I'm making this topic because normally on the server when people realize that i'm a pilot they inquire about the career and how to get started. The following information that ill be sharing with you is my personal journey in becoming an airline pilot and there's also making videos on youtube about other pilots sharing their journey. So let's get into it.....
Intro about myself: My name is Darion, Im 30 years old and i am currently enrolled in the John F. Kennedy Domicile for American Airlines.
Step 1: I wasn't born in the US meaning that i was an international student. Back in my home town i already had my Student Pilot license and about 36 hours under my belt. I applied to PEA (Phoenix East Aviation) based in Daytona Beach, FL and after being accepted, that's where it all started. So for all the International students who want to train in the US, you will need to apply to a flight school that is authorized by the US Department of Homeland Security to give out M1 and F1 visas. Here's a link to the flight school: https://www.pea.com
DON'T FALL FOR THE TRAP: I recommend not applying to an Aviation University such as Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. The trap is that universities have tuition fees that can be between 20,000-30,000 USD that is separate from flight training fees. Applying to a flight school will be the best bet as they focus on flying and ground school and not on getting you a degree. But if you want to go via the University route, be my guest.
FOR THE US CITIZENS: The process is quite simple for you as you don't need visas and once all your bank statements and paper-work etc is in order, your good to go.
Ok you have started Flight School: At flight school with no form of training or ground school your will have to go through the following courses:
-Private Pilot License
- Instrument Rating
Now after this you will need to build hours as in the US the FAA requires pilots to have a minimum of 1500 Hours to be hired by a Commercial Airline.
I highly recommend getting these ratings which will allow you to become an instructor which basically allows you to build flight hours while being paid by students.
-Certified Flight Instructor
-Certified Flight Instructor Instrument Rating.
-Certified Flight Instructor Multi-Engine Rating. (This isn't necessary but airline companies like to see when a pilot has this.)
Ok so you finally hit that 1500 Hours mark: You can FINALLY apply to the regional and start flying the big jets with some more training of course :). This depends on who you choose:
American (Envoy,PSA)- Dallas Forth Worth, TX
Delta (Endeavor)- Harts-field-Jackson, Atlanta
United- United Training Center in Denver Colorado
These are some of the main airlines pilot normally join after flight school.
(KEEP IN MIND: YOU HAVE TO APPLY TO A REGIONAL CARRIER TO BE HIRED BY A LARGER COMPANY)
Most likely you would be at the regional airline for anywhere between 2-8 years. Its all up to how fast you progress at this point.
You will need to get approx. 1000 hours as a First Officer and another 1000 as a captain and then apply for a bigger airline.
I started off in the E145 for Envoy and about 2200 hours after becoming a captain, I applied to American and got accepted. Got onto the B738 Type rating became a captain on the jet and moved up to the B757 as a first Officer and then Captain. I was fortunately lucky as pilots with more seniority was moving up and retiring so i was placed in the recent years on the B777 as a first officer and thats where i am now.
I will truly say that Aviation is an amazing field and whether flying a bunch of sweaty passengers around the world or defending your country in the air force, I hope you are enjoying what your doing. Feel free to reply to this post as questions or if you see me in TS, or in game.
FOR RETIRING MILITARY AIR FORCE PILOTS: I'm not to sure about this one, but i believe that since you already have flight hours under your belt, you can apply to the big leagues example: AA,DL,UA.
P.S. For those pilots looking to come to the best airline in the world a.k.a (American Airlines) the company will be looking to hire at least 900 in 2019 and so goes on into the years.
Check out this page: https://www.airlinepilotcentral.com/airlines/legacy/american_airlines
HAVE A GREAT YEAR.