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Old 01-08-2017, 06:30 AM   #11
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If you are enlisted as an E-3 in the unit as a Pilot Selectee, doing StuFlt garbage every UTA...can you just up and say "LOL naw changed my mind"???

Why the huge delay getting you into AMS and UPT?
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Old 01-08-2017, 06:39 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by FLY6584 View Post
This couldn't be more wrong.

The military background helps you get hired by a Legacy with a lot less hours than straight civilian.

The quickest and more importantly the cheaper way to the airlines is to go to UPT with the guard/reserves which gets you all of your ratings free of charge. Hit 750 hours and get your restricted ATP, also courtesy of having a military background, and then immediately go fly for the regionals. Continue to fly at the regionals and in the Guard until a Legacy calls.

Or you could spend a lot more money getting your ratings, slug it out as a CFI until 1500hrs, go to a regional, and slug it out there even longer because your hour requirement will be higher than a military guy.

IMO this is a no brainer.
Beware the Air Force's golden boys, they like to tell you fairy tales about how great everything is.

If your unit is already jerking you around and putting you on the back burner, they're sending you a message: you aren't a priority and may never be a priority. The people that they care about will be taken care of--you aren't one of those people.

One of my friends spent 10 years flying tankers on active duty, and he still ended up spending about 5 years flying for a regional before getting hired by Alaska Airlines. Fly6584 is correct in saying that a military background can help with hiring, but it's a long way from being anything that resembles a golden ticket.
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Old 01-08-2017, 07:37 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by FLY6584 View Post
This couldn't be more wrong.

The military background helps you get hired by a Legacy with a lot less hours than straight civilian.

The quickest and more importantly the cheaper way to the airlines is to go to UPT with the guard/reserves which gets you all of your ratings free of charge. Hit 750 hours and get your restricted ATP, also courtesy of having a military background, and then immediately go fly for the regionals. Continue to fly at the regionals and in the Guard until a Legacy calls.

Or you could spend a lot more money getting your ratings, slug it out as a CFI until 1500hrs, go to a regional, and slug it out there even longer because your hour requirement will be higher than a military guy.

IMO this is a no brainer.
This is a "no brainer" if your mindset is in the lost decade when legacy/major hiring was at a trickle. Straight civilian he could be at a regional easily in 2 years and major in 4-6 based purely on the retirements. If he goes to UPT he will finish UPT and Altus in 2-3 years at the rate it's going, have a few hundred hours, then get a few hundred hours a year. If he volunteered for a bunch of deployments, it'd take 5-6 years from now to get hired by a regional and 7-8 min to get hired at a major by my napkin math and guesstimations.
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Old 01-08-2017, 07:59 AM   #14
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If there was EVER a time when you could skip the military and enjoy faster career progression, this is probably it.

That said, if at all practical I would still hang in there at this point since there are a variety of benefits, tangible and intangible to be had in the military.

You might consider a carefully thought out talk with unit leadership, along the lines of you need to get your civilian career going as well and the holding pattern is interfering with that. If you already had a regional job, that would be one thing.

Also note that the 750 hour ATP requirement for military only requires:
1. Graduate from military flight program
2. Have 750 hours total

The 750 hours does NOT have to be all military flight time.
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Old 01-08-2017, 08:15 AM   #15
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You don't need to be hired now to get the wave. If your hired 5-6 years from now you have a great career. Get hired by the Reginals at 750 hours and you have more options fed ex, ups, American, sw, when your time comes. One of my tanker buds got picked up by UPS the other wanted Alaska and got it.

Good luck
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Old 01-08-2017, 09:01 AM   #16
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Here's a boatload of questions for you. What happens if you quit now, do you still have a commitment? Are you working another job right now that you like and pays the bills? You are commuting to drill, so you're not local, that's a pain in the butt, are you going to have to commute there forever, or are you planning to move? Commuting to drill isn't easy, especially if you don't have jumpseat privileges.

Since you really don't know for sure what's going to happen in the future (ie are they going to keep dragging their feet, will the unit shrink, will you make it through UPT, how long will the mega hiring at the airlines last), I suggest you think about what you'd really like to be doing for the next several years.

Do you see yourself enjoying being part of this guard unit and their mission, or is it just a means to an end? Do they get deployed often, and is that appealing or not. Can you go on a trip with them, watch what they do and talk to the pilots, do you see yourself doing that? How about the commuter life, is it for you? Can you start working on the commuter route right now and make the decision before you go to anything that commits you further with the guard?

I never saw myself as anything but a military pilot, and never even planned to get out. It was a no brainer for me. But if you consider that either way, what if you were hired by a major in the same amount of time (because you really don't know), what way would you choose to go, what do you want to spend your life doing?
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Old 01-08-2017, 10:10 AM   #17
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Hey y'all looking for advice.
Fed up with my guard unit. My board was 2 years ago, FC1 almost 1 year ago. They won't put me into TFOT until July. Graduate August. UPT and everything else to follow. Very sick of waiting and putting a huge strain on my family life - Wife no kids yet-

Its a refueling unit. I really do want to serve they just make it so difficult with all the hurry up and wait. Plus I'm stuck commuting to drill every month and doing pushups with all the enlisted high schoolers.

Is it worth it in the end to stick out all the bs to become an airforce pilot?

Or should I take the easier way out go the civilian route finish up my ratings in a few months, be a cfi, and be at the regionals by the time i'd finish ANG training? With all the money and retirements coming up it is tough to sit on my hands and wait.
No don't do that. A guard gig is worth it due to the reduced hrs requirements for ATP, supplemental part time income and stability in case of economic downturn. Having military on the resume is also a big plus, not to mention the experience you'll gain flying grey jets is different than 121.

Your best best would be do guard, bum until you get your RATP mins then go to a regional with a flow while applying direct to the majors and going on mil leave.
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Old 01-08-2017, 06:16 PM   #18
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The guy two seats to the right of me in Delta indoc was 26 years old. He went the regional route. It's impossible to get hired at 26 years old at Delta/United/American/FedEx/UPS via the military route. The people telling you that the military is the better career move for a professional pilot are misinformed at best.

Join the military if you really want to be in the military. I did. Parts of it were fun and rewarding. Parts of it sucked. I would have been hired at Delta earlier in life had I chosen a more traditional civilian route.
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Old 01-08-2017, 08:39 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by busdriver12 View Post
Here's a boatload of questions for you. What happens if you quit now, do you still have a commitment? Are you working another job right now that you like and pays the bills? You are commuting to drill, so you're not local, that's a pain in the butt, are you going to have to commute there forever, or are you planning to move? Commuting to drill isn't easy, especially if you don't have jumpseat privileges.

Since you really don't know for sure what's going to happen in the future (ie are they going to keep dragging their feet, will the unit shrink, will you make it through UPT, how long will the mega hiring at the airlines last), I suggest you think about what you'd really like to be doing for the next several years.

Do you see yourself enjoying being part of this guard unit and their mission, or is it just a means to an end? Do they get deployed often, and is that appealing or not. Can you go on a trip with them, watch what they do and talk to the pilots, do you see yourself doing that? How about the commuter life, is it for you? Can you start working on the commuter route right now and make the decision before you go to anything that commits you further with the guard?

I never saw myself as anything but a military pilot, and never even planned to get out. It was a no brainer for me. But if you consider that either way, what if you were hired by a major in the same amount of time (because you really don't know), what way would you choose to go, what do you want to spend your life doing?
24. Only 80 hours w/ private so far off from regionals.

Commute is 5 hour drive. If i quit pre commissioning there is no commitment. Plan on moving closer to unit after UPT.

I like the mission and love all the guys I get to tag along with. Love the guard's style vs active duty. Ive always felt obliged / served to call but I also only want to fly for a living. I don't plan on moving up playing base politics or trying to get an AGR position. The goal is guard and 121 and work half the days of the month.

My biggest concerns, which were addressed were
A) Im going to miss out on the retirement wave and miss a good shot at a legacy and legacy pay?
B) That all this government BS isn't going to end and ill have the next 12 years of my life tied up waiting on someone to make a decision which radically changes my entire life?

Im sticking with it because I have so much invested already but If I could go back in time i probably wouldnt have waited this long and went a different route
Upon further prying training delay seems to be some sort of a funding issue not scheduling
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Old 01-09-2017, 02:52 AM   #20
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Lots to consider, so I will throw add my two cents...probably worth less than that.

I joined the military because I wanted to serve my country. I also really wanted to be an airline pilot one day, and I saw AFROTC and UPT as a way to make both things happen. My plan was 7 years, (6 after UPT) then get out and try to get to Delta.

UPT turned out to be an incredibly enjoyable year. Made great friends, flew jets--sometimes upside down and sometimes in very close formation. Got my wings and a Miss Mississippi finalist for a wife. It was a great year.

Went to my first assignment...slept through the AFROTC briefing about how some Air Force pilots go out on the ground with the Army. When my training RIP for the OV-10 showed me going to learn to drive HUMVs, qualify in the M-16 (in addition to the M-9), and go on a REFORGER exercise in Germany during the winter, I realized some of that "officer first, pilot second..." crap they were spewing wasn't'...well....crap after all. Got to practice what I learned in Desert Storm..then got my dream assignment (F-15 Alaska) as a follow on.

Now--the F-15 came with a price, because the Air Force changed the rules (who would have thunk it, right?) that a Basic Course obligated you for 5 years instead of the previous 3. That meant I was committing to most like 2 more tours, not one, if I stayed in. Air Force said anyone who wanted out could go in the post cold war drawdown. With about 1500 TT and maybe 700 PIC turbine in 1992, nobody was going to kick in my door for an airline gig. I actually flirted with idea of pursuing the WC-130s down in Keesler in the reserves but figured not many get a chance to fly an Eagle so I stayed active duty.

Three F-15 assignments meant a lot of time and work upgrading, deploying, and taking on some leadership roles. Won't go into a long list of them but any of the guys on here with military planes as avatars or in their profiles can attest to the personal challenges and growth that came with the job. I eventually did leave for the airlines--at 14 years--but did 20 in the ANG. I got about 2 ranks and 14 years more than I ever planned on giving. Ironically, many of the "career aspirants" from my AFROTC group and first squadron were RIF'd or ended up leaving along the way. I found that I liked the job, the people, and the mission--and felt it was important enough to stay around and serve.

Not trying to make this an "all about me" post--its about you--but I wanted to give you some context. Here's my big take-away:

Being a military aviator made me more than a pilot--it helped make me the person that I am. I think every young man wonders how he will do in high stress situations. The military gave me plenty of those to develop my character--combat, ethical challenges, mentoring opportunities, and a bunch of things in life beyond flight time and hours. Did I enjoy all of it? Hell no. Would I take anything for it? Of course not...

When I look at the boy-wonders who were hired at 2x at FedEx or a legacy, I see a guy who ended up with great seniority and income. Some get bigger homes, or go on better vacations, or have nicer GA airplanes. But I often wonder "Do they KNOW what they are like when the chips are down?" I didn't always want to be there, but helping blow up Iraqi tanks in 1991, refueling in the weather over the Pacific, the Atlantic, at night and in the weather...getting scrambled off alert for a 5 minute practice scramble....and even being asked to be ready to escort Air Force One on 9/11 (that job went instead to some F-16s on alert) and countless other experiences have taught me that I know what I will do during those times. That piece of mind, and the confidence it has instilled, go way beyond the value of just hours in a logbook.

Do not join the military to get a head start to the airline gig. Join because of what it will allow you to provide to your country, and ultimately to yourself.

If you want to chat...send a PM.

Last edited by Albief15; 01-09-2017 at 03:33 AM.
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