learning2fly
Topic Author
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2019 7:44 am

Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:37 am

Hi Everyone,

I am currently 20 and starting out on flying and should be at a regional in about 2 years. I wanted to get advice if going to a regional that has a better quality of life with better base matters or working for a regional that is owned by a major partially. My ultimate dream is United Airlines and most of their new aviate program is for pilots at ExpressJet, Mesa, Air Wisconsin, and CommutAir. If you do not fly for one of these airlines and go to another regional does it harm your chances of getting into United or has no effect or all?

Moreover, If someone you could recommend what to keep an eye on. Forex: a better regional pilot job with more bases and salary pay and apply to majors on your own merit OR a regional with a major airline partnership for flow thru? Such as Envoy, United Aviate, etc.

Thanks!
 
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Starlionblue
Posts: 19497
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 9:00 am

Don't overthink it. When you start out in aviation, take any job that pays you to fly. Don't go chasing salary or lifestyle too much. That's for later. For most people in aviation (or otherwise), the first job is a stepping stone. Get a job and use it to build experience towards the job that you actually want. Who knows what your life is like in 5-10 years? You might love what you are doing and keep working with that. You may get an opportunity at another airline. You might start a family and want to make certain lifestyle choices that limit certain career paths.

I don't know United specifically, but I imagine they care that much about where you come from, as long as you have the necessary qualifications and a good attitude. The fact they take most of their pilots from certain commuter carriers might simply mean contacts have been made. If 50 guys from ExpressJet now work at United, they're going to know people at ExpressJet who want to work at United. And so they put in a word with recruiting.

Maybe don't set your sights on a specific airline as your "dream job". The road is long and winding. Enjoy the journey, wherever you end up.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
VSMUT
Posts: 3257
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 9:40 am

Starlionblue wrote:
Maybe don't set your sights on a specific airline as your "dream job". The road is long and winding. Enjoy the journey, wherever you end up.


A million times this. 2 years is a long time in aviation. The flag carrier in my country went from fantastic wages and conditions to undercutting the LCCs and regionals in only a matter of weeks, then a few years later started outsourcing mainline flying to the lowest bidder.

Keep your options open. The airline isn't going to show you the same loyalty as you show them.
 
learning2fly
Topic Author
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2019 7:44 am

Re: Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:47 pm

Starlionblue wrote:
Don't overthink it. When you start out in aviation, take any job that pays you to fly. Don't go chasing salary or lifestyle too much. That's for later. For most people in aviation (or otherwise), the first job is a stepping stone. Get a job and use it to build experience towards the job that you actually want. Who knows what your life is like in 5-10 years? You might love what you are doing and keep working with that. You may get an opportunity at another airline. You might start a family and want to make certain lifestyle choices that limit certain career paths.

I don't know United specifically, but I imagine they care that much about where you come from, as long as you have the necessary qualifications and a good attitude. The fact they take most of their pilots from certain commuter carriers might simply mean contacts have been made. If 50 guys from ExpressJet now work at United, they're going to know people at ExpressJet who want to work at United. And so they put in a word with recruiting.

Maybe don't set your sights on a specific airline as your "dream job". The road is long and winding. Enjoy the journey, wherever you end up.


I agree with it mainly being about setting foot in the right direction as you said a stepping stone in your aviation career. I have come across many individuals saying how the industry may change at any moment as aviation is always changing. There is a lot of opportunity as of now in the aviation industry but things can always change so I agree that right now the emphasis should be on experience and hours building and I will keep that in mind going forward. Some airlines in the Asia region desperate for pilots hire pilots right after a CPL on the Airbus A320 but moving from the United States to an international airline would be a huge difference vs flying at a regional in the States.

I do believe United really wants a percentage of pilots from specific regional carriers but contracts may change or the flow may stop so it is better to focus on what airline has the best present when applying, I assume. Time to start focusing on training itself and doing well along the timeline to the first job.


Thank you for the reply and great advice.
 
learning2fly
Topic Author
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2019 7:44 am

Re: Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:48 pm

VSMUT wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:
Maybe don't set your sights on a specific airline as your "dream job". The road is long and winding. Enjoy the journey, wherever you end up.


A million times this. 2 years is a long time in aviation. The flag carrier in my country went from fantastic wages and conditions to undercutting the LCCs and regionals in only a matter of weeks, then a few years later started outsourcing mainline flying to the lowest bidder.

Keep your options open. The airline isn't going to show you the same loyalty as you show them.



I will keep that in mind when applying as well as training. It is crazy how the industry has picked up now but a small global hiccup could change everything.
 
Alias1024
Posts: 2553
Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2004 11:13 am

Re: Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 7:19 pm

Flow or a guaranteed interview is a nice thing to have in your back pocket, but not something to rely upon.

I know two pilots at DL that had flow to AA, but after nine years at American Eagle they were tired of waiting and jumped on the opportunity at DL. I know pilots that were at Endeavor and got their guaranteed interview (SSP), only to find themselves in a separate hiring pool to DL and eventually 1,500 seniority numbers behind non-SSP pilots that interviewed the following week. I know pilots that were in the CPP program for United, but failed the Hogan computer personality test, only to get hired at WN a couple months later.

As said above, hiring in the industry can change in an instant. While unlikely we'll again see the combination of a major recession and a simultaneous increase of the retirement age, it could happen. The first time resulted in five years of total hiring gridlock. I flew at the regionals for a decade.

Thankfully I'd heeded this one good piece of advice regarding which regional to fly for if you have options. Go to a place you'd be happy to be stuck at for a while, because it could happen. Look at which companies have good reputations, and if it is important to you, multiple bases in the part of the country you'd like to live.
It is a mistake to think you can solve any major problems with just potatoes.
 
GalaxyFlyer
Posts: 4129
Joined: Fri Jan 01, 2016 4:44 am

Re: Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 9:32 pm

learning2fly wrote:
Starlionblue wrote:
Don't overthink it. When you start out in aviation, take any job that pays you to fly. Don't go chasing salary or lifestyle too much. That's for later. For most people in aviation (or otherwise), the first job is a stepping stone. Get a job and use it to build experience towards the job that you actually want. Who knows what your life is like in 5-10 years? You might love what you are doing and keep working with that. You may get an opportunity at another airline. You might start a family and want to make certain lifestyle choices that limit certain career paths.

I don't know United specifically, but I imagine they care that much about where you come from, as long as you have the necessary qualifications and a good attitude. The fact they take most of their pilots from certain commuter carriers might simply mean contacts have been made. If 50 guys from ExpressJet now work at United, they're going to know people at ExpressJet who want to work at United. And so they put in a word with recruiting.

Maybe don't set your sights on a specific airline as your "dream job". The road is long and winding. Enjoy the journey, wherever you end up.


I agree with it mainly being about setting foot in the right direction as you said a stepping stone in your aviation career. I have come across many individuals saying how the industry may change at any moment as aviation is always changing. There is a lot of opportunity as of now in the aviation industry but things can always change so I agree that right now the emphasis should be on experience and hours building and I will keep that in mind going forward. Some airlines in the Asia region desperate for pilots hire pilots right after a CPL on the Airbus A320 but moving from the United States to an international airline would be a huge difference vs flying at a regional in the States.

I do believe United really wants a percentage of pilots from specific regional carriers but contracts may change or the flow may stop so it is better to focus on what airline has the best present when applying, I assume. Time to start focusing on training itself and doing well along the timeline to the first job.


Thank you for the reply and great advice.


Those Asian carriers are hiring low-time local nationals, not 250-hour foreigners. They’re trying to develop there own local pilots. Very similar to Europe’s MPL program.
 
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Starlionblue
Posts: 19497
Joined: Fri Feb 27, 2004 9:54 pm

Re: Career Path Program

Mon Nov 25, 2019 11:29 pm

learning2fly wrote:

I agree with it mainly being about setting foot in the right direction as you said a stepping stone in your aviation career. I have come across many individuals saying how the industry may change at any moment as aviation is always changing. There is a lot of opportunity as of now in the aviation industry but things can always change so I agree that right now the emphasis should be on experience and hours building and I will keep that in mind going forward. Some airlines in the Asia region desperate for pilots hire pilots right after a CPL on the Airbus A320 but moving from the United States to an international airline would be a huge difference vs flying at a regional in the States.


The fact that it would be a huge difference is part of the attraction. :) Working abroad even for a few years can be a fun and enriching experience, both professionally and personally rewarding. Doing it when you are young and have no or few familial commitments is ideal. If you can land a position abroad while waiting for something to free up at home, I highly recommend going for it.

Even a non-ideal experience will "expand your horizons". And you can always return home.

Just be cautious of dodgy employers, "pay to fly" schemes and the like.

(I've been an expat for almost half my life so I do admit to being bit biased.)

GalaxyFlyer wrote:

Those Asian carriers are hiring low-time local nationals, not 250-hour foreigners. They’re trying to develop there own local pilots. Very similar to Europe’s MPL program.


There are airlines in Asia hiring foreigners with CPLs and 250-500 hours. Some even hire directly onto widebodies. The "low-time nationals" on cadet programmes are often hired with 0-50 hours.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
RetiredWeasel
Posts: 738
Joined: Sat Jul 05, 2014 8:16 pm

Re: Career Path Program

Tue Nov 26, 2019 1:30 am

I bring this up every time somebody asks about starting in a flying career. As a 21-25 year old, and in good physical condition with a college degree, you should look into being a military aviator also. If you get a guaranteed pilot slot, pass the training and spend your next 8-9 years or so flying military aircraft, and keep out of trouble, you would have an excellent chance of getting hired by a major. Yup, not for everybody, but the pay and benefits aren't bad and the flying can be exciting.
 
FlyHossD
Posts: 1947
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2009 3:45 pm

Re: Career Path Program

Tue Nov 26, 2019 2:46 pm

Reread Starlionblue's post at least 3 times. All that I can add is that in my career, persistence was a key factor. I was just too stubborn to quit!

Starlionblue wrote:
Don't overthink it. When you start out in aviation, take any job that pays you to fly...
...Maybe don't set your sights on a specific airline as your "dream job". The road is long and winding. Enjoy the journey, wherever you end up.
My statements do not represent my former employer or my current employer and are my opinions only.

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