Why Every Pilot Needs an A320 Type Rating


A type rating certification is the most important credentials a pilot should acquire if they want a career as an airline pilot. A type rating is necessary certification for flying a commercial jet. Having a type rating provides a pilot the necessary competencies to operate an aircraft and provide the pilot with a comprehensive knowledge of the systems and skills required on a specific kind of jet aircraft.

In the world of commercial aviation, the Airbus A320 (A320) is one of the most frequently used aircraft. Here we discuss why investing in an a320 type rating with AeroStar Training Services proves to be advantageous for current Airline Transport Pilots and future ATP pilots.

Aerostar Training Services in Orlando, Florida operates simulation training centers and provides aircraft type ratings, namely the Airbus A320 & the Boeing 737 Classic & NG versions. Aerostar offers Jet Transition Training, the atp ctp, and Type Ratings. AeroStar Training Services offers training courses that will allow you to navigate an Airbus 320 as well as the A318, A319 & A321 series of aircraft.

A320 Type Rating - Fast Facts

The Airbus A320 series ranked as the world’s fastest-selling jet airliner and as the best-selling single-generation aircraft program. 6,157 aircraft are currently in service. Another 5,099 airliners are on firm order.

Since its first flight back in 1988, the Airbus A320 remains to be one of the most ordered and used aircraft amongst airlines across the globe. It is was the first commercial aircraft that was outfitted with the Fly-By-Wire system, catapulting the technology of then analogue pilot controls into digital electronic signals via wire transmissions.

A market-leader in the single-aisle jetliner industry and one of the best-selling aircrafts in the world, the A320 offers flexibility and improved performance. To date, Airbus has already logged over 11,000 booked orders for the A320 family. Its unique construction, consistently strong performance, cost efficiency and its high capacity for both cross-region and cross-continental flights makes the A320 a popular choice in the industry.

AeroStar is the world leader in atp ctp and Type Rating Training and is now offering an A320 Type Rating. a320 type rating Training at AeroStar provides a thorough understanding of the Airbus A318, A319, A320 & A321 series of aircraft.

Part of the process in acquiring a type rating is going through a comprehensive training course. These programs are designed to equip pilots with capabilities in handling complex aircraft systems and instruments. At AeroStar, that training includes ground school, fixed base simulator training and full flight simulator training in an FAA certified Level D Airbus A320 Full Flight Simulator.

One advantage of this particular type of training is that it not only equips pilots with advanced knowledge on flight, it also provides pilots a comprehensive understanding on the demands of the role of an airline pilot.  The AeroStar A320 simulators replicate the cockpit of its namesake and even replicate all weather operations, routes and technical problems, preparing pilots for everything they can expect in their future careers.

An a320 type rating facilitates easier transition to a different type. The various aircrafts in the Airbus family share a number of similarities in terms of cockpit layout, handling characteristics and system operations. For example, a cadet with an a320 type rating would find it easier to cross certify over to the double decker Airbus A380, which is primarily used for long-haul flights.

Airbus has also developed its own Cross-Crew Qualification (CCQ) concept that enables pilots to transition from any Airbus fly-by-wire equipped type to another simply through difference training. With the effective planning and implementation of the CCQ difference training, a transition from an A320 to the A380 would take a mere 13 days. With this, airlines can maximize operations as a result of reduced transition training period and costs.

With the significant increase of airlines ordering Airbus fleets by the bulk, having an a320 type rating is more important than ever. The a320 type rating ensures that pilots remain relevant and have the opportunity to pursue successful careers in the ever-expanding aviation industry.

AeroStar offers the A320 Standard Type Rating which is perfect for the first time jet pilot or those who prefer the benefit of instructor lead classroom training. The course requires approximately three weeks to complete and includes 9 days of ground school/labs with a blend of lecture, virtual flight, and CBT training.

  • 1 level 5 FTD procedures integration session (four hours per crew)
  • 5 level D full flight simulator sessions including LOFT (twenty hours per crew)
  • 1 oral & practical exam in a level D simulator by an in-house evaluator (four hours per crew)

AeroStar offers the A320 Fast Track Type Rating for those pilots who have previous jet experience and or those who need to get their training done with fewer days away from family and work. This course requires approximately 10 days on site to complete and includes:

  • 56 to 72 hours of cloud based aircraft systems instruction via distance learning software
  • 3 days of ground school – includes a blend of lecture and virtual flight
  • 1 level 5 FTD procedures integration session (four hour per crew)
  • 5 level D full flight simulator sessions including LOFT (twenty hours per crew)
  • 1 oral & practical exam in a level D simulator by an in-house evaluator (four hours per crew)

(A320 Fast Track Type Rating students must meet eligibility requirements)

AeroStar offers the A320 Upgrade or Foreign License Conversion for pilots with three hundred hours or more recent experience in type or those who possess a foreign PIC type rating. This course can be accomplished in approximately 9 days and includes:

  • 5 days of ground school – includes a blend of lecture, virtual flight, and CBT
  • 1 level 5 FTD procedures integration session (four hours per crew)
  • 3 level D full flight sim sessions including a LOFT (twelve hours per crew)
  • 1 oral & practical exam in a level D simulator by an in-house evaluator (four hours per crew)

AeroStar offers the A320 PIC / SIC Recurrent Proficiency Check for pilots who require an annual proficiency check or just want to refresh their skills. This course can be accomplished within 2 to 3 days and includes:

  • 1 day of ground school – includes a blend of lecture, virtual flight, and CBT
  • 4 hours level D full flight sim sessions (includes proficiency training and check)

Tailored recurrent programs are available upon request ranging from two to five days.

AeroStar offers the A320 ATP – CTP for pilots looking to complete their ATP written exam. This course can be accomplished in approximately 7-9 days and includes:

  • 4 days of ground school – includes a blend of lecture, virtual flight, and CBT
  • 4 hours of level 5 FTD per crew in the A320
  • 6 hours of level D full flight simulator per crew in the A320

Note – The Airline Transport Pilot Certification Training Program is an FAA mandated prerequisite prior to accomplishing the ATP written Exam

Pilots with an a320 type rating will usually end up being hired almost immediately with an airline or possibly the A318 business jet version. A320 pilots are very passionate about their profession and love flying airplanes.  Of everyone I know in all kinds of different professions, no one enjoys their job as much as I do.  And likely, if you do meet your career aspirations of becoming an airline pilot, you will realize the same thing.  There are few things better in life than going to work and actually enjoying what you do.  The job is always different, it’s stimulating, interesting, and can be extremely rewarding.  Frankly, it’s probably one of the coolest jobs anyone could ever have short of being a brain surgeon or an astronaut ????

The schedule flexibility, especially the flexibility afforded to senior A320 pilots, can be extremely beneficial. Airline pilots don’t work the typical 9 to 5 schedule that many other professionals work.  Very often, pilots have groups of days where they are “ON” and have groups of days off where they are “OFF.”  The quantity and the quality of these ON/OFF days are usually determined by one thing- seniority.  A moderately senior pilot can have sometimes 18 days off, with these days off grouped together in a manner that would allow weekends and holidays off, or perhaps long stretches of time off by grouping “OFF” days together.   There are very few jobs that offer that type of flexibility.  Of course, you have to be senior enough to take advantage of these scheduling abilities.

For lower time ATP or Airline Transport Pilots pay is very low, especially during the early several years of one’s career with a regional airline. However, for Airbus A320 pilots, the career can be very lucrative.  It is possible, after many years of service, to earn high salaries sometimes well north of $100,000 per year.  Some airlines still have pensions, now becoming extinct in other industries, so becoming employed by one of these carriers could be financially beneficial to your retirement.

If you love to travel, then flying the A320 is the job for you.  Not only will you have the opportunity to “see the world” on your company’s dime as you “work for the man” as an Airbus A320 pilot, but you also will enjoy travel benefits, like inexpensive space available seating to wherever your airline flies, or discounted airline tickets for you, your family, and your parents.   Now I’ll be the first to tell you that the travel benefits aren’t as good as they used to be just 10 years ago, but for the most part they are usable if you travel smart.  And if you’re traveling alone as a pilot, you’ll have access to the jump seat(s) in the cockpit of both your airline and other airlines, usually for free.  With this benefit, you can travel virtually anywhere in the world on your own.

Just as pilots usually love their jobs, you’ll find that the other professionals you work with enjoy theirs, too.  You’ll meet many different people, cultures, and their associated ideas.  There are few things more enjoyable than flying with a group of people who love their jobs and the airline biz.

Since pilots can fly very inexpensively on their own airline, or use the pilot-exclusive cockpit jump seats on their own carrier or just about any other carrier for free, many pilots choose to live outside of the city they are based in with their airline.  For example, a Chicago based pilot could live in Florida if he or she desires.  As long as the pilot allows enough time to fly from their home to their airline’s domicile to begin their trips, it’s perfectly acceptable to commute and live wherever you choose.  Some pilots, however, would find such a commute stressful and undesirable so therefore chose to live in their assigned domicile.  Regardless, the pilot can choose to live “in base” or anywhere else, as desired.  Few jobs offer that type of flexibility.

This is more for career changers, but unlike other professions where once you hit a “certain age” it becomes more and more difficult to find employment, in the airline business the airlines don’t really seem to care how old one is.  In particular, during the short periods of time of airline economic growth where regional airlines get desperate for anyone to take their low paying, low quality, entry-level jobs, they’ll hire just about anyone who meets minimum qualifications.  You could be 60 years old for all they care.  If you meet their minimum requirements and can withstand the financially difficult regional airline first officer lifestyle, the job will likely be yours!

Many professionals, even when at home, are still chained to their company.  Even on days off, they still may be required to answer e-mails, texts, or phone calls. Typically when you set the parking brake on the last leg of your last day, that’s it.  You don’t take your job home with you.  There may be some times where you might have to do a little “homework” for the job (like preparing for your check rides or upgrades) but again, for the most part, unless you’re on call you are not required to answer your phone or be “available” to the company.

Simply put, getting an a320 type rating from AeroStar Training Services in Orlando, Florida will enrich your life and open the door to a rewarding career flying all over the world in one of the greatest aircraft ever designed. For more information about getting a type rating or pilot career advice please email [email protected] or call us at (407)888-9011 to speak to one of our specialist. Please visit our website for more info & download our free course catalog www.AeroStarTypeRatings.com 

Join us for an Airline Pilot Career Workshop online!

Airline Career Workshop
Join us for a Webinar on Wednesday, November 12, 2014
airline pilot career
Space is limited.
Reserve your Webinar Seat Now at:

Questions and Answers about airline pilot careers for future captains and first officers.We’ll be asking questions about career opportunities.Featuring Captain David Santo, airbus a320 Captain for Jetblue Airways and President of AeroStar Training Services and guests.This session is free to attend, but seating is limited, so register today! Sponsored by AeroStar Training Services, LLC

Title: Airline Career Workshop
Date: Wednesday, November 12, 2014
Time: 1:00 PM – 2:00 AM MST

System Requirements
PC-based attendees
Required: Windows® 8, 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
Macintosh®-based attendees
Required: Mac OS® X 10.6 or newer

Mobile attendees
Required: iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phone or Android tablet

The Future of Flying With The High Cost of Training

Pilot shortages are becoming a major issue for regional airlines and will soon include the major US airlines as well. Rule changes that require co-pilots to have more flight experience in the United States have caused major problems for smaller regional carriers. Some have had to ground flights because there aren’t enough qualified people for their cockpits. When Republic Airways declared bankruptcy recently, its CEO blamed the situation, in part, on a nationwide pilot shortage.

Meanwhile in Asia, the huge growth in demand for air travel has also led to a shortage in qualified pilots. For example, airlines in China have actually had to look abroad. Some are even offering outrageous salaries and perks to lure pilots from countries like South Korea & Vietnam.

It seems like becoming a pilot is a good career choice, not just because it is a “dream job” for many, but because it looks like qualified pilots will be in very high demand in the future. They will enjoy job security and command high salaries.

There is one thing standing in the way of would-be pilots: the high cost of education and the even higher cost of fulfilling experience requirements.

Strict experience requirements

It was not always this way. Until a few years ago, novice pilots could learn on the job. They would graduate from flights school and get a job with one of the smaller regional airlines as a co-pilot after having logged as little as 250 hours of flight time.

The pilot shortage is really a shortage of pilots. The low entry requirements changed after a series of incidents involving pilot error on regional airlines. The last straw came in 2009, when a pilot and co-pilot’s mistakes were blamed for a crash in Buffalo, New York. All 49 people on board were killed when a Continental Airlines-affiliated Colgan Air turboprop stalled and crashed near the Buffalo airport.

Soon after this crash, the FAA changed the rules. Co-pilots are now required to have 1,500 hours of flight time before they can fly commercially. Additionally, fliers must log at least 1,000 hours in the co-pilot’s chair before they are eligible to be promoted to pilot.

It’s becoming more and more expensive to learn to fly. With flight time costing more than $150 per hour in a 172, getting the requisite experience is very expensive. Considering that the first jobs that commercial pilots have are usually with regional airlines that pay far less than legacy carriers, it could take years before the cost of getting a commercial pilot’s license is recovered.

The other problem: the military is using fewer pilots as it relies more and more on drones for combat operations. This means that not only is it becoming more expensive for people to pursue a pilot license privately, but the previously-steady stream of military-trained fliers ready to enter the commercial aviation job market is also drying up.

What is the solution?

Regional carriers have asked the FAA to make some sort of allowance that will let them avoid the 1,500 hour threshold for co-pilot experience. The 1,500 rule will be up for renewal this fall, and some airlines are asking for a lower level of experience, saying that the 1,500-hour minimum is too high.

However, because of safety concerns, a return to a 250-hour minimum for co-pilots is unlikely. Airlines could start their own training programs, teaching novice fliers in-house and giving them the requisite experience in exchange for a commitment to work for a certain period of time.

In-house training

Recently, Jet Blue launched a program that has gained a lot of attention in the aviation world. The airline accepted 34 people with zero flying experience and promised to train them and give them positions in JetBlue cockpits once they become qualified. The experimental pilot training program will last for four years. There is one major catch for the future fliers: the cost of this education is $125,000. Yes, they will have a guaranteed job when they graduate, but that is still a steep price to pay.

This kind of in-house training could be a way for novices to learn to fly without having to assume too much financial risk. If their education is successful, they will be able to earn the cost of tuition back while flying for a major airline (instead of having to work their way up through the regional ranks while making $20,000-$30,000 per year).

Also, some regional carriers have started to offer pilots-in-training jobs to help them pay for the cost of their education. The airlines then guarantee a spot in the cockpit when all the flight requirements have been met.

It is clear that something will have to change or there will simply not be enough qualified pilots to go around. At the same time, lowering experience requirements is not a very attractive option either.

Going overseas to build time

I work in a part 142 training center that provides Type Ratings in the A320 & B737 as well as the ATP CTP called AeroStar Training Services. Lately, I’ve noticed a trend of pilots going to foreign airlines in order to build their time. I’ve even seen students come over with less than 300 hours and get a type rating, then go over to Asia and start making $6,000 (tax-free) a month flying in the right seat of an airliner. I’ve even heard of pilots in that situation upgrading within a year or two to the left seat.

A friend of mine who was already in the left seat of a major US Airline was even going over there to fly because the job is so glamorous and the pay is almost double. In countries like Vietnam for example, being an airline pilot is just like the days of the Pan Am era back in the 1960’s and 70’s. If you’re willing to be away from home for a few years the benefits could be lucrative. You could potentially make back all the money spent on initial training within a few years. And afterwards come back to the U.S and land that high paying job with a major airline earning high salaries.

by Bryan Pilcher Pilot & Aviation Sales / Marketing Expert at AeroStar

2016 “Airline Industry Forecast”  Air Transport World Magazine

“Training Tomorrow’s Workforce” Regional Horizons RAA Magazine

“JetBlue Shakes Up Pilot Hiring by Training Them from Scratch” Bloomberg Magazine


RAA Convention Update – Future Pilot Career Outlook

We recently returned from the RAA convention and are very encouraged about the prospects for pilots starting airline careers.

The Regional Airlines (members of the RAA) are an important career step for many of AeroStar’s former students as they graduate to legacy carriers and wide-body pilot positions. Advancing through the ranks at a regional airline can set you apart from other candidates applying for Captain or First Officer positions at larger, more prestigious carriers.

Many regional airlines have realized that they need to provide additional incentives to attract quality candidates. Those incentives may come in the form of sign-on bonuses, training opportunities, and other incentives that make these positions more attractive than they may have been in the past.


Airline Pilot Career Workshop – Career Difficulties

Paula Williams –

Great, excellent Yassine from Tunisia is looks like he’s having a career difficulties, and again I apologize if I’m pronouncing names incorrectly but apparently put a lot of money into an aviation education and is not having much luck. But I know we, we’ve talked about this a little bit before, but if you have any thoughts from Tunisia or that area?


Captain David Santo –

So I don’t know specifically about Tunisia. I will say that there are certain areas of the world, that there is not a huge amount of growth going on, in the airline industry. So you have to be willing to go where the demand is. And right now, there is a demand in Asia. There is a demand in central and south America. There’s some demand in Europe, of course. There’s demand in the United States but it requires. So don’t get discouraged. You didn’t make a bad decision. You’ve made a decision, and now, if you wanna pursue this. You need to look at where in the world best fits your experience and go there and apply.

One of things that I find, I get, you know, some blogs and some feedback from people that talk about how negative it is. I grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. There wasn’t a lot of jobs in Phoenix, Arizona. I love being in Phoenix, my home is in Phoenix, my mom and dad live in Phoenix.

I left and went to Michigan because that’s where the flying jobs were. And it snows in Michigan and it’s a lot colder than my home in the desert in Arizona, but I did what it took to pursue the job.

Paula Williams –


Captain David Santo –

So my question back to Yassine is, are you willing to do what it takes? And if you do, then turn the glass upside down you’ve gotten a lot of experience already. Let’s look at how you’re gonna make that next step.

Paula Williams –

Right. So it’s only a bad decision if you give up and turn a different direction and then you come all this way for no reason.

Captain David Santo –

That’s correct, you can’t get discouraged. So many of my friends and colleagues from Flight School, they did get discouraged. And what set them apart from, from me? I don’t have any skills that they didn’t have. What I did have was perseverance and I wasn’t taking no for an answer.

Paula Williams –

Here’s a, another similar one, looking for a first job. Has a type rating in a b737 NG. And in the, Ismail in the Maldives. So that’s what I understand a beautiful part of the world but there may not be a lot of demand there and you may need to move somewhere else.

Captain David Santo –

So that’s right. So again, same answer as before. I would look at where the biggest demand is and I would go after it. With a 737 type rating, that doesn’t mean just like any, just like getting your commercial, your multi-engine, your ATP. That doesn’t mean the jobs are going to come and look for you.

It just means you’re giving yourself a tool to advance your career by looking better in front of the, the pilot hiring committee or the pilot recruiter. You need to go out there and bang on doors. And I’m, I’m saying that fictitiously now because now it’s bang on email addresses I guess.

You need to be out here trying to get the job.

Paula Williams –


Captain David Santo –

You need to be out there showcasing yourself as a 737 NG type-rated pilot. And talk to them about how you’ve learned crew resource management, multi crew experience, jet time. What are we doing? And I would invite Ismail to, to contact me directly. He should have my contact information.

Let’s look at what you’re doing, I’m still here to help you. Just because you graduated and you’re gone, we still want to help you pursue your career dreams. So utilize the resources of AeroStar, call us up, let us know what you’re doing and we’ll do our best to assist you to take that next step.

Airline Pilot Career Workshop – A Second Career for 55+ Pilots?

Paula Williams –

Fantastic. And Jim from Brazil says he was flying a B737. He’s a Hawker 400 captain now jet, jet transition instructor. Okay, I guess that wasn’t really a question, so we’ll move on. Let’s see, and here’s another one.

I’m 52 years old, I’ve always dreamed of flying.

 30 years ago I took some, took the theoretical courses in France. Today I train with the flight simulator, is it too late for me to make a career as a pilot now? This is Robin from Guinea.

Captain David Santo –

So Robin I never think it’s too late, the current retirement age is 65. I know that at my airline, we have hired new hires that have been 60. I don’t know whether there’s been anybody hired older than that, but I believe so. So, you really, you know, the, the clock is ticking.

So to get some years of experience in, you really need to do everything you can do right now to pad your logbook, build your time. But if you were hired by 55. So that gives you two or three years, of really getting all of your time built up, your experience built up, you will have ten solid years to work as a airline pilot.

Now after that ten years mandatory retirement at 65. As it looks today, and that might change it might go up. So, you could ride that, that bow wave if it does, but retired airline pilots, still have the opportunity to do things like ferry airplanes. They do maintenance flights, and they also become Sim instructors.

So, I would say absolutely Robin if this is something you wanna do don’t wait, come on over the water’s fine and I think you’ll have a good time doing it.


Airline Pilot Careers – The Time Building Conundrum Part I

low timeQuestions from aspiring pilots about the “Time Building Conundrum”

Paula Williams –

All right Eduardo from Spain says I would like to earn a B737 type rating. I have an an ATPL, well I’ll let you read all the letters there.

And I would like to know what is the best, easiest, and least expensive way to obtain the type with Aerostar.

Captain David Santo –

Okay, well and it’s not just with Aerostar it’s gonna be with any 142 school we certainly appreciate your business, but we want you to look at every other option and see what’s best for you. First of all EASA. You’ve had some wonderful training. EASA’s very well recognized as being a great organization for requiring a lot from their pilots.

The first step is to go to www.faa.gov and apply for validation of your current experience. Once you get your current experience validated, then you need to think about the written examination. Do you have valid ATP written exam results? If you don’t, the FAA has recently passed a new requirement for the airline transport pilot certification training program.

Very similar to the EASA Multi Crew Coordination course. You do need to take that course regardless of your experience. Right now, there is no waiver for it. So a 142 school like Aerostar can offer you that course. That then get you the prerequisite met to take the ATP written.

Once you’ve got the ATP written done, you’ve got your validation of all your experience, you’ve met all the logbook requirements for the ATP. Come over and do a type rating course with us. And out of that type rating course, we’ll be able to add the ATP certificate. And the A370 or 737 type rating are all in one one checkride.


Paula Williams –

Great. Here’s one from  Fourati from Tunisia as you know airlines do not hire any pilots with low hours and there’s a lot of jobless cadet pilots type rating costs a lot and is not terribly affordable profession must work on a solution.

So first of all, I would agree with you. I wish there was a better solution for the industry. Although this is an age-old problem. This is the exact same problem that I had when I was coming up through the ranks. Nobody would hire you without multi-engine time.

And nobody would give you multi-engine time to get hired. And yet, we all made it. So how did we all make the leap? If we all made the leap, you can make the leap too. Now first of all, I’m gonna push back on you. And say airlines do hire low time pilots.

If you don’t think they do, go look in Asia. Go look at VietJet. Go look at Indonesia. Go look at China. Go to the websites for the aviation recruiters, like Rishworth or VOR Holdings. For the first time ever, they’re starting to actively hire first officers. But in your particular region of the world, it may be true.

It may be true that there isn’t gonna be a low time pilot job opportunity. So what are you willing to do to pursue the career? Are you willing to go to Asia and fly for a while? If that’s your option, boy, I would jump on that. What a great experience, it’d be a great adventure.

And when you come back, you’re going to be the top of the stack. Cuz you’re going to have lots of experience. Do I agree there needs to be a better solution? I do. I don’t have the answer for that. I’m just trying to provide the solutions that work within the, the context of what we have in the industry now.

Paula Williams –

Right. So you just look at the cards you’re dealt and play them the best you can. And sometimes you have to go somewhere else to get better cards. [LAUGH].

Captain David Santo –

And, and, and I do wanna reassure, all of us did it. I had 250 hours once. Every single one of those airline pilots the 50 some thousand that we saw on the previous table, had 250 hours once. We all made the leap, and you can too.

Paula Williams –

Right. And here’s a real similar question 265 hours and a commercial ME and a Type Rating.

Captain David Santo  –

So what can you do? So Pablo, there’s a couple different pathways. Number one, there’s flight instruction, that’s the old proven pathway to build time is to get a flight instructor job. And the good news is, the schools right now are losing their flight instructors at an alarming rate So there are opportunities to go instruct. It’s a great way to give something back to the industry. It’s a great way for you to build your experience. And nothing teaches you how to fly better than helping to teach somebody else. However, if you don’t want to do the flight instructing route, there’s still other routes out there.

There’s banner flying. There’s towing gliders. There’s flying bank checks. There’s freight jobs out there in single engine and twin engine airplanes. There’s the commuters. Right now, you can’t get on with a commuter, by the way, until you have 1,500 hours, so you got to build some time to get to those.

The other thing is I was saying to the previous question. There are job opportunities outside the United States. And you should consider those. If you have the ability to travel to Asia and to work in the Asian market, you might actually be able to land a job flying an Airbus or a Boeing.

It’s not going to be easy. You’re gonna have to go beat on doors and make your own opportunities. But nothing worthwhile in life is gonna come easy. It’s all gonna take a lot of effort and work, so keep your options open. There are a number of venues out there, there are a number of avenues out there to build time.

The first thing is build your single engine time to get to that 1,500 hours and get your ATP. Once you get your ATP, I really think you’re gonna be snapped up very quickly by the commuters.

UPS Feeder Route to Jet Job Without a Pay Cut?

Paula Williams – 

Right. Jesse from Ohio says, I’m making $300 a day, 7 days a week on a UPS feeder route. How can I move into a jet job without taking a pay cut?Aerostar UPS Feeder to Jet

Captain David Santo –

Well, first of all, Jesse, I flew 206s and 207s. Flying bank checks for a company called Air CSI out of Phoenix, Arizona. And so I understand in fact, there was a point in my career where I thought the 208 caravan was such a cool airplane that I would never make it there, so you’re in a good position, the pay is awful, this is a stepping stone job.

You need to be applying to a twin. You need to build that multi engine time. Even though the Caravan is a great airplane and it’s turbo prop, need to try to make the next move into the regionals, and that might be a pay cut. I don’t know the answer to that.

But it’s gonna be a worthwhile pay cut if you can build up some multi engine time. There might be some alternatives. Maybe on the weekends you could go get a job as a multi engine instructor. Or you could find a, a job working as a first officer flying a twin.

You might even look at a company like Cape Air. Where you might be able to make a move fairly quickly from. Right seat to left seat. But the regionals need you. If you have 1500 hours and you have an ATP and a multi-engine instrument rating, you are needed by the regionals.

But you may have to take a pay cut to go over there and get some jet time and some twin time. I would bite the bullet now, take the pay cut, so that you can make a huge leap in your career.

Right, sometimes it’s a short term versus long term strategy. Like chess you know, sometimes you go back to move forward.

Pilot Careers – Regionals to Majors

From our Airline Pilot Career Workshop – Drew from Virginia asks – “I’m at a regional and looking to take the next step!”

Moving from the regionals to majors is a big key to success in an airline career.

Paula Williams


Fantastic. Alright, Drew from Virginia says, I’m at a regional and looking to take the next step. Well Drew if you’re at a regional right now, congratulations because I think you’re in a great position. The regionals actually are going to be struggling to find qualified pilots to backfill because the airlines are hiring so many of the regional pilots.

David Santo

And you guys are actually the best prepared. To make that next step. And I would say best prepared, here in the US. Of course those folks that went overseas, and are flying Air Buses and Boeing’s, they’re coming back, very well prepared too. To take the next step I would say be.

Be persistent in applying, the squeaky wheel gets the oil so you need to actively prove to the airline that you’re applying to that you’re a good candidate. One of the biggest mistakes that I’ve experienced from helping young men and women pursue this career. Is they put out an application and, and they think well it’s all on auto pilot form here.

It’s not. You’ve got to be updating your application as frequently as possible. You’ve got to be updating your hours. You’ve got to be going to the job fairs. You’ve got to be making yourself. The squeaky wheel. Getting yourself to the top of the application pool. Anything you can do to increase your professional standing too.

If you’re already typed in the RJ or the ERJ or the aircraft that you’re flying, that’s great, if you’ve completed your ATP, which I’m sure you have, those are things that are, clearly going to help you. You should consider whether a typewriting would help you to get on with an airline Jet Blue, With Spirit, With Virgin.

How much are you willing to invest now to make that next step sooner, so that you can get the bigger return on investment.

How To Be A Great Pilot

Career Advice

Career Advice: Captain David Santo answers questions from our Airline Career Workshop.

Paula Williams

Fantastic. Well, let’s dive into the questions, and I know you’ve already kind of answered some of these, but, you know, we can kind of apply what you’ve talked about already to these questions. And if you want me to flip back to any of these slides while we’re doing this, we certainly can.

We’ll start off with a really general one. Abdullah from Vermont wants to know what advice do you have to be a good pilot?

 How to be a great pilot?

David Santo

I think being a good pilot is being a risk mitigator. And anything you can do to mitigate risk. And that means, really studying constantly being prepared, take good care of yourself both mentally and physically. So that when the time arises and you need to deal with problems, you can deal with them methodically, systematically to make sure that you keep your aircraft and your passengers safe.

Paula Williams

Right, excellent. Emre from Turkey. I don’t know if I’m saying that correctly so I apologize if that is not right. How many hours can a pilot fly in a day? What are the limitations, daily and monthly and how many days does a pilot work in a month? I know we touch, just talked about that a little bit.

David Santo

So it does change regionally and I can’t speak to all the different regions. Even in the US now it’s a little bit of a formula because it’s based on what time of the day you started your schedule. But for a two-pilot crew, you’re limited to between eight and nine hours of flight time a day.

And you’re limited to somewhere between 12 and 16 hours of duty time a day. Duty meaning that, you are at work, flight time meaning you’re physically, taxiing out, flying the aircraft, or taxiing in. Now that’s the daily limitation. Weekly is. Approximately. It’s changed a little bit with the new rules.

Approximately 100 hours a month and it’s approximately 1000 hours, per year limitations.