Let’s talk Brexit, EASA licences, COVID-19 recovery and MPL support

There’s no disputing 2020 came at us from all angles. With COVID and Brexit combined things have been tough for the industry this past year but it’s not all doom and gloom. A Brexit deal and the vaccine have injected some fresh hope and 2021 has kicked off with things seeming a bit more positive than they did previously. But what exactly has been said and how does this affect you?

Brexit and EASA Licences

For lots of us Brexit has meant having to consider converting to an EASA licence, with some airlines even saying they wouldn’t consider candidates with UK CAA licences. The effects of COVID have meant many authorities are in lockdown and have been unable to meet the demand for transferring licences by 1st January 2021 and so the CAA have issued an extension. EASA licences must now be issued before 31st March 2021 if you wish to transfer your licence away from the UK CAA. You can read the CAA publication on this matter here.

Alongside this announcement the CAA issued a validation form, which you can find here. This form allows the use of EASA licences on UK G-registered aircraft. Flight crew carrying a non-UK CAA licence who wish to operate a UK-registered aircraft must carry a general validation form with their licence at all times under ICAO rules. This form is valid for two years under UK law.

If you wish to discover more about the changes being made due to Brexit the UK CAA have a YouTube channel.

COVID-19 Recovery

It’s all anyone has talked about for almost a year now.  Thousands of pilots have lost their jobs and the industry is in turmoil, but will it stay like this? After BALPA’s controversial announcement many industry professionals were unhappy, with the heads of four competing ATOs (FTA Global, FTEJerez, Skyborne Airline Academy and VA Airline Training) uniting to issue a statement in support of the pilot training industry in retaliation.

No one knows for sure how long a recovery will take but with companies such as Ryanair already looking to recruit it may be sooner than anticipated. In contrast to the advice given by BALPA, CAE released an article predicting the industry will require 27,000 new pilots from the end of 2021 due to uncontrollable factors such as retirements.

“Fundamental factors influencing pilot demand prior to the Covid-19 outbreak remain unchanged. Age-based retirement and fleet growth were, and are expected to remain, the main drivers of pilot demand.”

It’s important to remain positive in the current situation and if you have found yourself out of work try to do what you can to stay connected. If you’re looking to renew or revalidate licences Aviation Insider offers a variety of support from online training material and simulator sessions to Jobcentre help.

Aviation Insider was one of the first aviation-approved suppliers to the Jobcentre helping hundreds of pilots over the last few months with the application. The funding is a discretionary award and each case is looked at individually. 

For those people who are also struggling with the mental challenges of the pandemic, Aviation Insider have recently announced a partnership with several leading mental health and wellbeing companies, in an attempt to offer our support.

MPL Support

The MPL is a fairly new concept in the world of aviation but before the pandemic hit, many viewed it as the ultimate training route. Tagged from the beginning of your training, the MPL offers cadets the opportunity to spend more time in the simulator learning company SOPs and MCC skills.

Unfortunately the structure of the MPL route left no room for flexibility and many students have lost their tags and been left facing £65,000 additional fees to convert to CPL licences. However, after months of stress and worry there seems to be a light at the end of the tunnel. It has been agreed that MPL cadets who are unable to complete base training will have the option to apply for a MPL licence with type rating privileges restricted to “Cruise Relief Co-Pilot”.

“The issued licence would be a valid ICAO-compliant licence and would preserve the validity of an applicant’s completed theoretical knowledge exams. In addition, this would give pilots the option of obtaining single pilot CPL/IR privileges in compliance with FCL.405.A MPL (b)(2) and FCL.325.A CPL (A).

To remove the “Cruise Relief Co-Pilot” restriction, the pilot would need to submit evidence of having completed the required base training, provided the type remains valid on his/her licence.”

This announcement I’m sure will come as a huge relief to many, whom until now have had to consider giving up their dreams entirely due to the astronomical expenses associated with retraining.

It now looks as though the MPL is set to stay, with suggestions of “white-tail” MPLs in the future. Catch up on what was said about the MPL at Pilot Careers Live here.

We wish you all a happy and healthy 2021 and look forward to seeing breaks in the clouds as the industry takes off once more!

If you wish for any further advice on the information covered in this article please do not hesitate to contact us at admin@aviationinsider.com.