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What are the job prospects for new CPLs? (MERGED)

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What are the job prospects for new CPLs? (MERGED)

Old 4th Feb 2012, 14:59
  #201 (permalink)  
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Thanks Bravo,

This was disappointing news for my friend a recent I.R. graduate who never heard a word about it until recently. He would of went the Bristow route.
Now i have that option to throw wads of money at them, for the love of flying !!

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Old 4th Feb 2012, 16:23
  #202 (permalink)  
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"for the love of flying"

that's not flying - in a twin IFR autopilot machine - it's so boring, especially when you have to spend over 40k for an IR.

Sling load operations, fire fighting, rescue ops in a AS350 or LAMA in mountain environment - that is what I call FLYING !!!
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 18:24
  #203 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by swapshop
Agreed, UK offshore flying is NOT "flying", it's like comparing "driving" to operating the Park and Ride bus around Bluewater.
Hmmm, done lots of offshore flying around the UK have you, swapshop?
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 20:38
  #204 (permalink)  
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FAA + JAA Qualified

I am a uk citizen and I will shortly be qualified under FAA to CFII and under JAR to FI (hopefully IR within a year or two). I potentially have a job as an instructor in the states which should take me from the 2-300 hours mark to about 1000hrs. Hopefully this should make me quite flexible and employabe. I'm happy to pay my dues as an instructor but i've got no interest in flying R22's much past 1000hrs (or when i get my us atpl). My question to any pilots out there is where in the world is a good place to work (or **** places with good jobs!), who's hiring and what sort of jobs can i apply for both now and in the near future. I'm single, i dont mind moving to dodgy countries and i dont mind offshore work.

would also like to hear about anybody's general experiences and opinions on being a jobbing heli pilot.


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Old 4th Feb 2012, 21:45
  #205 (permalink)  
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Get the 1000 hours first and then ask the same question. You have to pay your dues first, and that's harder than you think. Oh and by the way a 1000 isn't really going to cut it 2000-2500 is what you need, and even then you still need to work hard.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 21:53
  #206 (permalink)  
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@ hobomike

You don't mind the offshore work, eh? Well that's good! Hopefully you don't mind the work that comes before that neither.

FYI, to qualify for the FAA ATPL the aeronautical experience requirements are:

1,200 hours total time as a pilot of which 200 hours are in helicopters, including 75 hours PIC
500 hours cross-country flight time which must be longer than 25nm in a helicopter or 50nm in a fixed-wing
100 hours night flight time of which 15 hours are in helicopters. The night time must be unaided (without the use of NVG)
75 hours of instrument flight time of which 25 hours are in helicopters, and not more than 25 hours are in a simulator

I know how much your butt hurts after all that in R22's cause I did it.

Too bad your flight school doesn't provide reality checks! Did they show you some nice pictures and the success stories?
I suggest that before you even start thinking about jobs in the offshore part of our industry, you actually get your CFII. Then you should actually get hired as a CFI, and then you better not crash during your first 1000 hours.

Here's an example of the requirements for one of the more recent offshore co-pilots jobs:

Current CPL(H)
AW139 Type Rating
Class One Medical
Min 1000 hours total time
Min 100 hours on type
Min 20 hours night flight
Min 20 hours instrument

Oh pardon me, of course you are going for the captain position right away. Here we go:

Current ATPL (H)
Sikorsky 92 Type Rating
3000 hours pilot in command on rotorcraft,
1500 hours in medium/heavy rotorcraft category
1500 hours pilot in command on multi-engine helicopters
250 hours instrument flight time
Search and Rescue background

Good luck to you ... and I mean that!

Btw … most of us consider ourselves professional helicopter pilots rather than jobbing heli pilots.

Last edited by hammerhead70; 4th Feb 2012 at 22:45.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 22:48
  #207 (permalink)  
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I thought i made it clear i dont mind working hard to acheive an offshore position. Believe me I'm not well off and the 200hrs i have have come hard enough! I'm trying to make a plan for my future and i didnt mean to give the impression that i was getting ahead of myself.
I'm well aware of the atplh hours requirements, the FAA atpl is pretty acheivable compared to the JAA licence. What i want to know is where do I go from there.
please dont think i'm some sucker with his head in the clouds, like you said, you did it, so i can too.

thanks for the advice.
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Old 4th Feb 2012, 23:30
  #208 (permalink)  
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I'm from the UK originally....got over 12500hrs rotary, mostly on longline and fires. The first 1000hrs are the hardest to come by, but the next couple thou, Mmmmm a 1000hrs doesn't make you a great pilot, staying alive and passing PPC's annually as an operational pilot does. Apples/oranges comes to mind, yes a 1000hrs in a Robbie instructing, will give you some hands on, but come the operational world of utility, offshore etc, whole new game to learn. Don't think for a minute that reaching the 1000hr mark as a CFII will earn ya bum a seat........... She's a hard slog my friend.........
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 00:23
  #209 (permalink)  
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Fair enough ... just checking! Like I said, I started on R22’s as well and throughout my career I have flown a variety of different operations ranging from flight instruction over photo ops to vip, external load, seismic, mining, heliskiing and heavy / ifr offshore operations. Every one of them has its challenges with ifr offshore being one of the more challenging and difficult to get into. Mainly due to the specific minimum requirements I posted before, hence my cynical response to your post. Always keep in mind that you are competing against hundreds of other guys just like yourself, against ex-military pilots who usually have a lot of multi-engine ifr experience and also against pilots that are already well established in the business. An ifr offshore job doesn’t just fall into your lap.
Here’s some reading material for you:

The following is an excerpt from a post on the **** Forum that not only attempts to answer this question, but actually fits nicely into the category of “12 things that every future career minded helicopter pilot should know.” They are really just some rough (and rawly written) rules to live by in the helicopter business. Glean from them what you would like.
The post went on to say:
You can expect to accomplish whatever it is that you desire. Your question really has the answer...or at least part of it. You used the word "expect". Well let me ask you a question.....what are your expectations? What exactly do you think you want? (Mark my words, what you say you think you want today is not what you will end up wanting or getting!)

So, what do you want? Money? To fly a certain Aircraft? Stability? Travel? Fly a certain mission....logging , EMS , corporate , SAR , ENG , combat? Be specific.

I say this....I do not care what you want to do.....no matter how impossible it may seem or how impossible the naysayers say it is......YOU CAN DO, AND HAVE ANYTHING YOU WANT FROM THIS BUSINESS. That is a fact my friend. Do not let anyone tell you that because you begin flying an R22 that there is no way you will ever Captain a B412 EMS or a B430 Corporate or a BV107 slinging logs in some far way land or in an S76 screaming down an ILS to minimums somewhere in NYC. It can be done; all it takes is some patience, persistence, and a little knowledge.
Here are some very simple commons sense ingredients that will create your recipe for success:

1. Be humble everywhere you go....no one likes a bragger. Let your skill and actions speak for you, not so much your mouth.

2. Always learn from the mistakes of others and always be willing to admit when you make a mistake and learn from it. Nobody likes a hardhead know-it-all.

3. Never stop going to school or seeking continuing education. Keep striving for every rating...every seminar....more college.....recurrent training. It is all about development in both your career and personal life. Some guys have 30 years of experience, but have lived the same year 30 times. Keep striving for more.

4. Project a positive attitude wherever you go. I should make this #1 on this list. Ask any employer...attitude is at the top of everyone's list. I would rather work with a person that has a positive attitude and still has a few things to learn than a person that really knows everything but their attitude stinks. Bad attitudes are infectious and can tear up an operation. This single attribute WILL get you further along in this business that any other.

5. Work hard and always give a little more than expected.

6. Be honest with yourself and everyone around you. If you screw up and think you had a hot start...admit it. Do not lie about anything....if you do it will come around and bite your butt and word will be out that you are a liar. Having a reputation for being an honest guy that has made a mistake will not keep you from getting a job. Having a reputation of being a LIAR will keep you from getting a job.

7. Network , network , network.

8. DO NOT BURN BRIDGES....unless it is unavoidable. This is a very small industry and everyone talks....ESPECIALLY the Directors of Operations. They have an unwritten code regarding these things. A good Chief Pilot once said to me, the guy whose toes you are stepping on today, may be the guy whose butt you are kissing tomorrow. Sad but so true!

9. Always, always remember...YOUR career is built upon YOUR reputation. In most cases, how you are to be perceived in this business rests on your shoulders. The piloting aspect is not what causes most problems for pilots. That part is easy for most of us. The problems usually come when the pilot has to speak or interact with coworkers or supervisors. All I can say is this (from a man standpoint)....when presented with a situation....think with your BRAINS and not your BALLS first, AND THEN speak. You ever hear the phrase..."don't cut off your nose to spite your face?" Most of us have, but take ego + type A + pride + testosterone - a few brain cells and that phrase gets erased from memory and something real stupid happens. BOTTOM LINE: No matter where you go in this business, you must learn, understand, master, and play the GAME!

10. SEEK out opportunities and when they do present themselves, JUMP on them with both feet and do not look back.

11. Never forget where you came from OR those that saw something in you and gave you that big "CHANCE". Trust me; many big chances WILL come along. You are going to need and get help from many along the way. Just DON'T forget it and repay them by doing a good job and helping others along the way when you get the chance.

12. Find out what type of work you want to do and who you think you want to work for. THEN find out everything that you can about the company. THEN find out who are the people that make the decisions. THEN go and meet them and learn a little about their operation. THEN make your decision on whether it is the right place for you and that you can accept what they are offering. THEN show them your eagerness to work for them and try and convince them that you are the best guy for the job. THEN once you get that job, LIVE by concepts 1 thru 11.

Follow #1-12 and your track CAN be:
Trained up and job ready in 1 to 1.5 years
CFI/CFII for 1-2 years
Turbines in 2-4 years
Twin Turbines in 5-10 years
Any mission you want in 5-10 years
Any aircraft you want in 5-10 years
Want the most money or best schedule or best retirement.....find out who’s got it , what qualifications they require , who does the hiring and go for it with a never ending persistence.

The Sky is the Limit. The only limits you will have are the ones that you place on yourself, not by the naysayers!
Best of luck in your helicopter endeavors!
This excerpt was taken from a post written by Lyn Burks.

… and here are my 2 cents:
Read the above over and over again and live by it! For the near future I would get all the licenses you can get, including the ATPL written exams. Try to build as much IFR training into your CPL training as possible, if possible even at night. Night time is very hard to come by and is therefore very valuable. After instructing the hardest part will be finding a job. For that … ask us again in 2 years. We might have another global financial crisis or simply just run out of oil til then.
In 5 to 10 years you’ll hopefully understand a lot better what I was trying to tell you today.

Best of luck to you … and I really mean that!
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 07:08
  #210 (permalink)  
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What a good post. Good job.

Tam Macklin
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 08:55
  #211 (permalink)  
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Great post there HH70
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Old 5th Feb 2012, 20:40
  #212 (permalink)  
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Fantastic post Hammerhead, should be gospel for people !!

Helops, i would not consider flying off shore boring after 3/4 years , my end goal will be flying the S92 on SAR ops. Re-read point 3 on hammerheads post !!

Sure work can become repetitive , try setting the goal higher ! I've been on flights out to decks and loved it.
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Old 13th Feb 2012, 17:57
  #213 (permalink)  
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Cool Looking for any job.

Hi everybody! Im a 23 year old boy from Norway. I finished my helicoptertraining for soon two years ago and have been after jobs in Norway without much luck. Without knowing much about how the market is around the world I would like to hear oppinions on how dry/wet it is.

About me. Done well in school. Played fotball up to 19. Semi-poker pro. Worked approx a year at a factory. Studing math and economics atm.

If I am willing of working (maybe) anywhere in the world, for close to 0 salary, as long as I will get a few flight hours in or have some insurrance I will get it in th futrure, will it be hard to get a job?

Thanks for reading, and every responses, good or negative, is much appreciated.
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Old 14th Feb 2012, 00:58
  #214 (permalink)  
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PP, did you have JAA CPL done as well? Or was it FAA only? Norsk (Bristow) was hiring locals with not so many hours about year or two ago. Now it went up. There's advert for CHC in the UK for basic CPL holders, with ME IR, MCC and, ehrm AW139 rating as preferred. I know it'd be long shot due to competition of all the ME IR/MCC holders.

You need to try to keep current or semi-current. I know how rusty I was after almost 3 years of no heli flying (and I did some fixed wing/gliding, but anyway). If applying for job, if that happens that you'd be asked to have quick sortie with Chief Pilot or Asst Chief of smaller company and you'd be totally out of shape, it'd not bear well.

If no copilot job with turbines, the next most likely start of career is instructing. Or are you so short of cash to do extra hours and the FI rating? I know it's not little. Good luck.
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Old 27th Feb 2012, 16:40
  #215 (permalink)  
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Question helicopter career path

I am from Canada and I want to be a helicopter pilot. Eventually I want to be a Search and Rescue Pilot. I am willing to go anywhere in the world to get the hours. I do want to have weekends off consistently though (except in the case of an emergency). Does this sound unrealistic? I am willing to get any job anywhere in order to meet the qualifications for being a sar pilot. What do you guys recommend as a path for achieving this without having to work on weekends? Yeah, I know that SAR pilots work on weekends, but I am talking about before I reach that point...while I am building hours.

thanks for any information,

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Old 27th Feb 2012, 16:56
  #216 (permalink)  
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My personal view is that it is completely unrealistic to embark on a career like this and to expect weekends off.

I started flying professionally in 1998, and have never had consistent weekends off, although once it did happen for about 6 months because I was on the flexi roster and the fixed roster was supplying all the weekend shifts.

Typically even now I am working about half the time on the weekends.

I have seen more than 1 Christian kick up a stink about getting every Sunday off and not succeeding.

While you are paying for the hours, treat yourself have every weekend off, and why not have every Friday and Monday off too if you like.

As soon as you are being paid, no chance in my opinion, and another thing, you really can't set Barriers like this and expect to be taken seriously, all it does it make you look like your commitment is low.

You will be up against others who don't careless about weekends, I was once a flying school manager and the most junior instructor tried not to work weekends, he soon became an ex instructor with that school

Good luck CF
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Old 27th Feb 2012, 17:16
  #217 (permalink)  
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Weekends off?

If you want to become a helicopter pilot then you can forget the concept of weekends. They do not exist in our business.
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Old 27th Feb 2012, 17:16
  #218 (permalink)  
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Eventually I want to be a Search and Rescue Pilot. I am willing to go anywhere in the world to get the hours. I do want to have weekends off consistently though (except in the case of an emergency). Does this sound unrealistic?
Yes, completely. IMHO you need a total rethink as to your career aspirations. Emergencies are not 9-5, Monday to Friday, and neither is the helicopter industry.

It's been said many times, but what a great post Hammerhead70
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Old 27th Feb 2012, 17:32
  #219 (permalink)  
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Alright, thanks. Just curious. Don't worry, I haven't started my career yet. I was just contemplating it, though I did know that emergencies where not nine to five monday to friday.
Anyways, thanks,
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Old 6th Apr 2012, 16:08
  #220 (permalink)  
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Post Low Hours Helicopter Pilots - Initial Jobs

Hi everybody, I'm a low experienced helicopter pilot, with a CPL JAA and a mountain of money (spent, already).

Finding a low hours job outhere is really difficult, everyone requires at least 500/1000/1500 hours, and without being an instructor I see it very difficult.

The real problem is that you end the CPL with about 200h and you can't start FI (CFI) course till 250 h...so how to do, at least, that 50h?

I started this thread to have some advice, usefull also for all the fresh pilots outside there looking for an apparently missing job to start.

If anyone have suggestion, we can travel worldwide, from the Ice of Antartica to the sand of Sahara and the jungle of Vietnam.

Waiting for your suggestion to us, your next colleagues.

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