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r22butters
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Over these past several years looking at the job ads, if there has been one "constant", it has been Helicopters Inc. :mellow: . It seems as if they are always looking for new pilots. Why is this? Does flying ENG really suck? :o Or, are its pilots just building so much time, so quickly, that they're always moving on? :huh:

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ENG is a pretty lousy job. I did it for a little while, but only part time. The pay is low and you are on call 24/7 with only every other weekend off. That seems to be how most ENG operations work. The flying can be interesting, though. You often work a split shift, a couple hours in the morning and a couple in the late afternoon with a 15 minute response time during the day and 45 at night. It's pretty much your whole life. Don't count on your time off, either. You will probably asked to work overtime when they can't find anyone to cover your days off. It burns pilots out pretty fast, hence the turnover.

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Most of the posts are for part time back up pilots. They only like to hire people that live locally to be the back up. I know a few ENG pilots and they have a hard time finding back ups because most pilots with those hours already have a full time job.

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ENG is a job. Just like everything else in this world, some people like it, some don’t. The interesting part is; ENG is now seen as a legit career position rather than a stepping stone, slash, time-building gig. And why not? If you’re not into big-time socializing (partying) and into being a homebody ready respond at a moments notice, then ENG can be something worthwhile. Sure, the downside is the amount of time you’re held responsible but like I said, it’s a job……………………

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ENG is a pretty lousy job. I did it for a little while, but only part time. The pay is low and you are on call 24/7 with only every other weekend off. That seems to be how most ENG operations work. The flying can be interesting, though. You often work a split shift, a couple hours in the morning and a couple in the late afternoon with a 15 minute response time during the day and 45 at night. It's pretty much your whole life. Don't count on your time off, either. You will probably asked to work overtime when they can't find anyone to cover your days off. It burns pilots out pretty fast, hence the turnover.

 

What kind of quals do ENG pilots need for a "no life" job?

 

Thanks

 

Rotorrodent:rolleyes:

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The helicopter life is a tough gig. Always a trade-off for what you want. I have chosen to work in the GOM, make decent money, get good benefits and have a lot of time off. In return, I get to spend half my life away from home, in the middle of nowhere, in Louisiana. I would not consider being chained to a helicopter 24 hours a day as something worthwhile. At one point in my career, yes, I would have. But I don't think it would have lasted long. I don't think that many other people would, either. It's a lot more "take" than "give" in most ENG jobs. You don't have to be a big partier to appreciate time off. Something most ENG pilots get very little of. That is why I think ENG has a lot of turnover and not many career pilots. I'm sure there are some good ENG jobs. But they probably don't open up very often and the 1500-2000 hour pilots ain't gonna get them.

Edited by helonorth
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Different strokes for different folks.

 

During the normal journey of a helicopter pilot career, at one time or another, life becomes more important than flying. That is, the sacrifices a pilot usually would make to further his/her career change along the way and they change because 2 distinct things become more important. They are TIME and/or MONEY.

 

Some feel that, even though they are strapped to a helicopter 24/7, it’s more important to kiss the wife goodnight and tuck the kids into bed every night. These folks will sacrifice, what some may consider a lousy flying job, to have that balance in their lives. Some pilots don’t see it that way. Some feel a 7&7 or 14&14 as a good schedule because of the consecutive days off. However, some see this as a poor schedule due to the consecutive days on which completely removes them from the family core. The fact of the matter is; the majority of helicopter jobs available today are basically 24/7 jobs regardless of the time on/off differential. It becomes a simple math calculation to realize this.

 

As far as the money part goes, ENG pilots are pulling down $70K base pay, plus OT and benefits. Therefore, for them, that “strap” becomes more tolerable because of the balance between the time and money sacrifice.

 

Lastly, no doubt, there are lousy helicopter jobs out here. Lousy jobs which people will stand in line for to do for free. The reality is, to an unemployed helicopter pilot, there is no such thing as a lousy helicopter job…………..

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Different strokes for different folks.

 

During the normal journey of a helicopter pilot career, at one time or another, life becomes more important than flying. That is, the sacrifices a pilot usually would make to further his/her career change along the way and they change because 2 distinct things become more important. They are TIME and/or MONEY.

 

Some feel that, even though they are strapped to a helicopter 24/7, its more important to kiss the wife goodnight and tuck the kids into bed every night. These folks will sacrifice, what some may consider a lousy flying job, to have that balance in their lives. Some pilots dont see it that way. Some feel a 7&7 or 14&14 as a good schedule because of the consecutive days off. However, some see this as a poor schedule due to the consecutive days on which completely removes them from the family core. The fact of the matter is; the majority of helicopter jobs available today are basically 24/7 jobs regardless of the time on/off differential. It becomes a simple math calculation to realize this.

 

As far as the money part goes, ENG pilots are pulling down $70K base pay, plus OT and benefits. Therefore, for them, that strap becomes more tolerable because of the balance between the time and money sacrifice.

 

Lastly, no doubt, there are lousy helicopter jobs out here. Lousy jobs which people will stand in line for to do for free. The reality is, to an unemployed helicopter pilot, there is no such thing as a lousy helicopter job…………..

$70,000 for an ENG pilot? That would be nice, but HeliInc's starting pay is $50K and no 401K until one year. It's a slight step up from instructing. Except you have no time off.

Edited by helonorth
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Lol, slight step? I'd love to know where you instructed.... Wanna help me get a new job there!? :P

$70,000 for an ENG pilot? That would be nice, but HeliInc's starting pay is $50K and no 401K until one year. It's a slight step up from instructing. Except you have no time off.

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I look at it this way: most pilots are paid a daily rate. Your lower seniority EMS or GOM pilot is making about $300 a day, plus per diem (and offshore pay for the GOM pilots). The daily rate works out to be about $150 for a ENG pilot making $50,000 (trust me, that's what most are making). So you work twice as much for half the pay. All for the priveledge of being on call 24 hours. I was offered an ENG job a couple years ago. Not with Heli Inc, but almost identical pay and benefits. When I asked why the pay was so low, the operator told me I could make it up in overtime. I would already be working 26-27 days per month and on call 24 hours! Even if you did make $70K (you won't) your still making a low daily rate. You're just making up for it "in volume". Now, there are a few M-F jobs in the GOM. No nights. No weekends. No on call. Starting pay: $80,000.

Edited by helonorth
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Some of the operators have geographical pay. That is, you live in a high cost area, you get paid more. However, no matter where you live, in the end, it balances out. Plus, the overtime is applied when the pilot is actually called in. In one instance, I know of a guy who made approximately $1000 in one day flying ENG when he applied “standby pay” plus “call in pay” plus the “OT”.

 

Yes, the ENG thing can be taxing but, depending on the market your in, the chance of being called in is the exception, not the norm. In any case, a 40 hr week, Mon-Fri, day shift, with a slim chance of being called in is not bad for a helicopter gig. Especially for those pilots who can’t be away from home for extended periods of time. Some will feel $80K (MONEY) GOM job doesn’t make up for the time (TIME) removed from the homestead. Then again, some pilots feel a 24/7 logging job for months on end for a given pay is worthwhile. Howabout a 6 month tuna boat trip? Wanna work a 6&6 month shift in the Middle East? What about a 20/10 sling contract in Boogers Montana? Or what about a being strapped to a corporate beeper 365 days a year for 120K? Basically it’s up to the individual and a matter of opinion of what’s best.

 

When it comes down to it, it’s all about the sacrifices pilots make between the time given and/or the money made to do their jobs and there is no right or wrong in it. It’s what works best for the individual and their families at that moment in their career. However, you can rest assured; career priorities will change as life takes hold..….

Edited by Spike
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