Although aviation industry employs many women men still tend to dominate in the pilot market. With the air transportation becoming more intensive and the growing need to eliminate schedule disruptions airlines pay attention not only to retraining the existing pilots and addressing young cadets but also to women pilots, noticed AviationCV.com.
Since the first license issued to a female pilot 101 years ago when merely 3% of all pilots were women the situation has not changed much. Today female pilots account for 6 % of all pilots in the market. However small the percentage, it is inclined to grow.
The USA market counts up to about 123 thousand commercial aircraft pilots 6.6% of which is female. In 2010 the private sector had 13 thousand women pilots, i.e. 6.7% percent. A significant increase in hiring female pilots has been observed within the emerging markets. In India alone women make up for almost 11% of the entire pilot market. For instance, in 2010 ‘Air India’ had more than 130 female pilots, ‘Air Asia’ – 17. In Europe most of the female pilots are employed by the largest airlines: ‘Lufthansa’ has 300, ‘British Airways’ – 175, ‘SAS’- 70 and ‘AerLingus’ – 41.
‘Despite the existing stereotype suggesting that aircraft piloting is a manly job, the ratio between female and male pilots is rapidly changing. Around 30% of women who graduate from initial pilot training courses continue studying for aircraft pilot license. Most airlines are reluctant to employing female pilots due to such reasons as possible absence periods, such as maternity leave. However, even in such situations women are fully capable of sustaining and even increasing their level of skill by using real time flight simulators.’,- commented the CEO of AviationCV.com Skaiste Knyzaite.
According to Lufthansa's pilot training school in “Deutsche Welle“, for many younger women, the technical demands of the job and sexism are not the primary issue keeping them away from the runway. What matters is whether a company offers family friendly policies that make it easier for women to combine work with motherhood. In the past decade, the proportion of female pilots at Lufthansa has more than doubled and the number of pilot trainees has tripled to make up 15 percent of the training roster. 27 female pilots at Lufthansa now hold a captain’s licence. And in the flying business, there is no difference from their male colleagues – either in the rigorous requirements they have to meet in the aptitude test or in their flying skills.
As well, the aviation training leader in the Eastern Europe ‘Baltic Aviation Academy’ has recently appointed pilot qualifications to three women: for Boeing 757 to an Italian, Boeing 737 CL to a Lithuanian and SAAB 340 to a Latvian nationals.
‘Lately we receive more and more attention and enquiries about aviation training from women. Female pilots have absolutely the same rights and opportunities as the male ones. If they are well trained and highly professional they will always be sought-after by employers. Female pilots are fully aware of this that is why they take firm steps into the aviation industry.’, - says the General Director of ‘Baltic Aviation Academy’ Egle Vaitkeviciute.
The USA statistics shows that the last decade saw an almost 20% growth in the number of female pilots. In South Asia, due to general lack in pilots, the number of female ones is also rapidly increasing. AviationCV.com states that with the growing attention to flight safety, increasingly high pilot qualification requirements, growth in passenger flows and an already felt shortage of experienced pilots the number of female pilots will only rise.