Alpha Aviation Academy UAE is offering a unique training programme which can lead to a First Officer position with Air Arabia – the region’s largest and most successful low cost carrier with over 82 destinations across the Middle East, North Africa, Asia and Europe.
Successful applicants can look forward to training in both Greece and the UAE to achieve a Multi-crew Pilots Licence (MPL) using the most up-to-date technology including Level D full-motion Airbus simulators. Graduates who meet Air Arabia’s standards go on to work as a First Officer flying the Airbus A320.
The Alpha MPL Programme is an 18 month ab initio programme – meaning one may start completely from scratch as a novice – and train over approximately 18 months in UAE and Greece.
The course includes 1,500 hours flying as a First Officer on the A320 – and being paid for it – provided all the training is completed to a high standard. After the 1,500 hours cadets will have a United Arab Emirates Multi-Pilot Licence – only valid in the UAE. Converting this to a UAE ATPL is pretty straightforward with no further training or qualifications required, should one wish to do so.
Alpha MPL Programme summary:
- Cadets spend the first 8 months completing ground training at the AAA training centre at Sharjah, UAE.
- Flight Training is done with AAG’s European partner FTO, Egnatia Aviation. The ‘Core’ flight training is completed using new Diamond DA20 and DA40 aircraft. In Greece cadets are introduced to Threat and Error Management – a concept that will feature heavily throughout the training. There is also an introduction to instrument flying.
- Basic jet training is conducted at Sharjah and cadets are introduced to multi-crew operations using simulators. Advanced instrument flight training is introduced at this stage.
- Cadets progress to intermediate training and specifically, the airbus A320 systems. A mixture of ground and flight training using the full motion A320 simulator at Air Arabia and using the airline’s standard operating procedures (SOPs).
- Finally, advanced training for the A320 is undertaken and cadets take the licence skill test on the A320 simulator at Air Arabia. Training is complete after take offs and landings in the actual A320 aircraft are carried out, and if successful, cadets fly as a Second Officer on real routes – up to 100 sectors – with a training captain. Provided the Line Check is passed, cadets will become paid First Officers and fly for approximately 2 years on the line to achieve 1,500 hours.
The Multi-crew Pilot Licence is a relatively recent qualification, created by the International Civil Aviation organisation (ICAO) in 2006. It was designed specifically to develop the abilities needed to fly in a multi-crew airline environment. Compared to traditional pilot training, it makes greater use of simulators, adopts competency-based-training methods and applies human factors with threat and error management in all phases of training. This contrasts heavily with traditional training methods which have tended to emphasise independence and individual skills within a single pilot environment. While appropriate for single-pilot operations, they can impede the eventual transfer to multi-crew operations, and it has become very apparent that pilots moving into airline work from this standpoint require bridging training to close the gap.
Therefore, the MPL is seen as being more suited to the task and is being hailed as the future of airline pilot training. Alpha Aviation Group (AAG) was the original pioneer of the MPL in the Middle East and, at the time of writing, the sole training organisation currently offering it as a route to becoming an airline pilot.