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Virgin Atlantic launches first airline pilot career programme

Virgin Atlantic launches first airline pilot career programme

In a first for the airline, Virgin Atlantic has today announced its airline pilot career programme - The Virgin Atlantic Future Flyers Programme - offering potential pilots the chance to join the airline with no previous flying experience.

The programme, run in partnership with CTC Aviation, is the only one in Europe that sees new recruits training on long-haul aircraft once they receive their license. 

Applications are now open for two weeks.

The airline has selected CTC Aviation, one of the world’s leading pilot training and resourcing companies, to run its pilot career programme, offering state of the art training facilities, highly qualified instructor teams and a rich history of providing skilled pilots for many international airlines.

David Kistruck, general manager, flight operations at Virgin Atlantic, commented: “Our people have always been at the heart of Virgin Atlantic and we’re delighted to offer this opportunity to a whole new generation of flyers.


“They’ll be part of the Virgin family from day one and will enjoy an opportunity like no other, as the only trainee pilots in Europe to fly straight onto long- haul aircraft once qualified, building their career as an ambassador for one of the world’s most iconic brands.

“It’s an exciting chapter in our history to be able to offer a programme that closes the gap between the dream and the reality of piloting a long haul aircraft and we’re looking forward to finding our diverse and talented flight crew for the future.”

The 18 month programme comprises pre-flight training, full motion flight deck simulation at CTC Aviation’s Crew Training Centre Southampton, along with flight training in Phoenix, Arizona. 

The programme leads towards the Civil Aviation Authority’s latest Multi Pilot Licence and a position as a Virgin Atlantic First Officer operating the Airbus A330-300.

To ensure a smooth transition for all trainee pilots, a team of front-line Liaison Pilots will be on hand to answer questions, provide feedback and act as mentors for the recruits.

Applicants are required to have a minimum of five GCSE’s or equivalent including Maths, Science and English. 

No flying experience is required and ground school accreditation should not exceed PPL (Private Pilot’s Licence) studies.