United Airlines expands Flight Training Center in Denver

United's new building at their Flight Training Center in Denver.
Photo Credit: United Airlines

United Airlines has recently unveiled its newest addition to its Flight Training Center in Denver, marking a significant expansion in its pilot training capabilities.

Already the largest facility of its kind in the world, the additional building gives the airline the capability to add 12 more advanced full-motion flight simulators to the facility, six of which have already been delivered.

Expansion Details

The latest addition to United’s Flight Training Center in Denver boasts an impressive size of 150,000 square feet, making it one of the largest facilities of its kind globally.

With the addition of this building, United gains the ability to incorporate 12 advanced full-motion flight simulators into its training programs, with six already in operation.

This brings the total number of full-motion flight simulators at the center to an impressive 52, along with 34 fixed training devices, enhancing the hands-on training experience for pilots.

Impact on Pilot Training and Recruitment

United’s commitment to pilot training is evident in the investment made in its Flight Training Center.

With over 300 pilots hired in 2024 and more than 2,300 in the previous year, the additional building further augments training capacity, catering to the needs of United’s 16,000 pilots.

The facility operates around the clock, conducting over 32,000 training events annually and accommodating up to 860 pilots per day, ensuring that United’s aviators receive quality training to maintain the airline’s high standards of excellence.

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The expansion of the Flight Training Center forms part of United’s broader growth strategy, known as United Next.

By investing in infrastructure and technology, United aims to support its ambitious plans for fleet expansion and modernization.

United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby emphasizes the pivotal role of well-trained pilots in realizing these plans, highlighting United’s dedication to recruiting, hiring, and training the best aviators in the industry.

Photo Credit: United Airlines.

Local Economic Impact

Beyond its significance for pilot training, United’s investment in the Flight Training Center brings substantial economic benefits to the Denver community.

With over $145 million poured into the new building and the creation of over 370 new jobs, the expansion contributes to job growth and stimulates the local economy.

Moreover, the influx of pilots visiting the training facility generates substantial revenue for the hospitality sector, with millions spent on hotel accommodations annually.

History of United’s Flight Training Center

Originally constructed in the late 1960s, United’s Flight Training Center has undergone significant transformations over the years.

From its inception as part of the Stapleton Airport complex to its current status as a state-of-the-art training facility, the center reflects United’s enduring commitment to pilot training and excellence. The recent expansion is yet another chapter in the center’s storied history, symbolizing United’s evolution and innovation in aviation training.

View of Denver International Airport at dusk.
Photo Credit: Denver International Airport

Continued Expansion in Denver

United’s investment in Denver extends beyond the Flight Training Center, with plans for further expansion near Denver International Airport.

As United’s fastest-growing hub, Denver plays a pivotal role in the airline’s network, with ongoing efforts to enhance the customer experience and accommodate increasing demand.

The expansion of the Flight Training Center underscores United’s long-term commitment to Denver and its vision for growth in the region.

Enhancements at Denver International Airport

In addition to its investments in training infrastructure, United is dedicated to enhancing the customer experience at Denver International Airport.

With investments exceeding $1 billion in recent years, United has implemented various improvements, including new gates, state-of-the-art United clubs, and a revamped check-in lobby.

These enhancements aim to elevate the travel experience for passengers and reinforce Denver’s status as a key hub for United.

Career Opportunities at United

For aspiring pilots, United offers a diverse range of career paths, catering to individuals with varying levels of experience.

From experienced pilots seeking immediate opportunities as First Officers to aspiring aviators with little to no flying experience, United provides a clear pathway to the flight deck.

Programs such as Aviate® and the United Aviate Academy offer tailored training and development opportunities, while initiatives like the United Military Pilot Program support active-duty military personnel in transitioning to civilian aviation careers.

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By Len Varley - Assistant Editor 5 Min Read
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