• The current forecasts for air traffic growth in coming years confirm the recovery of the aviation sector in the wake of the crisis caused by COVID-19.
  • In this growth scenario, ENAIRE has resumed its plan to hire new air traffic controllers, in keeping with its pre-pandemic preparations.

The Official State Gazette (BOE) published a call for 90 new air traffic controllers for ENAIRE, Spain’s air navigation service provider.

The Ministry of Transport, Mobility and the Urban Agenda is making an effort, through ENAIRE, to provide the air traffic manager with the human resources it needs to ensure that air traffic can continue to grow safely and efficiently in coming years.

According to the forecasts of EUROCONTROL, the European organisation for air navigation safety, air traffic in Spain will recover faster than expected a year ago, following the crisis in the aviation sector prompted by COVID-19. Moreover, forecasts for coming years confirm that traffic will not only recover, but surpass the levels of 2019.
In the words of Transport, Mobility and Urban Agenda Minister Raquel Sánchez, who spoke on 11 November, this call “is on top of all the measures that the Government is putting in place to recover key sectors”.

As a result, ENAIRE has resumed its pre-COVID plan to hire new air traffic controllers.

The openings will be announced on ENAIRE’s website and the deadline for submitting applications will be 10 business days, starting at nine (9:00) CET on the first business day following the publication in the BOE, and ending
at twenty-three fifty-nine (23:59) CET on 15 December 2021.


The selection process for potential candidates is divided into 3 phases:

Phase 1 – FEAST (First European Air Traffic Controller Selection Test). A computer-based test designed by Eurocontrol. This phase, eliminatory in nature, consists of three tests: FEAST I, FEAST II and FEAST III, each of
which must be successfully completed to access Phase 2.

Phase 2 – Oral assessment of English, eliminatory in nature.

Phase 3 – Clinical personality assessment and behavioural test. Both tests are eliminatory in nature.

Once the selection process is complete and, as a condition for hiring, the candidate must have an air traffic controller or student controller licence, to which end, ENAIRE will provide a period of 17 months for the candidates
to complete a specialised training course that will qualify them for the job of air traffic controller.

This course constitutes the so-called Initial Training. There are several schools certified by the National Aviation Safety Agency (AESA) that provide this type of training so the candidates can obtain the qualifications required by ENAIRE.

Once hired by ENAIRE, they must pass a Unit Training Course with an estimated duration of 3 to 6 months, depending on the unit, which will allow them to provide air traffic controller services at their assigned destination.

The candidates must satisfy the following requirements to be eligible for the call:
be Spanish citizens. Foreign citizens to whom any of the following situations apply may also take part in the call on equal terms:

  • – be a national of any European Union Member State, or of any State to which the free movement of workers applies under the International Treaties signed by the European Union and ratified by Spain;

– be the spouse of Spanish nationals or of nationals of any European Union member state, provided that they are not legally separated.

Similarly, their dependent children and those of their spouse, whether minors or of legal age, may apply under the same conditions;

foreign citizens legally residing in Spain;

be over 18 years of age and under 65;

be in possession of a degree granting access to university: secondary school degree, diploma or equivalent studies (BUP, vocational training II, Specialist Technician, etc.), and Advanced Vocational Training degrees or equivalent, as per the provisions of Royal Decree 412/2014 of 6 June, establishing the basic procedures for admission to official university degree courses; In the case of studies and qualifications obtained abroad, the provisions of the aforementioned legislation on the educational systems of Member States of the European Union or other States with which Spain has signed a recognition agreement, or on the approval of prior studies for candidates from foreign educational systems, shall apply;

have the medical and functional fitness necessary to perform the duties specific to the profession, as per the requirements laid out in Commission Regulation 2015/340 of 20 February, laying down technical requirements and administrative procedures relating to air traffic controllers’ licences and certificates pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 2018/1139 of the European Parliament and of the Council.

Disabled persons may take part in this call on an equal basis with all other candidates, provided they possess the necessary physical and functional capacity to perform the tasks specific to the profession, also subject to the contents of the aforementioned Regulation;

  • not have been removed from service through disciplinary proceedings from any of the government agencies or from the constitutional or statutory bodies of the Autonomous Communities, nor b fully or specifically disqualified from public sector jobs by court order to perform duties similar to those performed, for anyone who was removed or disqualified.

Nationals of another State must not be disqualified, or be in an equivalent situation, or have been subjected to disciplinary punishment or equivalent that would make the candidate ineligible for public employment in his/her State on equal terms;

  • candidates must satisfy the participation requirements by the application submission deadline; by submitting an application, the candidates declare that the details contained therein are true, that they satisfy the participation requirements and that they expressly accept each and every rule of the call.

The cost of the Initial Training shall be paid in its entirety by the candidates and generally assumes that they will have to request bank loans. ENAIRE negotiates favourable terms for personal loans with different banking institutions, which the candidates will start to repay once the Initial Training is complete and their contractual relationship with ENAIRE begins.

Moreover, so as not to create situations that entail economic hardship for those candidates who do not pass the Unit Training Course and therefore cannot be hired, ENAIRE provides a support service in these cases whereby it fully assumes the cost of the initial training course.

This call is consistent with the contents of ENAIRE’s Strategic Plan (2025 Flight Plan), which focuses on the needs of air traffic controllers in the coming years, based on the evolution in demand, improved airspace efficiency, the challenges of technological modernisation and sustainability, and on building the Single European Sky.

ENAIRE- also photos