Here's why Monarch pilots can't just make a seamless switch over to relieve Ryanair's shortage


Monarch announced it had entered administration on Monday (Source: Getty)

Ryanair has been troubled with a pilot shortage after the airline mismanaged staff holiday, leading to mass flight cancellations.

Monarch has just collapsed into administration, with 1,900 job losses amid the fallout.

The possibility of Ryanair picking up a number of Monarch pilots has been floated as a solution for at least some of those woes. Only it's not that simple.

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Liberum analyst Gerald Khoo said in a note yesterday that Monarch pilots are likely to be in demand, but "Monarch's all-Airbus fleet means that they would not be available to relieve Ryanair's shortage (Ryanair operates an all-Boeing fleet)".

And Tilmann Gabriel, a former pilot turned City University senior lecturer, told BBC Radio 5 this morning that it would take three to four months to retrain the Monarch pilots.

Plus, he wasn't sold on the idea that the pilots would want to go to the Irish carrier over other potential options as it does not pay that well comparatively, with significant demand for pilots in China and India too. 

Meanwhile, other airlines have made no secret of ambitious recruitment plans. 

EasyJet is still after 100 cabin crew in Luton, 400 in Gatwick, and a number of direct entry captains. Yesterday, it reached out to cabin crew, pilots and head office staff of Monarch to consider applying.

Tina Milton, head of cabin services for EasyJet, said: "Many of us know people who worked for Monarch and so we are really pleased, as our recruitment drive is still open, to be able to offer opportunities to those affected."

Last month Wizz Air, which has Airbus aircraft, announced its biggest hiring drive to date, with plans to bring on board 1,300 new cabin crew and pilots ahead of the arrival of 21 new Airbus A320 and A321 aircraft. 

The Hungarian carrier however has not commented on whether it will look to pick up Monarch employees in the wake of the airline's collapse. 

Read more: Ryanair reports soaring traffic for September despite cancellation woes

Tags: Airlines