At least two Indian origin skippers were amongst 4 pilots who fled the initial New York-Singapore aircraft, the globe’s longest nonstop flight, last Friday.
Singapore Airlines (SIA) witnessed the openingChangi-Newark (EWR) during last Thursday and the return leg got controlled a day later.
While sources said that both the commanders of the main New York-Singapore nonstop on the Airbus A350 ultra long range (ULR) are of Indian origin, SIA did not remark on that.
As per SIA representative, “There were four pilots operating the inaugural Newark-Singapore flight. Out of the four pilots, three are Singaporeans while one is Malaysian. Their names and ranking are: Captains I R Chaudhury and Ruben Gamoo and senior first officers Maxx Tan and KH Lim.”
With a maximum flying time of around 19 hours in order to cover up 16,800 km, this uninterrupted has two groups of pilots with both set boasting of a Captain and a first officer (FO).
SIA, which has around 2,000 pilots, did not notify how many pilots are of Indian origin.
“While monetary aspect is obviously there when we go flying for foreign airlines, the other reason is also that we get a chance of fly aircraft that are not on the radar of Indian airlines. Kingfisher had ordered five A380s but it closed before taking delivery of any of them,” said an Indian pilot.
Officials of a few big overseas carriers say on condition of not being acknowledged that there has been a spurt in job applications from pilots of a wide-body airliner of the only two Indian aircraft carriers, which presently control planes such as the A330 and Boeing 777, 787 and 747.
A wide body pilot of an Indian carrier stated,“In India, Tata-SIA JV Vistara has ordered Boeing 787 and some pilots of AI (which has been flying this aircraft for years) and Jet (which has B-777) are applying there. IndiGo and SpiceJet have been talking of inducing wide-body aircraft in their fleets. The ramp up of Vistara’swidebody fleet is going to be a gradual one and we do not know what the low-cost carriers will do when. So the number of widebody pilots these three airlines can absorb is rather limited and applying for foreign airlines with twin aisles in their fleet is an option that we have to look at.”