Dear Members,

An extremely turbulent year is drawing to a close. I am glad about this, because for most of us this year has brought more bad things than good. Let's not kid ourselves: Even though we pilots do not tend to bury our heads in the sand, the pandemic took a toll on us.

Nevertheless, I am looking forward to 2021, because I firmly believe it will be better than 2020! Let's think about where we are now and where we are likely to be in a year's time and beyond.

After all, people still want to travel, want to see foreign countries, want to meet friends and relatives, and many will fly around the world again for work. The people need us - and we need the people!

So, let's continue to cope with this crisis together. The members and the organisation VC both have the strength to do so. I firmly believe that things will soon start to look brighter for our industry again. And then we will again make the call out "take off thrust set" on a regular basis. I am certain that this will happen and I am already looking forward to it with all my heart!

On behalf of the entire Executive Board and the VC Team, I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Markus Wahl

VC sets up competence network - Part II

We want to make the VC more powerful and assertive. We would therefore like to gather competencies and skills of the members in order to be able to use these specifically for our purposes in the new competence network. Farid Merdaci explains the project in two parts in the Waypoints.

Step 2 - The practical doing and then what?

As outlined in the first post, we start the query of your additional qualifications and competencies. The disclosure does not entail any obligation to use them. It is all about voluntary work and getting involved in specific projects. The answer to a question about commitment can be anything between "Yes, absolutely!" and "No, absolutely not!".

You decide if you want to make your entry just for statistics, to show what pilots are up to, or if you really want to network. You can limit your networking to VC staff and Working Groups, connect with colleagues in the same field, or be visible and approachable by all VC members. This decision can be changed at any time.

You can enter your competencies and qualifications in the members area of the VC website under "My Cockpit" - "Qualifications/Competencies". The website is in German only, but English entries are very welcome. When doing so, please ask yourself how well your skills still are in the subject matter and give us your assessment of it. This is the only way we can judge who is best suited for which project. Your data will of course be treated with absolute confidentiality.

We have identified four areas in which we would like you to state your competencies:

  • Academic education related to aviation
  • Additional flight crew qualifications (TRI/TRE/...)
  • Network in associations, politics or organizations that might have a connection to aviation
  • Adult education, CRM, coaching or similar teaching and training experience.

Maybe you have contacts to persons or organizations (LBA/Ministry of Transport/...) which could be of interest for the VC. If you already have an idea or a project you would like to work on, please enter it in the free text field. We welcome feedback and further suggestions on the topic of our new competence network. Write to us at

Enter your qualifications and skills now:

To the members area of the VC website (in German, but please feel free to enter your information in English)

Changes in the Advisory Board

The Advisory Board is the representation of the members within the VC. If an Advisory Board member leaves his or her electoral group, e.g. due to a change of employer, or if the electoral group dissolves (due to insolvency), he or she must leave the Advisory Board. For this reason, the Advisory Board has lost two members this year:

  • Wolfgang Starke was on the Advisory Board for eight years and was Chairman for three of those years. He represented the VC in various international committees for many years and remains active in the AGE working group.
  • Konrad Messerer was active in the VC advisory board for more than ten years, six of them as chairman. Before that, he influenced VC's course for many years as Executive Board member.

We would like to thank Wolfgang and Konrad for their many years of cooperation, important and valuable discussions and extraordinary commitment within and for the VC.

Due to Konrad Messerer's retirement, Condor is no longer represented on the Advisory Board. A supplementary election for the remaining term (until the end of October 2021) is possible and will be carried out if 10 members of the electoral group request this in writing to the board (VC Statutes, 6.4).

At this point, we would like to encourage all VC members to consider running for the Advisory Council. In the fall of 2021, the scheduled new elections for the upcoming term will take place.

Carolin Bach
Chairwoman of the VC Advisory Board

VC Debrief #4 - Industrial Relations 2020

The fourth edition of VC Debrief is about industrial relations: What does the much-vaunted "social partnership" still mean and what do we and the employers have to prepare for after the crisis? Dr. Marcel Gröls (Chairman Industrial Relations) explains current challenges of collective bargaining against the backdrop of the crisis in 2020.

You can find the video in the internal area of our website at "VC Debrief":

VC Debrief #3 live - Watch the Recording

Last week we had the first live edition (in German) of VC Debrief with Carolin Bach and Markus Wahl. Thank you once again for the numerous questions and feedback that were sent to us.

For all those who could not watch it on the live stream, the recording is now online in the internal area of the website:

Family and Career: Possible!

The flyer "Family and Career" (in English) of our Working Gorup DAS (Diversity and Social) deals with reconciling family and professional life.

Covid-19 Vaccine Update

The FAA has cleared Biontech/Pfizer's Covid-19 vaccine for pilots and air traffic controllers. Please find more details on the FAA website. The FAA had previously generally precluded their approval of a vaccine with emergency approval only, which would have resulted in the grounding of pilots in the case of vaccination.

In contrast to the emergency approval of the vaccine in the U.S., the German government is seeking proper approval from the European Medicines Agency (EMA). We therefore anticipate less problematic use of the vaccine among flight crews. A statement from EASA or LBA is currently pending but expected. Nevertheless, VC recommends all members to consult their aviation physician in advance, as with all vaccinations.

Three new IFALPA Safety Bulletins

IFALPA has been very busy before Christmas and has published three new Safety Bulletins, which we would like to highlight:

Room Lockdown During COVID 19 Pandemic

Public health authorities may require in-room lockdown for crew members on layovers. This isolation may have detrimental effects on mental health, which is why IFALPA has issued the Safety Bulletin "Room Lockdown During COVID 19 Pandemic" with mitigation measures.

Use of Masks in the Cockpit

Many countries recommend or require the use of face masks, especially when physical distancing is not possible. However, the masks can adversely affect working in the cockpit. IFALPA has published the safety bulletin "Use of Masks in the Cockpit" with recommendations and safety instructions.

COVID-19 Guidance For Crews

The Safety Bulletin "COVID-19 Guidance For Crews" provides general advice about COVID-19 as understood at the date of publication. It provides recommendations for crews for before the flight, during the flight and at layovers.

Three new IFALPA Position Papers

In addition to the three new Safety Bulletins, IFALPA has also published three new Position Papers:

Caution when transporting vaccines with large quantities of dry ice

FAA is highlighting risks associated with transporting Covid-19 vaccines with large quantities of dry ice (frozen and solid CO2). CO2 sublimated into gaseous state could unnoticeably lower oxygen levels of the cabin air. To FAA's SAFO.

Report on the shoot-down of Ukraine Air PS752

The Canadian government has published a report on the shoot-down of Ukraine Air PS752 in Tehran in early January 2020. Chapter 5 contains information on Conflict Zones, which shows how important this information is for airlines and pilots.

Flights into and over conflict zones is a key topic for our Working Group SEC. In addition to the VC policy "Flüge in und über Krisengebiete" (Flights into and over crisis areas), recommendations on this topic have also been included in the VC Flight Safety Concept, which is available in German and English.

Airbus Safety First Magazine: Emergency Evacuation

Airbus' Safety First Magazine has published the new article "Attention! Crew at Stations!" on emergency evacuation. It provides recommendations for cockpit and cabin crew from preflight briefing to safe evacuation of all aircraft occupants.

News from Associations, Organisations and Regulators


  • IFALPA and IATA jointly call on governments to follow the ICAO Council Aviation Recovery Task Force (CART) guidelines to exempt crews from COVID-19 testing that is applied to air travellers.
  • In addition, the two associations have also presented an "IFALPA/IATA Joint Statement on Fatigue Management". In it, they call on operators to return to the existing Flight and Duty Time Limits (FTLs) or, alternatively, to introduce an approved Fatigue Risk Management System (FRMS).

OPS Group

  • Multiple chunks of airspace, varying levels of operating capability when it comes to datalink, a "logon list" to consider, a datalink mandate... There is a lot to consider for CPDLC in Europe. OPS Group has made the effort to compile a "Super Simple Guide to CPDLC in Europe".


  • ECA draws attention to the "Wellbeing Resource Hub" announced by EASA at the Annual Safety Conference 2020, which is now online. The first part consists of a career training package including an online course as well as information on wellbeing.

BfPP Helicopter Calendar

The Federal Association of Police Flying Staff (Bundesvereinigung fliegendes Personal der Polizei - BfPP), which has close ties with VC, is once again publishing its own calendar with police helicopter motifs for the coming year. It can be ordered on the new website

Watch out for Xmas Traffic - Santa Tracker

The Norad Santa Tracker is back online: On Dec. 24 and 25, the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) will be tracking Santa's flight live and showing it at If you spot a sleigh from the cockpit this holiday season, take a photo and send it to Thank you and Merry Christmas.

TCAS needs your help - link correction

The link to the handout "TCAS needs your help" from IFALPA and IFATCA in the last Waypoints did not work, because it had been changed by IFALPA after we put together the newsletter. Here is the document for download once again: "TCAS needs your help!".

We continuously strive to improve our newsletter and welcome your feedback. Please send comments and suggestions to or use the reply function of your mail programme. To stay up to date with the latest news, follow us on: