Jump to content

Future of the Helicopter Industry


Recommended Posts

I just want to get the impressions from those that have been around the block as to what they think is going to happen to the industry in the next couple of years. I think we all know that its not so hot right now, but considering that there are two wars going on and a lot of people in the military logging more and more flight time, is it possible that people who got all their time the civilian way are going to be pushed out? In other words, could this whole industry turn into a mostly ex-military market?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have the same fears. When,(if), I ever get to a thousand hours, will it then be two, or even three thousand? All those pilots coming back with tons of hours, all turbine, and "real" experience. The rest of us don't stand a chance? :huh:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Using the post Viet Nam war as a reference, you will not see the same events happen as we did after Viet Nam. First of all the military is not training pilots to the numbers they did for Viet Nam. Next, the military is requiring a much longer commitment after flight training. Further more, the National Guard and Reserves are taking a lot of the burden of this war, compared to Viet Nam where they had very little use. Forth, the military is using a lot of contractors to support their operations. To a much larger degree than during the Viet Nam war. And Air America doesn't count as they were a government organization.


Under law the National Guard and Reserve personnel's jobs are saved for them if they are called up. So they will have a much smaller effect on the job market when they return. There are fewer regular military pilots being trained and to be let loose on the job market. Plus the contract pilots are already working for a company. Some as full time and others as contract pilots. They too will have some effect on the job market. The pilots who were trained during the early part of Viet Nam are starting to reach retirement age. So these pilots will be starting to retire and these numbers will rise for the next 6 to 8 years and then start dropping off.


I entered the job market right after Viet Nam ended. Things did not happen fast. Spent a little extra time as a CFI and advanced to Chief CFI at a 141 school. Kept my eyes and ears open and put myself forward for any interesting job that presented itself. Of course that meant I had to move. I have seen too many guys out there, whining about the lack of jobs. When I would give them some leads I had but was not interested in, they then stated they were unwilling to move. At that point, my opinion is that their lack of job success is their fault.


Up until after Viet Nam, being a military pilot put you ahead of the civilian trained pilots. When the supply of military pilots dried up, employers had to hire more and more civilian trained pilots. And they liked what they saw. The civilian trained pilots were just as good as the military pilots and just as easy to train. So being a military pilot is no longer as much of the in as it was before.


So there will be jobs out there, but you must be willing to move, keep searching and be a professional.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...