- A new transatlantic airline has received 3,000 applications for its first 50 pilot roles.
- This is despite the global shortage of pilots which is making airlines struggle to meet the demand for travel.
- A spokesman said the Boeing Dreamliners had a fair chance of flying.
There is a global shortage of pilots and crew, but not one company has had a problem hiring.
Norse Atlantic Airways, Norway’s new low-cost transatlantic airline, has received more than 3,000 applications for its first 50 pilot roles, according to the BBC, which interviewed founder and chief executive Björn Tore Larsen.
Passengers continue to face travel chaos and delays as persistent flight crew shortages combined with economic factors mean airlines are struggling to meet pent-up demand for travel after the shutdown.
Starting in June, Gull will fly non-stop between Oslo, JFK, Los Angeles, Fort Lauderdale and Orlando. A non-stop route between London Gatwick and JFK in New York will start in August. It will fly Boeing 787-9 Dreamliners formerly operated by Norwegian, whose long-haul division collapsed during the pandemic.
A Nordic spokesperson told Insider that the number of applicants is higher than expected and all of them are qualified pilots, including some who work for other airlines.
The spokesperson told Insider that the opportunity to fly a Dreamliner is a popular attraction for pilots.
Larsen was one of two airline executives from a slew of new rival airlines that have launched over the past two years in an effort to plug the shortfall. He had previously postponed founding an airline because he was struggling to find staff and buy planes and safe landing pads at airports, according to BBC News.
But now he sees the current market as a “golden opportunity”.
“We don’t have any legacy systems,” he told BBC News. “We can launch this airline exactly the way we want it to.”
“We have the flexibility to enter the market cautiously and as needed, and that’s exactly what we’ll do,” Larsen added.
Backlog demand and current bottlenecks are forcing airlines to change their hiring method
According to figures from the International Air Transport Association, the number of air passengers has increased. Although airlines are still 41% below pre-pandemic levels for 2019, they are struggling to manage the rise. If demand continues at current levels, US airlines will need to find 14,700 pilots by 2030 to cover them, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates.
The pandemic shutdown has exacerbated the current labor shortage, which has been caused in part by an aging workforce and a tightening pipeline for new hires.
Consulting firm Oliver Wyman estimates that the global shortfall could reach 35,000 pilots by 2025.
Chiefs are innovating to speed up hiring for pilots by increasing wages, reducing required training hours and eliminating the requirement for a four-year college degree.
British budget airline EasyJet is removing the last row of seats on some planes to allow it to operate flights with fewer crew members.
Passengers were left in limbo over Memorial Day weekend after thousands of flights were cancelled. Delta canceled 250 flights on Saturday – up to 9% of its operations and another 140 on Sunday. The airline plans to cancel up to 100 flights a day between July and August to avoid major travel disruptions.
One of the reasons why Delta’s chief customer experience officer, Alison Abend, per Wealth.
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