Last weekend, thousands of pilots and cabin crew came together for the inaugural Pilot Expo, Europe’s largest event dedicated to pilot training and recruitment.

Held at the Messe Berlin over two days, the event attracted a host of major worldwide airlines within the industry, including Qatar Airways (the headline sponsor,) Cathay Pacific, Wizz Air, easyJet and Emirates. Alongside the airlines, many training providers, recruitment agencies and job sites also exhibited at this unique event.

Two conferences were held throughout both days – one for ‘future Pilots’ and one for the ‘aces’ (qualified Pilots.) Aviation Job Search’s Key Account Manager, Natasha Metcalf, presented in the first session of Friday mornings conference for future Pilots, aptly named ‘Zero to Hero.’ Metcalf presented on ‘How to write a standout CV,’ ‘How to utilise social media in your job search’ and ‘How to impress in an interview.’   

Metcalf said afterwards, “It’s really important that we pass on our help and guidance to the next generation of Pilots because it’s not easy. There’s a lot of competition. Gaining your Pilot license is one thing, but actually finding a job and succeeding in the recruitment process is a totally different story.”

The following sessions also explored financing pilot training, psychological and aptitude testing, aviation English testing, and what other opportunities in aviation could be available to you, if you didn’t go on to become a Pilot.

Founder and CEO of Goose Recruitment, Mark Charman, explored many of these options, offering solutions of working within the airport, as an Air Traffic Controller, as part of Flight Operations, in aircraft leasing, in private jet broking, or for a regulatory body.

Charman said, “You need to decide early, do you want to be a pilot? It’s a big commitment. Think, make a plan and look at your options.”

Charman closed his presentation with the remarks, “Job security no longer comes from being employed, it comes from being employable.”

“Job security no longer comes from being employed, it comes from being employable.”

Over in the ‘Aces’ conference, a wide range of themes were also explored, including the future of the industry (Brexit being a hot topic), working outside of Europe, options for all license holders and investing your income into a safe and independent future.   

On Friday evening, the day exhibitors and visitors all came together for an evening of socialising and networking at the Airliners Party, featuring live music from the singer, Haddaway.  

Despite being the first ever Pilot Expo, the event was extremely successful with Managing Director, Ingmars Kibermanis, thanking exhibitors for believing in his “crazy idea” in the event catalogue.

Kibermanis said, “About a year ago, we – a team of pilots and aviation training professionals – decided to create an event for ourselves. An annual gathering where we could meet each other, explore novelties of the industry and talk with potential employers.”

He continued, “I would like to thank all of the exhibitors and speakers who believed in our crazy idea, and for those who traveled long distances to be here.”

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