Real Answers from Real Pilots

Is being a pilot really for me?

Im about to finish my 4 year degree and starting all the steps to get a start date. Ive had an intro flight and loved every second of it. I even asked to go again they said no haha. I am about to take on a large financial investment that will effect my entire family. I’m young now and have no commitments but one day will have a family.
Questions

  1. Is having a healthy family possible with being a commercial pilot? Do any of you have a family/married? If so what are your thoughts?
  2. I’m someone who is not ADHD but I’m always fidgeting ( hands, fingers, legs). Can this be a reason to rethink aviation?
  3. Once you have reached a respected seniority level can you really build mostly your own schedule?
  4. Do you want to travel on your days off? Do you get burned out?
  5. If you had to rate your level of excitement from 1 being boring to 10 full excitement. How would you rate day one in the right seat to your advancement now?
1 Like

Taylor,

Lets get right to your questions.

  1. Yes, I believe that it is. I have children and am divorced, although I do not attribute my divorce to aviation. I am able to spend plenty of time with my children, far more than most fathers who work Monday through Friday. We are on the road quite a bit, but then we have a fair amount of time off, so it balances out.

  2. I wouldn’t rethink my career choice, but I would say that you need to find a way to get that in check, not just for aviation, but for any job.

  3. As a very senior pilot you can build your own schedule, but within the confines of the trips that are available to choose from and FAA and company limitations. So yes, you can have significant control over your schedule, but it isn’t carte-blanche.

  4. I do travel some on my days off, but there are times when I really do not want to get on an airplane. I generally prefer to get paid to travel and see places than do it on my own dollar and own time.

  5. I would say that I am more excited now than I was as a new-hire. Pilot contracts have improved greatly, I fly to more interesting places than I used to and I am more comfortable in the job than I used to be.

Let us know how else we can help you.

Chris