American Airlines Plans to Hire 2,500 Pilots Over 5 years

American Airlines parent company’s CEO Tom Horton said the airline expects to hire 2,500 pilots over the next five years as it increases the number of international flights in its route structure.

Mr. Horton also said in a letter to employees that the company’s plans between now and the end of 2017 “we think will lead to about 1,300 captain upgrades,” or promotions of first officers.

“The new American will be doing even more international flying, providing greater opportunities for career advancement and increased income for our people,” AMR Corp. CEO Thomas Horton said Wednesday in a letter to employees.

Horton’s discussion of pilot hiring was contained in a letter to employees touting the carrier’s plans to begin nonstop service from D/FW Airport to Seoul, South Korea, and Lima, Peru, next year. It also is adding new overseas flights from New York and Chicago.

American will also add domestic flights using regional jets that are smaller than the planes typically operated by American. The regional jets will be operated by American’s regional airline partners, spurring more growth at those regional operators.