Career Placement Program

Career Placement Program

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Your Aviation Career - By the Numbers

Quality flight training is a big investment… for a huge career payoff. Pilot salaries are higher than ever before in the history of aviation and will keep rising for decades. Over the course of a typical career, an airline pilot might earn as much as $20 million.

Only 10-12 months and 300-350 flight hours of vocational training fully prepares an aspiring pilot to succeed in a rapidly growing air transport industry. The career progression works like this:

  1. Flight schools train student pilots to become Certificated Flight Instructors (CFIs).
  2. These CFIs are then paid $22.50 - $35.00 / hr. for 12-18 months as they gain flight experience.
  3. At 850 – 1500 flight hours of experience, CFIs are eligible for hire at regional airlines, charter, corporate, or cargo operators, where they will earn up to $90,000 or more in annual salaries.

Regional airlines (Part 121 operators) provide the best entry-level salaries for early-career pilots, but charter and corporate (Part 135) are rapidly innovating to provide pilots with great options for work / life balance and flexible schedules. New pilots have more options to consider than ever before.

The Pilot Pathway

At Flex Air we call this career progression the Pilot Pathway and manage every student and alumni's progression through every step until they arrive at their dream job.

A $95,000 investment for a $15,000,000 career

But your payoff loses $30,000 for every month of delay.

Every month of delay costs a future pilot over $30,000 in future earnings because every Air Transport Pilot (ATP) faces a mandatory retirement age (currently age 65).

The most important day in a pilot's life is the first day at the last job they'll ever have. Why? Because everything is driven by seniority, and this means the first pilots hired at an operator are the first pilots to be upgraded for pay and benefits increases. Seniority does not follow you from job to job, so career progression needs to be managed and planned carefully for every pilot. Flex Air is the only flight school that offers career planning and management services for all students and alumni.

Overall, regional airline pay was up by 50% - 100% since 2020. These pay rates will continue increasing in the long term as regional airlines compete for a smaller pool of entry-level First Officers. Over 6,000 pilots retire from the U.S. air transport pilot community each year as the Baby Boomer generation ages out of the workforce. Mainline carriers will resume their practice of “poaching” senior Year 2 and 3 pilots from regional airlines. Demand for air travel, demographics, and diminishing supply of both civilian and military pilots will cause a critical shortage of pilots, with increases in wages and benefits continuing through 2035. There has never been a better time to start a career in aviation.

To make your investment pay off, your flight training should be a sprint, not a marathon.

The Pilot Shortage Isn’t Going Away-2
Airline pilot pay

What is the Average Salary for Airline Pilots?

 Airline pilots are among the most highly paid professionals in the world. The average salary for commercial pilots is $103,910 per year. Major carriers have unveiled significant increases in pilot salaries to entice pilots due to the pilot shortage - as much as 53%.

Airline pilot shortage

Will the shortage of pilots and hiring boom continue?

There is an acute pilot shortage of qualified pilots. All the evidence lead us to believe there will continue to be a global pilot shortage for at least the next 10-20 years and it is going to be severe. Hiring will continue indefinitely.


Placing Value on Career Placement

Our Flex Air Career Pilot Academy will help you to launch your aviation career with a combination of academic instruction, simulator lessons, and aircraft training. Our program delivers every certification and rating you’ll need to get hired as a professional pilot.

You're joining an aviation community, not just learning to become a pilot.

It’s a Big Commitment, For Even Bigger Results

We’ve partnered with a network of loan providers to help you connect with the best student financing options, all available in one convenient application form. They all do a soft credit pull so checking your rate won’t impact your credit score. You can even adjust the amount and re-apply.

Ryan Davis

Talk with a Flex Air Mentor About Your Pilot Pathway

Your first step into the exciting world of aviation is a conversation with one of our training advisors. We are happy to answer your questions and help chart a course for your goals in aviation.