Frontier Airlines Set to Merge with Spirit : What This Means for Pilots
Frontier Airlines is set to merge with Spirit, creating the largest ultra-low-cost carrier in the US. Details are still coming in about the proposed deal, but what does it mean for pilots?
With both carriers already offering discounted fares, the deal will allow them to provide travelers with better ticket prices, more flight options, and a higher quality of service. Over recent years, both airlines have been carving out a larger market share as price conscious customers moved toward more budget friendly options.
As their slice of the market grows, the increase in servicing will require more aircraft and more crew to support operational demand. They have already laid out plans to increase daily aircraft flight hours and add new short haul destinations to underserviced areas.
Simply put, they need a lot more planes and qualified pilots to fly them.
By merging fleets, the two carriers have 283 aircraft, but they plan to expand their footprint with a joint new-order book of over 350 aircraft and expect to increase their inventory by 75 percent over the next four years.
While its obviously great for the consumer market, we see it an opportunity for the next generation of aviators, too. As the current supply of pilots continues to hit retirement age, the demand for young, well-trained cadets has never been greater, with regional carriers citing a difficulty in finding new recruits. The pilot shortage is here.
For pilots, this has created an alternative route outside the previously well-defined path to ‘mainline’ or legacy carriers such as Delta and United. For the first time, a newly minted pilot will be able to take control of their career path as competition for qualified pilots increases.
In an effort to get ahead of the shortage, many airlines are now doubling down on their recruitment efforts by offering larger pilot salaries and increased bonuses to prospective candidates. Downstream, this means that cadets can expect higher lifetime career income and faster promotional opportunities.
There has never been a better time to become a commercial airline pilot and as demand grows at record pace, we continue to meet it head-on by offering a variety of programs built around the fundamentals of quality, safety and success. If you’re interested in becoming a pilot, contact us to learn more!