BA re-launches Self-Sponsored Pathway for pilots Post IR phase


As the nation’s flag carrier, we take great pride in connecting Britain with the world and the world with Britain. It’s something we’ve been doing for over 100 years, ever since we launched the world’s first international scheduled air service between London and Paris. This originality has been in our blood since day one. It’s the spirit we share with the people that fly with us, our partners, and our colleagues. So, whether you are a reassuring voice on the end of a phone, a smile at the door, under a wing keeping the turbines spinning or landing us gently in far-flung places, a job at British Airways is yours to make.

We know great things can happen when you’re inspired to think big and bring your ambition to work every day, which is why, at British Airways the sky is never the limit.

Speedbird Self-Sponsored Pathway

  • Candidates who are training at any ATO and have completed their IR and APS MCC or have completed up to their IR with their APS MCC taking place within 6 months.
  • This scheme is a rebrand of the Newly Qualified Pilot Pathway, if you have already applied through thls pathway our application will be moved, there is no need to reapply.

What you’ll do on successful completion of your training:

  • The First Officer is responsible to the Commander to assist in the safe and efficient conduct of the flight.
  • Maintain familiarity with such provisions of the company Operations Manual as are necessary to fulfil the role of First Officer.
  • Assist the Commander as requested, concerning operational and administrative duties in relation to the flight.
  • Support the Commander in the maintenance of a proper standard of crew discipline, conduct and personal appearance.

Where  you’ll be based on successful completion of your training:

  • You will be based at either Gatwick with BA Euroflyer or Heathrow with British Airways flying the A320

What you’ll bring to British Airways:

  • Passionate about a career as a pilot with British Airways
  • Comfortable with taking control of own learning and professional development, and both willing and able to self-study, and continue to develop as a safety conscious professional pilot for the duration of the flying career
  • Comfortable operating a busy schedule, with BA flights operating 365 days a year
  • Comfortable working with colleagues and customers from all cultures and nationalities, and able to identify, and work, with cultural differences
  • Genuine enthusiasm for our customers, and finding ways to exceed their expectations when they fly with us
  • Able to put our customers’ needs at the heart of all decision making, and will be comfortable dealing with our customers face to face both when things are going to plan, but also when they’re not

Entry Criteria:

  • Height will be between 1.57m (5’2″) and 1.91m (6’3″) (height is accurately determined during the assessment process). Qualified pilots who are taller than 1.91m may submit an application but will be required to undergo a functionality check to confirm their ability to meet the requirements of the seating positions in the British Airways fleet of aircraft
  • A good level of physical fitness, and ability to satisfy the British Airways medical requirements
  • ICAO ELP Level 6 proficiency
  • A valid passport (with minimum of 12 months before expiry date at time of joining) allowing unrestricted worldwide travel
  • Tattoos are permissible as long as they are not on the hands, face or head
  • UK Class 1 flight crew medical
  • Right to live and study in the UK without sponsorship

In addition to the above:

  • APS MCC – to be completed within 6 months of being tagged
  • aUPRT
  • UK Part-FCL licence
  • No more than three training providers for the following stages of training: Ground School, CPL/IR, APS MCC
  • PPL, hour building and aUPRT is not included in the 3 training provider limit.
  • Training completed no earlier than 1st January 2020
  • Application must include the ATPL Consolidated exam report and flying examiners report for CPL and IR (if completed at time of application) and a final course report if available.

Training Criteria:

  • First Series ATPL Ground School with an average score of 85% and above with no more than three resits
  • First series pass in both CPL and ME/IR (Series 1, Attempt 1 or Series 1, Attempt 2)
  • aUPRT
  • UK Part-FCL licence

What we offer:

We believe that all the people who work with us should feel valued for the part they play. It’s one of the reasons our rewards go far beyond a competitive salary.

From the day you join us, you’ll get access to brilliant staff travel benefits including unlimited basic and premium standby tickets on British Airways flights. You’ll also receive up to 30 discounted ‘Hotline’ airfares per year for yourself, friends, and family.

At British airways you’ll have the chance to take on new challenges and move forward in a way that feels right for you. We encourage all those who work for us to consider opportunities right across our business to help you develop and progress.

We never stand still, and we don’t expect our people to either.

Inclusion & Diversity

We recognise that all our colleagues are uniquely different and bring their own originality, creativity, and identity to work. We encourage people from all backgrounds to be part of our journey to become a Better BA.

Additional Information

The selection process:

  • Online application with application question
  • Pre recorded Video Interview
  • British Airways assessment, testing, group and interview

You can only apply to either the Speedbird Self-Sponsored Pathway or the Speedbird Pilot Academy at any given time. If you are unsuccessful for either scheme you can reapply in 12 months time.

Need help with the application or assessment? Download our guide