Today marks one year since Skyborne’s first intake on the IndiGo Cadet Pilot Programme officially began their pilot training in the United States of America.

We have 84 students currently in training who have demonstrated great resilience and commitment throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. When local health guidelines meant lessons had to temporarily move online, Skyborne trainees continued to work hard revising for their upcoming exams. Over the past year they have completed:

  • 7,142 hours of ground school training, and
  • 5,561 flight training hours

The stunning scenery and optimal weather conditions in Arizona, make for enjoyable year-round flight training. In the last few weeks, several of our IndiGo trainees have achieved their Private Pilot Licence (PPL) and Instrument Rating (IR), completing flight training in the Cessna 172 and Piper Seminole aircraft.

These milestones make up the first phase of the IndiGo Cadet Pilot Programme with Skyborne, and paves the way for the pilots’ future role as an A320 First Officer with India’s leading passenger airline.

With women making up 6% of pilots globally, we’re also proud that almost 12% of our trainees are female, the same percentage as in IndiGo’s own pilot workforce. India leads the way in gender diversity for airline pilots and it is fitting that our cadets reflect that.

It is our Skyborne IndiGo trainees themselves that are the biggest advocates of a career in commercial aviation. Hitesh spoke of his emotion on completing his PPL, saying “listening to my calling has been the biggest achievement in my life,” while for Shloka, her recent achievements have led to renewed confidence: “I’m really looking forward to acing the next phase and becoming a better version of myself. A day to never forget!”

The IndiGo Cadet Pilot Programme was the first airline partnership we announced at Skyborne and it remains very special to us. As our initial intake look ahead to the second phase of their training later this year – converting their US FAA flight licence to an India DGCA licence – our vastly experienced team remain committed to their success.