With the highest regional First Officer signing bonus at up to $60,000, the fastest path to a Denver base, and instant Captain upgrades — our airline family is a great place to work for pilots at any stage of their career. Captain Tony Sunekaer is one of many pilots who has successfully moved from the right seat to left seat. Read more to learn about Captain Sunekaer’s upgrade experience and what First Officers can look forward to when they become a Captain.
- How was your transition from First Officer to Captain?
The transition was seamless for me, although very busy. The study materials were like my initial training, but it was more detailed, covering the administrative and legalities that a Captain needs to know. As I became more comfortable with flying in the left seat and placing my bid, I knew I was prepared to perform the duties of a Captain.
- What do you enjoy most about being a Captain?
I enjoy making sure that my crew is well taken care of and ensuring that passengers have a great flying experience with us. Its also rewarding to teach and pass on new tips that I learned along the way to First Officers. I also enjoy having a personal sense of accomplishment because I met my goal. Lastly, being in charge and receiving a pay increase are great benefits that come along with becoming a Captain.
- What are some skills that you developed while in the left seat, that help you in your role as Captain?
I learned to be confident and make decisions in a timely matter and to include my crew members in my decision making, because I value their opinions and knowledge in working together as a team.
- What tips would you give upgrading pilots on how to best prepare for the oral exam?
I’d say study hard by knowing everything you knew for your initial, and a little more. Become knowledge in the AOM criteria, so that you understand how the systems work and not just route memory.
- What was the most challenging part about upgrading? How did you face the difficulty?
Simulator training was fast paced and the most challenging part about my upgrading process. I was expected to perform what was asked with new events being added. I prepared myself mentally, stayed focused and managed to get through the training and succeed to the best of my abilities.
- In what ways has upgrading to Captain shaped and strengthened your pilot career?
I feel I’m at a place I’ve always wanted to be. With Trans States’ additional training, I’ve become a better pilot! I’ve learned how to work through issues that may come up. The skills and experience I’m gaining as a Captain open door of opportunities to advance my career even further.
- What advice would you give First Officers who are interested in upgrading?
When you feel you are ready to do the Captain’s job, put in your bid. Study as if it was your initial. Be prepared to go in with the knowledge you need to successfully become a Captain. Lastly, I’d also recommend that Captain seeking pilots perform well and demonstrate their capabilities.
Are you interested in learning more about Trans States’ pilot careers? Visit our website for more information. https://cutt.ly/iwGeTRg