“This is the life I’ve always dreamt of. I want to fly.” Agamya Sharma, Paris Air Student
There are countless people who feel the same way as Agamya. Since its inception around the turn of the century, aviation career opportunities have sparked the curiosity of many and instilled a dream of flying in aspiring pilots. When you talk to just about any pilot, they’ll tell you that there’s nothing like soaring high above the clouds. It’s a feeling that can’t be replicated.
Oftentimes, people don’t realize the many different aviation career opportunities that pilots have. Yes, you can fly for a major airline. But did you know that you can also be an emergency rescue pilot? From flying for the airlines to flight instructing to search and rescue, opportunities abound in aviation.
And with increasing travel demand among other variables, the outlook is bright for pilot jobs.
Here’s some other statistics that demonstrate the bright outlook for pilot jobs:
- According to CAE, 260,000 more pilots will be needed over the next decade.
- About 14,500 pilots will be hired per year over the next decade.
- There is an expected growth rate of 6% or 7,700 from 2020 to 2031.
Now that we’ve established why now is a great time to become a pilot, let’s explore some other reasons why you may want to consider learning to fly.
Deciding to Become a Pilot
Why Become a Pilot?
Flying for a career has many unique advantages that make it attractive.
Some of the reasons people choose to become pilots are:
- The joy of flying: For many, the ability to get paid for doing something they genuinely love is ideal. If you have a passion for flying, getting paid to do it as a career could be the perfect fit for you.
- Travel opportunities: Airline, corporate and charter pilots have the opportunity to travel frequently and explore new places and cultures. If flying for a major airline, pilots can have the opportunity to fly internationally and explore other countries.
- Unique work environment: Flying is a complete departure from the nine-to-five office environment. Instead of working from a desk, the cockpit is your work station. You’ll be traveling great distances and seeing the world from above instead of going to the same place every day.
- Unique days: Each day is truly different as a pilot. Weather, traffic, delays and more yield unique challenges that ensure your flight is always different from the one before.
- Challenge: Pilots should enjoy being challenged. Flying requires mental and physical stamina with new challenges to face on a daily basis.
- Development of leadership skills: Pilots must make executive decisions on behalf of the crew and flight.
- Plentiful career opportunities: As you’ll see in the next section, there are many different types of flying jobs that are very different from one another.
Aviation Career Opportunities for Pilots
After you earn the necessary ratings, the opportunities abound for where your wings can take you. It’s important to consider your desired lifestyle and what kind of job would suit you best. In addition to doing research, it’s a good idea to talk to your flight instructors and pilots you know to learn the ins and outs of different types of flying jobs.
Here are some of the main career paths pilots can choose from.
Airline pilots are what most people think of when they hear the word “pilot.” They can work for regional and domestic airlines or the majors like American Airlines or Delta that fly internationally.
The average salary is $84,372 and the position requires an airline transport pilot (ATP) rating. A good way to gain the required hours of 1,500 for the ATP rating is to become a flight instructor.
While there are many benefits to being an airline pilot, there are also some drawbacks such as irregular schedules and delays. It’s important to take the positives and challenges into account before making a decision on whether this career path is right for you.
Corporate pilots fly company aircraft instead of flying commercial air travelers. Their average salary is $87,661. This position requires a commercial pilot rating.
Being a corporate pilot could be a good alternative for someone who wants to fly passengers but would like an alternative to an airline.
Charter pilots typically fly business associates in smaller aircraft directly to their destination. They often work for airports such as Paris Air. This service is especially useful when companies need to travel to smaller locations without an airport offering commercial air service.
The average salary is $87,597. There is an expected growth rate of 6% between 2018 and 2028. Charter pilots need their commercial pilot rating.
Being a flight instructor can be great for someone trying to build up their hours before flying for an airline. It’s also a great option for people who enjoy teaching others and sharing their love for aviation. Flight instructors can work for a flight school or teach students on their own independently.
The average salary is $66,373 and they need a certified flight instructor (CFI) rating.
Cargo pilots transport shipments for cargo companies such as UPS, FedEx and USPS. They can fly domestically and internationally.
The average salary is $63,988 and they need a commercial pilot rating.
Agricultural pilots, or crop dusters, fly over crops to spray pesticides and herbicides. They can work for large-scale agricultural operations or individual farmers.
The average salary is $84,372.
An ambulatory pilot transports medical patients to hospitals. They can also fly doctors to and from hospitals.
The average salary is $134,630.
Government Service Pilot
A government service pilot transports goods, equipment and individuals for the federal government. The average salary is $202,180.
An aerial photographer takes pictures of the ground and landmarks from the sky. Their work can be used for cartography and even in movies.
The average salary is $80,832.
Become a Pilot with Paris Air
Whatever your desired career path, Paris Air offers comprehensive flight training to prepare you for your dream job.