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Working as an Airplane Pilot

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being an airplane pilot. For example, did you know that they make an average of $51.97 an hour? That's $108,102 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 6% and produce 7,000 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does an Airplane Pilot Do

There are certain skills that many airplane pilots have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed observational skills, problem-solving skills and quick reaction time.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be an airplane pilot, we found that a lot of resumes listed 63.4% of airplane pilots included faa, while 31.3% of resumes included dod, and 4.8% of resumes included aircraft systems. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the airplane pilot job title. But what industry to start with? Most airplane pilots actually find jobs in the transportation and finance industries.

How To Become an Airplane Pilot

If you're interested in becoming an airplane pilot, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 53.8% of airplane pilots have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 15.4% of airplane pilots have master's degrees. Even though most airplane pilots have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become an airplane pilot. When we researched the most common majors for an airplane pilot, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or master's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on airplane pilot resumes include associate degree degrees or high school diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become an airplane pilot. In fact, many airplane pilot jobs require experience in a role such as helicopter pilot. Meanwhile, many airplane pilots also have previous career experience in roles such as flight instructor or security guard.

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Average Salary$108,102
Job Growth Rate6%

Airplane Pilot Jobs

Average Salary for an Airplane Pilot

Airplane Pilots in America make an average salary of $108,102 per year or $52 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $139,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $83,000 per year.
Average Salary
$108,102

Best Paying Cities

City
Average Salary
Albuquerque, NM
Salary Range78k - 135k$103k$103,090
Fort Worth, TX
Salary Range77k - 132k$102k$101,628
Washington, DC
Salary Range76k - 132k$101k$100,753
Little Rock, AR
Salary Range75k - 130k$99k$98,993
Youngstown, OH
Salary Range74k - 127k$97k$97,499
Missoula, MT
Salary Range73k - 120k$94k$93,997
$56k
$135k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Airplane Pilot
Airplane Pilot
State of Florida
State of Florida
01/22/2020
01/22/2020
$90,19901/22/2020
$90,199
Airplane Pilot
Airplane Pilot
Forest Service
Forest Service
11/24/2019
11/24/2019
$62,23611/24/2019
$62,236
Airplane Pilot
Airplane Pilot
Air National Guard Units
Air National Guard Units
11/05/2019
11/05/2019
$120,39911/05/2019
$120,399
Airplane Pilot
Airplane Pilot
Air Education and Training Command
Air Education and Training Command
11/02/2019
11/02/2019
$87,06211/02/2019
$87,062
Airplane Pilot
Airplane Pilot
Air National Guard Units
Air National Guard Units
10/25/2019
10/25/2019
$126,51610/25/2019
$126,516
See More Recent Salaries

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Airplane Pilot Demographics

Gender

male

86.2 %

unknown

10.3 %

female

3.4 %

Ethnicity

White

85.9 %

Hispanic or Latino

7.1 %

Unknown

2.8 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

50.0 %

German

25.0 %

Italian

25.0 %
See More Demographics

Airplane Pilot Education

Degrees

Bachelors

53.8 %

Masters

15.4 %

Associate

15.4 %

Top Colleges for Airplane Pilots

1. University of Cincinnati

Cincinnati, OH

In-State Tuition
$11,000
Enrollment
25,973

2. Siena Heights University

Adrian, MI

In-State Tuition
$27,124
Enrollment
2,035

3. Montana State University - Bozeman

Bozeman, MT

In-State Tuition
$7,277
Enrollment
14,566

4. Liberty University

Lynchburg, VA

In-State Tuition
$22,584
Enrollment
45,370

5. University of Alaska Anchorage

Anchorage, AK

In-State Tuition
$8,580
Enrollment
10,482

6. Eastern New Mexico University

Portales, NM

In-State Tuition
$6,326
Enrollment
3,347

7. University of Alaska Fairbanks

Fairbanks, AK

In-State Tuition
$6,657
Enrollment
4,657

8. Baker College

Owosso, MI

In-State Tuition
$9,800
Enrollment
8,319

9. Utah State University

Logan, UT

In-State Tuition
$8,138
Enrollment
21,658

10. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Champaign, IL

In-State Tuition
$15,094
Enrollment
32,974
See More Education Info

Entry Level Jobs For Becoming An Airplane Pilot

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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Best States For an Airplane Pilot

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an airplane pilot. The best states for people in this position are New Jersey, Illinois, Iowa, and Kansas. Airplane pilots make the most in New Jersey with an average salary of $120,768. Whereas in Illinois and Iowa, they would average $115,281 and $111,920, respectively. While airplane pilots would only make an average of $110,884 in Kansas, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Kansas

Total Airplane Pilot Jobs:
6
Highest 10% Earn:
$181,000
Location Quotient:
1.76
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Iowa

Total Airplane Pilot Jobs:
7
Highest 10% Earn:
$180,000
Location Quotient:
1.48
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Nevada

Total Airplane Pilot Jobs:
14
Highest 10% Earn:
$171,000
Location Quotient:
5.31
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Airplane Pilot Employers

1. Air National Guard
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$57,064
Airplane Pilots Hired: 
10+
2. UNIVERSAL IND SALES
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$50,417
Airplane Pilots Hired: 
2+
3. CityLink
4.0
Avg. Salary: 
$39,490
Airplane Pilots Hired: 
1+
4. Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association
4.2
Avg. Salary: 
$54,143
Airplane Pilots Hired: 
1+
5. Saudi Aramco
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$68,802
Airplane Pilots Hired: 
1+
6. Boeing
4.9
Avg. Salary: 
$91,362
Airplane Pilots Hired: 
1+

Recently Added Airplane Pilot Jobs

Updated October 2, 2020