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Do Female Pilots Make Less Than Men?

Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:50 pm

I've been trying to research this and coming up with very little. I'm wondering whether anyone has any insight as to whether the pay difference that is described as existing between men and women in other fields also makes its way into aviation, and in particular into piloting. The frame of reference for the question is western first-world countries, such as the US, where the gender equity problem is something spoken loudly of in many professions (and in general). Does anyone know whether female pilots in the US (for example) tend to earn less than their male counterparts (at the same level - obviously a female ERJ pilot makes less than a male 747 pilot)?

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DualQual
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RE: Do Female Pilots Make Less Than Men?

Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:54 pm

At least at majors in the US your pay rate is determined by your collective bargaining agreement or employment policy at a non union carrier. Most CBAs base pay rate off of equipment, seat, and longevity. Your company seniority will dictate your equipment and seat. So all 757 FOs with 8 years OLF longevity make the same rate. Yearly earnings will vary with how much one actually flies.

[Edited 2013-09-06 13:56:53]
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Dalmd88
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RE: Do Female Pilots Make Less Than Men?

Sat Sep 07, 2013 2:32 am

I think you need to change your question. DualQual is correct, but it doesn't really give you an answer. The better question is, do female pilots of the same age and experience level find the same level of flying jobs? Are they getting hired at the majors or are they stuck at lower level airlines. Are they dropping out of the commercial pilot ranks at a higher rate than men?

I can only answer those question through my personal limited observations. I went to ERAU 20 years ago. I have an idea of how many women were in our flight program. The percentage was maybe 10-15%. I now work for DL. I rarely see female pilots in DL uniform, but I see lots of guys my age or younger. I think a lot of women get out of the career earlier than men. For many generations of pilots there are many lean years before the major opportunity knocks. I think the women get sick of living in poverty and get real jobs. Us men are just ok with the mac and cheese and ramen noddle lifestyle.
 
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OzarkD9S
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RE: Do Female Pilots Make Less Than Men?

Sat Sep 07, 2013 2:54 am

not if they have a union...some folks will balk but
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loggat
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RE: Do Female Pilots Make Less Than Men?

Sat Sep 07, 2013 4:18 am

For doing the exact same job at the exact same airline, the compensation for male and female is identical as there is no personal negotiation over compensation.

I will say this though... Over the course of a pilot's career that started in the mid 1980s and possibly through the 90's, a female pilot could have expected to earn more throughout her entire career because companies like United would actively seek out minorities and women to fill their pilot ranks. While a young female would find employment at 23 years old or younger, a male may have had to wait until their late 20's and early 30's. A white male in that same time frame would not necessarily have had as easy a time finding employment at one of the higher paying airlines.

Nowadays it is hard to quantify because there really has been relatively minimal hiring at the majors in the last decade.
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longhauler
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RE: Do Female Pilots Make Less Than Men?

Sat Sep 07, 2013 3:27 pm

Quoting loggat (Reply 4):
While a young female would find employment at 23 years old or younger, a male may have had to wait until their late 20's and early 30's. A white male in that same time frame would not necessarily have had as easy a time finding employment at one of the higher paying airlines.

This was very true at Air Canada. In the 1980s, when a government owned airline, they had a mandate to hire pilots who were "female, French, native Canadian and/or visible minorities". This was required for all government jobs, and Air Canada fell into that category.

This feeling continued into the private era of Air Canada. And even today, Air Canada hires far more female pilots by percentage than hold ATPLs in Canada.

Quoting loggat (Reply 4):
Nowadays it is hard to quantify because there really has been relatively minimal hiring at the majors in the last decade.

Air Canada, has and contiues to hire a lot in the last decade. And yes as stated above, the job pays what it pays, regardless of gender. However, female pilots tend to end up more senior at the airline, as they were hired first. Pay increases as you stay longer, so ... no, female pilots don't make less, usually they make more than male pilots.
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