Flight crew jobs consist of the Captain, or pilot in command, the First Officer, or co-pilot, and on longer flights, possibly a Second Officer to relieve the pilot. The position of flight engineer was eliminated with improved and reliable computer navigation systems.
FAA rules require that every air flight have flight attendants onboard. The main job requirement of the flight attendant is to ensure that safety regulations are followed. They also try to help passengers to be comfortable for the duration of the flight.
According to surveys conducted by salary.com on flight crew jobs, the median salary for a pilot in command is about $114,000. With bonuses, and full benefits (including Social Security) considered, the median annual income is a little under $166,000.
Co-Pilots make slightly less than the pilot in command. As far as flight crew jobs are concerned, co-pilots have the second highest pay with a median salary of about $87,000 with an annual income (base plus bonus plus benefits) of about $125,000.
Small Jet pilots earn slightly less, with a median income of just under $100,000. With bonuses, and full benefits considered, the median annual income is about $140,000The median base salary for a flight attendant is about $54,000, with an annual income (base plus bonus plus benefits) of a little less than $80,000.
Who is interviewing?
In May, over nine major airlines were posting and interviewing for flight crew jobs.. Some of the major airlines that were not hiring were American, Jet Blue, Northwest, and Delta.
If you are a pilot who has over 5,000 hours of flying experience and possesses a rating for a specific aircraft, your chances of changing airlines increase substantially. For instance, an airline may have an opening for a B-737 pilot and not a B-727 pilot. Now if you happen to have a rating for B-737 here is an opportunity for you. Rating for B-737 is very important for a pilot given that it is now the most popular airplane, primarily due to fuel efficiency. Many training organizations provide rating classes for experienced pilots.
National, Regional and Low Cost Airlines
If you are not very particular about the size of the airline you work for, then you might want to consider applying with the 65 national, regional and low cost airlines. Of these, 32 are recruiting for flight crew jobs. Of the 32 who are recruiting, 24 are actively interviewing for recruiting pilots and flight attendants.
An additional choice for flight crew jobs is to fly for cargo operations. . Thirty-one cargo operations companies have posted flight crew jobs . These airlines primarily hire pilots. As there are usually no passengers in the cabin the requirement for flight attendant does not arise. At this time, FedEx and Gemini Air cargo are not recruiting or interviewing for flight crew jobs.
Corporate Charter and On-Demand
Of the fifty-one corporate charter and on-demand airlines, many are recruiting and interviewing for flight crew jobs. While all of the corporate charter and on-demand airlines are recruiting pilots, about half of them do not have flight attendant positions. This position may be more sporadic in schedule.
Holiday Charter Services
Nine holiday charter services recruit for flight crew jobs. Two-thirds of them also recruit flight attendants.
Where to Live
Flight crews have the benefit of flexible living locations. They must be able to be in the city to pilot their assigned planes. However their headquarter city may be away from their city of flight; the head quarter city may even be across the country. Many take advantage of jump seats or open seating on planes flying to their destinations.
Major Airlines and Some National, Regional and Low-Cost Airlines
With the major airlines, it is possible for the flight crew to live in any of the hub cities (Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Denver, Salt Lake City, Houston, Dallas, Chicago, Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Washington DC, Atlanta, or Miami). Flight rotation allows the flight crews from almost any city to fly almost any flight, depending on the logistics need of the day’s schedule. While it is the responsibility of the flight crew to be in the departing city on time, major airlines, as well as many of the National, Regional and low-cost airlines provide free jump seats on planes traveling to the hub. It is important to recognize that the regional, national, and low cost airlines will not offer you much choice as to which city you could reside in, neither would they have the same seniority systems for choosing routes and flight schedules as other major airlines.
The situation is a little different with cargo operations positions. While there may be some flexibility, it is important to examine the posting of flight crew jobs regarding any headquarter city requirements. Generally, living near the hub of operations is important. Because the hub of operations is different for each cargo operations company, check these requirements carefully.
Corporate Charter and On-Demand
Corporate Charter and on-demand airlines generally have city location requirements for flight crews. Because of the nature of the corporate charter services and on-demand airlines, carefully read the flight crew jobs posting before applying. If they require that you live in Green Bay, Wisconsin and you currently live in Tampa, be aware that they won’t have the same opportunities to transport you to your flight location like the major airlines.
While the airline industry is currently undergoing restructuring as well as feeling the economic pressures of high oil prices and a slow economy, many airlines are still recruiting and interviewing for flight crew jobs.