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Instructor pay rates

Old 13th Feb 2023, 22:23
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Instructor pay rates

Not sure when this was last asked, but I would like to know opinions on what is current expected pay rate per flying hour for self employed FI(A) in the UK. It depends on the level of instructing so perhaps break down:

Instructing for PPL / LAPL, restricted FI(A)
Instructing for PPL/LAPL, unrestricted FI(A)
Instructing for advanced UPRT (does transport aircraft type experience make a difference?)
Instructing for instructor course (FICI)
Instructing for advanced UPRT instructor course
Instructing for modular CPL, single engine
Instructing for IR(A) single engine or CPL BIFM
Instructing for MEP class rating or multi engine IR

The latter two I suppose it depends on who pays for recurrent proficiency checks.
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Old 26th Feb 2023, 08:25
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£ 30 to £ 35 per hour for unrestricted FI instructing for PPL extra £ 5 for IRR duties
£ 30 an hour AUPRT for instructors who have not done ATPL theory and with only light aircraft experience
£ 60 an hour AUPRT for unrestricted FI with command time on heavy jets and airline background .
South of England . No idea on CPL and IR training .
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Old 27th Feb 2023, 07:05
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Pay is whatever you accept.
I pay myself 700 a month operating my own school.
I do about 20-30 hours a month.

My advice don't own your own school.
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Old 20th Feb 2024, 21:18
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Does anyone have an update on current instructor pay rates?
And can anyone recommend a good place to advertise instructor vacancies?
Many Thanks.
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Old 21st Feb 2024, 15:33
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Originally Posted by shorehamite
Does anyone have an update on current instructor pay rates?
And can anyone recommend a good place to advertise instructor vacancies?
Many Thanks.
Lately I've been seeing a lot of adds on LinkedIn ranging from 32k SEP to 60k MEIR at ATO level (GBP and EUR),
Leading Edge and One Air in Malaga to name a few.
No published information on small institutions (aside of the famous competitive salary) but I keep hearing that the basic FI is now reaching 40 per hour and the MEIR one 80 on freelance basis.
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Old 24th Feb 2024, 00:08
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Source ftnonline

Posted on Dec 20, 2023

Since the recovery began from the pandemic and airlines began recruiting hard to operate their aircraft, a shortage of flight instructors has been a growing concern at both PPL and commercial pilot level in Europe (and pretty much everywhere else it seems). This is hardly a new occurrence, with periodic shortages of flight instructors a perennial thorn in the side of the flight training industry.

Now, Gloucester-based *****, one of four UK schools providing integrated commercial pilot training programmes, appears to have set £65k as a realistic figure for a Multi-Engine Instrument Rating (MEIR) instructor; a figure they say is roughly commensurate with a Senior First Officer airline salary.

Flight Instructor (FI) availability has historically been directly linked to airline pilot demand, given that many FIs view their instructor jobs as temporary employment ahead of gaining an airline pilot career. Accordingly, FIs tend to decamp in their droves to airlines when recruitment is buoyant, as is currently the case.

Under the modular training system, it was (and to a degree still is) common practice to become an FI after graduating commercial flight school, in order to build hours and experience ahead of joining an airline. This route to the airlines has declined a little in popularity following the introduction of one-stop integrated commercial pilot training programmes in the noughties, where one can go from zero to flight deck in one jump without having to become an FI in between.

Nevertheless, becoming an instructor has historically been a viable option for those who have completed their professional flight training and have not gone straight into an airline.

As flight instruction has historically been a temporary career for many, and often for younger and less experienced pilots at the very beginning of their flying career, itís hardly surprising that it hasnít tended to pay that well, particularly in comparison with airline pilot salaries. But with demand for FIs being so high at present, pay (and associated employment conditions) does appear to be rising in an attempt to make instructing a more attractive career option.

In the PPL sector, before COVID, an FI would expect to earn around £25 per flight hour. Given that one hour in the air equates to around two hourís work (when factoring in ground briefing, flight planning, aircraft checking, refuelling, admin etc), this doesnít provide much of a living wage when one can only complete four or five flights a day. Even this may be a challenge given the weather, especially in northern Europe, and the restricted daylight hours during the winter.

Post-COVID, flight pay has been increasing gradually and a brief survey by FTN (a more detailed survey is planned in the new year) shows that on average PPL instructors are currently getting closer to £40 an hour, but even this improved figure must be set against the costs of obtaining their professional licences and FI rating.

Meantime, in the commercial pilot training sector, pay has always been a bit higher as training organisations prefer career instructors over temporary FIs. Moreover, commercial instructors tend to have more experience and further instructor qualifications, such as those to teach Multi Engine (ME) and Instrument Rating (IR). Even so, even at this level pay has also historically fallen short of airline pilot salary levels.

So, what can commercial pilot instructors expect to get paid in the current marketplace? Skyborne has recently opened recruitment for FIs and is offering packages worth up to £65k, based on a base salary for £55k and bonuses of up to £10k per annum, based they say on realistic activity.

As getting to MEIR instructor level is a costly exercise, Skyborne also states that they are willing to sponsor instrument and multi-engine instructor ratings for the right candidates. Other enticements include ďgenerousĒ pension schemes, flexible rostering, a sign-on bonus and relocation allowance. This is in addition to the undeniable satisfaction of training the next generation of commercial pilots, while working more sociable hours than most airlines pilots and being able to return home at the end of each working day.

Objectively, the ***** package appears to set a new benchmark for instructor pay, together with the welcome possibility of sponsorship to achieve the ME and IR instructor qualifications. These figures may well tempt experienced instructors to move to ****, and should also be attractive to those pilots who enjoy instructing and are not entirely sure they see their future as flying airliners. The package may also be attractive to pilots wanting to leave the airlines but wanting to maintain a flying career.

For many, many, years, instructors have bemoaned their pay and conditions compared to their airline pilot colleagues. It will be interesting to see in the coming months if the **** offer will become the new standard for the professional flight training industry.

Last edited by Airgus; 24th Feb 2024 at 13:35.
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