successful completion of the above, the candidate gets his/her Student Pilot License (SPL).
  • After Student Pilot License (SPL), another step is the Private Pilot License (PPL).The candidate has to undergo rigorous training of 60 hours of flying. This enables the candidate to be eligible for the Private Pilot License (PPL)examination which comprises of Air Regulation, Aviation Meteorology, Air Navigation, Aircraft Engines and Seamanship. Besides this, the candidate must have a medical Fitness Certificate issued by the Armed Forces Central Medical Establishment (AFCME).
  • After Private Pilot License (PPL), a Commercial Pilot License (CPL) can be obtained. The candidate has to undergo 250 hours of flying.  The candidate has to appear for an examination which comprises of Air Regulations, Aviation Meteorology, Air Navigation, Technical, Planning, and communications in the form of Radio & Wireless Transmission. They also have to undergo Medical Fitness Test which is held at New Delhi.  After getting a Commercial Pilot License (CPL), the candidate is eligible to take up professional assignments.
  1. The course mainly content:
  2. Flight Planning
  3. Air Navigation
  4. Aviation Meteorology
  5. Air frames and engines
  6. Air regulations
  7. Cockpit resource management

There are several courses available for an interested candidate who wants to pursue a career in Professional Pilot. They are as follows:

  1. Advance Diploma in Aviation Management 
  2. Air Transport Pilot’s Licence (ATPL)
  3. BTEC [HNC] in Aviation, Hospitality and Travel Management
  4. Certificate Course in Aviation and Hospitality Management
  5. Certificate Course in Aviation Studies
  6. Commercial Pilots License (CPL) 
  7. Diploma in Aviation and Hospitality Management
  8. Diploma in Aviation Management
  9. Diploma in Aviation, Hospitality and Travel Management
  10. Diploma in Fast Track Aviation and Hospitality Management
  11. Diploma in Global Aviation and Hospitality Management
  12. International Aviation Management

Some of the Institutions which conducts training for the Professional Pilot are as follows:

  1. Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Academy, Rae Bareli, Uttar Pradesh
  2. Vasundhara Aviation Academy, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
  3. Aptech Aviation and Hospitality Academy, Dehradun, Ghaziabad, Kolkata
  4. Indira Gandhi RashtriayUran Academy, New Delhi
  5. Glorietta Aviation Academy, Tripura
  6. FIP’s Institute of Aviation and Aviation Safety, Mumbai
  7. Ahmedabad Aviation and Aeronautics Ltd. , Ahmedabad
     
  • With the privatization of the airlines industry, lot of job opportunities has been opened up for the candidates who have the Commercial Pilot License. They can be employed in both government and private domestic and international airlines. 
  • Airlines like Indian Airlines, Air India, Jet Airways, etc. are the airlines which employ Professional Pilots. The services of the pilots are in demand in the corporate houses that have their own aircrafts. 
     

There are few skills that are required to become a Professional Pilot. They are as follows:

  • The person needs to be disciplined, patience in their work.
  • He/she should be a responsible person.
  • He/she should be punctual and meet commitment.
  • He/she should have confidence in himself/herself.
  • The person should be hard working and have good stamina to work on odd hours.
  • The person must have good presence of mind.
  • The person must possess the ability to work as a team. 
  • The must have a positive attitude towards their work.
  • The person must be technically sound and understand all the nitty-gritties of the aircraft.
     
  • There are several Distance learning Diploma courses available for Aviation programme in IATA.

There are scope and opportunities for the Professional Pilot. They are as follows:

  • After obtaining the Commercial Pilot License (CPL), the candidates are employed as trainee pilots for the airlines. After completing the training period, the candidate gets the designation of a pilot or first officer on board. 
  • The pilots are designated as first officer on board basis on their seniority. The seniority is determined by their number of hours of flying experience

    To pursue a career in Professional Pilot, the candidate must have the following eligibility criteria:

    • The candidate must clear their 10+2 examination in science subjects.
    • The age of the candidate should be at least16 years of age.
    • They must register themselves to a flying club recognized by Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), Government of India.  After successful completion of formalities like clearance of oral examination and other formalities, the candidate is entitled for a Student Pilot License or SPL.
    • For the Private Pilot License or PPL the age of the candidate must be 17 years. 
    • The candidate must clear their 10+2 examination in science subjects and must have a medical Fitness Certificate issued by the Armed Forces Central Medical Establishment (AFCME). The candidate has to undergo rigorous training of sixty hours of flying. 
    • A candidate can obtain their Commercial Pilot License or CPL after acquiring their Private Pilot License or PPL. The candidate has to fly for 250 hours to get this. Besides this, they have to undergo a Medical Fitness Test. 

    The candidate is eligible for taking up professional assignment after having their Commercial Pilot License or CPL.
     

    The job responsibilities of a Professional Pilot are as follows:

    • They need to check completely the condition of the aircraft before and after every flight. 
    • They need to check the aircraft’s weight that is whether the aircraft is balanced and below its weight limit. 
    • They need to ensure that there is enough fuel supply; the aircraft is ready to fly on acceptable weather condition and to submit the flight plans to the air traffic control. 
    • While flying they need to communicate with air traffic control over the radio system on the aircraft. 
    • The pilot operates and controls the aircraft on planned routes.
    • They check the engines of the aircraft, fuel consumption. They report or respond to any changes to the control room for change in weather condition or other actions like engine failures.
    • They direct the aircraft by using cockpit instruments and by visual references. 
    • They must be trained to make a safe landing and take-off.
       
    • The salary structure of a Professional Pilot depends upon on which airlines they are getting into and their work experience. 
    • The remuneration package for a senior pilot is approx. Rs. 65 lacs to Rs. 1 crore per annum. The starting package of a professional pilot is approx. Rs. 10 to Rs. 15 lacs per annum depending upon the airlines. 
    • The salary package of professional pilots in the public sector depends upon their grades and positions. They get attractive pay packages and other perks like contributory provident fund, gratuity, medical facilities, free/concessional air package for family or dependents, etc. 
       
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