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seth d
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I know the job market changes all the time, but what is it really like out there? I have about 10 hours fw, and just a helicopter discovery flight. I would truly be happy flying either, but I wanted to get a since of the job market. All the helicopter flight school websites say it is a great time to learn, that Vietnam era pilots are retiring and in a few years helicopter pilots will be in high demand with great pay. Is this true? Also if anyone on here knows about the current airline job market, I hear a lot of major airlines have laid off pilots. What can you guys make of this?

Thanks for any input

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All the helicopter flight school websites say it is a great time to learn, that Vietnam era pilots are retiring and in a few years helicopter pilots will be in high demand with great pay. Is this true?

 

Anytime is a great time to learn, but now is a horrid time to try getting a heli flying job. Schools have been hanging that "Vietnam pilots retiring" carrot in the face of students for over a decade and it still isn't happening, at least not fast enough to be worth mentioning.

And heli pilots are always in demand, the schools just don't tell you which ones. The ones in demand are the highly experienced ones, not the low timers.

And the pay? Ask a first year CFI here what they make, sadly it ain't much. Stick it out though and in 5 to 10 years and yes you'll have a very nice wage. It'll still be peanuts though compared to the airlines.

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Airplane career: Less hands on, lots more money at the top

 

Helicopter career: More involved in flying, less money all over the place. (although most entry level jobs pay better heli vs FW)

 

So if you like sitting on your ass and getting paid a ridiculous sum of money. Airplanes are for you.

 

If you can't understand why anyone would ever turn on an auto pilot and you're just amazed you get paid for this, then you're a helicopter pilot.

 

Either way, it sucks to be low time, it's quite possible you won't be home very often, and you spend a lot of time looking for work.

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The industry SUCKS FOR JOBS RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

There is a small chance of moving through the program and finding work as a CFI. But there is a bigger chance you won't!

 

But if you want it you can get it.... JUST DO NOT TAKE OUT LOANS!![/b]

Edited by CFIAP5544
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I wouldn't say, "just don't take out a loan" if you're gonna do the training. Just be aware that when it comes to repaying the loan in the first few years, it's close to impossible. My wife done the whole Sallie Mae loan thing about 3-4 years ago. She was lucky enough to get a job instructing full time at our school. During her time instructing she was also working 30 hours a week at Starbucks. Even though she was at work about 90 hours a week, she still struggled with the bills and needed help from her Dad from time to time just to stay afloat.

 

Now we're married and I'm going through the whole instructing gig and we're still struggling. Luckily I have some savings to fall back on to get us through the next year or so.

 

It certainly ain't easy for the first 4 years or so but, if you work hard and have some kind of financial plan to get you through, things will get a lot easier once you get that first turbine job.

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I will submit that it's not just the aviation industry that is hurtin' right now...

 

 

Seth, I just wouldn't suggest giving up any income that you currently have coming in. Flying is an addicted, fed whether the market is doing well or not. The market will turn around, just a matter of time.

 

 

 

CHAD

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well it's very rough right now, there is quite the doom and gloom going around right now for me and for the industry it seems. I have 350tt but cant get any school to even bite. During the job fair at the heli expo this year most of the major companies were there but thats all that they were doing...making a show as none were hiring but were happy to say will put your resume on file for later (this was from a higher time guy I know 2000tt +) So I'm staying positive but it is very hard right now it seems, flight schools seem to just barely be holding on to what they got and in a lot of cases letting go of what they got.

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Hi all....

 

I would have to echo most of the sentiments here with respect to flying work. One thing I keep going back to is that there are no straight lines in nature. Sound, light, everything travels in waves. And in the somewhat un-natural world of business, things manage to travel in waves and cycles too. Right now, there are a whole lot of us inexperienced helicopter pilots out there trying to become experienced (Supply) The economy has an effect on all industries, and as a result there are more lower time pilots than jobs. (Demand)

 

So, what to do... what to do! Hang in there, look and work for those few opportunities that do come up, strive to be as professional as possible and eventually you can work your way into that dream job. The whole flight school sales pitch of the vietnam era pilots didnt quite happen as predicted, but those fine pilots will eventually begin to retire. Think of the slow down in flight training that is occurring now, and move that bubble a little further down the road and there is another small opening for some of us lower time pilots.

 

Fly safe, demand excellence and safety from you and your students, and always strive to learn something new everyday.

 

One more thing..... If you are a CFI looking for a job, make yourself a CFII and your chances go up.

Edited by rollthbns
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