Envoy Air, a subsidiary of American Airlines Group, will be nearly doubling the starting pay for new pilot hires! At about $38 per hour, a First Year Pilot can now make $58,000 or more, a dramatic increase to help bring in the next wave of Airline Pilots. Adding to the new incentive program is a First Officer Retention Bonus of $20,000 and a $5,000 bonus per pilot you refer.
Ric Wilson, the VP of Flight Operations summarized “Envoy’s new industry-leading starting pay – along with our up to $20,000 signing bonus, $20,000 First Officer retention bonus and guaranteed flow-through to American Airlines, without any further interview – means our pilots will be among the most highly compensated in the industry now and throughout their flying career.”
They were right! As a result of the CAPS system, over 135 lives have been saved to date. However, this didn’t come without a huge effort on Cirrus’ side to educate its pilots.
When CAPS was first put into place, it was speculated that there was a spike in Cirrus accidents because Pilots felt more comfortable knowing they had the parachute system if anything should happen. But, as Cirrus discovered, there was a lack of knowledge regarding how to use the CAPS, which didn’t have the results Cirrus was hoping for.
After recognizing the new statistics, Cirrus knew they had to do what they could to educate pilots. The Cirrus Owners and Pilots Association worked diligently to create a system of encouraging CAPS use and celebrating pilots for using the technology, rather than questioning them every time. Additionally, Cirrus created the ‘Cirrus Approach’ safety program to integrate safety and CAPS procedures into regular Cirrus training.
As a result of the Cirrus Approach, the aircraft industry saw the decline in fatal accidents each year steadily increase. The height of the accident peak was in 2011, with 16 fatal accidents in SR20s and SR22s. By 2014, the number of fatal crashes decreased to three, which is remarkable considering the spike in Cirrus Aircraft use.
The Cirrus Approach system of encouraging pilots to “pull early, pull often” has helped the world to see the safety precautions put in place. In 2015 Cirrus’ CAPS was publicized when a pilot flying his SR22 over the Pacific Ocean was filmed using it. The pilot realized mid flight that there was a fuel tank issue, and he would have to utilize CAPS in the middle of the water. The U.S. Coast Guard caught the incident on camera, and the Cirrus Approach was proven beneficial.
The world saw CAPS in action again just months later when Bill Simon, the CEO of Wal-Mart, and two passengers were forced to deploy the parachute after losing oil pressure. This too was captured and quickly spread on social media.
These widespread CAPS success stories are just two of the numerous incidents in which the system has saved lives. By constantly placing safety at the forefront of design, and regularly training pilots, Cirrus has been able to lower the number of aircraft fatalities exponentially.
Cirrus is proud to be the first recipient of the Joseph T. Nall Safety Award, and looks forward to continuing to work on safety and innovation for the aircraft industry.
The degree in Aviation Pilot Training can be completed while students are building their hours for their next flight rating. Once students have completed the required flight ratings, they may work as a Commercial Pilot with one of our airline partners, and continue to finish their studies online from wherever their flights may take them.
ACT student Danny Perez shared, “This offer allows us the opportunity to gain a degree and flight train at the same time, which makes the process of obtaining a job in the airline industry much quicker. The online classes make it easy for me to keep my daily schedule and study around it. ACT has also made it easy to meet and fly with my peers. Indian Hills Community College is constantly ranked amongst the top community colleges in the nation, which lets me know I am getting a great education while I train.”
When the ACT program was first introduced, Coast was quick to make sure that they not only had a college partner to offer an online degree, but also airline partners who would help students make connections and jumpstart their careers in the airline industry. Coast has two partner airlines who allow students to join pipeline programs to becoming airline pilots. SkyWest Airlines has given all ACT students a conditional offer of employment prior to flight training in the ACT Program. Envoy Air, an American Airlines subsidiary, holds interviews with ACT students upon completion of their Instrument Rating certificate. If an ACT student is selected by Envoy, they will have a guaranteed position as a pilot at American Airlines.
Will Dryden founded Coast Flight in 2008 and shared, “When I started the company, I always knew that combining professionalism and fun would result in the best pilots. Our job was to encourage each student’s passion for aviation to surface while we molded the best professional aviators! The idea was Over 120 Students Enrolled in ACT always to help people realize their passion for flight and start exploring the sky. We now have partnerships with two of the largest regional airlines in the United States, who represent almost 6,000 pilots, and a top rated school, which I could not be more excited about.”
The ACT Program also offers incentives for veterans, accepting up to 100% coverage for the program costs from the Post-9/11 GI Bill after Private Pilot. If students don’t have military benefits, they can get up to 100% financing and have advisors to help figure out how to make their dreams a reality.
“The ACT Program is a truly unique opportunity for our students.” added Coast’s President, Bryan Simmons, “They can get a job offer before ever starting flight training. Students also have the ability to expedite their training and degree, and get to live in the best city for flight training. Sunny San Diego allows our students to train on a more regular basis, which helps get them their ratings faster. The ultimate goal is to help them reach a career as an airline pilot, and we are happy to see that this goal is being achieved with over 120 students now in the program and well on their way to professional pilot careers.”
Pictured: Coast CFI Kristen Verdi now flying for SkyWest Airlines!
OTTUMWA — The Indian Hills Aviation Pilot Training Program is really taking off.
Wednesday morning, eight students enrolled in the Airline Career Training (ACT) Program received a conditional employment agreement with SkyWest Airlines after they finish their Associate of Applied Science degree.
This means that as long as students complete their program, with enough hours and flight experience, they will automatically be offered a position as a first officer at the airlines, based in San Diego, California.
“It’s basically like a gift card,” said Darren Graham, director of aviation programs and chief flight instructor at Indian Hills. “We give this to them as they go through training, and they don’t have to use it if they don’t want to, but it’s a great for students, and many are focused on going there right after the program.”
The applicants have had lots of training and interview practice up to this point. On Saturday, recruiters from SkyWest conducted interviews with the potential students. They awarded conditional job offers to students with outstanding interviews, high test scores and other criteria.
Graham believes this partnership with SkyWest is extremely valuable.
“We hope this program will attract new students to the industry; just like in any field, students go through all of the training then get experience, but when it’s time to interview, 50 percent don’t get hired,” said Graham. “We want to change that.”
This is the first year that the ACT program has been on the Indian Hills campus. ACT started a year prior via the Coast Flight Training in San Diego.
Graham thinks this program will bring a new sense of professionalism to the aviation program.
“This will raise the bar for our program — it’ll bring a whole new level of professionalism and safety — students are not only representing themselves and Indian Hills but they will be a representative of SkyWest Airlines and the ACT program,” said Graham.
Thatcher Carel, Kasey Murphy, Luis Zelaya, Brennan Parker, Levi Riddick, Aaron Riche, Tim Menninga and Robert Dodd were all conditionally given offers through the program.
Indian Hills flight instructor Michael O’Connor was conditionally accepted into the SkyWest Bridge program. The purpose of this program is to help bridge the gap between completion of CFI certification and building the minimum ATP qualifications as a pilot at SkyWest Airlines.
The SkyWest aircraft participants will fly 65-80 people. For more information on the ACT program, contact Graham at 641-683-4254.
An instrument rating is an advanced type of aviation certification enabling pilots to fly rather than be grounded even during cloudy weather and other weather conditions that cause low visibility. The Instrument Flight Rules Rating (IFR) training requirements include 30 hours of pre and post flight ground school, 40 hours of instrument flight training, 50 hours of PIC Cross-Country, and the successful completion of an instrument written exam. It is an excellent addition to a private pilot’s certificate, which by itself leaves the pilot limited to flying only during Visual Flight Rules (VFR) conditions. Aside from the obvious, though, there are many additional advantages that come with an instrument rating. Here are seven good reasons why an instrument rating ultimately makes for a better pilot:
1) Better Planning Pre-Flight
It’s typically true that a pilot with an instrument rating will be better at pre-flight planning than a pilot without an instrument rating. The training prepares pilots for alternates, deviations, hazards, fuel stops, and more.
2) Heightened Pilot’s Intuition
Pilots with an instrument rating also tend to be more forward-thinking, as opposed to less skilled pilots who are always in the present moment. Being a couple steps ahead, with split-second reaction times, is always a good thing in the sky.
3) IMC Flight Preparation
Flying inadvertently into Instrument Meteorological Conditions (IMC) can be tricky, but with an instrument rating pilots are better prepared for the unexpected limitations to their visibility due to unpredictable weather and clouds.
4) Improved Accuracy
Pilots with an instrument rating are known to possess an improved level of accuracy because IFR training gives pilots an opportunity to learn more precise flying techniques in terms of power changes, pitch, heading, altitude, and airspeed.
5) More Instrument Knowledge
Completing IFR training provides pilots with a more in-depth knowledge of the instruments and other technology in their aircraft as well, which makes them a superior pilot in a variety of circumstances.
6) Weather Predictions Become 2nd Nature
Pilots tend to improve their ability to notice and predict weather conditions once they’ve gotten an instrument rating. The required training includes a heavy focus on the ins and outs of weather reporting and weather theory, as well as exercises to build specific skills such as recognizing frontal passages, ice, thunderstorms, and more.
7) You’ll be a Traffic Pro
And finally, once you have finished your IFR training, you will also improve your ability to find nearby traffic with a high level of accuracy and understanding of the leading pilot reporting terminology.
If you’re ready to get an instrument rating in addition to your private pilot’s license, there is no time like the present. Coast Flight offers an Instrument Flight Rules Rating Program that prepares private pilots for clouds and other bad weather in an accelerated format. Pilots build their confidence in a complex and busy airspace and are only certified when they have reached an airline-standard of skill for flying in little (or no) visibility. After getting an instrument rating, pilots are also qualified to begin a commercial pilot’s certification program.
From smartphones and laptops to e-readers and tablets, personal computing devices are more advanced than ever, with applications that can do practically anything – including apps that make flying safer, simpler, and more convenient for pilots. There are even applications that help pilots to connect with other pilots. If you’re curious which applications are most useful for pilots, look no further. The following list covers the top 10 apps ever pilot needs to know about.
1) AeroWeather Pro
This app by Lakehorn AG allows pilots to check weather conditions and forecasts at their destination prior to takeoff. You can see everything from visibility to wind speed to runway conditions in one place.
2) Air Navigation Pro
Xample Sarl developed this app to assist pilots in their efforts to plan a flight with an interface that looks and feels like the instruments of a cockpit.
Peter Lundkvist developed this application to give pilots everything they need to know about their destination airports before taking off, including NOTAMs, runway data, weather conditions, and more.
This app from CloudAhoy, Inc. allows pilots to use the GPS receiver on their iPad to record flights and retrieve the data later on from any location. It’s the ultimate debriefing app.
5) FAA Airplane Flying Manual
Insomniac Industries put the most pertinent information from the FAA Flying Manual in one place so pilots are set up for a safe trip every time. This free app is an excellent refresher when pilots forget emergency procedures and other information in the rush of the flight.
6) FBO Fuel Prices
The team at GlobalAir .com developed an app that makes it easy for pilots to check the latest FBO fuel prices and ramp fee information before heading to their destination and fueling up. The app was developed to work in-flight or in Airplane Mode.
Jeff Cardillo’s FlightPlan – Pilot’s Toolbox tak es the guesswork out of common calculations with everything from weight and balance calculators to conversion calculators to a cutting-edge E6B slide rule computer, making calculating simple.
8) LogTen Pro X: the Pilot Logbook
Coradine Aviation Systems developed a logbook replacement app that some say is one of the greatest applications for pilots on the market today. Now those bulky, old, hard-to-use logbooks are a thing of the past.
9) WnB Pro
This application from Angell Development LLC is the go-to tool for weight and balance calculations. Pilots receive an accurate weight and balance calculation for their exact aircraft and a warning if the inputted baggage, fuel, and passenger weights are out of the safe range.
Last but not least, this app from Len Robinson goes above and beyond the basic weather conditions to provide pilots with a more accurate picture of the crosswind, headwind, tailwind, and other conditions at the destination runway and its surrounding area.
Pilots are relying on apps to do everything in this day and age: charting their routes, viewing the pertinent weather maps, completing safety checklists, getting help with navigating, and much more. From a technology standpoint, there’s never been a better time to be a pilot.
New data reveals that a young American pilot starting out in today’s market can potentially earn $7 million over the next 44 years, assuming they make the right career moves along the way. Coast Flight projects that a 21-year-old aviator starting out as a flight instructor, following the school’s Airline Career Training (ACT) program, may be able to earn $7 million by the time they’re 65, assuming they follow the suggested path to a position as Captain for a major airline. Of course, salaries for airline pilots can vary widely based on factors such as experience, schooling, and the airline they are working for. When you look at the facts, though, there’s no denying that career aviators stand to earn a great deal of money in a job they love if they can go the distance. In the following post, we explain more about how pilots are paid, and how to get the most out of this rewarding career.
Encouraging Projections from Delta and SkyWest
Coast Flight’s Airline Career Training program is unique because it provides conditional job placement at SkyWest Airlines for the elite student pilots accepted into its ranks. According to PilotJobs.com, a First Officer at SkyWest Airlines may earn approximately $28,400 their first year, but by their fifth year they could be earning as much as $48,880. And if they are promoted to Captain in their sixth year, they could see this salary increase to as much as $81,520, which will continue increasing exponentially as their career advances. Moving on to a major airline such as Delta is recommended, though. Starting pay for a Delta Airlines 737-800 Pilot is $66,000. Upon promotion to Captain, though, Delta pilots earn a starting pay of $189,000. The top pay for a Delta Airlines Captain is approximately $205,000, but those flying a Boeing 777 can potentially earn $298,500 per year plus bonuses, or as much as $350,000 in one year.
Going the Distance Pays Off
These figures may seem confusing, and if you’ve tried to do your own research on aviation salaries, you may be even more confused, as starting and ending pay for airline pilots varies so much. Each company pays its pilots differently, and since pilots are paid hourly the salary depends on how many hours one works in a year. There are wide variances between the pay for regional airline pilots and the pay for major airline pilots as well. According to figures from The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median salary for airline pilots is $114,200, but starting pay for a regional airline First Officer could be as little as $28,000, while ending pay for a major airline Captain could be several hundred thousand per year. What this shows, however, is that going the distance pays off in the field of commercial aviation. Airline pilots have the potential to earn some of the top salaries in today’s job market, but it takes a few years to get there.
A Suggested Path for Career Pilots
Coast Flight’s ACT program is designed to give graduates a clear path to a career as an airline pilot, with job placement at regional SkyWest Airlines following the completion of their training in school and job experience as a flight instructor. After two years in flight instruction, pilots are ready to begin their placement as a First Officer for SkyWest Airlines. Three years later, the same pilot should be qualified to move up to a position of Captain for SkyWest. Ultimately, however, a pilot must take their years of experience at a regional airline to a position at a major airline to make the most out of this career. So, pilots are encouraged to move on to a position of First Officer for Coast’s partners at Delta Airlines by the end of their first decade in the field, which could potentially translate to a position as a Delta Airlines Captain some eight or so years later.
It all depends on the skill, discipline, hard work, and tenacity of the pilot, of course. But assuming that you have what it takes, you could start out making less than $30,000 a year as a flight instructor and end up making well over $200,000 a year by the time you retire from a major airline.
The aviation industry appears to be entering a golden age for new pilots as we continue into the New Year. The generous compensation and retention programs of airlines such as Endeavor Air, a subsidiary of Delta Air Lines that flies as Delta Connection, are evidence of this positive trend. The airline recently announced that it is beginning an $80,000 Pilot Retention Payment program to attract the best and brightest to its cockpits. With pilots earning more of the compensation, downtime and respect they deserve, it is an excellent time to enter this critical and esteemed profession – if you have what it takes.
Endeavor’s Plan to Hire and Retain the Best
Endeavor Air, which describes itself as evoking “an image of innovation, excitement and the adventure of a journey,” will now provide pilots hired between 2015 and 2018 the opportunity to earn $20,000 in retention payments per year for the first four years of employment – that’s up to $80,000 just in bonus compensation! This generous opportunity comes in addition to the company’s competitive compensation package. Endeavor Air states that new pilots will earn $44,000 in their first year thanks to this new bonus, and their earnings will go up each year with a fourth year salary totaling over $80,000. If you’re looking for even more incentive, Endeavor pilots are also given up to 15 days off every month to relax or earn additional income, and have the opportunity to take as many as 35 days of vacation throughout the year. New hires aren’t the only ones with an opportunity to earn additional compensation at the airline, though. All current Endeavor pilots will have an opportunity to earn $2,000 for each new pilot they refer who successfully finishes the airline’s training program and joins the team.
What This Means for Prospective Student Pilots
Completing a flight training program, such as Coast Flight’s Airline Career Training (ACT) program, puts new pilots in an excellent position. There’s no denying that the airline industry is facing a shortage of pilots, and airlines like Endeavor are clearly in need of skilled new aviators to join their ranks. This pioneering retention program may be the most generous in the nation for regional pilots, but it isn’t the only one of its kind being offered at the moment. Other regional airlines such as Envoy Air, GoJet Airlines and Silver Airways have also announced signing bonuses ranging from $5,000 to $12,000 for new pilots.
With regional airlines going out of their way to attract new pilots, it looks like 2015 is an excellent time to begin training for a career in aviation. Contact Coast Flight to learn more.
Airlines will continue to add incentives to an aviation career as the 2015 Pilot Shortage shows no sign of slowing down.
There is a commercial pilot shortage plaguing airlines across the nation, and as we look forward to 2015 it appears that this trend is only going to intensify. The current state of the aviation industry in the United States is causing headaches for airlines struggling to meet the demand for flights while ensuring their pilots are given the adequate rest they need. This shortage is also creating an ideal environment for new pilots completing flight school and embarking on a career in commercial aviation. With increasing demand for commercial pilots and continued growth in this job market is expected over the next 20 years! The current pilot shortage is creating new opportunities for aviators to enter this highly regarded profession.
Understanding the Pilot Shortage
Many factors have contributed to the current commercial pilot shortage, which is expected to escalate in 2015 and beyond. The Federal Aviation Administration’s new rules for First Officer Qualifications include an increase in the number of hours that first officers are required to complete – to 1,500 hours – effectively reducing the number of qualified pilots in the job pool. Another new rule added to the Federal Aviation Regulations, FAR Part 117, has also increased the number of pilots that air carriers are required to employ to ensure adequate rest hours between shifts. This new rule alone has created an estimated increase in over 8% of total airline pilots the airlines must hire to comply.
With older pilots retiring year after year, the demand for new pilots with adequate training and sufficient flight hours is that much greater. The demand is particularly intense for regional airlines in the U.S., which currently employ fewer than 18,000 pilots in total. At the same time, our nation’s major airlines are expected to require more than 18,000 new pilots due to retirements over the next decade, and Boeing even predicts that half a million new pilots will be needed over the next two decades. Many of the pilots currently working for regional airlines are expected to leave their current positions to help fill this void within major airlines, essentially shifting the shortage from one area of the industry to another. Airports across the nation are losing service, and many more are at risk. United Airlines has even ended its Cleveland service due to its shortage of qualified pilots available to fly.
What This Means for Budding Pilots
The situation appears dire for regional airlines and their passengers around the United States, but for those considering a career in aviation this shortage is creating abundant opportunities to join the work force. Pay rates are on the rise and many airlines offer signing bonuses to entice new pilots and to fill the increasing number of vacancies in the industry. Coast Flight even offers student pilots the opportunity to interview with SkyWest and secure a Conditional Offer of Employment, so those who have what it takes will already have a job waiting for them upon completion of their required training and flight hours.
There couldn’t be a better time to become an airline pilot. Contact Coast Flight today to learn more about what it takes.
See how airlines are reacting to this news in 2015 by reading about Endeavor’s Pilot Retention Program!