Friday, February 05, 2016

Rookie pilots are in a flap as training fees hit the sky

Budget airline SpiceJet charges its rookie pilots Rs 40 lakh each to teach them how to operate Boeing 737 aircraft, a training and certification process for which other carriers demand only Rs 14 lakh, some recruits alleged on Thursday. The trainee pilots claimed they had been informed that Rs 20 lakh would have to be paid up front, while the remainder would be deducted from their salaries over a period of five years.
But a SpiceJet spokesperson strongly refuted the claim and said that the airline had never deducted any money from pilots' salaries.
"SpiceJet is not taking any money from its 737-rated pilots. A sum of only Rs 20 lakh is sought as a deposit from the candidates towards empty aircraft flying training and subsequent upgrade training," the official said in a statement.
"The Rs 40 lakh fee is basically a donation," one recruit with a commercial pilot licence (CPL) said. "We have already spent Rs 35 lakh to obtain CPL and the airline now expects us to shell out Rs 40 lakh. We will spend around nine months in training and earn only a stipend during the period," the pilot said. He added that professional training colleges charged only Rs 9 lakh to Rs 12 lakh for the same process. The SpiceJet spokesperson clarified that a sum of Rs 40 lakh to Rs 45 lakh was applicable only in certain cases. "Again, [there is] no deduction from salary," the official said.
05/02/16 Bangalore Mirror
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