Indian aviation students now bank on international carriers

October 23rd, 2008 - 11:47 am ICT by IANS  

Chandigarh, Oct 23 (IANS) Cost-cutting steps of leading Indian domestic airlines are forcing students in private aviation institutes that impart training for airhostesses and flight attendants to rely on international carriers and the hospitality industry for placements.”This crisis in the aviation industry is a temporary phase and will pass soon,” said Kamal Saini, senior centre head of Frankfinn, an institute of air hostess training that has branches all over the country.

“This is going on only in the domestic market. Our students have plenty of opportunities available in the international market,” Saini told IANS.

The Frankfinn executive sought to brush off as mere rumours reports that the turbulence in the global aviation industry would result in a substantial drop in both recruitment and salary packages.

“In the last 45 days, over 1,400 students of Frankfinn have been placed in various organizations of international repute.”

She said these students had been placed in various international airlines like British Airways, Singapore Airlines, RAK Airways, Emirates Airlines and in different five-star hotels all over the country.

“Our placement drive is on. We are still getting countless queries from diverse international airlines for the placement of our students.”

The comments came in the backdrop of Jet Airways sacking some 850 employees, following a strategic alliance with rival Kingfisher Airlines, and deciding to issue pink slips to 1,050 employees more - only to retract the move following pressures.

“We should understand that every industry has its own ups and downs and this phase will soon wither away,” said Mohanbir Singh Chawla, director of Jet Wings, a venture of SQL Technologies based in Chandigarh.

“Students here are not at all worried about the problems going on in the domestic aviation sector,” Chawla told IANS.

He said students of aviation had bright scope in the international airline, hospitality and tourism sector as they were always in great demand overseas because of their neutral accent and adaptability qualities.

“Initially, I was also worried after reading newspaper reports about the sudden sacking of employees by one major airline. I have paid over Rs.100,000 for an eight-month course here,” said Akanksha Chahal, who is undergoing training here to become an air hostess.

“But after talking to my teachers and other aviation experts at my institute I realized that this crisis is only in two airlines and we still have good scope in the international market,” said Chahal, who has come for the course from Amritsar.

Students and faculty of aviation training institutes hope that the government will soon formulate a plan that will bail out the aviation industry, which is facing problems due to high fuel prices, overcapacity and a general downturn.

“We have seen the recent downsizing of staff and slashing of salaries by some domestic airlines as increased prices of fuel in the international market were affecting their profitability,” said Chawla.

“We just need to wait.”

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