CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Pilot Magazine today CLICK HERE

Commercial pilot shortage: our readers provide their solutions

PUBLISHED: 13:46 14 March 2018 | UPDATED: 13:46 14 March 2018

MatusDuda, Thinkstock

MatusDuda, Thinkstock

Matus Duda

As global markets grow, existing pilots near retirement age and training costs remain restrictive, the demand for highly-trained pilots is fast outstripping supply. Although the solution to the shortage isn’t obvious, our readers have had their say on this complex issue

When we shared BBC Money’s video regarding the commercial pilot shortage on our Facebook page we asked Pilot readers: ‘If a shortage of commercial pilots is the problem, what is the solution?’ We received over 30 comments from concerned readers.

We also covered the problem in the November 2017 issue of Pilot where we spoke to a number of training providers to get their view and to see what advice they have for pilots thinking about going commercial. You can read that article here.

Readers spoke about the cost of training, potential subsidization by airlines or companies, the number of airfields in the UK and even the maximum age for holding a professional pilot license.

All this created a fascinating dialogue featuring pilots and enthusiasts whose views will be crucial in understanding and combating the problem as it manifests in the future. We’ve picked out 10 of our favourite comments from that thread.

1) Rob Wood says many are costed out of their dream job

2) Gordon Drummond argues airlines and authorities are to blame

3) Alex Xander Craig believes age may prevent him from starting

Others said you’re never too old however!

4) Ray Crawford reckons airlines should pay for the pilots they need

5) Adam Loader believes a lack of airfields at grass roots level may be contributing

6) Robert Taylor argues the maximum age for holding a professional licence should go up

Patrick Tinton agrees!

As does Jon Grainge

7) Jerzy Chudzicki says corporate pressure and automation play into the issue

8) Angus Ritchie said the shortage is actually just concerning captains and first officers

Will Matley echoed that sentiment

9) Michael Reardon thinks each airline should be responsible for pilot training

10) For Helen Williams – and many others – it still boils down to cost

And Nick Hansen feels it impedes on the practicalities of everyday living

To join in the conversation about this issue and many other topics relating to all matters aviation, follow Pilot on Facebook and Twitter

More from Techniques & Training

Friday, October 12, 2018

The saying goes: ‘if there’s any doubt, there’s no doubt’. But sometimes we learn this the hard way | Words: James Anderson

Read more
Thursday, September 27, 2018

We’d entered cloud inadvertently and were climbing to avoid high ground, so why did the aircraft suddenly sound and feel so very strange? | By Alistair Macpherson

Read more
Tuesday, September 18, 2018

How air-brained are you? Test your general aviation knowledge on matters including safety, history, training or anything related to flying! Compiled by James Allan

Read more
Friday, August 24, 2018

Only my second visit, a frisky Learjet, and snow ‘patches’ on the runway – what fun we could have! | By Linton Chilcott

Read more
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

How air-brained are you? Test your general aviation knowledge on matters including safety, history, training or anything related to flying! Compiled by James Allan

Read more
Friday, June 29, 2018

Showing off to his mates while not paying enough attention to the aeroplane was almost the last thing this pilot ever did | By Charlie Huke

Read more
Friday, June 15, 2018

Covering all the points when briefing non-flying onlookers is essential; how they receive that information is variable... By Tony Dring

Read more
Friday, June 15, 2018

How air-brained are you? Test your general aviation knowledge on matters including safety, history, training or anything related to flying! Compiled by James Allan

Read more
Friday, June 8, 2018

A pilot with limited Tiger Moth experience gets a rude awakening when he ignores that little creeping doubt at the back of his mind | Words: Peter Binks

Read more
Wednesday, May 30, 2018

How air-brained are you? Test your general aviation knowledge on matters including safety, history, training or anything related to flying! Compiled by James Allan

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Pilot weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy


Subscribe or buy Pilot Magazine