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.

What responsibilities are common for Pilot jobs?
  • Assist with synthetic tactical training scenarios for advanced aircrew training and white force scenario management.
  • Provide planning, briefing execution, debriefing and after action activities.
  • Facilitate the daily execution of large force employment and small team events.
  • To accomplish these unit training requirements he/she will develop the executable Computer Generated Forces (CGF) scenarios, mission materials and briefs for the diverse aircrew training audience.
  • He/she will assist directors in regulating the flow of timely inject throughout the training event.
What are the typical qualifications for Pilot jobs?
  • Certification in aviation or aeronautics and requisite flight training.
  • Experience with applicable software and systems such as R Language, C, or ROTOR.
  • Completion of trainings and exercises and demonstrated attention to detail.
  • Is a professional at all times with an eye on continuous improvement.
EducationBachelor's Degree
Work/Life Balance
3.3 ★
Total Pay--
Career Opportunity
3.7 ★
Avg. Experience2-4 years

How much does a Pilot make?

$83,668 /yr
Total Pay

Base Pay


Additional Pay


 / yr
Most Likely Range
Possible Range
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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
Pilot IV

Years of Experience Distribution

0 - 1
2 - 4
5 - 7
Not including years spent in education and/or training

Pilot Insights

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

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

Jan 31, 2022

“Pay is not the best if scheduled flights are spaced a good period of time apart.”

British AirwaysBritish Airways
Airline Pilot
May 19, 2023

“Not as good as other career airlines in terms of monetary package when Inc bonus etc and housing.”

Horizon AirHorizon Air
Airplane Pilot Or Copilot
Apr 15, 2022

“By far the best training department among regional airlines and sharpest schedulers in the industry.”

Magna Service AgencyMagna Service Agency
Nov 20, 2022

“They enjoy swinging wildly back and forth between paper check and direct deposit and it’s rarely ever paid on the same day.”

Silverhawk AviationSilverhawk Aviation
Sep 12, 2022

“No Loyalty to current pilots QOL and career goals and what they see flying the line.”

Airline Pilot
Feb 21, 2023

“great people to work with the pilot group is one of the best out there!”

Out of the blueOut of the blue
Aug 1, 2021

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

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Pilot Interviews

Frequently asked questions about the roles 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
  • Helicopter Pilot
  • Flight Instructor
  • General Manager

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

Related Careers

No skills overlap
Helicopter Pilot
13% skills overlap
Flight Instructor
38% skills overlap
General Manager
No skills overlap

Pilot Jobs