Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Wannabes Forums > Professional Pilot Training (includes ground studies)
Reload this Page >

Am I too old to get a job when I've finished flight school?

Professional Pilot Training (includes ground studies) A forum for those on the steep path to that coveted professional licence. Whether studying for the written exams, training for the flight tests or building experience here's where you can hang out.

Am I too old to get a job when I've finished flight school?

Old 23rd Mar 2009, 18:06
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: LEicester
Age: 42
Posts: 5
Am I too old to get a job when I've finished flight school?

I'm 32 and about to get married. As the honeymoon we're off to travel the world for a year. When we get back I would love to go to Oxford and train to be a first officer. The only thing is by the time I've finished my training I'm likely to be 34/35. Is this too old?

In addition, I've got the academic qualifications required (A Levels and degree) but neither of these are particularly great and stem from a time where going out drinking and generally having a good time outweighed the desire for serious study.

I'd like to think that I'm more grown-up now and could handle the pressures of the course. In addition through the various online tests available it appears that I have the aptitude to pass the initial assessment day.

Job wise I've nothing that's really aviation related. I've just finished several 'Grand design' type self-build projects (which were fun) and previously worked in pretty low level retail customer service.

With my pretty average work history and academic achievements together with the fact that I'm getting a bit long in the tooth I was wondering if I'd have any real chance of securing a job after graduating from flight school (particularly in the current economic climate).

I realise that this post has been fairly self-deprecating but I just want to be as realistic as possible.

Thanks in advance,

Will
will77t is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 18:13
  #2 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: up a gumtree
Age: 48
Posts: 109
Of course not, I know of people who went into the airlines in their 40s. Turboprops even prefer slightly older guys (which 35 is certainly not) because they are stay with them longer.

Since when was early to mid 30s considered too old? Oh dear.

The main thing to concern yourself with is timing to start the training. As things stand, very poor prospects in the airlines for new low hour people.
tropicalfridge is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 18:30
  #3 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: london
Posts: 82
Not sure which one is the worst decision........getting married or starting flight training.

But of them one will make you happy for the rest of your life, the other will put a smile on your face for a while. You need a real long term comitment with no garentee of success. There are a number of young guys with access to endless amounts of cash that will be in direct competition with you. Can you afford to spend a year not earning and go fly something for peanuts to get the experience you need for a few years after that? You could be looking at three years of hard times followed by a job where you're expected to locate yourself near to a base (that probably wont be around the corner from your current house). Your best chance will be in the private jet sector and that could involve staying away from home during your rostered days at work. If your wife to be is still with you at that point, you'll probably Love it and not regret a thing.

It's a great job and those of that do it are indeed the lucky few. Only do it if you can afford to fail. ( in finacial terms ) and still get on with your life after
Vanpilot is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 18:45
  #4 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: UK.
Posts: 629
This question comes up all the time, see:

http://www.pprune.org/professional-p...ral-times.html
preduk is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 18:53
  #5 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: LEicester
Age: 42
Posts: 5
Thanks for the advice so far. I guess the last two projects has put me in a relatively favourable financial position. I could afford to pay for the flight training but after the wedding and the travel Id not have a great deal left.

Im fortunate enough to have good family and prospective family-in-law whom we could stay with while training. My partner is a teacher and with her salary and no mortgage payments (if were living with family) wed be able to survive during training.

The only thing is once Ive passed the training Id be 34/35 (as would my wife) and wed really have to start thinking about a family. As such I would need a well paid job pretty quickly. I have a friend who finished at Oxford about a year ago and worked with Flybe and has now landed himself a job with BA. Hes on over 50k a year which is excellent. Having read a few of these threads it does appear that this is very much the exception rather than the norm. I know he did well at flight school but he was (and is) about five years younger than me.

Is his experience very unlikely or damn near impossible considering my age, experience and timing?

P.s. Im just trying to get clear objective advice and I know the above could be considered unrealistic.
will77t is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 18:56
  #6 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: LEicester
Age: 42
Posts: 5
Apologies for any repetition Strangely I did search the terms old and age but uncovered nothing. I genuinely thought I was writing something unique.
will77t is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 21:02
  #7 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 80
From what I get you're going integrated.. Have you thought about going modular? It'll be cheaper?
Vems is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 21:53
  #8 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: LEicester
Age: 42
Posts: 5
I appreciate that this may well open a can of worms but from what I gather the major airlines (rightly or wrongly) seem to favour the integrated route.
I feel that (given my age and circumstance) I need to choose the route that would offer me the best chance of success in terms of future employment. Oxford seems to be a well respected school and this is why I am currently opting for this option.
will77t is offline  
Old 23rd Mar 2009, 23:37
  #9 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: UK.
Posts: 629
Yeh... thats what OAA tell you.

Flybe take modular students on and if you have the hours required for BA it really doesn't matter where you are coming from.

I've got friends who have joined Globespan, Ryanair, Loganair, Flybe and a number of other airlines direct from modular schools.

Anyway... I'm going off on a tangent, what I would suggest is you have a good look at the post above this, it has all answers to the majority of your questions.

http://www.pprune.org/professional-p...-question.html
preduk is offline  
Old 24th Mar 2009, 00:47
  #10 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: South London
Age: 37
Posts: 38
Based on what you've written it sounds like you need to do some serious research. You'll probably find you won't get to many useful replies when a simple peruse over recent posts and the stickies will provide all the info you need.

See here;

http://www.pprune.org/professional-p...ml#post4774578

This was just a couple of weeks ago.

but from what I gather the major airlines (rightly or wrongly) seem to favour the integrated route.
Depends where you "gather" your information, if its the OAA prospectus then you may want to dig a little deeper before investing the sort of money involved in pilot training.
James D is offline  
Old 24th Mar 2009, 09:17
  #11 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: LEicester
Age: 42
Posts: 5
Thanks once again for all the responses. I appreciate many of these points have been covered in previous threads and once again I apologise for the repetition.
As I said previously, I did do some searches prior to posting which did not reveal the answer I was looking for. Had I read the 'read before posting thread' I would have found many of the answers and indeed I would have found the 'perpetual am I too old' thread'. For this I am sorry.
I have tried to answer questions that people have posed but perhaps I should ask the moderators (if they are reading this) to merge this in the 'perpetual am I too old thread' to avoid further repetition.

I will continue to do some research but it appears it is a very bad time to start training in the current economic climate. That said, due to my circumstances I would aim to graduate in 2011/2012. I guess you'd need a crystal ball to know what it's going to be like then. I suppose there could even be a glut of newly trained pilots that have been put off training by the current job prospects. Well, perhaps that's wishful thinking.

Once again thanks for all who gave their time to respond and good luck to all who are currently on a course or looking for employment.


Thanks once again,

Will

p.s. If anyone has any comments regarding my specific employment history (everyone's is different) and how this would be viewed by the airlines, I would be interested to hear them.

Last edited by will77t; 24th Mar 2009 at 09:23. Reason: For ease of reading.
will77t is offline  
Old 24th Mar 2009, 11:22
  #12 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: N/E England
Age: 43
Posts: 239
past employment history is irrelevent as long as you retain the necessary flying qualifications!
Rugbyears is offline  
Old 24th Mar 2009, 13:45
  #13 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: UK.
Posts: 629
I will continue to do some research but it appears it is a very bad time to start training in the current economic climate. That said, due to my circumstances I would aim to graduate in 2011/2012. I guess you'd need a crystal ball to know what it's going to be like then. I suppose there could even be a glut of newly trained pilots that have been put off training by the current job prospects. Well, perhaps that's wishful thinking
I doubt it. At the moment we have a number of experienced FOs and Captains job hunting and not getting much luck. If they're struggling then imagine what its going to be like for a newly trained wanna be with no experience.

From my own opinion, I think when the economy picks up a bit it's going to take a further year for the experienced guys to get a job and then another year or two for the low hour pilots. The only issue is we don't know for sure when things are going to get better, some suggest 2012 some thing later than that.

Best of luck!



preduk is offline  
Old 24th Mar 2009, 14:27
  #14 (permalink)  

Supercharged PPRuNer
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Doon the watter, a million miles from the sandpit.
Posts: 1,159
I started modular training in 2000 while working full time to pay for it. Slowed down my training due to 9/11, unemployment, divorce, etc etc (note that only modular allows that flexibility). I finally jacked my old job in a couple of years ago, completed modular training and got a job with one of the U.K.'s larger airlines aged 36, with a little over 200hrs and without paying for a type rating. I guarantee you I'm nothing special, and there are plenty of others with similar stories.

Three top tips for success in this game:
(1) timing (think 2012 onwards)
(2) contacts (network, network, network)
(3) not believing anything the schools tell you . . .
G SXTY is offline  
Old 30th Mar 2009, 07:41
  #15 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: US
Posts: 27
will77t, you may need to ask yourself whether you can afford NOT to pursue your passion. if that is going to leave you somewhat unhappy or with regrets for the rest of your life, then you gotta do it. if you really want to fly, then you'll be happy even when your job is not top-pay, or when you come back home tired after a long day of work. and your family will thank you for that
saintexupery is offline  
Old 30th Mar 2009, 11:21
  #16 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Dry bar
Posts: 352
Big gamble

Think about this. Airline pilots all over the place right now are in fear for their jobs. I know because I am one of them! Hopefully the majority of us will be able to keep a grip and not end up working in a petrol station or tesco's later this year. (I work for a legacy at LHR). You must be mad considering flight training at the moment. If we are worried about future employment prospects then I would suggest that you should be shtting yourself come graduation day.

Please get grip on reality for yours and your wifes sake. No amount of money spent is going to get you a job in this game. Nothing is guaranteed, most of it is luck. We are now being invaded by the pay to fly mob. Unfortunately for us!
Take it slow, learn how to fly on a PPL and enjoy that, maybe with a view to CPL training in the future should things get back to normal.

I note that you are worried about your age. I have to say that you have picked a fine time to do something about it.

Good luck.
shaun ryder is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.