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Survey: 2018, Instructor's terms and conditions on a changing market?

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Survey: 2018, Instructor's terms and conditions on a changing market?

Old 10th Oct 2018, 20:55
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I would love to flight instruct but it seems like it's not worth it at the moment? As some have said, the hourly pay is low and if you count in the actual time you spend in the airport, that hourly pay is even lower! I don't want to seem like all I'm after is the money, but reality is that I'll probably be under a lot of debt at the point when I can flight instruct so paying that loan off would be a priority and if I can turn up on a nursing agency shift at 7am and leave at 8pm and be paid for 12 hours (two unpaid breaks), that will be a better use of my time. I suspect spending the same amount of hours on the airfield will only yield maybe 4-6 hours of pay?
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Old 10th Oct 2018, 21:59
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...or if it's over this weekend - zero. Don't forget whole days and sometimes weeks can get wiped out by the weather, wherever you are in the UK.

TOO
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Old 10th Oct 2018, 22:36
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Yeah but if the weather is bad, then simply do not go to the airport in the first place? Is there a requirement for instructors to be sitting at the flight school when no flights are scheduled?
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Old 15th Oct 2018, 07:22
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Quite often, unless it’s purely by the hour. I was paid a retainer at one school and a salary (£11k, 1997) at another. Always bits and bobs to do and we’d encourage students to come in and get briefed up for the next trip .
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Old 15th Oct 2018, 07:32
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Originally Posted by Nurse2Pilot
Yeah but if the weather is bad, then simply do not go to the airport in the first place? Is there a requirement for instructors to be sitting at the flight school when no flights are scheduled?
i donít think youíve started your flying training yet or are in the early stages so you may not have seen how much time there is waiting on a iffy day. There are few days when one can guarantee no flying.
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Old 15th Oct 2018, 10:48
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Originally Posted by rarelyathome
you may not have seen how much time there is waiting on a iffy day. There are few days when one can guarantee no flying.
So if the weather may clear up in the afternoon, the instructors are still supposed to be there all day? Maybe they (flight school) can ask that if the instructors are paid a retainer fee but not if the instructor is paid by flight hour, surely?
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Old 15th Oct 2018, 14:04
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Originally Posted by Nurse2Pilot
So if the weather may clear up in the afternoon, the instructors are still supposed to be there all day? Maybe they (flight school) can ask that if the instructors are paid a retainer fee but not if the instructor is paid by flight hour, surely?
Depends on your relationship with your school. Its a 2 way street. Of course they can't compel you to be there if you are not on a retainer. However, if they only see you when you are guaranteed to fly, you are unlikely to have much of a rapport and you may find the work going to more committed instructors. Similarly, weather windows sometimes open for a couple of hours only. Would you be able to drop what you are doing, have time to get in, ensure the aircraft is prepped, brief and then fly the exercise if that unforecast window appears? If not, you could be losing the school money and you won't be instructing there long. Sadly, instructing isn't going to pay all your bills but does demand a huge committment. You have to ask yourself how committed you are likely to be. If the answer is anything less than fully, then getting to the airlines via instructing probably isn't for you.

Finally, just remember that not everybody can be an instructor. You need to be able to do more than just get a PPL. I would wait until you have seen how you are taking to the flying before worrying too much about life as an instructor.
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Old 16th Oct 2018, 15:12
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I see what you mean! I do live close to the local flight school and was only thinking of doing this as a part-time instructor.... I've yet to see evidence of full-time instructing being anywhere near close to what I'm making in my main occupation.

Originally Posted by rarelyathome
Similarly, weather windows sometimes open for a couple of hours only. Would you be able to drop what you are doing, have time to get in, ensure the aircraft is prepped, brief and then fly the exercise if that unforecast window appears? If not, you could be losing the school money and you won't be instructing there long.
I'm sure in such an example, there would have to be students loitering in the school as well, correct? I wouldn't mind hanging around the school if there were students there and the possibility of flying and I'm sure if such a case were to happen, I would prep the aircraft anyway and also brief the student so no time is wasted when the weather does clear.... and worse case scenario is that we both go home if the weather turns sour and if it suddenly clears up in the afternoon, then the aircraft has already been prepped and we've briefed, so it'll only be a quick re-check over everything and then fly? Then again, I may have this all wrong...


Finally, just remember that not everybody can be an instructor. You need to be able to do more than just get a PPL. I would wait until you have seen how you are taking to the flying before worrying too much about life as an instructor.
This is true, and not even the best pilots can be a good instructor.
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Old 16th Oct 2018, 17:04
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And most students have jobs they need to do to earn money, so if weather no good, they need to work.

And the student who hangs around wants to use the same instructor, they had before, but that instructor is the one who is off doing something else with their day!
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Old 17th Oct 2018, 05:32
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I’d actually see if you can fly first, nurse2pilot , before moaning about the state of the instructor market.

It used to be a great stepping stone to the airlines, but less so now, they are not interested in 000s of hours of single time.its an irrelevance mainly to operating a modern airliner.

Itd be easier to make ikea furniture on my days off
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Old 17th Oct 2018, 08:28
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Originally Posted by Meester proach
Iíd actually see if you can fly first, nurse2pilot , before moaning about the state of the instructor market.
If you mean see if I have the skills, yes, I do.
I did not realize I needed to have aviation qualifications before asking about (ie, moaning, as you put it) the state of the instructor market. That aside, am I wrong with the impression I'm getting that it's nowhere near competitive?

It used to be a great stepping stone to the airlines, but less so now, they are not interested in 000s of hours of single time.its an irrelevance mainly to operating a modern airliner.
Is it, really? Do you look at it as hours of single time? Or do you look at it as evidence of the desire and ability to teach others? Do you want a sh!t hot pilot who can't teach for squat or do you want a good pilot who can pass on his skills to others?
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Old 17th Oct 2018, 20:10
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After 20 years of instructing part time I tried full time over the Summer to see if I could get close to a level of earnings that I could live frugally on.

Mostly it was about giving myself the Summer I had promised myself for a long time but it was also an experiment to see if it might work longer term.
I thought I might get somewhere close over the summer but, actually, not a hope.
It'll have to wait until I've got much, much more money in the bank.

The problem wasn't so much to do with the peak earning level - mine is one of the better hourly paying PPL schools - it was more about the level of time commitment I need to make in order to get some chargeable hours. I had imagined that I might be able to do something else to earn a few pennies when either there is bad weather or when I'm short of students. In practice, while I was able to arrange my own timetable and only turn up at the airfield if there was something to do, I could not plan ahead sufficiently to make myself available for other activities. In order to get flying hours I must commit to being available for flying and then, when I find I'm available for something else, it's too late.
I also find myself putting quite a few more hours than I expected in the evenings etc. managing student queries and timetable changes.
So the effective pay rate after including commited but not spent days and extra homework is absolutely dire even though the hourly flying rate is pretty good.

So, Nurse2Pilot, my experience is consistent with your suspicions - and that's with all of my own training costs written off a long time ago.

Having said all that I have had the most wonderful Summer and don't regret it for a moment and can now go back to part time instruction and have the most incredibly rewarding job without having to worry about it paying so little.
I suggest that if you think you might enjoy instructing then you do the same.
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Old 17th Oct 2018, 21:34
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Originally Posted by pondlife
So, Nurse2Pilot, my experience is consistent with your suspicions - and that's with all of my own training costs written off a long time ago.

Having said all that I have had the most wonderful Summer and don't regret it for a moment and can now go back to part time instruction and have the most incredibly rewarding job without having to worry about it paying so little.
I suggest that if you think you might enjoy instructing then you do the same.
Thank you for confirming that, pondlife! Do you mind PM'ing me the details regarding school and hourly rate? I guess I'll put flight instructing in the backburner for now, something that I might pick up later on if Plan A doesn't go through. Hopefully, when all this training is done, I'll still have my current job and if the market has slowed down, I can look at flight instructing on the side and not worry too much about how much it pays. Quite sad to come to this decision, I was looking forward to instructing, but sadly, other responsibilities comes first.
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Old 18th Oct 2018, 07:40
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[QUOTE=Meester proach;10285141]

It used to be a great stepping stone to the airlines, but less so now, they are not interested in 000s of hours of single time.its an irrelevance mainly to operating a modern airliner. [QUOTE]



I partly agree with this, but the fact is that the regionals and larger carriers are aggressively hiring in the current market. Its not so easy to get multi time as a FI, unless of course you're reasonably experienced and meet requirements for an IRI. I would say any time flying regularly is what employers are looking for today.
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Old 18th Oct 2018, 21:47
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Originally Posted by Meester proach
they are not interested in 000s of hours of single time.its an irrelevance mainly to operating a modern airliner.
I've heard advice to the contrary; that some recruiters are looking at what you've been doing in your spare/unemployed time. From what I understood, it seems that a fATPL holder who goes back to Tesco stocking shelves is looked upon less favorably than the guy who goes out and tows banners or gliders or whatever. Time in the air is time in the air and is experience under your belt. I think it was Captain Joe's video that mentioned this.
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Old 20th Oct 2018, 17:32
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There are several FI opportunities for salaried FIs that pay a good wage, especially if you are willing to travel. Greece has really good opportunities and they even pay for accommodation costs on top of the salary they pay you. I know Portugal also has a couple schools looking for instructors. It's a bit harder in the UK but south England I can think of several schools who are in need of Instructors. At my current school I know of 4 instructors who have been offered airline jobs over the past few months.

There are definitely opportunities out there and airlines really do like to recruit FIs but they don't like too many hours I hear, they prefer you to have about 1500hrs instructing.
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Old 20th Oct 2018, 18:18
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What exactly is "too many hours"?
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Old 20th Oct 2018, 19:59
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Originally Posted by Nurse2Pilot
What exactly is "too many hours"?
Can't say for certain and I don't think there's a defined too many but if they are after 1500hrs I would say about 2000hrs is where they start to think "too many".
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Old 20th Oct 2018, 22:44
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I seem to recall something one in Flight Training News that Easyjet didn't want people with more than 85 hours post PPL for one of their entry schemes.

Don't want other people's bad habits!
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Old 21st Oct 2018, 09:07
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Most of the guys I fly on the airline with, have paid 100k euros for integrated training, spent 30k on a type rating, been treated like crap by Ryanair for three years then come to us.

very little have instructing experience . Although personally I believe any flying / other career before airlines makes the person more grateful and interested in the airline stuff.

Id done 1600hrs instructing when I got my break onto a small jet, but it was only a few airlines that actively courted instructors like AirUk and jersey European
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