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Are you dreaming to become a professional airline pilot and advancing your career in the aviation industry? A pilot is one of the most popular, respected, high earning and demanded jobs around the world.

Every commercial airline across the globe hire professional pilots to enhance their flight operation and you can also join their team to assist with your expertise. So, how can you become an airline pilot?

Before applying to the pilot vacancy, you must fulfil basic requirements, proficiencies and piloting skills. If you are planning to become a Cathay Pacific Pilot, this article is for you.

Without further delay, let’s get started.

About Cathay Pacific

IdentityNational Flag Carrier of Hong Kong
World’s 6th Best Airline of 2021 (Skytrax World Airline Awards)
IATA CODECX
ICAOCPA
Call SignCATHAY
HubHong Kong International Airport (HKG)
FleetOver 150 aircraft
Airbus A320
Airbus A330
Airbus A350
Boeing 777
DestinationOver 190 international destinations in 60 countries.
Codeshare AgreementsAir New Zealand, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, British Airways, Japan Airlines, Lufthansa, Malaysia Airlines, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Swiss International Air Lines and much more.

How to become a Cathay Pacific Pilot?

Being one of the best airlines in the world, Cathay Pacific offers opportunities for aspiring aviation enthusiasts to join the team of the flight crew as an airline pilot. As an applicant, you must meet various qualifications to apply for the pilot position.

At Cathay Pacific, you will get three different opportunities to join the pilot team.

  • Apply for Second Officer
  • Apply for First Officer
  • Join Cadet Pilot Program

With that, let’s explore these opportunities in depth.

Apply for Second Officer

Second Officer offered by Cathay Pacific is an entry-level pilot position also known as the third in the line of command for a flight crew. Such Flight Officer receives training and supervision from First Officer and Captain to gain more experience for transitioning to First Officer Position.

Now, let’s find out the basic requirements to apply for the Second Officer position at Cathay Pacific.

Cathay Pacific Pilot Requirements for the Second Officer

Following are the basic requirements that need to be met before applying for the Cathay Pacific Second Officer vacancy.

Note: The nationality requirement is based on the country listed on the vacancy announcement.
  • Applicants must be permanent residents of Hong Kong for Hong Kong-based vacancies.
  • Applicants must hold a valid Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL).
  • Must hold Multi-Engine Instrument Rating (MEIR).
  • Must have accumulated a minimum of 250 hours of flight time.
  • Must have obtained a valid Class 1 Medical Certificate.
  • A minimum of ICAO English Language Proficiency Level 4 is mandatory.
  • Applicants must hold a valid COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate.

Apply for First Officer

If you have more flying experience and skills, you can apply for the First Officer position at Cathay Pacific. But before applying, you need to make sure the following requirements are strongly met.

Note: The nationality requirement is based on the country listed on the vacancy announcement.
  • Applicants must be permanent Hong Kong Residents for Hong Kong-based FO Vacancy.
  • Must hold a valid Class 1 Medical Certificate.
  • Must possess a minimum of ICAO English Language Proficiency Level 4.
  • Must hold a valid COVID-19 Vaccination Certificate.
  • A minimum of 1,500 hours of total flight time is mandatory.
  • Applicants with 3,000 total flight hours are highly preferred.
  • Applicants must hold a valid ATPL or CPL with a Multi-Engine Instrument Rating (MEIR).
  • Must have obtained ATPL examinations credits without exemption or conversion.
  • CPL Holder applicants must be eligible for HK ATPL on conversion.
  • Applicants must hold a minimum of 500 hours P1 U/S or 250 hours P1 and/or P1 U/S including at least 70 hours as P1 for ATPL Conversion.

Cathay Pacific Pilot Recruitment Process

cathay pacific pilot hiring process aviatechchannel

If all the qualifications are satisfied, you can apply for the First Officer or Second Officer position. For that, you can go through the following processes.

  • At first, you need to visit the Cathay Pacific Careers website and look for pilot vacancies. If there are any pilot vacancies available, you can apply online by submitting an application with the required document and information.
  • The airline recruitment team will review the submitted application and if selected, you will be invited for a 2-day selection process.
  • 1st day includes group exercise, simulator assessment and technical quiz whereas the 2nd day consists of a panel interview, suitability questionnaire, medical examinations and ICAO English Test.
  • If you manage to pass all the assessments during the 2-day selection process, you will be selected for the desired position (First Officer or Second Officer).

Cathay Pacific Cadet Pilot Program

Directly applying for the First Officer or Second Officer position is for those candidates with pilot licenses and flying experience. Is there any opportunity for fresh candidates at Cathay Pacific? 

cathay pacific cadet pilot program aviatechchannel

Cathay Pacific offers Cadet Pilot Program to interested and enthusiastic candidates so that, they can become professional airline pilots in a short period of time with an accelerated approach.

To apply for the Cadet Pilot Program at Cathay Pacific, you need to fulfil the basic requirements.

  • Applicants must be Hong Kong Permanent Resident.
  • The minimum age requirement is 18 years.
  • Must hold graduation from secondary school with good marks in English Language, Mathematics or Science. (A degree in any discipline will also be accepted if you meet the secondary school criteria.)
  • Applicants must be physically fit and obtain a Class 1 Medical Certificate from HKCAD.
  • Must be able to meet Cathay Pacific Flight Deck Reach Requirements.
  • Must obtain at least ICAO English Language Level 4. 

Cathay Pacific Cadet Pilot Programme is conducted for 52 weeks during which selected candidates will spend time in both single and twin-engined light aircraft (DA40 and DA42). In addition, they will undergo intensive jet aircraft simulator training, multi-crew flying, large commercial jet handling and learn Airline Operating Procedures.

Talking about the programme cost, it is fully sponsored however, selected candidates must agree to the bond requirements with Cathay Pacific.

After successful completion of the Cadet Pilot Program, the cadets will get the opportunity to join Cathay Pacific as a Second Officer.

How to apply for the Cadet Pilot Programme?

You can apply to the Cadet Pilot Vacancy by submitting an online application via the Careers website. After application verification, the airline will conduct ICAO English Test, Computer-based test, technical quiz, initial panel interview, group exercise and the final interview.

Those candidates managing to pass all the assessments will have to undergo medical examinations before getting selected for the program.

Cathay Pacific Pilot Uniform

cathay-pacific-pilot-uniform-aviatechchannel
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Cathay Pacific Pilot Salary

First Officers at Cathay Pacific earn an average of HK$60,000 (US$7,673) per month and this pay scale can range from HK$35,647 (US$4,558) to HK$80,214 (US$10,258) depending upon the flying hours, destination, experience gained or seniority level.

Cathay Pacific Pilot Captain Salary

The salary of Cathay Pacific Captain start from HK$86,862 (US$11,109) per month and can reach up to HK$112,150 (US$14,342) per month. The average salary of the Captain is almost HK$99,576 (US$12,735) per month.

Cathay Pacific Pilot Benefits & Bonuses

Besides the basic salary, pilots at Cathay Pacific get various benefits and perks.

  • Travel Discounts
  • Discount schemes on hotels, car hire, transportation, dining, retail, luxury cruises and tours.
  • Physiotherapy and Dental Service
  • Extensive Leisure and Recreation Facilities
  • Onsite Medical Facility
  • Medical, Dental, Life and Disability plan
  • Professional Counselling 
  • Career Growth and Personal Development
  • Shuttle Services

Conclusion

To sum up, we explored three different options to become a Cathay Pacific Pilot. If you have flying experience, you can go for Second Officer or First Officer depending upon the qualification. As a beginner, you can apply for the Cadet Pilot Program and make your dream come true through a systematic approach.

Some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How much do Cathay Pacific Pilots earn?

Cathay Pacific pilots earn an average of HK$60,000 (US$7,673) per month and this pay scale can range from HK$35,647 (US$4,558) to HK$80,214 (US$10,258) depending upon the flying hours, destination, experience gained or seniority level.

How do I become a Cathay Pacific Pilot?

First of all, you need to fulfil all the basic qualifications and then apply online. You have to undergo various assessments including interviews, medical examinations, skill tests, English language tests, simulator tests and so on to become a Cathay Pacific Pilot.

Where do Cathay Pacific Pilots live?

The majority of Cathay Pacific pilots live on Lantau Island which is the largest island in Hong Kong.

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