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Helicopter Pilot Shortage


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I was at work and metioned I am planning to get my rotorwing private pilot's license. The Flight Operations Manager told me to just get my Commercial License because there is a shortage of helicopter pilots. Is this true? I am 42, considered "over-the-hill" for a new helicopter pilot according to what I've read.

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Yes there is a shortage, but a commercial rating won't get you a job. A CFII will. 42 is not too old - if you do everything right, you can be flying in the GOM (or Vegas, or AK, or the Ditch) at 45.

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Wouldn't it be fairer to say that there is a shortage of more experienced pilots?

 

From what I gather, there are some CFII's still looking for jobs after months of looking - apparently.

 

It has been predicted for some time that the Vietnam Vet pilots, who have loads of hours, will be retiring and leaving a gap to be filled by those lower down in the food chain. Whilst this seems to be happening, it doesn't appear that those in the GOM are lowering their hour requirements. In fact, it appears that even minimums for instruction have gone up - from what used to be 200ish to a common requirement of 300 hours to comply with insurance policies.

 

So, isn't "shortage" still a little bit over stating the reality for those with less than a 1000 hours?

 

For those who've been around a while - how do you see the retirement of the Vets effecting those lower down on the ladder? Lower minimums? More training perhaps? Better salaries? Better jobs sooner?

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I was at work and metioned I am planning to get my rotorwing private pilot's license. The Flight Operations Manager told me to just get my Commercial License because there is a shortage of helicopter pilots. Is this true? I am 42, considered "over-the-hill" for a new helicopter pilot according to what I've read.

 

Here's a thread from the JH board about that subject:

 

http://www.helicopterforums.com/talkshop/m...176.html#282379

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Thank you to everyone who responded with such great info. I have decided to go for the career change to Helo Pilot. I have been in my Engineering career for 24 years and its time for a change. See you at the airport!

 

One of the causes of pilot shortages is from universal helicopters based in AZ. Back in 2003-2004 every student that they had they took complete advantage of them. Training was $62,000 but, every student I know of spent well over $100,000 and that is not including the UVSC program which is $17,000. Alot of these students had to drop out because of lack of funds and if they couldn't get the funds they were kicked out. This happened to more than 30 students. Just think if the students paid an extra $38,000 x 30 students = $1,140,000.00 that the school took from the students. I want our money back.

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