Career Guidance

Ever wanted to learn to fly and become an aviator?

Well, now may be the perfect time to do so. There is a substantial need for many different types of certified professional pilots, from commercial airline pilots to more unusual pilot careers. If you are interested in earning a pilot certificate, there are a few questions you need to be asking yourself:

Do you know what type of pilot you would like to be?

Do you know about the type of pilot license you will need for your particular pilot career path?

Have you ever researched the many different types of pilot jobs and pilot careers that are currently available for SACAA certified pilots?

A good knowledge of the job opportunities attached to flying is of great importance as the training itself comes at a huge cost which one would have to pay back especially for students going on study loans.

Often freshly qualified commercial pilot from flight schools with an average of 250 hours to their logbooks are disappointed when they approach big airlines for jobs. Usually it’s a story of the airline requiring 500 – 1000 hours or even certain number of hours on the type of aircraft they operate.

As a recommendation, freshly qualified Commercial pilots should consider applying for jobs flying small single engines and multi-engine aircraft to build up the hours. Ultimately building up the much-needed experience and as acquiring more knowledge along the way towards flying the bigger birds

Agricultural Pilots

Also known as an AG Pilot or crop duster, these pilots get paid to fly and release chemicals over farmland. These types of pilots are sometimes hired by local governments to assist with spraying chemicals for pest and weed control.

Banner Towing Pilots

This type of pilot career can best be defined as “low and slow,” meaning you will be flying low to the ground and at slow speeds while towing advertisement banners.

Air show Stunt Pilots

Definitely one of the more riskier pilot careers, this type of pilot performs aerial acrobatics for large crowds at events and venues, performs in competitions, and sometimes this classification of pilot also competes in aerial races.

Air Tour Pilots

This type of pilot career basically takes people on flights to tour different tourist sites, attractions, and other popular destinations.

Media and Patrol Pilots

This type of pilot usually flies around reporting on traffic, police pursuits, aerial surveillance, news media, etc.

Test Pilots

That’s right, you can be a “crash test dummy” of the skies. This type of pilot career covers a lot of different sectors as you could be testing aircraft for aircraft manufacturers, private businesses, the military, federal government, and other aviation related businesses that may need test pilots.

Fire Fighting Pilot

Pilots can get paid to fly aircraft to put out fires. This type of pilot career is very dangerous, work is sporadic, and it takes extremely knowledgeable and experienced pilots to get the job done as safely as possible. Some pilots will work as firefighting pilots along with having another job as a pilot, such as a CFI, private charter, or commercial pilot.

Medical and Air Ambulance Pilots

Also known as EMR pilots, these types of pilots fly for various medical situations. They fly for extreme emergency situations, life flight, organ deliveries, non-emergency patient transport, etc.

Charter pilots and Air Taxi

A charter pilot is basically a pilot that flies people to specific destinations, hence the name” Air Taxi.” You can operate your own private charter company or work for a large number of other charter airlines.

Ferry Pilots and Aircraft Salesmen Pilots

This type of pilot delivers newly purchased aircraft to the new owner’s destination. With plane manufacturing at an all-time high, this is a growing area.

Regional Airlines

Become a domestic commercial airline pilot for a regional airline carrier. Many pilots prefer this, because it requires fewer overnight trips and keeps them closer to home.

Major Airlines

Become a commercial airline transport pilot and fly all over the world for major airlines. There are more than 5,000 airlines worldwide, and with pilots retiring in record numbers, this remains the number one career for pilots.

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