Long term future of pilots.

A place to have your say and ask your questions on anything in the Helicopter learning environment.
WetBehindTheEars
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby WetBehindTheEars » Thu Mar 5 2020, 05:25

Hi mate,

I went through VET funding with Airwork in Caboolture I'm originally from sydney and had to move there for training. As far as I'm aware there are no schools in NSW that offer VET. There is Townsville, Airwork and I believe Aeropower who offer it all in Qld this may change as it has been recognized in NSW. It is substantially more expensive in the long run to use VET ends up being around 6k up front then 76k cap on VET plus 20% loan fee. So I ended up owing the best part of 100k where you can complete your CPL (H) for around 65k if you pay upfront if that's an option that's what i would suggest doing if not then VET gets you started right away. And R44 time is a must if you want a job I know airwork now offer an optional extra to do the last 20 hours 44 time.
A noob on the subject
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby A noob on the subject » Fri Mar 6 2020, 08:30

WetBehindTheEars wrote:Hi mate,

I went through VET funding with Airwork in Caboolture I'm originally from sydney and had to move there for training. As far as I'm aware there are no schools in NSW that offer VET. There is Townsville, Airwork and I believe Aeropower who offer it all in Qld this may change as it has been recognized in NSW. It is substantially more expensive in the long run to use VET ends up being around 6k up front then 76k cap on VET plus 20% loan fee. So I ended up owing the best part of 100k where you can complete your CPL (H) for around 65k if you pay upfront if that's an option that's what i would suggest doing if not then VET gets you started right away. And R44 time is a must if you want a job I know airwork now offer an optional extra to do the last 20 hours 44 time.


Thanks for that man,
I was having a look onto some of what you bring up here and found this website from Aeropower (link 1) which covers everything you brought up here plus some other nick-knacks on the topic. According to this the only school that they mention which you didn't is Flight Training Adelaide which is pretty much just the opposite direction from QLD ones.

Also according to My Skills (link 2) there is also a VET subsidised one way out over in Perth with South Metropolitan TAFE if I really want to go see something in the great
south west.

Secondly, if someone could give me some info on what difference the Diploma of Aviation could do for/against me would be really nice as it is not very clear as to what difference the Diploma makes.

And finally, I have come across a school who (as far as I can tell) also offers Bell 206 Long Ranger time. Would this be something that should make me consider the school? Or is r44 time suffice?
The school in question is Air T&G (link 3).

Once again, still very new around here so if this is the wrong sort of thing for this thread then please, do say. Thanks for all feed back.


Link 1:
https://aeropowerflightschool.com.au/al ... r-licence/

Link 2:
https://www.myskills.gov.au/registeredt ... e=AVI50315

Link 3:
http://www.airtg.com.au/helicopter-flight-training/p/18
A noob on the subject
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby A noob on the subject » Fri Mar 6 2020, 09:28

WetBehindTheEars wrote:Hi mate,

I went through VET funding with Airwork in Caboolture I'm originally from sydney and had to move there for training. As far as I'm aware there are no schools in NSW that offer VET. There is Townsville, Airwork and I believe Aeropower who offer it all in Qld this may change as it has been recognized in NSW. It is substantially more expensive in the long run to use VET ends up being around 6k up front then 76k cap on VET plus 20% loan fee. So I ended up owing the best part of 100k where you can complete your CPL (H) for around 65k if you pay upfront if that's an option that's what i would suggest doing if not then VET gets you started right away. And R44 time is a must if you want a job I know airwork now offer an optional extra to do the last 20 hours 44 time.


Thanks for that man,
I was having a look onto some of what you bring up here and found this website from Aeropower (link 1) which covers everything you brought up here plus some other nick-knacks on the topic. According to this the only school that they mention which you didn't is Flight Training Adelaide which is pretty much just the opposite direction from QLD ones.

Also according to My Skills (link 2) there is also a VET subsidised one way out over in Perth with South Metropolitan TAFE if I really want to go see something in the great
south west.

Secondly, if someone could give me some info on what difference the Diploma of Aviation could do for/against me would be really nice as it is not very clear as to what difference the Diploma makes.

And finally, I have come across a school who (as far as I can tell) also offers Bell 206 Long Ranger time. Would this be something that should make me consider the school? Or is r44 time suffice?
The school in question is Air T&G (link 3).

Once again, still very new around here so if this is the wrong sort of thing for this thread then please, do say. Thanks for all feed back.


Link 1:
https://aeropowerflightschool.com.au/al ... r-licence/

Link 2:
https://www.myskills.gov.au/registeredt ... e=AVI50315

Link 3:
http://www.airtg.com.au/helicopter-flight-training/p/18
Chopper Guy
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Chopper Guy » Fri Mar 6 2020, 20:52

Hey Noob

To answer your questions;

Vet Fee vs Self Funded – It doesn’t matter how you fund your license. Getting your first (and subsequent) job will come down to who you meet along the way that can put a good word in for you, how well you present at an interview, what skills you bring to the table outside of a CPL license and what your work ethic is like.

Diploma of Aviation – I stand to be corrected but I’ve never seen a low hour job asking for this!

Bell 206 – I wouldn’t pay for a Turbine endorsement straight out of school. By the time you’re employer is ready to put you into one, they’ll pay for the associated training required.

Thoughts beyond the above;

To kind of echo what others have said;

You need to ask yourself where do you want your first job.

Your two options realistically are either mustering or tourism. If you want to go down the mustering pathway just do your license in a 22 with maybe a handful of 44 hours at the end of it. If you want to go down the tourism pathway you want as many 44 hours as you can get, at least 20! Ultimately, the more, the better.

With either job, be prepared to do your time on the ground.

If you head to the bush (unless you actually come from cattle background) you’ll spend at least one season on the ground learning how cattle work.

If you head into tourism, very few operators will put you into their half a million dollar helicopter day one. They’ll want to see that your trustworthy, responsible and good with passengers. Be prepared to do some time loading passengers watching another low hour pilot build their hours.

The other thing to consider is where you want to do your license.

You’ve highlighted Air T&G. If you’re thinking cattle work, Tim & Georgie have a heap of contacts in this area… (Tim and Georgie are really good, honest people. You’d do well if you did your license with these guys regardless of where you want to end up)

If you’re thinking tourism work, PHS will sell you the idea that they have a transition program in place where you do your CPL with them and upon finishing get a job either driving the fuel truck in Melbourne or loading passengers at Sea World on the Gold Coast before progressing to a tourism flying job at Ayers Rock. I’ve had a few mates go through this pathway so it is genuine. Be cautioned but, they can’t give every person they train a job, so it’s not a guaranteed pathway!

You’ve also highlighted Aeropower… I know a few people who did their license with these guys and are now working at the 12 Apostles. See my first point on Vet Fee vs Self Funded. Specifically - Getting your first (and subsequent) job will come down to who you meet along the way that can put a good word in for you, how well you present at an interview, what skills you bring to the table outside of a CPL license and what your work ethic is like.

Hope this helps…

CG
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Jabberwocky » Sat Mar 7 2020, 00:47

We shouldn't be too quick to rubbish the VET Fee setup in some of the aspects. I know a few instructors working in that system that are very, very capable pilots and would recommend training with them any day of the week. It has been used before in New Zealand to some success. They have outputted some great pilots who have made a career for themselves far and wide. It does also open up avenues for people to be able to gain their licence when they feel it is too big a financial hurdle. In saying that, finishing your licence with such a big debt is not a question of the quality of the product that is outputted, but more a question of whether it is a financially-wise decision to make. It is a massive debt. And don't kid yourselves, we all had to make sacrifices somewhere along the line financially to get in to this game. If you really want it, you will find a way. We all did.

The diploma in aviation is horse sh!t and it's only there to allow the VET fee system to cover the course, do not worry about needing it.

What used to be the advice offered was basically do some research on whom has the connections post-training for employment. Then go and visit and spend some time around the school to see if it's the right fit for you. Remember, you are the customer, you can take your business where you see best fit. There are a lot of good schools still around, yes the VET schools have taken the lions share of the market, but that's up to you if you want to go down that route.

Air Tag are a great group, that's why they have the reputation and you won't go wrong there. As does Aeropower and many others. Do you research, ask questions and enjoy the ride.

If you asked me three months ago what t do, I would have said fixed wing for the lifestyle and money. Now that avenue looks to have been decimated by the Covid19 thing. Now, I'd suggest the military avenue, you get paid and get all the ticks in the boxes you need to climb the ladder. You can still have a lot of fun in the GA world though, just don't get caught up on getting rich from it. It's the most rewarding job I've ever had.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby 3rdtimelucky » Sat Mar 7 2020, 07:26

Hi all,

After several years in and out of the industry and a lot of thought, and I mean a lot. I’m going down the VET fee route for MEIR, already commercial but I can’t see anyone paying for training, particularly as I’m slightly older in the tooth.

It’s a risk I guess but without the ticket no chance of progress, with the ticket some chance !

I’ll report in on the experience....
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby havick » Sat Mar 7 2020, 16:28

3rdtimelucky wrote:Hi all,

After several years in and out of the industry and a lot of thought, and I mean a lot. I’m going down the VET fee route for MEIR, already commercial but I can’t see anyone paying for training, particularly as I’m slightly older in the tooth.

It’s a risk I guess but without the ticket no chance of progress, with the ticket some chance !

I’ll report in on the experience....


Do you have a fixed wing license at all? If so get better bang for your buck and do your fixed wing stuff and then convert it to helicopter.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Rotorpilot » Sat Mar 7 2020, 19:17

WetBehindTheEars wrote:Hi mate,

I went through VET funding with Airwork in Caboolture I'm originally from sydney and had to move there for training. As far as I'm aware there are no schools in NSW that offer VET. There is Townsville, Airwork and I believe Aeropower who offer it all in Qld this may change as it has been recognized in NSW. It is substantially more expensive in the long run to use VET ends up being around 6k up front then 76k cap on VET plus 20% loan fee. So I ended up owing the best part of 100k where you can complete your CPL (H) for around 65k if you pay upfront if that's an option that's what i would suggest doing if not then VET gets you started right away. And R44 time is a must if you want a job I know airwork now offer an optional extra to do the last 20 hours 44 time.


Have you or the other students going though the VET fee help scheme found a job yet? Is it flying?

Townsville students are probly out mustering.

FTA - ?

Be interesting to to see what all these freshly licenced people are doing with their 100k debit and little to no job prospects.
Have they gone out of the industry just to find work and an income till a the day a flying or ground crew job comes available?

pop;
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Chopper Guy » Sat Mar 7 2020, 22:37

Rotorpilot wrote:Be interesting to to see what all these freshly licenced people are doing with their 100k debit and little to no job prospects.
Have they gone out of the industry just to find work and an income till a the day a flying or ground crew job comes available?

pop;


Hey Mate

I’m not saying that racking up 100K worth of debt to get a job that pays $45K - 55K per year for the first few years is a good financial decision. Based on long term financial reward, it’s not…

But the truth is even before VET fee help became available, there was plenty of people who self funded (aka either saved hard or spent their parents money) to get a CPL license who never got a job at the end of it.

The only way to absolutely guarantee you won’t get a job, is to not get a license!

** On a side note, I actually wonder if the majority of people (60-80%?) who do their license actually get a start within 12 months but can't maintain it long term. Eg. Whilst you're young and single, it's easy to earn crap money and live in a regional location. What happens when things like a partner, kids and a mortgage come along? All of a sudden a low income job no longer pays the bills, moving every couple years for work isn't an option and tour work with a family at home just isn't sustainable.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Rotorpilot » Sun Mar 8 2020, 10:47

** On a side note, I actually wonder if the majority of people (60-80%?) who do their license actually get a start within 12 months but can't maintain it long term. Eg. Whilst you're young and single, it's easy to earn crap money and live in a regional location. What happens when things like a partner, kids and a mortgage come along? All of a sudden a low income job no longer pays the bills, moving every couple years for work isn't an option and tour work with a family at home just isn't sustainable.[/quote]


Yes 100% you hit the nail on the head. While your young and single, the operators can use and abuse you, and you will take it because you want the job so bad. But what does it do to the industry?

There are those who as youve said worked hard, saved the money and will work hard again for an operator. But its in the too hard basket to hire committed family men for entry level jobs as they want the jnr pilots to be at their beck and call for pittance $$

With the job oppertunity being so small i ask how is flooding the candidates for said jobs going to help?
The only time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby 3rdtimelucky » Sun Mar 8 2020, 10:59

Havick,

No Fixed wing, never been interested but the cash sounds good, I here Asian airlines are paying $500k AU for captains on the big aircraft. Met two DAME pilots yesterday, one of their sons was on line.
If I was 30 years younger I’d go fixed wing knowing what I know now but I like flying helicopters so here we are....
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby averagejoe » Sun Mar 8 2020, 20:53

I’ve got to be honest with you - I know there are exceptions to every rule but these days I am much more likely to give a non VET school trained junior pilot a job.

I understand that all the VET fee schools have high time, good instructors at the top, but the reality is that because of the numbers being pumped through, most of the students are spending time with a lot lower quality, lower hour instructors, who are likely to barely even remember the students name as it’s the 25th student he’s flown with that week. Their flying on a whole straight out of their licence is definitely poorer than a student out of a non VET fee school.

On top of this, there’s a different attitude between someone who has known he wanted a licence and sacrificed a lot to save for the previous 2-3 years, compared to someone who thinks it’s a good idea and all of a sudden the money ‘magically’ appears out of nowhere.

Talking to other operators out there, there is a similar feel, so if you really want to get that first job mate, do the hard yards saving for a few years (potentially in a job that will help you land that junior pilot job) and go to a school where you’re going to get the attention and level of instruction that your 70k deserves. 1 on 1 tailored instruction is always going to be better than 25 students in a classroom getting slowed down by the slowest student.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby SuperF » Sun Mar 8 2020, 22:57

Jabberwocky

I wouldn't call the student loan system that we had in NZ a success. All it did was produce a whole lot of Helicopter Pilots that then found out it was too hard and they went and flipped burgers or drove trucks or something. It created a few extra instructor jobs for a while, but most of those companies have gone broke now, and it created the expectation that there would always be a heap of fresh CPLs to use and abuse...

Im not having a go at the guys that went through the Loan system and made it, i think that they were probably going to find a way to make it anyway.

We ended up with companies doing an unsustainable amount of training, with very junior instructors passing on some very dodgy habits to unsuspecting newbies, and keeping the cost and value of instructing in the doldrums. Instructor pay is still trying to work its way up to a level where you could actually do it for a career, and make a living where you can support a family. Therefore very few real operators will consider doing training, as there is just no money in it.

I would think that the Student Loan system was the second worst thing to happen to Helicopters in NZ for quite a while.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Jabberwocky » Sun Mar 8 2020, 23:36

Hi SuperF,

all good and very realistic points. I was trying to point out that the Vet Fee and similar New Zealand systems still do/did contain some decent instructors - they’re not all crap and low time. They also can output quality pilots. We don’t need to label everyone from those groups as below par. I don’t think that’s the issue though of these systems, you’re going to have s#!t instructors and bad pilots even in the pay for yourself pre Vet fee days. Hence the previous advice which was always broadcast on here about going and trying a few places and see which one best suits what you’re like as a person and a learner.

It’s more worrying and future destroying to walk out with that much debt right when you’re going to be earning minimal wages. If you want a financial hurdle in life, you’re getting one.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Icefather » Mon Mar 9 2020, 07:09

SuperF wrote:Jabberwocky

I wouldn't call the student loan system that we had in NZ a success. All it did was produce a whole lot of Helicopter Pilots that then found out it was too hard and they went and flipped burgers or drove trucks or something....

I would think that the Student Loan system was the second worst thing to happen to Helicopters in NZ for quite a while.


SuperF

I am from the recent student loan scheme and have had success so far, but as mentioned, it has been who wants it most and who is willing to sacrifice to get where they want to be.

When I say recent scheme, at the moment in NZ, to get a student loan you basically have to fund the PPL (H) yourself and then you get just enough to get you to CPL (H) from there you are on your own. Now when I did mine the school I was at there were only 3 rotary students who did their license same at the same time.

Definitely the quantity has reduced and there is the odd school that have a higher instructor/student ratio. But it’s definitely not as many as there use to be.

There are opportunities for junior pilots out there one just has to go find them,

Will the current rate of students being trained meet the the future demand? or will NZ have to import more foreigners?


If that was the second worst. What’s the worst?
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Gasket18 » Mon Mar 30 2020, 10:12

Well I'm in the older part of this and just started studying. After going to schools and chatting to people, there have been the same views as on here bandied around. Also in my own head it is still a big debate going on. After losing my business a couple of years ago, after going thru gfc, a divorce and a guy owing me 50k all in 1 go. I've now just turned 49 last week, have less money and assets than when I was 18 and trying to do my dream job. I'll be happy to go anywhere for work in fact one of the reasons I'm keen is to try and get work around the world. I like the idea of pay now with loan and worry about repaying later as it's just taken off your wages and tax returns, and at the rate they get it back along with my age, I doubt I'd ever pay it all back ;P The big down side other than the debt is there are fewer schools available as you have to go to one that is approved by the funding. I was pointed in Aeropowers direction and did a TIF with them, they where quite nice people. Another plus side is being involved in the industry and schooling 100% of the time and being around others interested in it, so you get to chat about your lessons, bounce ideas off which hopefully helps to making all the theory sink in. ( I actually have learning problems with theory) however I have passed 2 exams so far on my own. Another upside is when it comes to flying, you've already paid for it and so will be getting a lot more hours in a shorter period of time, so motor skills etc will come along faster.
I do prefer the more personal approach. Another issue with VEt is once you choose the school, you do the course at their rate, doesn't matter for you are struggling or excelling at the theory it is at their pace. If you fail an exam you'll have to pay for the resit yourself and do it whilst studying another subject. I also looked at a couple of websites of schools and noticed the prices for self funding are different to if you go VET. All of a sudden the same course has jumped from say 65k to up to 90k ( is what I saw VET courses advertised at, not saying which schools.) So on top of the 20k the VET whacks on top the school is whacking another but on top.
Downside to self study and funding is trying to study whilst working 13 hour days and trying to keep fit etc is bloody hard. If you have any learning problems it's frikin hard on your own, not chatting to people all the time about flying is a bit of a disadvantage. The other thing wil be the flight training and balancing flying as much as possible whilst being able to pay for it. At the moment I'm trying to fund it. But do still keep swaying between the 2. At this stage I think I'll try and get all my theory done first, see what's happening with this dam virus and then if I haven't been able to save much up in advance which my hours might be getting less soon even tho I'm FIFO I might look at just doing flying thru VET. But again I have pretty much decided the company I would like to fly with and I visit them for a chat every time I do an exam and if I'm driving past and they aren't accredited thru VEt I try and not drop in to often as obviously they have to work don't really need people under their feet all the time.
Anyway hope you decide which way you're going and good luck with it.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby Bee3 » Mon Mar 30 2020, 19:23

If you can get funding for it why not. Get it done and get on the road looking for your start in the industry.

It’s irreverent how you paid for your training. If you want it badly enough you will do what ever it takes.

Silver spoon , cash or a loan of some sort doesn’t matter. Attitude does.

Good luck.
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby hralsy79 » Tue Mar 31 2020, 10:30

Bee3 wrote:If you can get funding for it why not. Get it done and get on the road looking for your start in the industry.
It’s irreverent how you paid for your training. If you want it badly enough you will do what ever it takes.
Silver spoon , cash or a loan of some sort doesn’t matter. Attitude does.



I agree with this 100%.
What makes a Vet Fee pilot any different to a non-Vet Fee pilot?
Does funding your learning through a government loan suddenly make you a less capable pilot to someone who's training is funded by their parents?
Yes, someone who works their butt off to self fund their training may potentially have a great work ethic, but that's not to say they are going to be a better pilot.

Why don't you look at it this way.
How many of you, who thumb their nose at a pilot who used a Vet Fee loan to achieve their license, ever asked your GP or Surgeon "were your studies self/family funded, or did you do the same as 90% of the other students and Vet Fee loan it?"
The answer is likely to be yes, they were loan funded students. Does that make you want to look for another doctor? Or will you keep going to the one you have been seeing because you like the way they work?

And yes, I did part of my training with Vet Fee. I self funded half and Vet Fee'd the other half.
I did this by choice so I could afford to live. When I started my training, I ensured I had enough behind me to live and obtain my license.
However, when the opportunity (and yes, I wasn't able to just walk into to a Vet Fee funded course, I had to apply and be screened) to train with a Vet Fee school, I took it.
Doing it this way for me allowed me to live a little more comfortably and longer knowing that getting my first job was going to be hard.

In all honesty though, the issues I have found in obtaining my first job have been the following:
1) you don't get a look in because the employer views you as Vet Fee student as an inferior pilot (even thought they have never met you or observed your flying abilities).
2) as mentioned by others, employers generally want some 18 to 20 year old single person who will be a "yes sir", "3 bags full sir", "no lube for me today sir" type of person that will live out in the middle of no where for a few dollars a day
3) your resume will instantly be dismissed based on total hours, regardless of anything else that may be there
4) the most important factor to landing that first job - It's who you know!

I have applied for jobs and been told "oh, we chose someone with more hours", or "the successful candidate had more experience in remote areas".
Funny thing was, in 2 of these situations both newly employed pilots up and left within a few months because "it wasn't their thing".

Oh, and I could be mistaken, but I am yet to see any school offering Vet Fee assistance on their courses having 25 students a week.
When I conducted mine there was 3 of us.
Others I inquired at had a cap at 8 students at a time.
Fixed wing schools I have seen 25 students at a time, but never a rotary wing school.

The reality of the situation is this:
To be a Vet Fee school, they must first be accredited under CASA to be a flight school.
Then to offer Vet Fee loans, they have a second independent set of hoops to jump through.

If anyone is seeing sub-standard pilots coming out of a Vet Fee training facility then I have two questions to ask them:
1) who was the instructor of that pilot? (they are the ones who was meant to teach them)
2) who was the testing officer who actually passed the student?

In my eyes, neither of these are influenced by how the student has paid for their training.


Edit:
For anyone interested, there are currently only 7 registered Training Providers who offer the Diploma of Aviation (Commercial Pilot Licence - Helicopter) (AVI50319)
https://www.myskills.gov.au/RegisteredTrainers/search?CourseCode=AVI50319&locationID=0&Distance=25
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Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby skypig » Wed Apr 1 2020, 00:42

It’s the same as it’s been for the last 30 years:
With a fresh CPL-H, it’s difficult to get a job.

The only jobs are ones no experienced pilot wants, one or more of the following almost certainly applies:
Low pay
Terrible place to live
Lot’s of non flying tasks

If you have any “disadvantages” EG Partner/Family, (inability/reluctance to move permanently to “s#it creek) Debt that needs servicing,“Older” (can be perceived to have higher expectations), an obvious “attitude” (inc time frame expectations - “must be flying by....”) Etc.

It’s going to be even more difficult.#

Often, new pilots are hired to do something completely non flying. Like selling tickets and “loading” pax. During this time the pilot is definitely being “used”, but also “assessed”. (Pro Tip: If you want to fail - put a time limit on how long you will do this job - EG “If I’m not flying by June, I’m out of here!”. Even non vocalised, this “attitude” will show through. Rather, I’d try for: “The guy flying the EC130 was selling tickets, there is every chance I’ll end up there {via the R44}, if I do a good job here for “As long as it takes”.)

Pre Covid 19, I would have advised FW/Airlines if you were starting out.

Good news?
Virtually all the pilots flying helicopters in Australia, went the above route (first job with a basic CPL-H) or Military.

# I had a Wife, and an Attitude, and plenty of other obvious character flaws - still made it up the slippery ladder, eventually.
(No one ever asked how I funded my CPL-H. Sold my house if you are interested,)

Sky “No wife or house, but the character flaws survived” Pig (c:_ol
zzodr
Silver Wings
Silver Wings
Posts: 64
Joined: Sep 2015

Re: Long term future of pilots.

Postby zzodr » Wed Apr 1 2020, 07:25

What is weird right now is living near a flightpath and there is more GA flying around than airliners.

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