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Daniele Ungaro

When did you first know you wanted to be an airline pilot?

The first memories I have about my aviation dream goes back to when I was 12 years old. My Granddad wanted to fly planes but because his family were against his decision during World War II he became an aircraft mechanic instead. I would sit for hours listening to his stories and adventures, and I believe that thanks to his passion for aviation my dream grew.

When and where did you first learn to fly?

My first flight lesson was in Andrewsfield, a 900m grass runway near the town of Braintree in Essex, UK, on the 14th September 2012.

What is your favourite thing about being an airline pilot?

My career is just taking off, but up to now the best thing I have experienced is the feeling you get when you receive a job offer from your first airline assessment! All of the studying, hard work and sacrifices finally made sense.

 
Daniele (right) and his training co-pilot Simon. Since graduating our APS MCC course in 2018 both have furthered their airline careers, with Daniele at Ryanair and Simon at Flybe.

Daniele (right) and his training co-pilot Simon. Since graduating our APS MCC course in 2018 both have furthered their airline careers, with Daniele at Ryanair and Simon at Flybe.

“Stay the course and trust your actions, work hard, stay focused and have a clear life goal.”

“Stay the course and trust your actions, work hard, stay focused and have a clear life goal.”

 

What challenges did you overcome on your journey to becoming an airline pilot?

The main challenge I faced was financially. It took me 6 years to get qualified to apply for an airline. After finishing College in Italy I had a few different jobs to support my dream of flying; I was a swimming instructor, I served in the Italian army, I was cabin crew, senior cabin crew and even a flight dispatcher. I am also eternally grateful to my Family and my Fiance for their financial and emotional support during crucial parts of my training.

What advice would you give yourself at the start of your airline journey if you could?

Stay the course and trust your actions, work hard, stay focused and have a clear life goal.                      

If you weren’t an airline pilot what would you be?

I would probably have studied aviation management, and I still want to, at some point during my career, integrate my pilots license with a bachelors degree in aviation. “Learn all you can and who knows how far you can go”

 
APS MCC class 1820 on their final day of training. The majority of this class now fly for or are undertaking their type rating training with Ryanair, with one exception now flying with Flybe.

APS MCC class 1820 on their final day of training. The majority of this class now fly for or are undertaking their type rating training with Ryanair, with one exception now flying with Flybe.

 

When did you land your first airline job?

Not long after completing the APS MCC at VA Airline Training I received the good news from my very first airline assessment, I will remember the feeling for the rest of my life!

What aircraft are you currently flying for your airline?

I will soon be starting my first type rating on the Boeing 737NG and in the near future I expect to integrate this with a conversion for the Boeing 737 MAX. I literally can’t wait.

For those thinking about becoming an airline pilot, would you recommend it, and why?

I would recommend it, a big YES! Why? No other workplace in the world can give you the chance to see the sun shine every day and to visit places that you’ve never been to before. Working takes up most parts of our life, don’t live doing something that’s just okay, do something that’s YOU!