The sky ahead seems to be clear for an aspiring airline pilot. Flying is a challenging task and not everyone is successful at it. There are many physical and mental challenges that serve as roadblocks. If one is up to the challenge, he/she can fulfill a lifelong dream of becoming a professional pilot.
U.S. airline companies are now expanding and they are hiring pilots from abroad, and some foreign airlines are hiring American pilots too. Emirates, Korean Air, Cathay and JAL are a few airlines reaching out to U.S. pilots. When companies run out of skilled and experienced pilot candidates, they hire foreigners. Education and experience are the two main attributes a pilot needs to fly successfully.
Anyone who hopes to fly professionally needs to begin training early. In order to fly commercially, pilots must be 18 years of age or older and have at least a high school education. A bachelor’s degree is also required if he is looking to work in one of the regional or major airlines. Flight hours logged is also an important aspect of applying for airline jobs. A person who has logged 600-700 hours of flying can apply for a job at most of the regional airlines. However, new legislation may up flight time requirements to 1500 hours. Flight time requirements are significantly higher at the major airlines, so pilots need to plan on “paying their dues” to get a position in the cockpit of a major airline.
Commercial pilots need to have corrected vision to 20/20, must be outgoing, have the heart and determination to put in long hours without complaining, and possess excellent concentration and multitasking skills.
Airlines are expanding worldwide and many have vacancies for those seeking jobs abroad. In addition, American pilots taking jobs abroad may find many benefits not available in the U.S. market. Apart from salary, the other benefits of the job can include stays at luxurious villas or apartments, five star hotel stays during trips, medical insurance coverage and flight discounts for family and friends. The salary range is also very extensive. Depending on experience and seniority, airline pilots typically earn between $25,000 and $160,000 annually.
Airline job seekers will be asked to provide a recommendation letter. Getting admission to and graduating from any world-renowned flying academy has its own perks. If an applicant graduated from a flying academy, the academy could help with building flight hours as a certificated flight instructor.
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