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How is being a pilot different from other career choices?

Aviation World | July 17, 2019

Being a pilot is a job unlike all others. With various unique pros and cons, it is more of a passion than a regular job. If you are interested in flying in the air, you may want to know how this career is different than others before making your choice. 

Because most airlines now stopped investing in training pilots from scratch, the cost and risk of this investment now fall primarily on the individual. And as pilot training is a substantial financial investment,  young aspiring pilots need more information about the career path to make an informed decision.

And we are here to help people do just that.

Traveling the world

Of course, this is the first thing that comes to mind when being a pilot is mentioned, pilots travel around the world. While some other professions require people to travel a lot, no other profession compares to becoming an airline pilot in that regard. Pilots do not travel a lot, they travel for a living, there is a huge difference. In addition to that, many airlines allow pilots to take their families on vacations as a benefit.

Nonetheless, you have to take some points into consideration. Not all pilots travel around the world for a career, this is the dream goal of most pilots, yes, but not everyone achieves that.

Many pilots work for small regional airlines at the beginning of their careers, and some of them spend a lot of time in that phase. This largely depends on the individual's attitude and capabilities.

Time for work and time to relax

As much as all people would love to do that, not everyone is able to!

A pilot job is one of the few high profile professions that still allow people to really leave work at work, and that is considered a great blessing indeed.

When a pilot is not in duty, they can completely relax, no annoying calls or emails or deadlines or anything. Yes, being a pilot is hard work, but you can truly enjoy your time off.

Excellent performance is expected

Of course, all jobs demand that you do your best, flying is a little different, however. When you are a pilot, you take responsibility for all souls on board. The airline you work for expects you to perform a perfect job.

As a result, good performance is not always commended, it is the norm when you are a pilot. Bad performance, on the other hand, has severe negative consequences. You can lose your job for one less than perfect flight. No one takes risks with a mediocre employee when lives are at stake.

No routine for you

If you hate routine, who doesn’t, then being a pilot is your dream job!

Pilots have flexible and changeable schedules, work hours change from day to day and workplace often changes as well.

Most importantly, when you get seniority, you can usually amend your schedule to your liking, something that many people only dream of.

Take into consideration though that this flexible schedule means that pilots do not nessaccerily take holidays off. In fact, holidays are some of the busiest times for pilots so most pilots work through them.

Considerable time off

International regulations state that pilots should take days off between flights, this means that pilots often work around 15 days per month. And guess what, they get to take the rest of the month off!

Of course, it is not exactly like that, you don’t take a two-week vacation each month. What it’s actually like is that you work for 3 or 4 days then take two or three days off, but that highly depends on your specific schedule.

Whatever your schedule may be, it will include significant time off though!

Incomparable view

No other profession, even being an executive with a skyscraper office featuring large windows, can offer you such a wonderful view as the cockpit.

Want a sea view? You will be flying over the sea. Want to see the desert? You will fly over vast deserts. Want to see magical city lights at night? How about seeing all the cities from above!

Pilots get to see more of the world than anyone else, they get to see more than anyone in a single workday.

A lifelong adventure

A pilot career is a lifelong adventure, ask any experienced pilot about his most interesting stories and you are bound to be amazed.

This career is different than all others, you work to the max and relax to the max. You fly for 10 long stressful hours, then land in an exotic country that you have never seen before. This versatile lifestyle creates amazing stories and sends you in an endless adventure.

Lifelong learning

While some jobs require initial training, being a pilot requires lifelong training. A pilot never stops learning new skills, if they want to stop learning they retire!

Because technology is developed rapidly, new airplanes require pilots to get more training. But that is only one aspect of the lifelong learning journey a pilot embarks on. Pilots also need to get Type Rated for aircraft as each aircraft requires a certificate. They also need to undergo leadership courses and workshops, as well as teamwork courses to advance in their careers.

To learn more about being a pilot see also:

Want to be a captain? This is how you become a successful pilot


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