Type rating before joining an airline: Why can’t I do my type rating overseas?

Joining Tiger Air or Jetstar Asia in Singapore? If you read my earlier article, you would have realised that type …

Joining Tiger Air or Jetstar Asia in Singapore? If you read my earlier article, you would have realised that type rating training in Singapore is notoriously expensive. A 2 months A320 Type rating course could cost up to SGD $63,000 (Airbus Type Rating + the required Multi Crew Coordination Course).

And if you did some research online, you would also realise that you could potentially save A LOT of money if you did your training overseas. So why isn’t anyone doing that?

The reason is simple. You are not allowed to do it.

In Singapore, CAAS maintains a list of Approved Type Rating Training Organisations (TRTO) that are approved to do Type Ratings for Pilots in Singapore. The link to a 24 August 2016 list is here. A list of companies that can conduct the A320 type rating training for CAAS licence holders are as follows:

  • Airbus Asia Training Centre
  • Asian Aviation Centre of Excellence
  • SilkAir (Singapore) Pte Ltd
  • ST Aerospace Academy Pte Ltd

What this means is that it would be a tough sell to CAAS during your licence conversion, if you are a fresh FAA ATP holder, type rated from a school in USA (even if it is a FAA sanctioned school).

Do take note that this doesn’t apply to an existing foreign licence holders, type rated with flying hours on type. These people would be able to get the A320 hours endorsed through another process, as long as the hours are legitimate! Meaning: foreign, experienced and current, A320 licence holders do not need to undergo training (again) on the A320 by a TRTO in Singapore.

20 May 2017 Comment: This really isn’t a double standard issue against locals. FAA is free to sanction and approve type rating providers, and so is CAAS. Likewise, you will run into problems with FAA if you did your Type Rating in Singapore with the intention of using it for employment in USA.

And on the reverse side, if you did your type rating in Singapore, worked in Singapore and gotten 5,000 hours in your aircraft, foreign regulatory bodies will recognise your type rating based on the strength of your employment in an airline, even though your Type Rating was done in Singapore, even though your type rating training organisation isn’t sanctioned by them.

So its not really a “double standard” issue, but more of a regulatory body exerting control to ensure quality.

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