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Old 12th Feb 2019, 00:19
  #517 (permalink)  
RHSandLovingIt
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: The Loony Bin
Posts: 112
Originally Posted by Happy89 View Post
I am 30 yrs old with a partner and no kids, I have the ability to self fund my CPL over 18-24 month. As I understand this is the first step, can I get some members to please share what they have done from this stage to 1. Start getting paid for flying - what other qualifications do you need? 2. Any background work I can do (other than getting my CPL) considering learning Cantonese to help have a wider range of prospects... or anything that can make you more attractive to future employers
I did something similar... but that started 9-10 years ago, and I already had the PPL, and was part way through my CPL (all self-funded). I also had an IT degree and ~10 years of experience as backup in case it didn't work out...

After getting my CPL I was fortunate enough to be "right place, right time" to get a gig doing aerial photography which got me another 600hrs on top of the CPL... then after finishing the MEIR and trying unsuccessfully to break into the air transport side of the GA sector, I went to Indonesia and spent 2 years at Susi Air... much to the dismay of my partner. That ended up as basically a (very costly) self-funded "Fly In - Fly Out" exercise.

In the end, that added another 1000 hours to the log book... Spent another couple of years trying to find flying work back in NZ (while working outside of Aviation, but in a job that paid well enough to pay for private flying)... Then, snared a Regional Twin Turboprop gig in mid-2018 during the present recruitment surge.

I won't lie. It was a long and hard road to get from bare CPL to Airline... It involved a mix of luck and hard work/sacrifice... and due to financial and relationship pressures, I seriously considered giving up the commercial aviation dream on several occasions... but stuck with it because I was too stubborn (too stupid? too selfish?) to quit. So, at great expense I kept the license and ratings current "just in case"... and eventually got the interview.

I'm also incredibly lucky that I have a VERY understanding and supportive partner... without a doubt, she has made a number of personal sacrifices for me to able to get to where I am. I'm honestly not sure I'll ever be able to make it up to her "properly"... but apparently business class upgrades that won't bankrupt us will help!

To answer your specific questions:

1. Technically, the only "quals" you need to get paid are a CPL. That is the easy part, finding the "first job" is the hard part. It will more than likely involve a lot of phone calls and door knocking etc.
2. One thing you can try is to browse through the jobs on AFAP and see what sort of "Desirable Qualifications" are being listed.

Also, I'd advise to stay "responsibility free" (ie. No kids) as long as you can... from what I've been told by others, trying to cover the costs of raising a family on GA pay, while trying to stay flexible with location/living arrangements is very difficult.
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