NEW! - GI-Bill TrainingFind VA-Approved Schools
Find Aviation Schools Flight SchoolsAircraft Maintenance TrainingHelicopter SchoolsFlight Dispatcher CoursesAir Traffic Controller SchoolsAviation Management DegreesAvionics Technician TrainingCertified Flight Instructor TrainingFlight Instructor TrainingInternational Aviation SchoolsInstrument Rating CoursesMulti Engine TrainingSeaplane Rating CoursesSport Pilot SchoolsTime Building SchoolsTurbine & Jet Transition CoursesType Rating CoursesUnmanned Aircraft Systems
Airline Pilot TrainingFind Out What It Takes to Become An Airline Pilot
By Kyle Garrett
You should consider a four-year college degree a necessary part of your airline pilot training today. However, some regional airlines do hire pilots with only a high school diploma. In the future, you can expect more and more airlines to require four-year college degrees. Obviously, people who have degrees in aviation-related fields like aeronautical engineering will enjoy an advantage during hiring. Find out more about airline pilot jobs.
Airline Pilot Training Paths
If you want to become an airline pilot, there are two routes to take: military training and civilian training. Military training is exactly that. Join the armed forces and learn to fly courtesy of taxpayer dollars. In the past, the vast majority of airline pilots went this route. But recent defense budget cuts and a general shift towards unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) means the military is not training anywhere near the number of pilots it used to. For the first time in history, the majority of new airline pilots are being trained in the private sector by flight schools, and academies.
Ab-Initio Airline Pilot Training
Many flight schools and pilot academies now offer ab-initio airline pilot training, which means "from the beginning". You can sign up for these schools with no flying experience at all, and their training programs will get you through your private, commercial, and ATP licenses with all of the additional ratings included. When you graduate, you'll be eligible to apply for first officer jobs on regional and low-cost airlines. Some of the larger flight academies have partnered with regional airlines and even offer guaranteed job interviews with their partners.
Once you've landed that airline pilot job, you can expect to take recurrent training every six months either with your airline, or at an airline-approved location from a private company like SimCom or FlightSafety. Constant training is part of life as an airline pilot.