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Ana offers an insight into life as a pilot with airBaltic

Alexandra O'Loughlin28 Aug 2018

Why did you train to become a pilot?

When I was 19 and a student I started to work as a secretary in an aviation company.  Within months of working there, I grew a passion for aviation and fell in love with the idea of being a pilot. I started in flight operations and became exposed to pilots, hearing their stories and how they explained things.

Despite my growing interest, I knew the cost and felt like it was impossible for me, something that was entirely out of my reach. 

No turning back 

I saved every penny I could and eventually saved up enough money to complete my Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL). For me, it made sense to start by only focusing on that aspect of the training. I told myself that the PPL was financially a lower risk than enrolling straight onto an integrated course. It gave me time to save just enough money and was an excellent place to start my training. I felt that if I succeed at this stage, it will give me the knowledge and confidence to decide whether I could progress on to the more advanced training required of airline pilots.

The problem was there would never be any turning back after experiencing what it was like to fly – I instantly became addicted. I knew that I would never be happy if I didn’t now follow my dream.

Finding the right flight school

I researched all the pilot training, and my boss who is also a mentor to me said to go to the states and train over there. It was a UK certified flight school but based in Florida, and you gained an EU licence at the end of your training. It was only possible with thanks to funds from my parents and a personal loan. After I had completed my commercial training, I had to find somewhere to complete my IR (in the US you cannot do your instrument rating).

I looked around Europe and the UK and first looked at a few, large flight schools based in the South of England and their prices were well out of reach. I was also very disappointed by their customer service. Through further research, I discovered FTA and everything felt happy. I got a response within hours and had all the answers to my questions. Stuart (the Admissions Officer at the time) was friendly and helpful.

 

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Posted in: careers, Pilot jobs, flight instructor, female pilots, women in aviation

Ana, a modular student from FTA, explains how valuable working as a Flight Instructor was for her both personally and professionally

Charlotte Berrystone02 Aug 2018

Ana, a qualified Flight Instructor turned pilot explains what life as First Officer for airBaltic is like, and how she and her partner make it possible to both work as pilots and still enjoy a happy family life. 

Why did you want to be a pilot?

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Posted in: careers, why be a pilot, flight instructor, female pilots, pilot trainnig, women in aviation, Pilot jobs, instructor

International Women's Day - why are only 3% of pilots female?

Alexandra O'Loughlin08 Mar 2018

Estimates from the International Society of Women Airline Pilots (ISA) in 2015 suggested that there were about 4,000 women pilots worldwide that's just 3%. Another estimate, by easyJet, puts the balance at 5%, with 6% of its own flying staff female.

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Posted in: cost of pilot training, female pilots, why be a pilot, aviatrix, cadet

Female students discovering the endless possibilities in aviation

Alexandra O'Loughlin23 Nov 2017

Over 37% of FTA’s October intake (on the Integrated Flight Deck Programmes or FDP) were female. If this were any other academic course that statistics would not be so unusual. But with over 94% of pilot jobs held by men, this number suddenly sounds very exciting!

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Posted in: female pilots, aviatrix, become a pilot, cadet

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