What does a Pilot do?

Pilots transport, people, military, private goods, commercial products, and other types of cargo including mail on airplanes, helicopters, and other aircraft. Pilots work for a specific airline, the military, or as independents or with private aviation companies. They are often part of a flight crew with a captain and a first officer or copilot. The trio works together to fly and navigate the aircraft safely.

Pilots perform regular inspections of the aircraft, paying attention to factors including fuel, equipment, and aircraft navigation systems. Pilots operate aircraft safely and maintain professionalism at all times. They monitor weather conditions and communicate with air traffic controllers throughout the duration of the flight and stay in close communication with copilots and flight crew. Pilots update and reassure passengers and crew should an emergency arise, and they determine the safest routes when they analyze flight plans prior to takeoff. Pilots must anticipate potential issues and maintain professionalism when emergencies arise, and they remain up-to-date with aircraft advancements and equipment. Pilots need a bachelor's degree in aircraft operations, aviation, aeronautical engineer in, or related fields; pilots also must complete two months of ground training and are required to complete more than 1500 hours of flight experience.

EducationBachelor's Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.4 ★
Salary Range--
Career Opportunity
3.8 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

Pilot Salaries

Average Base Pay

£41,155 /yr
Same as national average
Not including cash compensation
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Median: £41K
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Glassdoor Estimated Salary

Pilot Career Path

Learn how to become a Pilot, what skills and education you need to succeed, and what level of pay to expect at each step on your career path.

Senior Pilot
Staff Pilot
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Pilot Insights

Read what Pilot professionals have to say about their job experiences and view top companies for this career.
Airline Pilot
18 Apr 2021

“It was my dream to join the airline and travel the world plus good salary package”

Out of the blueOut of the blue
1 Aug 2021

“Still ok i like experience time well spent good pay doing what i love good weather.”

Surdex Co.Surdex Co.
10 Jan 2020

“Ron Hoffman is an excellent CEO as well as pilot; understands the role of pilots on the road.”

Airline Pilot
18 Nov 2020

“best supporting and encouraging for our career”

Commercial Airline Pilot
1 Sep 2021

“This is easily by far one of the best companies I have worked with overall in my 20+ years of experience being a pilot.”

Delta Private JetsDelta Private Jets
Line Captain
16 Jul 2021

“Fun Place to work and the people are very nice and helpful.”

Southwest AirlinesSouthwest Airlines
Airline Pilot
20 May 2021

“It is very fun and the pay is great.”

US Air ForceUS Air Force
Air Force Pilot
15 Sep 2021

“Extremely satisfying and exciting career.”

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Pilot Interviews

Related Careers

No skills overlap
General Manager
No skills overlap
Food And Beverage Manager
No skills overlap
Restaurant Manager

Pilot jobs

Frequently asked questions about the role and responsibilities of a pilot

When working as a pilot, the most common skills you will need to perform your job and for career success are Part 121, Master of towing, Part 91, English and IFR.

The most similar professions to pilot are:
  • Captain
  • General Manager
  • Food And Beverage Manager
  • Restaurant Manager

The most common qualifications to become a pilot is a minimum of a Bachelor's Degree and an average of 0 - 1 of experience not including years spent in education and/or training.