The hiring has been necessitated due to a new Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR), which bars pilots from operating two consecutive night flights, sources said.
“After the new CAR, the rest period for the pilots has almost gone double as they cannot operate flights for two consecutive nights. Consequently, pilots' requirement has also gone up by nearly 30 per cent,” an Air India Express official told PTI.
Last August, DGCA introduced the new civil aviation regulation (CAR) to replace the rules in effect since 1992. AIE has already implemented these new regulations from February 15, the official said.
At present, Air India Express, which operates over 150 flights a week with a fleet of 21 aircraft, has 109 commanders including 18 expats.
The airline has also tweaked its policy on expats hiring, the official said adding that foreign pilots on contract would now come under the direct administrative control of the airline.
“We have done away with the policy of airline paying to the hiring agency which, in turn, would pay salaries to the pilots after deducting its fee. As a new policy, we will keep the pilots on our pay-roll and the hiring agency would get a one-time fee,” the official said.