Cebu Pacific Hiring Foreign Pilots

Cebu Pacific has revealed that it will be hiring another group of foreign pilots to fly its current and upcoming fleet of Airbus A330-300 widebody aircraft after the airline was unable to find suitable local candidates. 

cebu pacific pilots
Image Source: Cebu Pacific
In an interview with Interaksyon, an anonymous official from Cebu Pacific stated that the airline currently employs 45 foreign pilots in regular positions representing less than ten percent of its flight crews. Cebu Pacific has partnered with two aviation recruitment companies to source the new batch of foreign pilots. Ryan Aviation and Contractair will be responsible for screening candidates for the immediate hiring of captain and first officer positions. 

Cebu Pacific first employed foreign pilots in 2011 when the airline embarked on a major expansion to meet the growing demand for air travel. At the time, the airline was already flying more than 10 million passengers per year. The majority of foreign pilots from the first round of hiring have ended up flying the airline's fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft on domestic and regional routes. Contractair advertised for an undetermined number of A320 captains for "permanent" and "immediate" deployment. 

Foreign pilots that join Cebu Pacific are provided with the same compensation and benefits as local crews. The pilots are based in any of Cebu Pacific's bases at Manila, Clark, Cebu, Iloilo, and Kalibo. It is rumoured that Cebu Pacific A320 captains are being paid $8,000 per month in gross income regardless if they are local or foreign. Cebu Pacific believes that the opportunity to work with the airline is attractive to foreigners and Filipino pilots because of the extensive opportunities for transition training to other aircraft types as well as the opportunity for first officers to be offered upgrade training to captain as Cebu Pacific expands its fleet. 

To address the country's pilot shortage, Cebu Pacific established the Philippine Academy for Pilot Training in 2012 with industry leader CAE formerly known as Canadian Aviation Electronics. The pilot school based in Clark offers two Airbus flight simulators that are capable of training up to 1,400 pilots per year. But in order to be employed by Cebu Pacific and most other airlines, graduates of the program need to obtain additional experience with actual flying time. For Cebu Pacific A320 captains, candidates are required to possess a minimum of 3,000 flying hours of which 1,000 must be completed on board an A320. 

Demand for pilots in the Asia-Pacific region will continue to increase over the next two decades with aircraft manufacturer Airbus forecasting that 34 percent of all airplane orders up until 2030 will be destined for the Asia-Pacific region. Cebu Pacific is currently expecting delivery of four A330, thirty A321neo, and fourteen A320 aircraft between now and 2021. But not all airlines in the Asia-Pacific region are turning to foreign pilots to fill shortages.

Malaysia-based AirAsia announced earlier this year that it would phase out all of its foreign pilots in an effort to cut costs by employing an all-Malaysian workforce. The change would happen gradually as pilot contracts expire. The airline hopes to achieve its objective by 2019. AirAsia currently employs nearly 700 pilots of which 100 are foreigners from 32 different countries. All are currently flying as captains aboard the AirAsia A320 fleet. 

16 comments:

  1. No U.S. based pilots will accept a $8,000 a month salary from CP. Starting salary here in the U.S. is $36,000.

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    1. That doesn't make sense. $36,000 starting salary would be annual not monthly I assume because I don't know many pilots who get paid that much per month if that's what you're referring to. I rather take the $8,000 a month ($96,000 a year) as a starting salary.

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    2. 8000 a month in PH and 20,000 a month in china. also usa allows pilots to fly to 65 NOT 60 as per article stated

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    3. Unemployed Pinoys can earn while enjoying time with their family and loveones.
      Unemployed is Brave and a choice to be a Freeman.
      Join us today at http://www.unemployedpinoys.com

      Delete
    4. you guys expect too much.. of course salaries won't be that high because they will be based in the philippines and cost of living here is cheap. 36k USD per month is too much for a manila rate... also, i don;t think there is much distinction if you are a foreign pilot or not, you fly the same planes after all... if you don't want the salary you can always haggle or turn down the deal

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  2. There is no way in the world that a US starting salary for a pilot is $36k a MONTH! I don't know where Fr. Gary V. Is getting his info, but here's one: http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Commercial_Pilot/Salaryhttp://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Commercial_Pilot/Salary

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  3. Here's a better link:

    http://www.dtek.us/salary/PP_2013_SS.pdf

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  4. Gary V man you make me laugh!!! Hahaha $36,000 a month??! That's definitely not a pilot. Average starting salary at MAJOR AIRLINES in the US receive about $5-6,000 per month....and those are jets and not turbo props. Foreign pilots don't mind earning and spending here in the Philippines. Your purchasing power is greater here than the US.

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    1. That is US pilots.... what you fly UFO's with that salary? for a starting? wow.. ahahaha! you guys just wanted to earn more while earning less.. look at US economy now.. why do businesses go out for cheaper work force.. because you guys don;t produce better than the others who can offer better and cheaper work..

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  5. "Your purchasing power is greater here than the US." - I agree, but only if you are earning dollars and not Philippine-level wages.

    I think Fr. Gary V honestly misunderstood the $36k as per month instead of per annum. Small commuter airlines do pay $36,000 per annum to start, some even lower.

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    1. Per annum would be acceptable salary for a philippine based pilot for starting..

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  6. Gary, please do some research before speaking out. I am a A330 Captain and I know the industry well.

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  7. US Pilots can fly till age 65, the age changed from age 60 about 5 years ago.

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    1. Thanks for letting us know. We have made the revisions.

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  8. Hi guys
    i am Algerian with an ICAO ATPL non rated ( gulfstream g4 rated),any chance to find a job in that company
    many thanks

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  9. Guys the start off salary at Cebu Pacific is for a FO is 75k-80k in pesos per month that's like US$1,535.66 monthly...that's even quite low then the USD$8,000 Gary referred to. After seniority level it jumps up to 129k (pesos)(US$2,476.66) per month. Correct me if I'm wrong. Maybe the captains at cebu pacific earn that US$8,000 per month not the FO. That US$2,476.66 (per month) for a senior FO at Cebu Pacific is still low don't you think compared to other major Airliners..or maybe not!!

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