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Old 4th Jan 2018, 22:36
  #76 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: 52N
Posts: 99
So, can we see this scenario happening?

Autonomous Boeing and Airbus aircraft prototypes begin an extended flight test programme, airport and ATC infrastructures do the same, say 10 years for proof of concept and then another 5 years before ICAO and national CAA's can agree rule making for the new technology.

In the meantime word gets out that pilots are going to become an extinct species, save in the poorly paid General Aviation sector so the attraction of a career as a commercial pilot begins to wain. Banks (including that of mum and dad) no longer see an investment of 100k+ in training a worthwhile proposition so the supply of new pilots begins to dry up and experienced ones opt to cash in on their earliest retirement dates.

The pilot shortage situation becomes a desperate one, salaries increase and the low cost airline economic model becomes redundant which forces up fares and pax numbers fall, perhaps drastically. Big name operators gobble up their balance sheet reserves before reverting to the legacy airline model. Traditionally piloted aircraft lose value like diesel cars, and the banks who have financed them shy away from the airline sector with extremely burnt fingers.

Investors in businesses get scared by major change, but of course there are always investors for new ventures that embrace upcoming technologies. What happens in the transition period?
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