How to become a pilot in Singapore Part 2/3 – (Commercial Airlines)

How to become a pilot – commercial airlines.

The route to becoming a commercial pilot is quite similar to that of a military pilot. There are a lot more opportunities in recent years to become a commercial pilot. One could apply to Singapore Airlines (SIA), Skoot, Jetstar, Tiger, or even foreign airlines such as Qatar Airways. The diagram below illustrates how to become a pilot with a commercial airline:

Basic Requirements

  • ​Singapore citizen, Singapore Permanent Resident, or Malaysian citizen.

  • Minimum 18 years old.

  • Must have completed National Service for Singapore citizens.

  • Must possess a full Degree, Diploma or GCE ‘A’ Levels certification.

Interview Board

  • There are approximately 2 to 3 interviewers on the panel.

  • Candidates are also required to write a short essay for SIA. 

  • Those who pass the first interview will be put through a second interview, followed by a tea party.

  • The tea party is basically an informal interview to assess candidates under a more casual setting.

Medical Requirements

  • Candidates must be at least 1.65m tall.

  • Must be medically fit (CAAS Class 1).

  • Must possess good eyesight

    • myopia not more than 500 degrees per eye (correctable to 6/6 vision).

    • astigmatism not more than 125 degrees per eye.

    • no other eye deficiencies.

Computerised Pilot Aptitude Screening System (COMPASS) Test

  • Candidates need to complete a 5-hour computerised assessment.

  • The test evaluates the candidates’ aptitude to become a commercial pilot.

  • Areas tested include psychomotor skills, multitasking, performance under stress, spatial awareness, decision making etc.

Outward Bound School (OBS)

  • Cadet pilots will have to attend a 21-day leadership course. 

Ground School

  • 6 months of studying aviation related subjects.

  • Subjects include navigation, meteorology, and air law etc.

  • Candidates will need to pass the ground exams to attain the Airlines Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL). This ATPL is like a driver’s licence, but is “frozen” until cadets clock 1500 flying hours.

Flying Phase

  • Different airlines have different requirements. However, candidates generally go through three phases of training:

    • First, cadet pilots build up their basic flying skills training on a simple propellor aircraft like the Cessna 172.
    • Once they complete the first phase, the cadets go on to learn how to handle multi-engine aircrafts like the Cessna Mustang and the Piper PA 44.

    • After getting their multi-engine qualification, cadets will then advance to get their aircraft type rating.

    • They will learn how to fly the Boeing 777 (for SIA), Boeing 787 (for SCOOT) or the Airbus A320 (for Jetstar and Tiger).

  • Upon completion of their type rating training, the cadets finally graduate as first officers.

Comments are closed.