There are children who are born with the illusion of driving an airplane. Sometimes, when they grow, perhaps by stubbornness, perhaps by passion, the dream survives and the time comes to land on a race little traveled at age 18: to put a price on the target. As almost always, everything depends on the taste and possibilities. In Jerez (Cádiz) is the most prestigious aeronautical school in the country, focused on providing quarry to flag airlines, but the comprehensive course costs 120,000 euros. The Flyby Alternative (69,300 euros for 14 months of training, including accommodation) represents, in the words of Álex Álvarez, manager of the company, "An approximation more like that of Ryanair, where the customer is given exactly what he wants at a price according. "
According to the Aena ranking, Flyby is already the school that most pilots prepare in Spain. There are six promotions a year and each of them exceeds the score of students, of various source (21% is Spanish and 50% of the EU). With 21 aircraft of different styles (including an acrobatic one to learn to straighten dangerous trajectories) and two flight simulators, this company invoiced 6.9 million in 2020 and could grow 100% by 2021, according to Álvarez's calculations.
Italy and Greece are the main competitors of Spain in the war for attracting the pilot's aspirant. The three countries share a definitive advantage over the north, which for the Flyby Manager "starts 200 kilometers above the Pyrenees": the climate, because a clear day is a day with visibility and visibility is perfect for practice. About Italy and Greece, Spain also has a plus, especially if it is attended to the school operating board, located in Castile and León and with Burgos as a nucleus. "They have a landscape very conditioned by the sea and the mountain, but here the plain is abound, and if you have an engine stop it is better to land emergency in an unobailed and flat place that in one abrupt and surrounded by water," he explains Álvarez.
On local rivals, Álex Álvarez emphasizes that "the airspace in Castile is nothing congested, as the fact that Burgos airport is recorded three flights a week. Imagine what it would be operating from Barajas and interfering with commercial flights ". With more than 530 cadets in the five years that have elapsed since Álvarez took the reins and one million euros aimed at buying new devices and imminent expansion plans, Álvarez is able to dive in the pilot's soul. "All our students have the aspirational component, generally acquired in childhood, but there are those who can afford to fulfill the dream at age 18, while others have started a university career and recall to return to this passion.
There is also a third group of people who never had the means to finance these studies but saves and poses. Although there are no age limits above to access this profession, it is advisable to say that airlines are hardly fixed on a novel pilot that rings 35 or 40 years. "
Two are the secrets that Álvarez reveals as a key to the success of his school. On the one hand, the promotion tasks vis a vis that he himself executes in places as remote as China and Pakistan, even admitting that "are pilots who leave each promotion" best commercials. On the other hand, the formative diversification, from the general course to other complementary, passing through the management of drones (activity that came to be supposed 54% of the billing in 2015 but today it also brings 0.5%), university education ( As of 2022) and a new itinerary designed for mechanics ("think that a commercial aircraft needs between 12 and 15 pilots and the same number of operators"). "In Spain there is a school atomization, but most are Aeroclubes and are centered on the national market, our classes are in English, our international vocation and our broad educational bouquet", synthesizes the CEO.
The all-inclusive Flyby imposes on the organization certain logistical challenges. The residences offer individual rooms and their own bathroom, meals adapted to the uses and customs of the students and displacements between aerodromes. The 14-month course includes 238 hours of flight and there is a certified room for the use of the simulators, designed so that the budding pilot becomes familiar with the instruments of a handshaw. Throughout the years, Álvarez and his team have lived all kinds of anecdotes. The main one stars a Dutch cadet that was lost in full flight without falling into account that: a) I could contact an air controller, b) had GPS and c) its low-height flight would have allowed it to use Google Maps in the mobile. What does this mental bird demonstrate? Answer the CEO: "In difficult situations, the first thing you have to do is not do anything because the instinct is often contrary to reason. Everything else is learned."Updated Date: 25 November 2021, 20:13