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Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

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What You Need to Know About Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

Occupation Description Pilot and navigate the flight of fixed-wing, multi-engine aircraft, usually on scheduled air carrier routes, for the transport of passengers and cargo. Requires Federal Air Transport Pilot certificate and rating for specific aircraft type used. Includes regional, National, and international airline pilots and flight instructors of airline pilots.

Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer Responsibilities

  • Record in log books information such as flight times, distances flown, and fuel consumption.
  • Work as part of a flight team with other crew members, especially during takeoffs and landings.
  • Monitor engine operation, fuel consumption, and functioning of aircraft systems during flights.
  • Brief crews about flight details, such as destinations, duties, and responsibilities.
  • Test and evaluate the performance of new aircraft.
  • Inspect aircraft for defects and malfunctions, according to pre-flight checklists.

What an Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer Should Know

These are the skills Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers say are the most useful in their careers:

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

  • Commercial Pilot
  • Pilot (Captain)
  • Jet Pilot
  • Pilot Captain
  • Airline Captain

Job Outlook for Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

There were about 84,000 jobs for Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers in 2016 (in the United States).

New jobs are being produced at a rate of 3.4% which is lower than average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 2,900 new jobs for Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers by 2026. There will be an estimated 8,100 positions for Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer per year.

Forecasted Number of Jobs for Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers in U.S.

The states with the most job growth for Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers are Georgia, Florida, and California.

Watch out if you plan on working in Wyoming, West Virginia, or New Hampshire. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Average Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer Salary

The typical yearly salary for Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers is somewhere between $65,690 and $208,000. The median salary is $140,340.

Salary Ranges for Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for jobs of this type in different U.S. states.

Annual Mean Salary by State
State Annual Mean Salary

Washington

$237,150

Michigan

$233,550

Nevada

$220,400

Oregon

$205,660

California

$205,520

Texas

$200,320

Colorado

$196,670

Illinois

$193,600

Florida

$188,400

New Mexico

$163,030

Pennsylvania

$151,390

Alaska

$148,820

Arizona

$132,250

Indiana

$124,270

Missouri

$123,820

New Hampshire

$122,810

Ohio

$119,320

Iowa

$118,700

Connecticut

$116,930

New York

$108,420

Oklahoma

$107,960

Nebraska

$106,480

Wisconsin

$106,240

North Dakota

$104,660

Utah

$104,230

Minnesota

$103,930

Alabama

$103,750

South Carolina

$102,990

North Carolina

$102,660

Kansas

$102,190

Louisiana

$101,010

Arkansas

$96,690

Mississippi

$94,760

Tennessee

$85,550

West Virginia

$85,490

Tools & Technologies Used by Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers

Below is a list of the types of tools and technologies that Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers may use on a daily basis:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word

How do I Become an Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer?

Are there Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer education requirements?

Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer Degree Level

How Long Does it Take to Become Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer?

Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer Work Experience

Who Employs Airline Pilots, Copilots, and Flight Engineers?

Airline Pilot, Copilot, or Flight Engineer Sectors

References

Bureau of Labor Statistics

College Factual

O*NET Online

Image Credit: Via Wikimedia Commons

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