Great update from Ric today. Tremendously good news and more proof (if you needed it) that things are going in the right direction.
Exciting times here at Envoy! With flow to American planned to exceed 300 Envoy pilots this year, we are on track to upgrade close to 450 new Captains and hire 650 new pilots. This means approximately 1,100 long-term training events this year, versus the 500 events we accomplished last year.
This increased training requirement has driven us to evaluate our current training processes to ensure that we are being as efficient as possible with our simulator and pilot resources. I am pleased to announce that we will be adding three new Graphical Flight Simulators (GFS) to our Embraer 145 training platform. This will advance our E145 training profile to the same level as our E175 training program. Additionally, we have decided to add Professional Simulator Instructors (PSI) to augment our existing staff and handle training events. This concept is not a new one in the industry, as many regional and mainline carriers already follow this practice – including American Airlines. These new PSIs will be limited to training events only, allowing us to tap into a different pilot supply without further depleting our line pilot resources. All checking will continued to be performed by our ALPA seniority list Check Airmen, with no planned reduction in our existing ALPA seniority list. This will maximize our flying capabilities for American and promote rapid career progression for existing pilots, by enabling more Captain upgrade opportunities.
Obviously, this is a substantial initiative and will take some time to roll out. We will begin recruiting for these new PSI positions immediately, and anticipate that you will start to see some of these changes incorporated into our training later this Fall.
These changes will not impact our CRJ-700 training program, based on the current fleet plan which has us transitioning out of the aircraft.
On a related topic, we are quickly reaching the capacity of our E145 simulators in DFW and Houston. Therefore, we have identified capacity with a simulator located in France and will begin running some of our qualified upgrades through this facility by mid-summer. The facility is located in Morlaix, approximately a 4-hour train ride outside of Paris. As soon as we iron out logistics, we will communicate the travel arrangements, schedule profile, hotel accommodations and other pertinent information needed for this international training event.
All of these initiatives are designed to meet an increased demand for training – which is a testament to the progress and positive developments here at Envoy. Thank you for all you do every day to make Envoy such a great airline.