Thomas Cook Airlines has worked out a tailored training programme in which selected self-sponsored students are schooled to become first officers by Oxford Aviation Training (OAT), UK. Toward the end of the training programme, the pilots are tutored in the airline’s own cockpit standard operating procedures (SOP) in OAT’s Boeing 737-400 simulator.

The initial batch of Thomas Cook students will begin the tailored course – a specific airline adaptation of OAT’s airline preparation course (APP) – soon, to be ready to join the airline by January 2007. A precondition of the course is that the students pass OAT’s aptitude test and interviews with the airline. If a student passes the first progress test – about 30 flying hours into the course – the school provides the students access to unsecured financing via a major bank, and the airline promises the students a career on successful completion of the tailored airline preparation course.

OAT says it is in negotiation with another carrier on a similar tailored training deal.

The course includes 20h multi-crew co-operation training, followed by 20h of jet operations to the client airline SOPs in the school’s 737-400 full-motion/visual system flight and navigation procedures trainer class 2.

Source: Flight International