is there light?

lilsnoboardr22

Well-Known Member
Hi everyone,
I read most of these posts, and although i havent posted much myself i read a lot into these forums to stay current with the aviation industry. I currently have one semester left in my degree in college i am 21 years old, and am currently working on my PPL. my dream job would be a airlines pilot, however, all the posts are negative talk. Is there any light at the end of the tunnel? should i go to law school or something else and fly for fun? what is the outlook for pilots and should i consider this a career or not? Any advice or comments would be appreciated. I just am looking for the truth.
 

PGT

Well-Known Member
You have to keep in mind that when the industry is in the downward cycle, most posts on here will be negative and when everyone is hiring, most posts will be positive.

The information on the forums seems to be the extremes (as I have found) so take it for what it's worth
 

lilsnoboardr22

Well-Known Member
So in 2 years or so when i am looking will there be hiring? do you think that in the future 5-10 years down the road when i am applying to the majors, or maybe a company like netjets the industry will not have tanked?
 

PGT

Well-Known Member
Nobody knows how the industry will be in 2,5, or 10 years...it's very unpredictable.

What I was trying to say is that you will hear a lot of success stories, guys that got hired with airlines right after flight school, and you will hear horror stories on the forums; you won't hear about many average pilots.

Don't get discouraged, the industry will rebound but nobody knows when.

What do I know, I'm just a college student :)
 

Patrick

Well-Known Member
This is an up and down industry. Always has been. They thing to keep in mind is that the best time to be training is when the industry is in a slump, as when the industry picks up you'll be in the right place at the right time to get hired.

Unfortunately, my crystal ball is no better than yours, so when it will pick up is anyone's guess. However, if nothing else changes between now and when a good portion of the major airline pilots start reaching 65 (2-4 years from now) there should be a good bit of upward movement from the regionals to the majors, which should mean a good bit of hiring at the regional level.
 

Brian Z

Well-Known Member
"Be greedy when people are afraid and be afraid when people are greedy."

In other words this is a great time to be training. It is true that it is hard to tell when the cycle will go into an upswing, but if you wait until the upswing it will be too late. If you do your training now you will have it paid and maybe some money in the bank when the hiring starts again. You will get in soon enough you may have a high enough seniority number to shield against furlough when the cycle downturns.
 

Matt13C

Well-Known Member
I wonder the percentage of pilots who will reach the age 65 rule within the next 5-10 years.

Would be an interesting statistic to see. I wonder though, how many pilots will actually get the call up to the bigs. Do you think they will take it as an opportunity to sub out more of their flying to regionals?

If you are one of the first pilots hired when they senior captians start retiring it could work out nicely. May not sit on the bottom of the seniority list too long.
 

Derg

New Arizona, Il Duce/Warlord
Staff member
There's some light at the end of the tunnel. Even if there wasn't, chances are you'd still want to fly, yes? :)
 

ChristheCFII

Well-Known Member
When I entered my University's flight program back in '03, everyone said my timing was perfect. The industry would rebound and thousands of pilots would retire just before my graduation date. Well...

I graduated a year and a half ago, got an excellent CFI job that pays a decent salary and saw several coworkers move on to the airlines. Just as I approached the end of my year-long contract, with a bonus in hand to get me through the rough times and tons of advice from friends on which airlines to apply to, crash! The economy, the airlines, everything took a dump.

I'm glad I have the same job and feel bad for our new hires who could barely get on with us after amassing 8,000 hours in a (insert shiny jet here). Most of my friends who got hired right out of school are on furlough and the rest of us are lucky to be instructors.

You never know what will happen, so if you're looking for job security, get out while you still can. I'm still hoping to ride out the storm and get to that dream job, but then how long before everything goes down the pipes all over again? If this wasn't something I wanted to do since I was 3, I'd be elsewhere by now.

There's a light my friend, but it's kind of hard to see.
 

jtrain609

Uniting the black vote.
Hi everyone,
I read most of these posts, and although i havent posted much myself i read a lot into these forums to stay current with the aviation industry. I currently have one semester left in my degree in college i am 21 years old, and am currently working on my PPL. my dream job would be a airlines pilot, however, all the posts are negative talk. Is there any light at the end of the tunnel? should i go to law school or something else and fly for fun? what is the outlook for pilots and should i consider this a career or not? Any advice or comments would be appreciated. I just am looking for the truth.
I'm on furloughed from a regional right now, taking the LSAT in December and applying to law school for the fall of 2009.
 

Number1atNumber2

Tries to keep it fun.
If I knew what I know now instead when I first started flying I'd probably just have kept it as a hobby. It will take A LONG time working in this industry before you make decent money in it. (Note: I said decent, not lots of) I had no idea how low the wages were when I started out. It never was about the money for me though, however as I've gotten older that's become more and more important.

You HAVE to do this because you love it. Even during the 'good times' you will be putting up with a lot of BS.

Right now I'm very lucky to have a job at all. Keep in mind, even if you do get a job flying for a living, you will have to deal with the down cycles. Each time one hits, job security can become a big concern, even if you've been at it for a few years.

IMO, this is not an industry I'd honestly recommend people pursue. But if you love it, well you love it, and if you want it bad enough, go for it. Most industries go through their good times and there bad times, but aviation goes to extremes. I know more than a few people that went to work for the regionals 3-4 years ago that are now out of work.

Will things get better? Absolutely. But they will also get worse again after they get better, then improve, and so on and so on... You have to know in your own self if that's something you can put up with throughout your career.

You have to be okay with being away from home a lot and having it be very difficult to maintain relationships/marriages. It most certianly can be done, but it WILL be more difficult than it would be with a normal 9-5 type job. If you have a family, you will at times miss kids' football games, graduations, and often be at work on holidays. I don't mean to sound all doom and gloom, but these are things you will have to consider.

On the flip side, you will get to have an office with an exceptional view at times. :) I do love what I do and am very grateful I've been able to do it. Most pilots I've known have had thought more than once: good God why do I still put up with this? Yet we still come back for more.

/ramble
 

mtsu_av8er

Well-Known Member
I love my job. I say if you wanna fly, go for it.

I have never woken up wishing that I had gone into another field.
 

Bigey

Well-Known Member
I think theres very few career choices that are guaranteed to keep there job minus being fired, and that's being a civil servant or a lawyer. And even then, the government is always looking at how to do stuff cheaper and contract it out.

Aviation has cycles. Theres good, and bad inevitably. You just have to find out if you're down for the ride when it gets tough, or you're passion for flying is strictly for the enjoyment of it. But the way i catch it is, it's your dream, you already probably have the motivation and determination to do the job regardless of the situation currently.

Despite the industry right now, i'd say go with someone you're gonna love. Yes, it eventually becomes a job, just like all careers, but remember why you chose this field, and it's not because of the money. It's a lifestyle. If you can cope with it, i'd say you'd be good. :rawk:
 
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