A senior executive at the Dubai-based airline Emirates says the carrier plans to train thousands of new cabin crew in the metaverse in a major shift away from in-person classroom training.
Speaking at the Dubai Metaverse Assembly last week, Emirates’ chief operating officer Adel Ahmed Al Redha said the metaverse would allow cabin crew to train in a virtual reality environment and even participate in simulated real-life scenarios.
Emirates is on a mission to recruit thousands of new cabin crew as it seeks to bolster its workforce to keep up with travel demand, but Al Redha points out that the sheer number of new recruits is putting pressure on the airline’s training facilities.
Al Redha said the airline could ease the pressure by taking some in-person training sessions into the metaverse. Around 4,000 recruits could be training in the metaverse by next year.
But what even is the metaverse? In its simplest form, the metaverse is simply the internet but in a virtual 3D world. For basic training activities, the metaverse is a little like a Zoom meeting that has been taken up several notches so that participants feel like they are together in the same space.
Of course, the metaverse isn’t able to replicate all the training that Emirates cabin crew go through in a virtual world.
Trainees will still need to go to the airline’s state-of-the-art training aviation training college close to Dubai International Airport to complete practical hands-on sessions like aircraft evacuation, ditching and medical emergency scenarios.
Earlier this year, Qatar Airways unveiled its first metaverse member of cabin crew – a virtual MetaHuman called Sama who is able to take visitors on a virtual journey onboard a Qatar Airways aircraft.