BUDGET airline Easyjet is to create 330 new jobs for pilots across it UK bases – including Liverpool.
However, the announcement has not been welcomed by pilots’ union Balpa which has accused the carrier of treating its members poorly.
Easyjet, which is the biggest at Liverpool John Lennon Airport (JLA) by passenger numbers, is to take on the flyers at 11 airports around the country.
As well as JLA, new posts will be created at Manchester, Gatwick, Southend, Luton, Stansted, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Newcastle, Bristol and Belfast airports.
Captain Brian Tyrrell, Easyjet’s head of flight operations, said: “We offer a clear career path for pilots with the potential to move from first officer to captain more quickly than at other airlines.”
However, Balpa general secretary, Jim McAuslan, added: “EasyJet has been dragged kicking and screaming by Balpa into offering a permanent contract to some of its growing casual pilot workforce.
“Despite the spin in today’s Easyjet announcement, this ‘take-it-or-leave-it’ contract is being denounced by pilots across Easyjet.”
Last month, the airline said it was forecasting lower half-year losses after seeing a surge in passengers and revenues at the end of 2012.
Easyjet traditionally records a loss during the autumn/winter period.
In the three months to the end of December it saw a 6.2% rise in passenger numbers to 13.7m with revenues soaring 9.2% to £833m.
The company is now forecasting that its half-year losses will come in at between £50m and £75m. This compares to losses of £112m for the same period the previous year.