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Aspiring Pilot

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Apr 4, 2020
Hello! My name is Andy. I am an aspiring pilot in Arizona looking to make a career change. I have recently applied to both American Airlines and Southwest's cadet programs and I am open to looking into private pilot training schools as well. I am really just looking to speak to any current or former American and Southwest pilots or other employees or pilots from other airlines who can give me any guidance, tips, insight, pros, cons, challenges of the job, perks of the job, etc. I would take any knowledge or wisdom that I could learn from you if you are willing. Thank you so much :) you can contact me on here or my email is [email protected] if you'd like to reach out.


Forget the cadet program. Use the money on a college degree outside of aviation and get your ratings part 61. Far better use of the funds.
Andy- Try posting on Airline Pilot Central within the Southwest and American threads. You’ll be able to get more professional opinions, advice, etc. This forum has too many trolls and negative Nancy’s.
Forget the cadet programs. Go to a part 61 school and get a degree in something outside of aviation as a backup. You'll end up with a backup option and have the same pilot's license

You'll be a lot better off in the long run.
These guys speak the truth.

Of course an Engineering Degree and career (or Dentistry, Real Estate or perhaps Property Development) will be far more boring but if you do things right you'll be able to afford a plane and pick when you fly instead of flying when told to by minions of Satan himself, somewhere many time zones away from where you started only to find that the hurricane got there sooner than forecast!

Just sayin...

There's something else coming...automation. Even with '80's technology, when everything works properly the only time a crew has to be hands on certain aircraft is during the takeoff roll and to raise the gear and retract the flaps once airborne and then to extend the same for landing.

Self-Driving cars are here, self-driving long haul trucks are on the horizon and it's only a matter of time before Airfreight is moved around the globe by UAV's. If you get into aviation and see that happen it will be too late to plan your exit strategy!

Andy, I have a friend who after making a metric crap-ton of money in computers got a pilots license, hauled checks and then went to a regional where he turned 60 and had to retire. It was a second career that he was doing for fun because he already had FU money and could pull the plug at any moment...he was pretty happy!

Most of us aren't in that position so we have our lives dictated to us by crew schedulers who don't really care about whatever the Contract says, they just need to put meat in the seat so the metal moves. Dispatchers may care more because they actually have a license to protect but ultimately you will become nothing more than a cog to make management more money, nothing more and nothing less. The prestige and respect have by and large been emptied from this career and the regulations...OMG the regulations-you wanna be a pilot? Get a Law Degree so you can understand the damned regulations!!!

I just posted this in the NA Chat area. You may believe that Biden is Oh So Much Better than the Great Orange Satan was, I have no way of knowing but here's a tiny example of the regulatory crap you're in for...

(NOTAM used to be Notice to Airmen...I'm not sure that an inanimate object like whatever the hell an "air mission" is needs to be warned about anything but I'm not suffering from new age wisdom so maybe I'm being too literal.)
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