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Old 11-29-2012, 12:24 PM   #31  
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I felt compelled to dig this one out of the grave, because I feel strongly that the op was putting out a negative impression to any potential aviators who may read it. Shameful really. There could be a teenager - or any young person, somewhere with ambitions of the open skies crying his eyes out thinking he hasn't got a chance from reading this drivel.

While it is important to make the realities known, I don't think this post honestly reflects them. Especially when the business is constantly changing. As if the military hero self worship were not enough of a pant load, the words used in describing the obstacles, pitfalls and challenges of this business were neck deep in melodrama and exaggeration, and sound like the words of a raving burnout quite honestly. If the going were really as tough as described, there would be a quarter as many professional pilots as there are - military too. And the world needs pilots, and even more as time will tell.

To any prospective aviator, I would say don't be discouraged by what you read, because if there is anything some pilots love doing, besides flying, it's complaining. Trying to make a happy life in this profession is not always an A to B journey. There is no method to follow, only an outline. And in that outline are any number of avenues. But there is always room at the bottom if you really want to be here. Always someone quitting, retiring or moving up. Always an open door somewhere. And on that note, there is more to a life in aviation than the majors. We all share the same sky, so take one day at a time - sound advice for anybody. Set realistic building blocks for your goals. Don't stress out trying to forecast the future, and get yourself a seat in that cockpit. Every hour you log is another feather in your cap. Perhaps most of all, surround yourself with positive people who encourage you, and give it to you straight. But who don't treat you like a snowball in hell either.

Best of fortune to all the young bloods and old dogs!
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Old 11-29-2012, 12:43 PM   #32  
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Yup, ALWAYS room at the bottom! Where after $80,000+ in loans you can find yourself in a $15,000-$25,000/year job! Welcome aboard!
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Old 11-29-2012, 01:49 PM   #33  
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Yup, ALWAYS room at the bottom! Where after $80,000+ in loans you can find yourself in a $15,000-$25,000/year job! Welcome aboard!
There is always an exit door too if you choose to use it... Those low base figures get thrown around an awful lot. But there aren't many jobs that pay you like a king right out of school. And like any seniority based profession, that's how it is. Though not entirely as it should be... Just don't invest X number of years flying for Bum******* Airways, then wonder how on Earth your seniority number could get yanked out from under you when the doors close. Finding an employer who (likely) isn't going away makes a pilot's life a lot easier.
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Old 11-29-2012, 02:25 PM   #34  
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There is always an exit door too if you choose to use it... Those low base figures get thrown around an awful lot. But there aren't many jobs that pay you like a king right out of school. And like any seniority based profession, that's how it is. Though not entirely as it should be... Just don't invest X number of years flying for Bum******* Airways, then wonder how on Earth your seniority number could get yanked out from under you when the doors close. Finding an employer who (likely) isn't going away makes a pilot's life a lot easier.
Unfortunately the exit door becomes hard to push after investing that kind of money in a degree/flight training. The "exit door" mentality is thrown around just as much as the low starting pay. The fact is many pilots are stuck in a position they can't reasonably leave even if they wanted to. Mortgage, bills, children, etc aren't paying themselves, and to leave the job at 30-50 y/o to start over again at something else is not an easy task, or a fiscally sound one either.

Moreover, those low base figures will continue to slap you in the face throughout your career if your aren't lucky. It's not just green CFI new hires that are earning pennies. I by no means am a seasoned 59 y/o Delta captain, but I have seen three airlines and three under $30k starting salaries and have chosen to not have any children yet because of it.

"Finding an employer who (likely) isn't going away makes a pilot's life a lot easier."

I'm glad you had the crystal ball here, but this is easier said than done. Plenty of legacies/majors have closed their doors in the last 15 years, even more regionals that 10 years ago looked great. Nothing is certain. Good for you if you have been one the lucky ones. But this is the reality.

I'll add the positive that I have travelled A LOT and enjoyed it. 23 countries and counting and don't regret that part at all.
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Old 12-04-2012, 07:27 PM   #35  
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some of this is way BS old news.... im interning at UAL and even with the ****ty contract negotiations going on there are many pilots I have met ( single & married ) that own vacation homes, ferraris, porsche race cars, boats, yadda yadda yadda you wouldnt believe how much crap pilots are buying and selling 24/7.... once you go through all the crap at the bottom life becomes great. Too much bs'ing, trust the people who actually deal with what is currently going on. Even at the regional level life is ok..... unless your some idiot flying for key lime....

Remember there is always going to be that 2% of pilots who B*tch and moan about everything..... they're at every airline.... trust me.
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Old 12-04-2012, 09:30 PM   #36  
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some of this is way BS old news.... im interning at UAL and even with the ****ty contract negotiations going on there are many pilots I have met ( single & married ) that own vacation homes, ferraris, porsche race cars, boats, yadda yadda yadda you wouldnt believe how much crap pilots are buying and selling 24/7.... once you go through all the crap at the bottom life becomes great. Too much bs'ing, trust the people who actually deal with what is currently going on. Even at the regional level life is ok..... unless your some idiot flying for key lime....

Remember there is always going to be that 2% of pilots who B*tch and moan about everything..... they're at every airline.... trust me.
OK so you are interning at UAL, which means you are enrolled in an university. So, out of curiosity, how much will the monthly payment be on the debt you have accumulated learning to fly and obtaining your college degree?

How much do you expert to earn, per month, when you graduate from university? Who will be providing you with health insurance when you graduate and how much will it cost you do you think?

Let's start with the answers to those questions, then we can evaluate if the b*ing and moaning is warranted.
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Old 12-04-2012, 09:59 PM   #37  
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OK so you are interning at UAL, which means you are enrolled in an university. So, out of curiosity, how much will the monthly payment be on the debt you have accumulated learning to fly and obtaining your college degree?

How much do you expert to earn, per month, when you graduate from university? Who will be providing you with health insurance when you graduate and how much will it cost you do you think?

Let's start with the answers to those questions, then we can evaluate if the b*ing and moaning is warranted.

There are only a few experts in this industry, I am not one of them.
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Old 12-05-2012, 07:18 AM   #38  
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Originally Posted by wrxsteve View Post
some of this is way BS old news.... im interning at UAL and even with the ****ty contract negotiations going on there are many pilots I have met ( single & married ) that own vacation homes, ferraris, porsche race cars, boats, yadda yadda yadda you wouldnt believe how much crap pilots are buying and selling 24/7.... once you go through all the crap at the bottom life becomes great. Too much bs'ing, trust the people who actually deal with what is currently going on. Even at the regional level life is ok..... unless your some idiot flying for key lime....

Remember there is always going to be that 2% of pilots who B*tch and moan about everything..... they're at every airline.... trust me.
The people who you see at majors right now are part of a different generation and a different industry. They took a big hit with bankruptcies but many made some decent money before that. It is the people who got stuck at regionals for the last decade making nothing that represent the new normal.
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Old 12-05-2012, 08:29 AM   #39  
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Originally Posted by wrxsteve View Post
some of this is way BS old news.... im interning at UAL and even with the ****ty contract negotiations going on there are many pilots I have met ( single & married ) that own vacation homes, ferraris, porsche race cars, boats, yadda yadda yadda you wouldnt believe how much crap pilots are buying and selling 24/7.... once you go through all the crap at the bottom life becomes great. Too much bs'ing, trust the people who actually deal with what is currently going on. Even at the regional level life is ok..... unless your some idiot flying for key lime....

Remember there is always going to be that 2% of pilots who B*tch and moan about everything..... they're at every airline.... trust me.
You lack perspective. Even though we don't make what we used to (I'm LCAL), you're still around some of the highest paid pilots in the world. If you're planning to fly, you'll understand what they're complaining about after you've worked at your first regional for 6 months or so. As an intern, you're also not gone for days at a time with a young family at home. While it is a great job in many respects, you haven't lived or even seen the ugly parts yet.
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