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Flying instructor jobs

Old 5th Sep 2012, 19:59
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Flying instructor jobs

Hi. I was wondering what the job prospects are like for newly qualified flying instructors in the UK and what the pay was like? And how many hours on average per month would a instructor be doing seeing that the UK weather isn't the best.

Cheers
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Old 6th Sep 2012, 21:06
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1. Variable.
2. Again variable, but somewhere between 15-20ph chocks on & off.
3. If you're full time, it varies, but roughly 25 to 35 hours a month in the SW.
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Old 6th Sep 2012, 21:14
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Thanks for the reply.

Wow. If those figures are right then wouldn't the pay be like 6000 a year? Which is nothing. Does your salary come from only flying or is there a fixed salary with additional flying duty pay? And only 30 hours a month seems very low.
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Old 6th Sep 2012, 21:42
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It depends - if you're FT then probably you'd have a retainer or fixed salary instead, although for a newly qualified FI(R), this would be unusual. Normally you'll start off on hourly pay per flight only, most likely on a self employed contractor basis.

Well, maybe it does, but FT FIs can be expected to do around 500hrs/year, tops.
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Old 6th Sep 2012, 21:47
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Sorry whats FT? First time?

Although I want to do it for the experience and also the hours the fact that wages are low you can't build up many hours is not very appealing. The investment of 5K to 8k for training to become one doesn't make sense.

Maybe working the USA as a EASA flight instructor makes more sense. Pay is I think the same. But at least you can get more hours in.

Thank you for the help

Last edited by Fanor; 6th Sep 2012 at 21:50.
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Old 6th Sep 2012, 21:54
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Yes. And yeah, wages are low. Market forces at play, sadly.

Did any of the (probably upwards of 80k) investment in your training make financial sense given the current state of the industry, expected pay, and the outlay required?

It's a pity that it's seen as a way to build hours, IMHO.
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Old 6th Sep 2012, 22:02
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I am not pursuing a career in aviation because of the pay or status. I am doing it because I love flying and it is the only thing I have ever seen myself doing since I was a child.

I think its seen as a option because you might as well get paid for building up hours. Because unfortunately nowadays hardly anyone hires pilots with 200 hours. If they do, they usually require 30000 and then you still get paid badly afterwards. You might as well get the experience from instructing and the hours and once you have build up 500-1000 try your luck in the market. Thats my opinion.
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Old 6th Sep 2012, 22:07
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I wasn't saying you were doing it for the status or the money. I was saying from a purely financial viewpoint today, training for a CPL/IR is a crazy decision (sadly). Therefore, viewing the outlay for an FI(R) from a solely financial viewpoint is also crazy.

You don't get paid to build up hours. You get paid to instruct someone how to fly.

But yes, you might as well. And people do, because, as you pointed out, there are scant few other options available. However, I still think it's a pity.

Last edited by hobbit1983; 6th Sep 2012 at 22:08.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 09:59
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You might as well get the experience from instructing and the hours and once you have build up 500-1000 try your luck in the market. Thats my opinion.
If you only knew how much that comment pisses me off.....

With an attitude like that you better hope you never send your CV to me for flying or commercial work.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 10:17
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And why does that comment piss you? Why not build up extra hours through instructing? In my opinion and my instructors it improves your flying skills and also gives you that extra experience that will make you stand apart from other people with minimal experience or hours gained just through hour building by themselves.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 10:34
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Instructing is about giving the best to educate others. It is not about having somebody else pay to provide you with experience and it is not a last resort.

It is little wonder that we have so many crap new pilots around when the Instructors teaching them are only there to build hours at there expense and move on.

The only reason I became an Instructor was because I was pissed off sitting next to idiots droning on about how they were really airline pilots waiting for a proper job.

I am a Commercial Turboprop pilot but also teach and examine and when I am recruiting I look for people who have a broad experience and real passion to teach and fly not those just marking time for something else.

It is also the attitude that teaching is the lowest form of job that keeps hardworking and dedicated career instructors on the bread line.

If I had my way, you would need a wide and varied 800 plus hours before being accepted to be an Instructor.

Go get your experience at your own expense, spend the money on touring and then when you have it and you still want to be an instructor you might have something to offer.

/rant mode off.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 10:34
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Because instructing well takes passion and also you give a little bit of yourself to each student if you are doing it properly.

If you had no intention of instructing before you started training stay away from it. All it does is drag the industry down as you use students to build your hours.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 10:40
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Well the point is I want to instruct to get the experience that comes from it. I have a real passion and love of flying and I want to share that with others.

Thank you for your input Bose-x.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 11:03
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Well the point is I want to instruct to get the experience that comes from it.
Thats kind of my point. You are gaining experience at the expense of those who need to gain experience the most, the students.

The blind leading the blind?
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 11:06
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That might be the case. But we all have to start somewhere!!!! How do you think the best instructors out there started? From the bottom and gained the experience and knowledge along the way!!!!
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 11:11
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Well I to was an instructor fresh out of school at 220 hours.

But it was always in my plan to do that.

Personally I would never employ and instructor who had an IR or hadn't done the instructors course straight after teh CPL IR.

In fact a CPL/IR MCC'd up FI with a break between finishing and FIC wouldn't be touched with a barge pole.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 11:45
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Well my plan is to do my cpl and then FI straight away. And the MEP, IR and mcc later.

I'm sure you didn't want to Instruct forever. Why did you become an instructor? Answer Honestly now
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 12:37
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Been a diving instructor, lorry instructor I have always got alot of satisfaction out of instructing. And know that you get a higher level of understand having to teach something than if you just do it.

Now after moving on to airlines i still hold a valid FI and linetrain.

In a couple of hours I head off to fly with a bloke that has 240 hours and 15 hours on type. Will I be instructing him? Yep. Realistically is it worth the extra I payed for doing it? Not really but I get alot of job satisfaction out of seeing him improve and develop.

If I could get a decent salary that I could live on working 9 to 5 instructing from PPL level up to IR, you could stick your early starts and commercial pressures where the sun don't shine flying the line. But instructing properly is vastly more tiring than flying the line.

Last edited by mad_jock; 7th Sep 2012 at 12:40.
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 12:53
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I became an FI this year, only a few months after finishing the CPL/IR/MCC, but I had the advantage of having spent the last 8 years instructing on motor gliders in my spare time, so I knew I already loved doing it regardless. And for the sake of full disclosure...it was not my intention to make a living out of instructing right now, but that's life in such a job market (fortunately, it was something I wanted to do at some point in the future anyway).

The problem is, I have flown with PPLs and students now, who have obviously lost out due to p*ss poor instruction and it winds me up no end. I am by no means experienced, but I can recognise rubbish when I see it.

My opinion is that a lot of this is partly down to disinterested and inexperienced "hours building" guys, but also down to a huge lack of standardisation in general (having come from an organisation where you are standardised every 6 months with continuation training between that too, I was amazed at the 3-year long FI rating and its renewal requirements!). But that's a different debate!

I cannot agree more with what MJ has said, but allow me to add my own advice...

1. Your instructors and friends are right; instructing is excellent for the person doing the instructing. It will improve your flying and aviation knowledge no end.

2. If you do not love the idea of teaching in its own right, DO NOT INSTRUCT. You will not enjoy it and your disinterest will show through to your students.

3. It is hard work. Think of all the briefs, debriefs, write-ups, ground lessons that usually you are not paid for (but are just as important to the progression of YOUR student). All of these require your best effort, despite not paying you anything. Think of that student who just can't quite get how to fly a level turn, but you've had a long week and can't be bothered to spend another five minutes reteaching it...Spend the five minutes!.

4. Recognise that you don't know much! Never ever bullshit a student if you don't know the answer to something. Admit you don't know and seek advice from someone who does. Then go back to your student with the correct answer (and you've both learnt something!). Same goes in the air; if you can't get something across to your student, ask someone else how they teach it. Don't waste your time and the student's flogging a dead horse.

5. Never forget what it was like when you were a student and how much you relied on your instructors (and probably believed 100% of what they told you, without reservation). It is a huge responsibility, so take it seriously.

6. Constantly assess yourself on every trip and every board brief. What could you have done better? Never allow your own personal standards of instruction or flying to slip. Go back to the books regularly to make sure you are teaching things correctly (don't let the bad habits slip in!).

So, to sum up, if you think this still sounds attractive, then go for it. The personal (not financial!) rewards are more than worth it. Seeing your student going off solo, the satisfaction when you finally manage to get them to understand landing without crashing , or seeing them coming back from their skills test with that big grin on their face is what it's all about. Do not do it if it is just a job and hours building to you (and I have a feeling this is probably what MJ was saying...).

P.S. Apologies for the massive essay that this has become!

Last edited by LAI; 7th Sep 2012 at 12:57. Reason: speeling ;)
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Old 7th Sep 2012, 13:44
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