Female First Officer promotion is a flydubai first

05 May 2011

flydubai’s in-house Captain upgrade programme is reaching new heights with the presentation of Wings to the first female First Officer to pass the course...

Andrea Sabol becomes the 11th pilot to be presented with her Captain's Wings following the successful completion of the in-house upgrade programme

Dubai, UAE, : flydubai's in-house Captain upgrade programme is reaching new heights with the presentation of Wings to the first female First Officer to pass the course.

Captain Andrea Sabol was presented with her new wings by Chief Pilot David Ray on landing at Dubai's Terminal 2 following the completion of her final line flying evaluation - FZ005 and FZ006 Dubai-Doha-Dubai. The upgrade makes Sabol flydubai's second female Captain.

The qualifications needed by pilots in the UAE is set and monitored by the GCAA (General Civil Aviation Authority), and are among the most exacting in the industry.

Captain Sabol, who has been a pilot at flydubai since November 2009, has clocked up more than 6,200 block hours during her career, including almost 800 at flydubai, which ensured she exceeded all GCAA flying requirements by more than 50% during her upgrade assessment.

Ghaith Al Ghaith, CEO of flydubai, said: "I would like to congratulate Captain Sabol on her new position and wish her all the best in the next stage of her career. I would also like to commend the training team here at flydubai; seeing more than a dozen pilots complete this process in the past six months is testament to the quality and commitment of the training department.

"Because the requirements are so stiff, passengers flying with flydubai can be assured our pilots are qualified to the highest standards. I am very proud to lead such a dedicated team."

The Command Upgrade programme at flydubai, the world's fastest growing start-up airline ever, began in September 2010, with the initial First Officer qualifying last November. All applicants must have recorded 4,000 flying hours, with 1,000 of those in a Boeing 737, including 500 at flydubai. With an average flight time of 2:25 hours at flydubai, that means pilots have to complete more than 200 flights before they can apply for the upgrade.

Captain Ray said: "Not only do the First Officers have to have flown with flydubai for at least a year prior to applying, they also have to complete a verbal assessment, 12 assessment flights, ground training, training flights in the simulator and two weeks of line flying under supervision. It is a very demanding, fast-paced and challenging programme so I commend Captain Sabol on passing this upgrade command and wish her every success in her new role."

flydubai has a simple model where customers only pay for services they want to receive. Fares are inclusive of all taxes plus one piece of hand luggage weighing up to 7kg and one small laptop bag or hand bag. Checked baggage starts at AED50 for 20kgs. A seat with extra legroom costs AED100.

flydubai operates from the modernised Terminal 2 building on the north side of Dubai International Airport.

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