Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2026)

The Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market is segmented by Training Type (Full Flight Simulator (FFS), Flight Training Devices (FTD), Other Training Types), Aircraft Type (Fixed-wing Aircraft, Rotorcraft), and Geography (North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, and Middle-East and Africa).

Market Snapshot

Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market Bar Graph
Study Period: 2018 - 2026
Base Year: 2020
Fastest Growing Market: Asia Pacific
Largest Market: Europe
CAGR: 17.85 %

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Market Overview

The civil aviation flight training and simulation market was valued at USD 1.15 billion in 2020, and it is projected to reach USD 3.10 billion in 2026 with a CAGR of 17.85% during the forecast period (2021-2026).

Just before the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, airlines were aggressively expanding their global networks and adding several new aircraft to their fleet every year. However, the situation changed in 2020 due to the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, as several pilots have lost their jobs due to the grounding of the airline fleet to curb the spread of the virus. Nevertheless, things are expected to come to normalcy by 2023. Subsequently, the demand for pilots may return to the pre-crisis levels.

The aviation industry witnessed a growing global pilot demand over the years, which, in turn, has led to the high demand for training aircraft and simulators in flight schools. On the other hand, many airlines are facing the issue of the pilot shortage, which is affecting their daily operations. Generally, flights with a duration of more than 12 hours require a team of four pilots. However, several airlines are still operating such long-haul routes with three pilots due to a shortage of pilots. The unavailability of trained pilots to cater to the ever-growing demand is generating demand for pilot training globally.

Scope of the Report

The civil aviation flight training and simulation market encompasses the training of pilots operating civil aviation aircraft. Flight simulators mentioned in the study are devices that artificially recreate the environment for pilot training purposes. Pilot training for civil aviation applications is included in the study. The revenues from military training purposes are not considered. Training for all fixed-wing aircraft (including commercial and business jets) and rotorcraft are included in the study. The civil aviation flight training and simulation market is segmented by training type into full flight simulator (FFS), flight training devices (FTD), and other training types. By aircraft type, the market is segmented into fixed-wing aircraft and rotorcraft. The report also offers the market size of and forecasts for the market in major countries across regions. For each segment, the market size and forecasts are represented by value (USD billion).

Training Type
Full Flight Simulator (FFS)
Flight Training Devices (FTD)
Other Training Types
Aircraft Type
Fixed-wing Aircraft
North America
United States
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
South Korea
Rest of Asia-Pacific
Latin America
Rest of Latin America
Middle-East and Africa
Saudi Arabia
United Arab Emirates
Rest of Middle-East and Africa

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Key Market Trends

The Fixed-wing Aircraft Segment is Projected to Dominate the Market During the Forecast Period

By aircraft type, the fixed-wing segment held the largest market share in 2020, and it is further expected to dominate the market throughout the forecast period. Prior to the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, the growth in global air passenger traffic has encouraged the fleet expansion programs of several airlines, while the potential business opportunities have also led to the entry of new airline operators to cater to the demand on new routes. With the global unique city pairs growing each year gradually to cross 22,000 in 2019, airlines invested over USD 1 trillion toward the procurement of new aircraft in the last ten years. The procurement of new aircraft for both commercial and general aviation created a pilot shortage over the years. As per Boeing’s 2020 edition of the Pilot & Technician Outlook, the global demand for pilots is forecasted to be around 763,000 during the next couple of decades. The margin of the shortfall between the demand and supply of pilots fostered the establishment of several flight training institutes across the world, which procure flight simulation and training equipment to provide certified training services to aviation aspirants. Though the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in pilot furloughing in 2020, airlines are now focusing on long-term growth strategies and re-started collaborating with pilot training schools to obtain airline-specific training for the pilots. On this note, in February 2021, IndiGo signed a Cadet Pilot Program with Chimes Aviation Academy, as per which 15 cadets will be trained over the period of the next 2-2.5 years and will then be inducted into the airline as pilots. Such developments are envisioned to bolster the growth prospects of the fixed-wing aircraft segment of the market in focus during the forecast period.

Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market Key Trends

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North America is Expected to Dominate the Market During the Forecast Period

The North American region held the largest market share in 2020, mainly due to a large aviation market in the United States. Air passenger traffic in the country increased at a rapid pace in the past decade, which also generated the need for airlines to expand in terms of fleet size and new routes. According to the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, in 2019, the US airlines carried 925.5 million passengers, a growth of about 4.1% compared to 2018. However, the COVID-19 greatly affected the airline demand in the region, with the passenger traffic coming down to 369 million in 2020. According to the FAA, the total number of pilots in the United States has drastically reduced since 1990, and it reached 584,000 by 2016 compared to 700,000 in 1990. However, in the last few years, the number improved and reached 666,565 in 2019. Though the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in furloughing of pilots in the region in 2020, a great demand for pilots in the region is anticipated in the latter half of the forecast period. Hence, several airlines have taken measures to increase their pilot training capabilities. In February 2020, United Airlines announced its plan to purchase a flight-training academy in Phoenix to speed up hiring more than 10,000 pilots by the next decade, as about half of its aviators approach the federally mandated retirement age of 65. The new COVID-19 relief package, announced in March 2021, grants a further USD 14 billion to support major US airlines and guarantees staff jobs. Following the package announcement, United Airlines and American Airlines confirmed that the package would prevent the need to furlough staff, which is expected to help the pilots in the region.

Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market Growth Rate By Region

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Competitive Landscape

The civil aviation flight training and simulation market is moderately fragmented. CAE Inc. is the simulator manufacturer on top as the global market leader, mainly due to its huge geographical presence and brand image. L3Harris Technologies Inc., TRU Simulation + Training Inc., FlightSafety International, and The Boeing Company are also some of the other prominent players in the market. Simulation and training providers and equipment manufacturers constantly strive to build brand reputation and reach out to geographic extremes to attract more customers. Flight schools are looking for long-term collaborations with the airlines and aircraft operators for the pilot training programs, which may help them make sustainable revenues for longer durations. There is a growing demand for simulators that can be re-configured or possibly be upgraded to support newer aircraft models, and the focus on manufacturing such simulators will drive the growth of the players during the forecast period.

Recent Developments

In August 2020, L3Harris Technologies was selected by Taiwan’s China Airlines to provide a range of pilot training simulators that will support the introduction of the airline’s A321neo aircraft fleet.

In February 2020, Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus provided a contract to L3Harris Technologies to supply training devices to enhance its pilot and maintenance training programs. Under the program, the company will provide a flight training device and two enhanced flat-panel trainers for pilot training, along with a virtual flight deck for classroom pilot and maintenance training.

In November 2019, CAE Inc. announced the expansion of its training capacity in the Middle East with the deployment of a new Bombardier Global 7500 full-flight simulator (FFS) to the Emirates-CAE Flight Training Centre (ECFT) in Dubai.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Market Overview

    2. 4.2 Market Drivers

    3. 4.3 Market Restraints

    4. 4.4 Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.4.1 Bargaining Power of Buyers/Consumers

      2. 4.4.2 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      3. 4.4.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.4.4 Threat of Substitute Products

      5. 4.4.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry

  5. 5. MARKET SEGMENTATION (Market Size by Value - USD billion)

    1. 5.1 Training Type

      1. 5.1.1 Full Flight Simulator (FFS)

      2. 5.1.2 Flight Training Devices (FTD)

      3. 5.1.3 Other Training Types

    2. 5.2 Aircraft Type

      1. 5.2.1 Fixed-wing Aircraft

      2. 5.2.2 Rotorcraft

    3. 5.3 Geography

      1. 5.3.1 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

      2. 5.3.2 Europe

        1. United Kingdom

        2. France

        3. Germany

        4. Rest of Europe

      3. 5.3.3 Asia-Pacific

        1. China

        2. India

        3. Japan

        4. South Korea

        5. Rest of Asia-Pacific

      4. 5.3.4 Latin America

        1. Mexico

        2. Brazil

        3. Rest of Latin America

      5. 5.3.5 Middle-East and Africa

        1. Saudi Arabia

        2. United Arab Emirates

        3. Qatar

        4. Rest of Middle-East and Africa


    1. 6.1 Vendor Market Share

    2. 6.2 Company Profiles

      1. 6.2.1 L3Harris Technologies Inc.

      2. 6.2.2 CAE Inc.

      3. 6.2.3 Raytheon Technologies Corporation

      4. 6.2.4 FlightSafety International (Berkshire Hathaway Inc.)

      5. 6.2.5 FRASCA International Inc.

      6. 6.2.6 Thales Group

      7. 6.2.7 TRU Simulation + Training Inc. (Textron Inc.)

      8. 6.2.8 Indra Sistemas SA

      9. 6.2.9 ELITE Simulation Solutions AG

      10. 6.2.10 ALSIM

      11. 6.2.11 The Boeing Company

      12. 6.2.12 Airbus SE

      13. 6.2.13 Moog Inc.


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Frequently Asked Questions

The Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market market is studied from 2018 - 2026.

The Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market is growing at a CAGR of 17.85% over the next 5 years.

The Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market is valued at 1 Billion USD in 2018.

The Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market is valued at 3 Billion USD in 2026.

Asia Pacific is growing at the highest CAGR over 2021- 2026.

Europe holds highest share in 2020.

CAE Inc., FlightSafety International, L3Harris Technologies Inc., TRU Simulation + Training Inc. (Textron Inc.), The Boeing Company are the major companies operating in Civil Aviation Flight Training and Simulation Market.

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