Outlined: the new training pattern for the Airbus A320

Get up to speed with the new training pattern for the Airbus A320 and how it’s shaking up the process of obtaining pilot jobs.


Outlined: the new training pattern for the Airbus A320

The typical training pattern for the Airbus A320 is undergoing something of an overhaul.

Airbus is introducing a host of new technologies and methods geared towards standardising the A320 flight training process and making it more accessible to prospective pilots in particular.

Today, we’ll look at the specifics of this new training model and how it can get budding talent into the A320 cockpit.

What does the new training pattern for the Airbus A320 look like?

Airbus has now developed a brand-new training model designed to respond to the increasing demand for pilots across the globe.

The company predicts the aviation industry will require 540,000 new pilots over the next 20 years or so. As such, it has introduced the Airbus Pilot Cadet Training Programme. This programme brings ab initio training to the company’s flight training curriculum for the first time.

The airline hopes the new method will prove “innovative, high-quality and cost-effective”, as well as help standardise training practices across the world. According to the company: “The Airbus Programme aims to equip cadets with the skills and mindset required to become an ‘operationally-ready pilot’, focusing on the all-important development of the key pilot competencies” (Airbus).

Having launched in partnership with the Escuela de Aviacion Mexico (EAM) earlier in 2018, Airbus is now in the process of rolling out this method across its network of official training centres.

Official training centre locations:

This course is currently only available at EAM. However, Airbus has suggested the same model could be rolled out across multiple centres worldwide, which may include:

  • Training Centre Europe (Toulouse)
  • Training Centre Miami
  • Training Centre Mexico
  • Training India (New Delhi)
  • Hua-Ou Aviation Training Centre (Beijing)
  • Asia Training Centre (Singapore)

Training models:

The Airbus training model combines theoretical and practical elements, simulators and other cutting edge digital resources.

According to the manufacturer, the course features “innovative courseware, highly-qualified instructors and the most advanced training technologies available on the market” (Airbus).

Airbus cockpit experience (ACE):

Although Airbus is yet to discuss expanding this model to facilitate A320 flight training, the company has introduced an innovative new approach for A350 XWB training.

Essentially, this model introduces trainees to fixed-base (high-fidelity) APT+ and full-motion/ full-flight simulation (FFS) hardware from the earliest possible stage. This gives candidates more opportunities to practice their skills, and enables them to try scenario-based flights later on.

Entry requirements:

The Airbus Pilot Cadet Training Programme is currently open to high school graduates (or, those with equivalent qualifications from overseas) aged 18+.

Once an application has been submitted, candidates will be called in for a range of screening tests which will take place both on-site and online.


Successful cadets will become operationally-ready pilots on completion of the course.

They will receive a fully integrated Airline Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL) and can take a bridging course to gain a European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) licence.

The training pattern for the Airbus A320 has changed. And, whether you’re looking to enter the profession or make a switch from a different aircraft type, understanding this new model will help put your career on an upward trajectory.

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