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Cadet Pilot Programme (MPL)

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The Dragonair Cadet Pilot Programme provides all the necessary training required to enable young Hong Kong men and women to become the Airline Pilots of the future. After successful completion of the programme, Cadets may be offered employment to join our professional crew team to operate our modern Airbus fleet.

In October 2011, Dragonair introduced the Multi-Crew Pilot’s Licence Cadet Programme, which is the first of this type in Hong Kong.

Dragonair's Cadets initially have to pass several stages of a rigorous selection process designed to ensure that only the most suitable candidates progress to flying training. Selection consists of a mixture of interviews, medical examinations, computer aptitude tests and tests of spoken and written English.

The MPL is specifically designed to produce airline-ready pilots from a low or no aviation experience level. Starting with the necessary theoretical knowledge and core flying skills, the course quickly progresses to basic airline-style operations in state-of-the-art flight training devices, operating as a crew using airline procedures. These skills are then further developed in a full flight simulator before completing the airliner type-specific training course. The MPL concept can be summed up by the phrase “train the way we fly and fly the way we train”.

Dragonair's MPL Cadet Pilots initially undergo a period of about 60 weeks of training in Adelaide. The Cadets will then attend an extended course at the Company Flight Training Centre. This course teaches them to fly and operate the Airbus aircraft and consists of a mixture of computer-based training packages together with many hours in the Airbus full-flight simulator and flying training in the aircraft.

The Cadet Graduates are now ready to take their place on the flight deck during commercial operations. Again there is an extensive period of training under the careful supervision of Training Captains. The Cadets graduates must prove themselves capable of performing all the duties of a normal First Officer before being allowed to fly on regular passenger flights without supervision by a Training Captain.

The training, however, never stops, and like all commercial pilots Cadet Graduates are subject to regular checks of their abilities, both in the aeroplane and in the simulator.

The major step in a Cadet Graduate's career is to be promoted to Captain, and take command of a Dragonair aeroplane. This step is normally achieved after several years as a First Officer, during which time the Cadet Graduate will have gained sufficient experience in the demanding environment of a commercial aeroplane.

There are other opportunities within Dragonair which may interest some pilots as well - perhaps the chance to train other pilots, to be involved in flight safety or to move into management. Dragonair's Cadets are provided with a unique opportunity to have a rewarding and interesting career in civil aviation. In order to succeed, cadets have to be highly motivated and be prepared to work extremely hard throughout their career to first achieve and then maintain the high standards expected of today's Airline Pilots.

To be considered for selection as a Dragonair Cadet Pilot (MPL), applicants must hold a Hong Kong Permanent Identity Card and meet the following requirements:

  • Be 18 years of age or more
  • Excellent command of English, both oral and written
  • Good command of Chinese an added advantage
  • Medically fit, including eye-sight
  • Minimum educational standard: completed secondary school with good passes in English Language, Physics and Mathematics, or a Degree in any discipline (science subjects preferred).

No previous flying experience is required .

Successful candidates will be offered training sponsorship for the Cadet Pilot Programme, which includes training tuition and travel/meals/accommodation for overseas training.


All applications will be treated in strict confidence and only for recruitment related purposes.