Landing your first Commercial Flight

by Lorenzo Salvi on Sep 20 2019

First of all welcome onboard ladies and gentlemen! My name is Lorenzo Salvi and I’m from Rome, Italy. I used to be a cadet at G Air Training Centre, now known as L3Harris European Airline Academy, and I’m presently a first officer flying the Boeing 717 with Volotea, based in Venice, Italy.

When I started my ATPL training in Ponte de Sor, Portugal, I was extremely excited and aware that this was the beginning of an immense journey. I was put into a class with 11 other cadets, where we initially undertook the 14 theory subjects in ground school followed by their respective exams. In my opinion this was the most difficult phase, but I felt fortunate to be surrounded by friends who understood the trials of the process. Together we could help each other to stay focused on our shared goal of becoming an airline pilot. After ground school we went through the flight phase: first VFR, followed by IFR and then multi-engine training. During this phase I got to meet many different instructors, who were all very professional and aviation oriented, but had varying backgrounds. The academy had a feeling of community and unification by the fact that everyone had a passion to teach and help you through your training.

My time at the academy flew by, and soon it was time for my first job interview for a first officer position. I felt confident and prepared for the interview, having studied for weeks and retaining all of the required knowledge fresh in my mind. I was consoled by the fact that L3Harris is the preferred education path by most airlines, and that I had completed my excellent training within the highest quality of education.

My initial type rating within an airline was difficult, however my study method helped me a lot, and knowing how to efficiently locate information was key to not wasting any time. Keep in mind that manuals for huge commercial airplanes built to carry 125 passengers and weighing a colossal 50 tons, unsurprisingly require ginormous manuals.

The first flight in a commercial aircraft is a day you will never forget. I flew from Venice to Marseille in France, whilst carrying 125 passengers. It was the moment that all of my dreams became a reality!

Time to land. Focus on the runway, speed, configuration, checklist, power, AUTOPILOT OFF, let’s land this big bird gently. 50…40….30…20….10…5. It was a monumental and emotional moment… something that can’t entirely be put into words, but that you will understand when you do it yourself.

The journey to becoming a pilot is undoubtedly challenging, but the most rewarding thing you will ever do. This job comes with the best office views that no one else could ever have, and gives you the opportunity to travel and visit the world (plus the uniform is pretty sharp)!
The aviation market has a bright future: huge companies such as Boeing and Airbus are forecasting a high demand for pilots in the coming years, so now is the perfect time to join the aviation industry.

Apply Now