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Is it a good time ? Corona virus

Old 27th Feb 2020, 09:56
  #1 (permalink)  
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Is it a good time ? Corona virus

Guys and gals,

I would like to hear your opinion on whether its a good time to start integrated? If you compare this to the SARS period, what would the effect be on pilot demand?

Easy MPL, Vueling MPL, Volotea MPL, Cityjet mentored P, Ryanair mentored P and Wizz air.... are these programs still realistic especially the MPL programs could have some impact on your future licenses and employability...

What do you think ? I just would like to have a discussion ...

Cheers,

Buenas


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Old 27th Feb 2020, 10:40
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The fact of the matter is, nobody knows. On one hand CV could blow over like the rest. On the other hand, it might not, and could raise hell for all involved. But then CV could fizzle out, and something else rears itís ugly head which threatens EU aviation. We just donít know.

Lufthansa and Finnair are already taking action, and plenty of the Far Eastern airlines are doing the same. (Although you could argue that things like this are the perfect excuse to trim the fat, cut costs, and get more for less out of their employees).

Realistically youíll have finished your training and be looking for a job in around 2 years. The world could be a complete different ball game by then. For better or for worse. We simply donít know.

My logic is that in 2 years all this CV stuff will have certainly blown over. If it gets (dramatically) worse as we speak, then the slowing down of airlines would be a threat to people currently at the end of their training, or looking for their first job. But, nobody here is a fortune teller. We just donít know.

However, we are due for a recession, and a major drop in pilot recruitment. We had one after the Gulf War in the early 90s, after 9/11 in 2001, and the 2008/09 Credit Crunch. The roughly 10-year cycle means we should be due for another one any time soon. I hope this isnít the case, but again, we just donít know what will happen.

I would never tell anyone to not start their training, as lifeís too short for that. But, definitely have a back up plan. A job you can go to and pay your way whilst trying to find an airline job. I would never advise anyone to go straight from school onto an integrated course, with no skills or qualifications to fall back on should flying fail. Definitely not worth remortgaging your parentsí house over.

Itís all a risk. But such is life. If you finish your training at a time similar to 2017/18, when the airlinesí doors were wide open, then youíd be laughing. However, if times are like 2008/2009, then you could be in for a 5-year long wait until something pops up.

You need a fortune teller, not a forum 😀.
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Old 27th Feb 2020, 11:08
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In general, things are always bad. It is in specific (your) case, where you can make them good. Choice of profession should be a lifelong decision, not predicated on some current global event. Just my very humble, unassuming, gentle opinion...
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Old 27th Feb 2020, 12:38
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As Rottweiler says - a backup plan is a good one - we recommend to our guys in similar situations to do an electrician's course - they don't cost much and the knowledge is directly relevant for the ATP exams. My own feeling is that there is too much hype for CV to be a permanent thing.
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Old 28th Feb 2020, 17:21
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There’s some very nervous experienced pilot out there, watch the news closely before embarking on a very expensive course. It maybe worth saving some pennies as the airlines are potentially going to see some hard times. Being inexperienced in these times isn’t good. Harsh but it’s reality...
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Old 29th Feb 2020, 07:42
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No one can predict the future and who knows how serious the current covid thing will ultimately be. What I will say is this. The worst time to train is during a boom. Lack of instructors in the industry makes getting trained is expensive and protracted. Just look at the current delays on all pathways. You never know when the industry is going to go pear shaped so being stuck in the pipeline is the last place you want to be.

Right now, if it was me starting again from scratch, I’d go modular while keeping another job going. Get the lengthy but relatively cheap bits out of the way (PPL then GS). Then look at the state of the industry and make a rolling decision about when to do the shorter expensive bits to make a dash for the finish line as soon as signs of an upturn emerge.
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Old 29th Feb 2020, 08:16
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Originally Posted by Capt Pit Bull View Post
Right now, if it was me starting again from scratch, Iíd go modular while keeping another job going. .
Agreed, and also agree with many of the previous posts - ATM keeping as many options open as possible sounds like extremely good advice to me.

Many of us in the "been around a bit" club have seen the shutters come down on recruitment/training before, and on occasions it's happened so fast that people were lucky not to lose fingers.


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Old 29th Feb 2020, 08:53
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Well according to the collective wisdom of me (Vietnam A320 skipper on indefinite unpaid leave), my Cathay mate (A350 skipper on unpaid leave) and my China Southern mate (A380 skipper on indefinite unpaid leave)

... who were all sitting around with a beer last night counting our sorrows ...

... we'd all say it's a really really shit time to get into the piloting business

Yes CV will "probably" blow over, yes things will "probably" slowly get back to normal, but, there is a definite chance that this is the big one. Feels bigger than SARS or H1N1. If it does get firmly established, if it kills 2% of the world's population, then massive massive economic recession will surely follow.

Strongly advise you to just wait a little while and see how things go
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Old 29th Feb 2020, 10:15
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Is it ever a good time to do an integrated course? 😂
The best time to do any kind of flight training is when others aren't...
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Old 29th Feb 2020, 12:28
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Flight training takes on average 2 years, and it's impossible to predict what can happen in two years.
This Coronavirus scaremongering is, in my opinion, over exaggerated and I think that in 3 to 4 months most of the public will have forgotten about it. And I see that at the moment Stobart Air and a few other airlines have put up ads for low hour cadets. Including my employer.

It is however true that we're heading for a recession if we look at the historical cycles over the last 30 years.

And then there is still the MAX grounded. Its return to service will only be a positive thing for recruitment.

I am always going to advocate modular training. As somebody said you could work towards your PPL and ATPL in distance learning and keep your job. You can manage the time as you wish and then go to a very good ATO to get your CPL and MCC.

​​​
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Old 29th Feb 2020, 16:49
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Originally Posted by Buenas View Post

I would like to hear your opinion on whether its a good time to start integrated? If you compare this to the SARS period, what would the effect be on pilot demand?

What do you think ? I just would like to have a discussion ...

Buenas
Buenas, IMHO the time now to look for the first job in Asia may be hard, it is still ok in Europe and yes, a slight shake up is happening. Maybe it is not a good time to switch jobs but regarding training, now it is a good time to start it. By the time you finish the training the panorama would be different.
You want to be ready when the market start going upwards.
Keeping a back up plan and pay as you train, it would be recommended.
Good luck!

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Old 1st Mar 2020, 15:15
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Everyone above is right.

You never know what the best time to start piloting is because nobody can predict two years in the future.

We all live in hope. Nobody who started in 2015 or 2016 knew that the job market when be booming when they finished. Nobody who started in 2000 knew 9/11 would happen.

CV may fizzle out to nothing; or it may cause a short recession and in two years the economy is booming meaning lots of jobs; or it may cause a long deep recession and slash international travel meaning bankrupt multiple airlines and no jobs; or maybe something else.
The other big one is the Max. It may/ will (is that too risky?) re-enter service causing a surge in demand for pilots eventually.

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Old 5th Mar 2020, 12:54
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As I see it and from my personal experience backed up by the feedback I have received from multiple airlines - the bad time to start was approximately two years ago. Or more precisely the bad time to be a new unemployed pilot is right at this very moment. If you have recently finished (within the last 6 months) and are still without a job there is virtually zero to none chance of getting hired into an airline in 2020 and most likely 2021. To sum up the experience of a rookie who has finished a few months ago and has a very solid CV plus all the bells and whistles (A-UPRT, JOC, PBN etc.) - the market is kind of dead at the moment and is becoming ever more quieter with every month. We have definitely left the 'good times' peak and are now on the other side of the curve beginning to accelerate towards the proverbial 'bottom' which I reckon will take at least a year or two to be reached if we take history as an example.

Nevertheless, potentially even during difficult times there might still be options to get a flying position in a non-airline area, such as becoming a flight instructor, towing banners, sky-diving pilot etc, areal photography etc. Basically, anything which will keep your flying current.

And finally, as others have already pointed out, the current situation should not deter anyone from starting the studies now. In two years time the market might be totally different. Yes, tough times might still prevail, but at least at that point the bottom of the market should be reached and a cautious growth phase might begin again. Personally, I'd say the best time to start would be within the next two years in order to be finished in four and catch the next wave up.

Last edited by wigbam; 5th Mar 2020 at 13:09.
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Old 7th Mar 2020, 23:01
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Personally I'd avoid integrated now & go modular due to the economic climate here in the UK re Covid-19, Flybe & Thomas Cook.
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Old 8th Mar 2020, 12:09
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Wink aaaand... it's gone

Originally Posted by Banana Joe View Post
... This Coronavirus scaremongering is, in my opinion, over exaggerated and I think that in 3 to 4 months most of the public will have forgotten about it. And I see that at the moment Stobart Air and a few other airlines have put up ads for low hour cadets. Including my employer.
​​​
Try finding that Stobart Air advert for an FO position now. I believe it lasted less than a week.
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Old 8th Mar 2020, 15:41
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The UK leaving EASA makes it even worse on making a decision to start....

Saved 8 years for the full training to end up in this difficult phase... age is also playing a role now 34..

time to throw the towel in
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Old 11th Mar 2020, 00:39
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Buenas. Answer is “No”.

Regrettably.
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Old 12th Mar 2020, 03:56
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The UK leaving EASA makes it even worse on making a decision to start....

Saved 8 years for the full training to end up in this difficult phase... age is also playing a role now 34..

time to throw the towel in
34 is not too old to throw in the towel. I routinely train people in their mid to late 40's and early 50's at a regional airline. Starting at 34 might not beget top the list seniority or pay, but you'll at least stop yourself from regret later in life - at least, that's what they all tell me.

With that said, this crisis is not one to push to the side; it is getting more serious with each passing hour and it definitely should form part of your decision-making process. If you can afford flying and a trade, do that. Then you have something to fall back on. A new, green future will need electricians and computer engineers, so those are professions you can take to the bank.

But, I agree with the likes of PFD that this is being blown way out of proportion and people will still need to travel, but with Italy closing its borders and the U.S announcing all flights from Europe will stop at the end of the week for a period of time, we are rapidly approaching a point where the airline industry was post-9/11, with all the capacity reductions and groundings. As the CEO of Southwest said today, this is being driven by fear, plain and simple. Remove the fear and we'll be back to normal fairly quickly.

It took the industry a solid 5 to 7 years to recover from 9/11, although there is certainly an argument to say it has yet to recover. Things were also different back then. Airlines were only just starting down the massive growth path we've seen in the industry in the last 15 years, south-east Asia was quietly taking-off, and pilots were talking about the pilot shortage as a theory that was supposed to come to pass in 5 years. If there is a silver lining to all of this Coronavirus stuff today, it's that all those things have happened - there has been massive growth, Asia took off, and the pilot shortage is here. It's similar yet very different this time around. Right now many airlines have stopped hiring and lay-offs are being discussed, but the genuine hope is that early retirements and voluntary leaves will be enough. They might not be, and lay-offs may happen, but it should be less than it otherwise would be were there not so many retirements. I'm high enough on my seniority list to ensure I'll be locking a door if the worst comes to pass, but I'm hesitantly optimistic that things will be back to pre-pilot shortage normals in about a year and a half to two years and back to the way things were in November in about five years.

So what does that mean to student pilots? Well, if you're just finishing your training, you get to have a start to your career like I did in July 2001. You might get your first job and first lay-off before the quarter is done. It might take you a couple of years to get back into it. But you'll get there in the end. If you're not picky and are willing to move off your continent, things have a way of working out.

If you're just starting your training, don't worry too much about it. You don't have the licenses anyway, so you couldn't apply for a job even if you wanted to. Once you're done in a couple of years, the dust will have settled - assuming, of course, the Russians and Saudis play nice - and the industry will be moving again. Maybe slowly and maybe such that you too will have to go off the continent, but that's the beauty of the modern world - people still need to travel.
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Old 12th Mar 2020, 12:46
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Join Date: Mar 2020
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I am a 31 year old freelance software developer hoping to fly commercially. Fortunately, I've got enough of work to keep my busy and I can dip in and out of it as per my requirements. So, in this respect I am very lucky.

Obviously the current situation is far from ideal and nobody knows when or how well the industry will recover. We can speculate and I'd hope that between 1 and 2 years things will have smoothed out. However, I recently finished my ATPLs and am currently scheduled to do my CPL/ME/IR full time beginning next month.

I am trying to decide whether to simply carry on as scheduled and get my licences and ratings so that I am ready to go when things do pick-up or whether to delay my trading until things pick-up. I'd need to keep the ME/IR current as I'd only be flying SEPs after qualifying if I have no job. I can do one year in a sim and the next year in an aircraft which is fine.

Last edited by onedaypro; 12th Mar 2020 at 22:39.
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Old 13th Mar 2020, 08:29
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onedaypro;

I am in the exact same situation. Although I have my last 4 exams in May and it looks like they wont be going ahead as the CAAs are cancelling all of their exams at the moment.

I am supposed to be starting my CPL MEIR in June.
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