United Airlines To Expand Flight Training Center

United Airlines said it is expanding its Flight Training Center in Denver in order to prepare for surge in pilot hiring amid growing air travel demand.

The airline expects to add more than 2,000 new pilots this year alone and is on track to hire 10,000 pilots by 2030. The expansion, which reportedly would cost United about $100 million, is expected to be completed before the end of 2023.

The world’s largest flight training center, according to the company, will add a new, four-story building on 23-acre campus in Denver’s Central Park neighborhood. It will house 12 additional advanced flight simulators, training classrooms, conference rooms and offices.

The Training Center campus currently has 39 full-motion flight simulators and 15 fixed training devices. With the expansion, United will soon have the capability to have a total of 52 full-motion simulators and 28 fixed training devices.

Through the flight training center, the company aims to recruit and train thousands of pilots in the next decade. Every nine months, United pilots cycle through the Denver facility to stay certified. United said its captains can earn more than $350,000 annually.

The campus with seven buildings, across 550,000 square feet of training space, is the sole training facility for the airline’s 12,000 active pilots and all newly hired pilots.

United Aviate Academy, the airline’s own pilot training school, would train around 5,000 pilots by 2030. The company’s goal is to have at least half of the pilots trained at the United Aviate Academy to be women or people of color.

Marc Champion, Managing Director of the Flight Training Center, “Our pilots are the best in the industry and flying remains one of the best, union careers in the world – great pay and benefits and the chance to captain the biggest planes to the most places around the world.”

Companywide, the airline plans to hire 50,000 people in the next five years.

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