Why the World is Running Out of Pilots

Why the World is Running Out of Pilots


This video was made possible by Brilliant. Learn with Brilliant for 20% off by being
one of the first 200 to sign up at Brilliant.org/Wendover. For the longest while airlines treated pilots
as a renewable resource. It was long considered one of the best jobs
one could have—to make good money flying around the world in comfort—but as aviation
has become more commonplace the job of pilot has too become more and more just like any
other job. While in the 50s the job garnered the same
respect and pay as a doctor, entering the industry today earns you not much more than
you’d make at a fast food restaurant. Before a pilot can even perform their first
take-off with passengers in the back they have to get licensed. Most top airline jobs require or strongly
favor those with a college diploma so for those that want to go all the way in the field
they have to start by getting a degree. The cost of that averages $133,000 in the
US and then every aspiring commercial pilot first needs to get a private pilots license
which requires 35 hours of flight-time. These first bits of flight time, which are
with an instructor, typically cost about $140 an hour or $4,900 total. You also have to take classes which have their
own fees so getting a private pilots license usually costs about $8,000 all in. To start actually making money as a pilot,
though, you need 15 additional hours of instruction for an instrument rating costing $900 and
an additional 215 hours of flight time costing $23,500. There are also tons of other smaller costs
for books and housing and transportation and other things which bring the total cost of
pilots training to at least $80,000. Having done all that, having spent $213,000
on education so far, one finally receives a commercial pilots license but still, at
that point, one can’t work for most airlines. To get an Airline Transport Pilot License,
the one needed to work for large commercial airlines by the likes of Delta or KLM or Cathay
Pacific, one needs, with some exceptions, 1,500 flight hours. That would cost an additional $136,000 in
rental fees alone if one were to pay for the flight time themselves so pilots normally
let someone else pay for it by working at a job that doesn’t require a full ATP license. The most common job used to get from 250 to
1500 hours is as a flight instructor but some also work flying skydiving planes, towing
banners, or for airlines flying small single-engine planes. Once that’s all done, after having been
in education continuously for a quarter of ones life until the age of 23 and having spent
hundreds of thousands of dollars one can finally start flying commercial passenger planes and
earning $30,000 a year. That’s a typical and even fair starting
salary for a first year first officer and, considering these individuals often have tens
or hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt, young pilots are often in a tough financial
situation. Most Americans pilots start their commercial
careers at regional airlines. The largest of these is SkyWest airlines which
is an airline that flies for other airlines. You could be flying any of the three major
American airlines—Delta, United, or American—and actually be on a Skywest operated flight. Skywest, along with other regional airlines,
operate all planes for these US airlines with under 76 seats. They fly the smallest planes which are actually
more expensive on a per passenger basis to operate than the larger planes. The regional airlines’ primary purpose is
to lower cost. The aviation industry is heavily unionized
so the major airlines would never be allowed to bring in pilots at a yearly salary of twenty
or thirty thousand dollars. Therefore, they contract these regional carriers
to operate the small expensive planes so the crew can be employed at a different pay-scale
even if the flights are branded as United or Delta or American. While a first year first officer for American
Airlines makes $88 per flight hour, a first year first officer for SkyWest only makes
$37. Pilots are only allowed to fly 900 hours per
calendar year in the US which works out to 75 hours per month or about 17 hours per week. Now, the idea of a 17 hour workweek probably
sounds great but these are only the hours in command of an airborne aircraft. They don’t account for the time it takes
to get to the airport, clear security, brief for the flight, inspect and prep the aircraft,
board passengers, deplane passengers, pack up, file paperwork, and get home or to a hotel. Pilots are primarily paid based on hours in
the air which is why you tend to see the more senior pilots flying the longer routes. A typical four-day trip for a regional pilot
in the US might see them flying on Monday from Minneapolis to Fargo, Fargo to Minneapolis,
Minneapolis to Pittsburgh, then Pittsburgh to Boston where they would stay overnight. The next day, Tuesday, they would fly from
Boston to Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh to Boston, and Boston to Nashville. After an overnight they would fly Nashville
to Boston, Boston to Jacksonville, and Jacksonville to Boston. Finally, on Thursday, they would fly from
Boston to Norfolk and then Norfolk to Minneapolis. Over that four day, twelve leg trip they would
be in the air for just over 19 hours. That regional pilot would have been almost
constantly either working, sleeping, or eating. Compare that to a long-haul pilot flying an
a330. They would leave Atlanta on a Monday night,
fly to Amsterdam arriving Tuesday morning, and fly back Thursday after having had a full
48 hours free in Amsterdam. On that trip the pilot would have accumulated
16 flight hours—not all that different from the hours that the regional pilot gained after
working constantly for four days. It’s no wonder why the most senior pilots,
who have the seniority to decide which type of plane and routes they fly, almost always
go for the long-haul routes. Meanwhile, while the young pilots don’t
get paid much and work tougher schedules, the advantage for them of working for these
regional airlines is that they can gain the experience and hours needed to get a job at
a more desirable airline. The problem that the airline industry if facing
is that not enough people are willing to put themselves through all the years of expensive
training, low pay, and long hours to get to the stage where they make good money and fly
the most interesting routes. There is a shortage of pilots but it’s hard
to know how bad this shortage is—some say it’s a myth, others will say it’s already
chronic—but by one estimate the US alone will have 1,600 pilot jobs unfilled by 2020. While the problem is only predicted to get
worse, the shortage of pilots is already having consequences. Emirates Airlines denies having any pilot
shortage but the reality is that in April 2018 they flew 36 777’s and 10 a380’s
over to Dubai World Central Airport, a less busy airport than the main Dubai airport,
and left those airplanes there on the ground for months because there just weren’t enough
pilots to fly them. The concerning thing is, Emirates pilots are
some of the best paid in the industry. Even young Emirates pilots make more than
$200,000 a year and, thanks to local laws, that’s tax-free income. Emirates has come under criticism for long
work hours, insufficient rest periods, and minimal pilot staffing for their longest haul
flights which is likely a contributing factor to their difficulty in attracting pilots but,
if they’re having trouble recruiting pilots while paying so much that’s not a great
sign for the industry. These high salaries from some airlines are
also a contributing factor to the shortage in the US and Europe, though. The UAE is a small country with two massive
airlines so they rely on recruiting foreign pilots. China, while not a small country, also doesn’t
have enough local pilots to staff their tremendously fast growing airline industry. The country’s airlines therefore pay a starting
salary of $312,000 per year to foreign pilots and some make up to $500,000. While working conditions are tough, it’s
still no wonder why 10% of all pilots in China are now foreigners. With more and more pilots heading overseas
to the best paying pilot jobs the US, Europe, and other western countries are left with
fewer and fewer people to fly their planes. The short-term solution for airlines in the
US has been to fast track pilots through the early phase of their careers flying small
jets for low pay and get more pilots flying the larger planes earlier. That leaves the brunt of the impact of this
shortage on small towns served by these small planes. US airlines especially, thanks to the country’s
vastness, operate with route networks emphasizing service to small airports. Rather amazingly, there are 553 airports in
the US with commercial service. United is perhaps the most focused among the
big three US airlines on small town service with 235 domestic destinations but, due to
the lack of pilots, it’s having to cancel routes. In September 2018 alone the airline stopped
service from Chicago to Willard, Illinois, Mobile, Alabama, and Manchester, New Hampshire
even though these routes were likely profitable. United isn’t alone in this. Horizon Air, the subsidiary operating Alaska
Airlines’ regional flights, had to cancel thousands of flights in 2017 due to a severe
lack of pilots. There are a couple of possible solutions to
this crisis. The most obvious one is to increase pay and
to improve working conditions but, from the airlines’ perspectives, that’s the last-ditch
solution as they focus on their bottom lines. While it’s tough to sympathize with these
billion dollar businesses losing some money as a result of paying a more livable wage,
the reality is that if they’re having to pay more for the pilots to serve small towns
it’s going to cost more to fly to small towns and those living in small towns are
often the ones least able to pay. Another commonly proposed solution is to attract
more women pilots. Only 6.7% of the world’s pilots are female
and so, by putting more effort into recruiting that half of the population airlines could
potentially increase pilot numbers without increasing pay. More and more airlines, such as Lufthansa
and Emirates, are also operating up their own flights schools where cadets can train
for reduced rates or for free as long as they end up working at the airline. Airlines are also working to reduce the number
of pilots needed. Emirates, for example, reduced the number
of pilots it uses on some of its longest flights. On the 13 hour flight from Dubai to Sydney,
for example, they now only staff three pilots instead of four which means that each only
gets four hours of inflight rest instead of six. Finally, one of the more controversial proposals
to fix this issue has been to increase automation in the cockpit to the point where only one
or possibly zero pilots are needed to fly. This proposal has met criticism from pilots,
cabin crew, and the public alike as many opponents point out that the cockpit is already highly
automated and the pilot’s main role is to troubleshoot if things go wrong. Nonetheless, with captains of wide-body planes
earning more than $300 per flight hour the cost of crewing the cockpit can be as much
as $19,000 each way on the longest flights like San Francisco to Singapore so there’s
certainly financial pressure on airlines to cut down the need for pilots if they can. There are thousands of people who become pilots
each year but there are millions more who want to become pilots. To bring more people into the industry all
airlines need to do is to lower the extraordinarily high barrier to entry since as the industry
grows worldwide, the allure of the skies won’t be enough to get enough pilots into the cockpit. If you want to become a pilot two of the major
things you absolutely need to have a solid grasp of are math and physics. Brilliant is a great place to learn those
two subjects since their courses break down concepts into their intuitive principles and
build them back up so you don’t just memorize how do something, you understand it. They also have plenty of other courses on
super interesting subjects like logic, probability, astronomy, machine learning, and more. They really put a lot of work into perfecting
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and access some courses for free then, by being one of the first 200 to use that same
link, you will also get 20% off when you upgrade to premium and you’ll be helping to support
Wendover Productions.

100 thoughts on “Why the World is Running Out of Pilots”

  • Wendover Productions says:

    Hey all, a few people have had some questions about the break-down of costs for a ATP License at the beginning of this video so I thought I’d try to clear things up and show a few sources for the different components.

    College Cost: I misplaced the original source that lines up exactly with $133k but this statistic is about the same accounting for yearly growth.
    https://www.statista.com/statistics/238112/university-attendance-costs-in-the-united-states/

    Private Pilots License: I said $8,000 in the video based off a source’s estimate. Looking at a random selection of flight schools’ estimates it could be even a little higher. Many have also pointed out that the vast majority of individuals can only apply with 40 hours flight time (a small minority of US pilots are trained under Title 14 of federal code part 141 which allow them to apply with 35 hours.) While I was choosing to use the lowest numbers for training as to not sensationalize the cost numbers (it’s sensational enough as it is) I probably should have done the math for 40 hours (maybe even more as many need more hours to gain the skills needed) to get a more average estimate.
    $9,950: https://www.illinoisaviation.com/flight-training/private-pilot-141/
    $8,123: http://www.stcharlesflyingservice.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/CostEstimateToAdvance.pdf
    $7944: http://www.flyhafc.com
    $9500: https://www.executiveflighttraining.com/Private_Pilot_License.html

    Instrument Rating: The way I presented this bit was definitely confusing. The $900 I mentioned was accounting for the ground training and then I wrapped the hours needed for an instrument rating into the additional hours needed for a commercial pilots license (215/210.)

    Commercial Pilots License: From the comments I’ve read nobody really disagrees with the estimate I put for the overall CPL cost but here’s the source I used anyways.
    $80,000: https://www.l3airlineacademy.com/us-career-programs/pilot-training-cost

  • 30,000 USD is almost 40,000$ Canadian, which is actually as really high salary for a first year commercial pilot. Here in Canada at a small regional airline like Jazz as a first year pilot, we would get paid in the likes of around 20,000 Canadian dollars or 15,000 USD. Sad.

  • It's not just pilots this happens to. Take EMS as an example. When I started out in EMS nearly 20 years ago, you first took an EMT-basic certification course. Usually laster about 6 months of 2x a week classes. You then went and took your national registry test, pass and then you're certified and can work on an ambulance. And basics do, do patient care. But their main roll in a ambulance is the driver and caretaker of the unit (wash, stock, ect..). Patient care is provided by, mostly, paramedics. Now back in my day you worked as a basic and got some experience and them you'd take a paramedic course, usually taught by another paramedic, for about a year, took the national registry test and you're a paramedic. But now, you still have to become a basic first but they've made it to where you must attend a actual accredited college and get an associate's degree to be a paramedic. You become a basic during that course but you're pretty much streamed line through. What you use to be able to get for about $500 (or free in your company sponsored a paramedic class) now can cost you $20k. Which isn't that big of deal except, most paramedics are paid barely over minimum wage and can only make money if they are willing to literally work their lives away. Same goes for law enforcement. It's quickly becoming a career that in the near future will require a criminal justice degree to work in but the pay for the job isn't going to go up…

  • for y'all who thinks its pay that is not the problem that can make up to 60.000 to 200.000 a year or more so it not pay usaf and navy pilots leave just to get the pay from the air line

  • Well if the pay is low they won't go. Pay is high we all fly.. Its going to be completely automated soon anyway.. So no worries. SKY NET will take over soon.. LOL

  • LOL, don't over complicate the issue. Raising pay for pilots is the answer and lower entry cost. No, people do not have to pick up the cost, the airline should. The airlines don't want to give up the profit they're used to since they are public companies run by greedy investment firms.

  • Leandro Resendes says:

    First off you do not need a great grasp of math and physics to be a pilot. The reading material that is required to know as a pilot is equivalent to grade 9/10 level studies.

    Pilots have done this to themselves. They are so desperate to work they jump at any offer that comes their way and ACCEPT these shitty conditions and pay. Its a fucking joke to be quiet honest. We have dozens of lives in our hands flying multi million dollar machines for something just above poverty. I hope this shortage gets so bad to the point where pilots can start asking major airlines what they can do for THEM.

  • rtrThanos Ezekyle Abaddon says:

    When I called my local flight school and they told me how much it would cost, I remember saying “If I had that kind of money, I wouldn’t be looking for a new career path.” Looking into it more after hearing the ridiculous requirements, i was stunned to hear about pilot flop-houses, a pilot that only made $16,000 their first year at a regional airline, and a pilot that actually PAID an airline to fly a cargo plane so they could build up hours. Yeah you’ll have a shortage if your only recruits are willing to incur massive debt, or are already so rich that they don’t care about money.

  • 0:36 industry is so bad they are giving licences to a 300lbs 4 year old with grey hair. Yellow eyes too so must be an alchoholic already.

  • Excuse me, $133,000? Did you pull that number out of your ass?
    The average cost of a bachelors degree in the United States is around ~$35000

  • If the pay isn't worth the effort for a segment of the population prone to have interest in such a field, how will the segment not innately interested in it be lured in to it?

  • The Airline industry has continually been topping the "worst jobs in the US" chart for the last 10 years. The number 2 and 3 spots are Air Traffic Controller and Pilot. The number 1 spot is Enlisted Submariner.. My current job. I cant blame anyone for not wanting to be underpaid and overworked. If the airline industry wants to attract young people they need to pay better initially and not overwork them. You burn someone out then they have no interest in continuing to work for you. I'm using my GI bill to start schooling.. And I wont have a ton of debt going into this. But I am going to take a MASSIVE pay cut. like no joke I'm going to go down in pay by 75% starting off. Luckily when I am doing this I'll have a pension, otherwise I'd never get into the industry out of simple work vs pay. I could get paid to be a security guard and make more. Dang, you can work at McDonald's and get paid more than entry level pilots without a degree. That should say enough to airline companies. If you want employee's you're competing with McDonald's and people with no degree.

  • Taylor Jaderlund says:

    Good luck getting a pilots license at 35 hours.. seeing as how the FAA minimum was set at 40 many many years ago and the average person takes closer to 50

  • I wanted to become a pilot but 30k a year for that much debt doesn't make sense. I settled for truck driving. With potential to own my own truck fleet one day.

  • In Quebec (Canada) it's $72 000 of tuition at a private school and I thought it was an insane amount. and it's basically free to THE public school of the province that offer THE program. The only one, no need to say it's hard to get into but graduates are guaranteed a job with Air Canada for private schools must of them , can find a job in northern Canada small airlines but it's harder. You can also work for the air force 10 years, they pay your formation, but you're required to serve 10 years

  • Lower executive pay or reduce the number of executives and pay pilots more. Ticket prices can remain the same in that case. Hell, it is probably easier to automate an executives role. Would not take much to automate going to needless meetings everyday.

  • Look at that phony pilot's USA license at 0:39! The male is 9 feet tall, weighs 300 pounds and has yellow eyes! And he was 3 years old when this license was issued. Not human! And your info in your blog is inaccurate also, you do NOT have to attend college to get a pilot's license, so the $133. is inane. We didn't bother reading the rest of your blog after that, but costs vary depending on many things.

  • Pilots NEED to gain their experience in smaller more forgiving aircraft than low time pilots in large aircraft, such as Boeing and Airbus. Low time inexperienced Pilots and also inexperienced Mechanics are DANGEROUS if they do not have a good means of gaining experience. A low time Pilot getting into an airline and watching the AUTOPILOT fly the aircraft for 20,000 hours is virtually NO experience. They NEED to fly charter flights in smaller aircraft or smaller airlines to gain experience before they get into an aircraft with hundreds of passengers and not have the knowledge and experience to deal with the many times that require immediate and correct action. Do you want to be on the aircraft that the pilot is trying to figure out HOW to deal with the situation? Look at the crashes on the channels that make those videos. Realize how many people died because the Pilots just did not have the experience to fly the aircraft in the emergency situations. There are a surprising number of crashes where the pilot lost control of an aircraft, and everyone died. Airliners are easy to fly, but they are very UNFORGIVING of even small mistakes. I could give you explanations of why aircraft have crashed due to Pilot ERROR, sometimes between both the Captain and First Officer. IGNORANCE is not bliss, it KILLS when ignorance is mixed with flying. I have been flying for over 40 years. I have never lost control of an aircraft and I have been in some really difficult situations and some situations I did not expect to survive. NEVER give up, never stop flying until the aircraft has come to a complete stop, hopefully, always safely on the ground. In my opinion, the FAA made a good move when they made the requirement that ALL Pilots must have at least 1,500 hours and an ATP Pilot Certificate. Enjoy your next flight.

  • Probably would be better if they did a contract system like some other professions. They pay for all the schooling and flight hours and you sign a contract saying you will work there for a certain amount time

  • I think our lack of general practice doctors is stemming from the same issue. Why spend a hundreds of thousands on an education for a career that won't pay? Doesn't matter how many highly intelligent potential recruits we have for these careers, if the cost of education stays outrageous in this country, it won't ever matter. We need to cut the fat out of these undergraduate programs to get high performing people to their careers faster. Even as dense as my B.S. in mechanical engineering was with relevant stuff, there were still plenty of no-value-add class hours that could have been cut out (like my modern dance humanities elective for example). We can't afford being pretentiously "well rounded" anymore, at least not at the prices our universities are demanding.

  • I want to become a pilot but it would be handy if you didnt have to pay over 200,000 and I think I could afford that but I will try….. BRUH

  • How did he not mention joining the US Air Force for say, 8 years and then getting an airline job? While difficult, it's the cheapest way.

  • WHATEVER GOES FOR ME says:

    Wow, can't believe the salary is almost the same as a fast food worker? I do understand the cost of education just like in medicine, but pilots do earn a lot more than fast food workers.

  • Sidney Mathious says:

    The job of a pilot is one which can't be taken over by a computer, and the same can be said for stewards/stewardesses as well.

  • I recently talked to a relative of mine who is pilot for Air Canada. He told me the average pilot just starting makes about $58,000 per year but after a few years the same pilot can work there way up to Captain and then make approx $160,000 a year. So according to my relative it’s still a good paying job.

  • Pilot courses are expensive as shit and when they become pilots they get paid little. That’s why no one wants to be a pilot.

  • Yet the CEO's, board members, and upper management will still earn multi-million dollar pay and compensation packages. Not saying they should work for free but for half that pay they will still enjoy a lavish lifestyle and could increase they pay for the pilots. I've seen this far too many times when "focusing on the bottom line". If they focused on passenger safety, comfort, and equipment reliability they would, in time, increase their share price. Take out every 8th row of seats and increase passenger leg room. Yours would be the first choice of all flyers then. Less passengers = less weight = less fuel. Less passengers = less luggage = more space for higher paying cargo and mail. Less passengers = less work for the flight crew, quicker boarding times, and less passenger discomfort. I have been flying nationally and internationally since 1990. The biggest problem with passenger comfort and delays is us. We, the passengers. And that no airline enforces the carry-on size/ qty limit. Just because your huge suitcase has wheels and a handle does not make it a carry-on. And airlines need to change their boarding procedures as well. Always board the back of the plane first. Then nobody is in each others way. And, pay attention passengers, do not put your carry-on above someone else's seat. I have seen a person put their bags in first class and go to the back of the plane. And stop serving drinks to first class while boarding. I can wait until we're in the air. I'm not going to die because I didn't get that champagne as soon as I sat down just so I can show off to those in economy as they pass by. Final thought; Stop obsessing about the stock price. Focus on your customer and the dollars will come.

  • PRIVATE PILOT'S LICENSE cost will come down dramatically when electric planes become available as small trainers. It's the cost of aircraft maintenance that keeps getting flight time expensive.

  • People always ask me why I'm not a pilot when they find out I have a private licence. Perhaps I should direct them to this video. I spent 2 months at a driving school and around $800 and got a job driving transport trucks for 50k CAD per year.

  • I'll agree that the airlines are solely driven by profit and therefore pure economic discussion is sufficient to give a satisfactory explanation for airlines behavior.

  • You guys aren't understanding the logistics of air travel is so penny pincher. They cut whole routes for losing them cents; I want better pay for pilots as well, but first lets make the airlines more profitable or they'll start charging it to the consumer, or cutting jobs!

  • hey i spent like a quarter of my life, and spent 250k on education. how much is my pay?
    Airline: McCdonalds
    pilot: visible confusion

  • The three main reasons that the world is running out of pilots.
    1) Airlines and the Air Force used to train pilots. Now you have to get a huge student loan to become a pilot.
    2) Airline don't actually want pilots anymore. They want "cockpit managers". Being a pilot has lost most of its glamour and is now on a par with bus driver as an occupation for most people.
    3) We are doing a lot more flights now days.

  • So you're telling me the airlines want pilots with college degrees, but they don't want to actually pay them to work long ass hours, because it would affect their precious bottom lines? They want ~smart people~ to make stupid life choices. I could not think of a more hilarious dilemma. How about–hear me out–make the career FUCKING WORTHWHILE. Honestly, I'd be happy with a $30k salary if it didn't come with crippling, lifelong debt. "Um, yeah, I'd like to pay you guys for the privilege of flying your planes." I hate to break it to y'all, but no career is worth paying for, even if you love it.

  • there's no shortage of pilots; there's a shortage of airlines with common sense..the comments are right. imagine flight simmers being given credit for their sim hours + paid training/sign on bonuses. dream on.

  • And this is why instead of flying for a career I work a boring but well paying desk job to fund my weekend flying addiction.

  • A S T H E T I C 1994 says:

    more the fact that companies like Qantas want to flood the amount of people getting CPL's so they dont have to pay their pilots 300k a year to fly A380s and such

  • Robert McDaniels says:

    Transport = the burdening cost that absolutely no one wants to pay for yet everyone expects their goods transported on time and with exceptional cost savings.

  • The pay is far far too low considering the cost of training, high stress, and hectic lifestyle. Pilots should be starting rookie jobs at 80k a year and work up from there. But ive heard of some people making just over 20k a year while being corporate slaves and having to be a yes man.

  • Moved to Tulsa Ok about 26 years ago to become a pilot. Began training flying out of Tulsa international airport. Started working for a small airline in operations while training. Soon learned the reality of what is discussed in this video.
    The cost of education, difficulty of gaining employment, and minimal income for many many years gave me good reason to transition to civil engineering and construction management. My income was much higher, with less difficulty in getting there, in a fairly and reasonable timeframe. At the time I predicted that trained skilled construction professionals would be in short supply and the income potential would be high. Today, as a skilled professional, we see incomes substantially higher than other professions. I now own and operate a fairly small general contracting company and have skilled workers at incomes of $200-350 per 8 hour day. To say the least I have seen, for some time now, an income well in the 6 figures. With all of that, we can expect skilled professions to continue to increase in salary costs. Otherwise we will certainly experience a shortage of many must needed services.

  • MANAGEMENT: "The first astronaut was a chimpanzee, how hard can it be?" I retired Nov 2018 after 30 yrs airline work: 18 months AA Eagle 1988-1990, then MD80, 737, 757, 767 Intl, Airbus 319-320-321 Intl, EMB190), and there was some furlough time and during that period I got a Captain job in the CRJ200/700 = 4 yrs. Before the airline, there was the CFII and Charter for 3 yrs building time. I've seen a lot of changes in management, unions, training, and pilot attitude. While I wasn't always smiling on those long redeyes, I was still counting my blessings for having the best job in the world. While I started flying as a kid, PVT PLT at 17 yrs old, I had a tour in the Army Special Forces only to have my GIBill canceled before I left the Army (Thanks to Jimmy Carter), so I built time while I did 10 years in Law Enforcement. Being a Deputy you will see the lowest possible attitudes and the worst of the population. Keep that in mind while you're learning to fly, and teaching others to fly. POSITIVE ATTITUDE will get you farther in your career than anything else. Is a college degree mandatory? No. It's a "filter". I got hired without a degree. I did finish it during furlough, but the airlines used the college degree as a filter to reduce the number of applicants. They also may people pay an "application fee". Some made pilots pay for their own training after being hired. Most made up the training costs with substantially lower pay for the first and second years after being hired. AA Eagle started me at $1400 month (1988). I made $1800 month flight instructing (1985-1987) and $2000/month flying light twins (1987-1988). So that move to the airlines was a major pay cut. Capt at the Eagle was $29000/yr but first year on the MD80 was $24,000, 2nd yr $49,000. My last year at American (Capt AB321) was $302,000. So you can see things have changed. There is no "I" in TEAM, and the TEAM is everyone working at the airline. If the company makes money you keep your job. The TEAM is Management , Unions , Non-Unions, fuelers, baggage handlers, gate agents, dispatchers, training departments…….. I'm retired now, and I was blessed to have the greatest job, a 2 and 3 man office with a window view of the universe, and a cabin full of people depending on the Team. Keep the pointed end forward and the rubber side down. Maintain a positive attitude. Good Luck. Tailwinds always with the sun to your back. Stay healthy and watch the booze.

  • Maybe in the USA… Because in Europe, pilots are paid anywhere between 5000 and 30000 per month depending on their experience. Isn't it?

  • MPL module have been proven mutually successful for a lot of airlines, i currently hold A full ATPL license with more than 1500 hours on a jet airline, and i was holding an MPL license.

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