Im so broke from being a pilot

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Pt6-42
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Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by Pt6-42 »

How long in your career were you living on less that 40k/yr. how long till you caught up your friends who are not in aviation.
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ant_321
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by ant_321 »

3 years under 40k. One year as an instructor and 2 as a 1900 fo. In year 5 I made over 100k so that put me on par or over what most of my friends make.
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Pt6-42
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by Pt6-42 »

100k... can you lend me $5 ?
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complexintentions
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by complexintentions »

Don't set the bar so low as "what your non-aviation friends" make. Aviation does have the potential to earn you far more money than any of your friends. But it takes more than a couple of years, exceptional adaptation skills, and a bit of luck.

Oh yeah. And you have to leave Canada. :lol:
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goingnowherefast
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by goingnowherefast »

Took me 6 years to break 40 grand. I also started my career in 2009, in the depths of the "great recession".
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skypirate88
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by skypirate88 »

Took me about 2 years, but in those 2 years I had progressed to a class 1 instructor. I then made even more at my next job until we lost our only contract. Now I am back on the bottom of the pay pile at a regional.

It is a challenge, but don't compare what you make to what your friends make and have. If you can't do that, then maybe look for some new friends who earn something similar to you. If you are always around people who earn more than you, you will always hear about all the things they do and buy with that money, and you won't appreciate what you have.
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Rockie
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by Rockie »

The problem for piloting has always been our willingness to sacrifice in order to do what we want to do. It's something employers mastered taking advantage of a long time ago. It's ultimately a question of supply and demand. Right now the supply is drying up, but it will take time before the demand side in North America makes substantive changes to lure in more supply.

Overseas they have already been forced to because of rapid growth, and if that's your cup of tea that avenue is open to you once you reach a certain experience/qualification level. You will eventually make a good living at it in Canada if you keep at it, but don't compare yourself to your friends though - they chose their path and you chose yours
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CL-Skadoo!
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by CL-Skadoo! »

No, no, please compare yourself to your friends. Which ones make over 150k per year working 8 days per month? That's accessible to you in this business.

I understand, it stinks for a few years, hopefully your passion and sense of adventure help you ride that out. If it's immediate money and the pursuit of "stuff" you're after, then yes, this is the wrong business. This is very much a career of journeys; both literal and figurative in nature. Hang in there, the rewards are there.
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clearmyside
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by clearmyside »

ok, lets see:

Started flying in 1997:
Started working in 1998:

years 1-3: 14000-20000; dispatch, washing planes, very little flying
year 4: 24000; did 1000 hours of flying in that year
year 5: 36000, plus a bit of mileage
year 6-8: medivac on king air 38000-55000 including mileage
year 8-9: first jet job on a light jet: back down to 36K, shit job, bad company, left and paid my bond
year 9-11: airline f/o start 48k base, plus all extras, made 95k in my first year, almost 125k second year

after that left for overseas; way more money, but also more expensive life

wasn't able to pay off student loans (college and flight school) until year 10! admittedly, because i was a bad money manager, but also, because it was crappy money for a long time..... still not rich, but ok-ish
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WASIE
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by WASIE »

Left aviation a year ago and already making 90+, first time in many years where I left a job and actually got a substantial raise. Oh and my employer encourages growth and promotion not the former of punching walls and banging fists on tables.
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altiplano
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by altiplano »

Yeah it was pretty tough those years... Perpetual 30k/yr career it seemed at times...

I was about 5 years in until I broke 40k, 10 years until I broke 100k.
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dirtdr
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by dirtdr »

I should get a job flying.
It costs me $50k/year to stay in the air
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North Shore
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by North Shore »

Took me ~10 years to top $100k, and I sometimes wonder what it would have been like, both financially, and lifestyle-wise had I stayed at my previous employer. But then I look at this thread: viewtopic.php?f=25&t=31028 and all of the photos I have, both physical, and mental, and know why I quit to go flying.

The grass is always greener, though...
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Jet Jockey
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by Jet Jockey »

Well I came back from a 3 year contract in Europe (1989-1991) were I was making the equivalent of $120K a year flying a FK28 to a job flying as a co-pilot on a Hawker for less than $40K/year. I knew then that this new job was for the long term and knew the salary would go up steadily over the years.

Many things happened during the past 25 years that accelerated the increases in pay where I now make over $200K a year.

You have to be ready to look outside Canada to make great salaries in aviation because there are very few companies here in Canada that pay what I would call acceptable salaries for flying duties.
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squash junky
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by squash junky »

I don't have any friends, but 4 years in Canada then moved away at age 24. Moved back to Canada at age 45 and commuted until I retired at age 50.
You just have to be at the right place at the right time with the right credentials while trying to walk normal with a couple of horseshoes up your ...
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SuperchargedRS
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by SuperchargedRS »

Depends on where you live, it's really a QOL thing, sometimes the money and the QOL don't go together depending on bennies and location.

Think it was job 2 before my QOL started to rock, had a house on the airport and everything else minus food paid for, basically zero expenses, loved opening my door and waking to the flight line everyday, my soft shoed college friends weren't digging going to work everyday. I was also working nearly everyday because it was fun.
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totalflyer
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by totalflyer »

Been fortunate...

Started in aviation as a groomer for 3 years(making $60k a year by the year I left)
Left to start coordinating for a charter management company at $30k... After about 6 months took on some additional duties and got $35k... Did that for about about 2.5 years and got my first flying job on a turboprop at $45k and after 2 years went up to $55k...

So flying wise I have never had a job under $40k
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goingnowherefast
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by goingnowherefast »

If you are into this sort of thing, chief pilot or assistant CP jobs will pay quite a bit. Be careful of what company you do that for though. Ops Manager, AE, CEO, owner, etc. can make that job a nightmare. On the other hand, it can be very rewarding if you are given the tools to to do a good job and treat your pilots well. Also depends on your company's relationship with TC. They can be a pleasure to work with, or can make you want to kill small animals for pleasure. Unfortunately that also depends on how much respect the Ops Manager/AE/CEO/Owner has for the regulating authority.
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newcomer
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by newcomer »

Took me 6 years to get to 40k.
But year 8 I moved overseas and made 180k NET (cost of living is higher though).
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WASIE
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Re: Im so broke from being a pilot

Post by WASIE »

I've always wondered about those bottom feeders whom "say" they would fly for free or take pay cuts, the live in "mom's" basement type. Will these same people once they get to a regional start to get crusty about their pay? They are the reason wages are rock bottom in the aviation industry in Canada. I guess that 100th Instagram sunrise picture is worth more than a decent salary !
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