What is a Line Pilot

A line pilot or a pilot's main duty is to transport cargo and passengers to their destination safely. Furthermore, they are responsible for running checklists, performing all necessary inspections, reporting any deviations to the management, and acting accordingly during emergencies. They must also maintain a good working relationship with their co-pilots and flight attendants to ensure a good working environment on the plane.

More than that, a line pilot must provide great customer service to all passengers. That said, they may have to answer passenger queries, greet passengers while deboarding or onboarding, and calming passengers during times of turbulence during the flight.

A bachelor's degree is not required for the role of a line pilot, but one must have an airline transport pilot license (ATPL) before one can work as one. Proper training and on-the-job experience are also a must.

As a line pilot, one's annual earnings can range from $47,000 to $121,000 in the U.S. As for the median salary, a line pilot can earn an average of $70,000 per year.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a Line Pilot. For example, did you know that they make an average of $38.47 an hour? That's $80,018 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 a Line Pilot Do

There are certain skills that many Line 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 Communication skills, Problem-solving skills and Quick reaction time.

How To Become a Line Pilot

If you're interested in becoming a Line Pilot, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 63.2% of Line Pilots have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 7.5% of Line Pilots have master's degrees. Even though most Line 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 a Line Pilot. When we researched the most common majors for a Line Pilot, we found that they most commonly earn Bachelor's Degree degrees or Associate Degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on Line Pilot resumes include Master's Degree degrees or High School Diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a Line Pilot. In fact, many Line Pilot jobs require experience in a role such as Pilot. Meanwhile, many Line Pilots also have previous career experience in roles such as Flight Instructor or Chief Pilot.

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Average Salary for a Line Pilot

Line Pilots in America make an average salary of $80,018 per year or $38 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $118,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $53,000 per year.
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Line Pilot Demographics

Line Pilot Gender Statistics


85.2 %


11.7 %


3.1 %

Line Pilot Ethnicity Statistics


86.2 %

Hispanic or Latino

7.1 %


2.5 %

Line Pilot Foreign Languages Spoken Statistics


50.0 %


20.0 %


10.0 %
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Line Pilot Education

Line Pilot Majors

41.2 %
11.5 %

Line Pilot Degrees


63.2 %


17.8 %


7.5 %

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High School / GED

Top Colleges for Line Pilots

1. SUNY Farmingdale

Farmingdale, NY • Private

In-State Tuition

2. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Champaign, IL • Private

In-State Tuition

3. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition

4. Baylor University

Waco, TX • Private

In-State Tuition

5. University of Minnesota - Crookston

Crookston, MN • Private

In-State Tuition

6. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition

7. Bowling Green State University

Bowling Green, OH • Private

In-State Tuition

8. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition

9. Siena Heights University

Adrian, MI • Private

In-State Tuition

10. Arizona State University at the Polytechnic Campus

Mesa, AZ • Private

In-State Tuition
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Online Courses For Line Pilot That You May Like

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Introduction to flight training, Aircraft Structure, Systems and Flight Instruments...

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How to Approach New Customers and Maintain Existing Ones...

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Top Skills For a Line Pilot

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 26.9% of Line Pilots listed EMS on their resume, but soft skills such as Communication skills and Problem-solving skills are important as well.

  • EMS, 26.9%
  • Company Policies, 24.9%
  • Helicopter, 16.2%
  • Federal Aviation, 14.2%
  • Company Aircraft, 12.5%
  • Other Skills, 5.3%
  • See All Line Pilot Skills

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