Well it’s certainly been a while since I wrote an update on here, and the simple explanation is that there has been nothing to report for a while! After leaving Oxford at the start of June I sent a few applications out to a number of companies, though there was one particular airline I decided to hold out for as my first choice. After being rejected by a few airlines, I think because of a lack of experience, and also turning down a couple of interviews for a certain low-cost Irish carrier, I finally heard back from my number one choice. And, having successfully completed the assessment process, I am very proud to say that I shall shortly be taking to the skies as a First Officer on board an A320 for Britain’s largest low-cost carrier. In fact the UK’s largest carrier all together in terms of passenger numbers!
The interview process was fairly standard for the airline industry, comprising of a day spent at Oxford doing aptitude/cognitive tests, and a formal interview with a HR professional and a technical interview with an airline pilot. I was able to take great positives away from the process, as well as having a few areas highlighted that I need to work on which is fine. I am due to start my A320 type rating on 19th October at Gatwick, and hopefully should be flying lucky passengers around Europe towards the end of December or the start of next year. I am really looking forward to the next big challenge, and will be working hard to make my dream become a reality. Because if there is one piece of advice I could give to aspiring pilots, it would be to never stop believing that you can do it, and to work as hard as you possibly can. Results only come from the effort you put in. I can’t wait to share my new experiences on here in the coming months!
Finally, it has not just been an aviation free few months. Since I have been living back at home in Norfolk, I decided to join the local flying club at Norwich Airport, and get checked out back on my old friend, the PA-28 Warrior. The check flight was done over two days as weather was a bit of an issue; of course it would be in the UK! Since then I have been flying a few friends and family around, under my own license for the first time, which was a fantastic feeling. A highlight was meeting up with my old Oxford flying partner, and we managed to successfully navigate our way down to Southend Airport for a spot of lunch and a relax in the Executive Lounge, before guiding ourselves through the low level clouds to safely arrive back in Norwich. I am thinking of billing my new airline for the flight; maybe it could count as research as Southend will be their newest base as of 2012! I also spent a few days in the South of France with another coursemate (and now workmate) who took me for my first experience of gliding around Les Alpilles. It was a fun and unique experience, though I’m not really sure I mastered it, and some of the aerobatic exercises made me glad I’ll be flying a smooth airliner in the future!