London-based Colibri Aircraft, which specialises in the marketing, resale and purchase of private aircraft, estimates that between now and 2038 the UK will need to find around 2,500 new business aviation pilots to meet growing demand for private air transport

“A shortage of pilots is creating operational challenges for current owners and risking the sale of some private jet types,” says the company’s Managing Director Oliver Stone.

“This is a real threat if they decide to only hire one full-time pilot and rely on contract crew. Business aviation pilots are increasingly leaving the sector to fly commercial aircraft as airlines offer them more predictable schedules… [and this will] intensify, because the world’s passenger and freight aircraft fleet is set to more than double over the next nineteen years, [during which] it has been estimated that the world needs to find 645,000 new commercial pilots.”

Stone predicts that, globally, some 98,000 new business aviation pilots will be needed over the next two decades.

“The world needs to meet growing demand. However, the business aviation sector is struggling to compete with airlines in recruiting pilots.

“This means commercial airlines are not only recruiting existing business aviation pilots, they are also getting the pick of newly qualified pilots. This issue is increasingly impacting the sale of some private jets, and we expect it to continue.”

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