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Apply for a career as an Emirates commercial pilot

Browse the FAQ categories on the right to explore specific questions and answers relevant to each of the sections.

    Working for Emirates

  • Logbook requirements
    • Do I have to hold certified logbooks?

      It is a requirement that the candidate provide complete certified logbook records when they are invited for the selection process. It is unacceptable to have some years missing, misplaced or otherwise. Prior to joining, all pilots must provide certified evidence of hours flown. This can either be a stamp in their logbook from their Fleet Manager/Chief Pilot verifying their hours flown or a stamped original letter from the record/fleet department of their respective airline/authority.

    • Does Emirates intend to recruit direct entry Captains?

      Please refer to our Pilot Vacancies page for current opportunities. 

  • Career path and rostering
    • How does the Emirates training bond apply?

      All First Officers sign a training bond for a period of 5 years (US$42,000) on a decreasing pro-rata basis.

    • When can I expect to be upgraded to Captain?

      The minimum requirements for upgrade to Command are: 

      a. Possession of a valid UAE ATPL.

      b. 6,000 hours Total Time (Note 1, Note 2).

      c. 2,500 hours Emirates operating time and 3 years’ service in Emirates, on any fleet (Note 2).

      d. Four satisfactory PPCs in Emirates on any aircraft type.

      e. Two satisfactory manual handling simulator sessions on any Emirates aircraft type.

      f. 1000 hours Emirates operating time on the fleet on which the upgrade is planned.

      g. Two satisfactory PPCs on the fleet in which the upgrade is planned (Note 2).

      The minimum requirements for upgrade to Command on the Airbus A380:

      a. 6,000 hours Total Time (Note 1, Note 2).

      b. 3,000 EK hours of which 2,500 hours must be on EK A380.

      c. Four satisfactory PPCs on EK A380.

      d. Two satisfactory manual handling simulator sessions on EK A380.

      e. Approval by the Upgrade Review Committee.

      Note 1: Total Time is defined as all flying as P1 and/or P2, excluding single and multi-engine piston.

      Note 2: No alleviations of SFI, non-EK P3, FEO, or any other credits or reductions are allowed to any hours criteria.

    • What is the duration of the contract of employment?

      Unless stated otherwise, the contract of employment is permanent and open (i.e. no fixed duration).

    • If I am selected how is my Fleet type decided?

      Whilst past experience and candidate’s preference is taken into account, this will not always determine the fleet type as allocation is based solely on Emirates’ operational requirements.

    • Can I change fleets?

      When Emirates’ operational requirements deem it necessary to transfer between fleets you can express your interest or volunteer for the transfer as it will be based on seniority.

    • Can I apply for Emirates Cadet program?

      The current Emirates Cadet Program is available for U.A.E. nationals only.

    • What is the probation period?

      The probation period is six months commencing from your date of joining.

    • How does the rostering system work?

      The rostering system is a rotating cycle, so each group becomes the top priority for bidding (favourite flights, etc.) every 5 months. Within the groups there is a seniority list, however when you are in the top most group, you have a strong chance of receiving the duties you request. Bid preferences include: Destination, Regions, Days off, requesting pairing length, check-in time, etc. Reserve/standby is usually rostered for each group every 10 months or there about for duration of 35 days which will be allocated in the bottom bid groups.

    • How long are the flight duties/sectors in Emirates?

      The sectors range from 50 minutes to 17 hours.

    • How long is a layover duty?

      Layover trips generally range from 24 hours to 72 hours. The maximum multi-stop layover duty is 9 days.

    • What happens if I am on holiday and can’t complete my bid for the next month?

      The system allows you to place a ‘standing’ bid, which will be registered in the system and will be the one selected if no monthly bid is made.

    • How long does the interview process for pilot recruitment take?

      As per current processes, the interview is generally held over 4 days in Dubai. We have recently introduced a pre-selection program in certain locations around the world which is designed to cover some aspects of the selection and shorten the time required for the remaining assessment conducted in Dubai.

    • Where are the interviews held?

      The major part of the recruitment process is held in Dubai. Pre-selection is now available overseas for the benefit of candidates who cannot take much time off work. It may include a SIM assessment, psychometric testing and Advanced Compass modules.

  • Financial issues
    • When do we get pay rises? Are annual increments guaranteed?

      The Company reviews salaries on an annual basis and may award pilots a ‘step rise’ in salary or a percentage increase, subject to satisfactory performance, however this payment is not contractual.

    • How does the profit share work?

      If the Company reaches its profit target, employees receive a profit share payment in May. The amount varies from year to year and has ranged from 2-14 weeks of basic salary. All employees must be employed for the complete period 1st April – 31st March in the preceding year to be eligible for the full profit share payment. If you join after the 31st March and before 30th September you are entitled to a pro rata amount. If you join after 30th September you will have to wait until the end of next financial year to be eligible for the profit share.

    • What is “Exchange Rate Protection” scheme?

      Expatriate pilots irrespective of nationality, grade or position are covered by the Exchange Rate Protection (ERP) scheme (except for the USA). The ERP scheme is intended to provide you reasonable protection if you are adversely affected by exchange rate fluctuations to the currency of your home country. Under the ERP Scheme, 50% of the net basic salary received each month is protected.

    • Do I pay tax on our salary?

      The salary you receive from Emirates is tax free. You may have to check the taxation laws in your home country of residence for any possible income taxation.

    • What is the provident fund?

      Our alternative to the pension scheme is the Provident Fund. Full details of the scheme are provided on joining the company. A = the amount that the company contributes-12% of basic salary B = Compulsory amount for employee 5% of monthly basic salary C = voluntary additional contributions made by employee. Eligibility for payout of the Provident fund on leaving Emirates is linked to your length of service. You will receive the market value of your contributions to the Account B and C fund, but will need to have completed 7 years’ service to be entitled to the full 100% of the market value of Account A, or 5-7 years to be entitled to 75% of Emirates contributions to Account A. For service periods of less than 5 years you are entitled to End of Service Benefit payments.

    • How is the fund doing at present?

      The fund is linked to the Stock Market (Global Stock Market).

    • Can I manage the fund myself?

      The fund is managed by a Provident Scheme Officer. Should you wish to change the investment of your funds (based on fluctuations on the Stock Market) you may make changes up to 6 times per year free of charge. You get 2 free consultations per year and can monitor your accounts online.

    • Can I take the money from the company and invest it myself?

      At the present time this option is not available.

    • Do I need to open a UAE bank account?

      Yes, as your salary is paid monthly in local currency.

    • Do I get transportation allowance?

      No, the company provides free transportation to and from work.

    • Do I have to pay to travel to Dubai for my interview?

      We provide invited candidates with a return Economy class ticket (upgradable to Business) to Dubai from their nearest destination on the Emirates network.

    • Does the education allowance for our children cover all costs?

      We contribute tuition and transport fees for 3 children, ages 4-19. Parents can choose which school they prefer for their children, and some schools may cost more than the allowance covers.

  • Medical
    • Who do I call or email to get a ruling on whether a pre-existing conditions is covered or not by the medical scheme?

      The final decision is taken by our Chief Medical Officer and you will be advised before joining. As with all insurance companies, there is an exclusion list and a pre-existing condition is normally excluded for the first 2 years of employment. You can email pilot.recruitment@emirates.com or following the selection programme contact your Recruitment Specialist.

    • Is medical service available?

      Yes, when outside of clinic hours you can go to the emergency section in selected hospitals that will treat you without any payment required upon presenting your Emirates ID card.

    • Is there an ambulance service here?

      Yes, through the government hospitals and through private hospitals.

    • What do I do if a member of my family is seriously injured?

      There are excellent Accident and Emergency services (A&E) through the private hospitals namely: Welcare Hospital, American Hospital, with which Emirates has direct billing service.

    • Is there a pre joining medical for families?

      No, but families will be required to submit a declaration of health. It is a requirement for the Company medical scheme. All persons joining the scheme must complete a medical before joining. They will also be required to attend an initial dental check upon joining which would assess any pre-existing conditions.

    • If I fail my pre-joining medical, will I be told the reason?

      This is at the discretion of the Company.

    • Why are the HIV/Hepatitis B and TB tests required?

      The above tests are a government requirement in order to be granted a residence visa. A positive result will lead to termination of employment and deportation.

    • What if I am sick for more than 15 days?

      As stated in the contract, for absence due to sickness/accident or industrial injury the following applies: Absence due to incapacity must be supported by a medical certificate and issued by a company doctor (after completion of a 6 month notice period) full basic salary will be paid for up to 52 weeks.

    • Am I covered by Emirates for loss of license?

      Yes, full details can be found in the Employee Handbook on joining the company. The Company insures all Flight Crew as listed below, against permanent loss of licence arising from accident or sickness: 

      Age of Flight CrewEntitlements
      All ages up to completion of 61st year3 annual basic salaries
      Ages 62 to 63 years2 annual basic salaries
      Ages 63 to 64 years1 annual basic salary
      Ages 64 and aboveNil

      Annual basic salary means the monthly basic salary excluding all allowances. If loss of license is due to a ‘pre-existing condition' it is not covered by this insurance. There are various private schemes available which you can arrange, or you may wish to continue with an existing coverage that you have in your own country.

    • Do I have to get a sick note if I go sick for a flight?

      No. Emirates currently operate a ‘self-certification’ system whereby the flight crew can call sick for a flight without a visit to the clinic. Restrictions and conditions apply to this system and full details will be made available to you on joining the company.

  • Entitlement of leave and time off
  • What happens before and after applying

    Moving to Dubai

  • Accommodation and domestic help
    • Where in Dubai can I expect to be accommodated? (Location)

      The location is subject to availability at the time of joining. But a request could always be placed.

    • What are my Accommodation entitlements as First Officer?

      As a single or married First Officer without children you are entitled to either furnished or unfurnished two or three bedroom company apartment OR if married with dependent children who are residing in Dubai you will be entitled to either furnished or unfurnished company villa OR in both cases the Accommodation Allowance of DHS 171,900 pa. Upon upgrade to Captain your entitlement will be as below.

    • What are my Accommodation entitlements as Captain?

      As a Captain you are entitled to either furnished or unfurnished three or four bedroom company villa regardless of marital status/children or Accommodation Allowance of DHS 192,900 pa.

    • What should I expect to find in my accommodation when I arrive?

      Should you choose the furnished option, your accommodation will be furnished with living/dining room/bedroom furniture with curtains and lamps provided. We also provide a ‘starter pack’ in all company accommodation which includes linen, kitchen items and crockery. During the first week of joining the company you will receive AED 3,300 to purchase supplementary items. You will be issued with a list of items in the starter pack with your contract. The cost of furniture/starter pack, which is valued at AED 45,000, is amortized in equal monthly amounts over a period of 5 years. If an employee leaves the company before the value of the furnishings allowance have been fully amortized, the employee will repay the company the unamortized value of the furnishings. You may not return the company furniture in lieu of any outstanding unamortized amount. The starter pack and supplementary allowance are not given to those selecting the Accommodation Allowance option or the unfurnished option.

    • Can I bring my pets from home?

      Some landlords (apartment accommodation) do not allow any pets. However, a special request may be made prior to joining (subject to availability). You will be required to advise Emirates in advance if you are planning to bring a pet with you, and you have to make sure that your pets have a government health certificate and the original vaccination certificate from your country of origin; then you will have to apply for an import permit that lasts for one month. Then you can start the shipping procedure.

    • Can I decorate the walls of my villa/apartment?

      You may choose to change the colours, however when you are leaving the premises, it is your responsibility to leave the accommodation in its original condition and colour, to avoid charges.  

    • Can I opt-out of the Emirates Housing Scheme any time and take the money to sort out my own accommodation?

      If you want to opt-out of company accommodation you must apply for permission giving 3 months’ notice to draw the Accommodation Allowance in writing, before making any commitment to lease or purchase alternative accommodation. Please note that if you opt for the Accommodation Allowance, you will be liable to pay the costs of electricity, water supply and municipality charges and you will not be able to change back to company accommodation.

    • What power supply is used here?

      It is 220 volt.

    • What television system is used here? NTSC or PAL?

      It is a PAL system. There are many companies offering different packages for satellite TV channels, e.g. Orbit, Star TV, Showtime or Firstnet. Packages vary, offering emphasis on sports, children’s channels, UK or US channels, etc.

    • I am entitled to an apartment but I want to live in a villa, is this possible?

      No, as you get what you are entitled to. However, on upgrade to Captain and change of family status (i.e. when you have children residing with you in Dubai) you will be entitled to a villa. Another option is to opt out of company accommodation and use your allowance to rent a villa.

    • Can I choose the colours of my soft furnishings?

      Unfortunately not as the company furniture comes in a standard design.

    • Can my friends and relatives who come to visit me stay at my villa?

      Yes, they can, as this is your place. If you reside in an apartment, you are required to notify the building security (if company provided accommodation).

    • Does Emirates insure my possessions in the house or must I do that?

      Emirates do not provide insurance neither for the house nor for your personal belongings, but you can use the insurance company that Emirates deals with so you get the best insurance deal.

    • Is there an Emirates club I can join? If so, how much does it cost?

      There is a pilot club called Emirates Pilot Club that costs DHS 75 per pilot and DHS 150 per couple per month. The membership gives you a wide choice of health clubs that you can use for free or at a very low cost, and a choice of restaurants with very good discounts. You will have to check the availability of the offers at the time.

    • Is it easy to hire a home assistant?

      Yes. It is possible to use an agency to employ a domestic worker. For visas fill in a visa form and submit the documents to Emirates HR service centre and they will direct you - with the next steps. This employee will be under your sponsorship and you will have to pay all fees incurred.

    • How much do you have to pay a home assistant?

      It depends on the individual’s nationality and you must adhere to the government requirements of minimum salary and annual leave entitlements. (Please note some governments stipulate a minimum salary for their citizens employed overseas).

    • Can we hire a home assistant and a driver?

      Sponsoring only one domestic help is the norm. If you wish to sponsor more than one, approval has to be obtained case by case basis only.

    • Can single pilots sponsor home help of the opposite sex?

      Single pilots can only sponsor home assistants of the same sex. There are many cleaning companies that provide home help by the hour and the prices are very reasonable.

    • Who pays my electricity, water and telephone bills?

      Emirates will pay the costs of electricity, water supply and municipality taxes (if the employee resides in company accommodation) up to an amount of 32,000 AED annually. The local calls to land lines are free of charge and the company will provide a telephone allowance.

    • If I am selected as an Emirates pilot, can I live in a city of my choice?

      All our pilots are based in Dubai, and accommodation in Dubai is provided by Emirates.

    • If I am selected, where will I live in Dubai?

      We provide accommodation in Dubai for all our pilots. Single pilots are provided a 2 bedroom apartment, and married pilots without children a 3 bedroom apartment. Married pilots with children who still live with them are provided a villa. Alternatively, Emirates provides an accommodation allowance and this can be used to rent an apartment or villa to suit personal preferences.

  • Schooling
  • Social and family matters