Best zero time to regional route

livin'thesim

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To an even greater degree than before, starting a flying career is like getting married.

Aviation is a cruel mistress, but with the new 1500 hour requirement and the other issues in the industry, she is now a 90 year old mistress who is grouchy and incontinent.

The old career track most of us took will be tougher than ever, because it is not "just" the 1500 hours. With a diminishing base of GA pilots, there are fewer and fewer non-career students to teach. Buying a crappy airplane might be the only route to 1500 hours for some.

In fact, if you have a really good paying job, it might be cheaper to fly off the hours in a tri-pacer than it would be to sit around all day at the airport waiting for a chance to teach for a couple hours and make $20.
 

cordova1

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Get your ratings and teach at an airport near you... AND REALLY LEARN HOW TO FLY AN AIRPLANE. Just enjoy the ride and don't be so focused on the end goal too much. You will just make yourself crazy and be set up for a let down.
Well said. You have until 65 years to be a pilot(give or take)sometimes the quickest way to the finish seems the slowest.
 

IBNAV8R

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The military option assumes A) you can get into flight school and, B) your cockpit is not an air-conditioned trailer in the desert.

My advice is to get a good career so that you can afford to fly for pleasure. Fly on the side, build time. This is what I did. By the time you get to 1,500 hours, you'll be old and wise enough to not choose this career. (epic fail on this part)

Still, if you are hell bent on flying, don't get married, don't have kids and make sure you're folks' basement is still available - unless you have an obscene trust fund or a spouse that can support all of you.

Well, it still beats working.
 

zasca

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Wow, so much awesome advice being given... Go instruct. Go fly for a mapping company. Go tow banners. Go beg, borrow and steal cheap time. Bartend on the side. It was never supposed to be easy to get this job. Yeah it sucks that gas is expensive and 250hr wonders are no longer allowed. 1500 hr is what it took to get hired most places in 2005.

BUT with practically endless hiring, across the board, starting in the next 3-5 years, who are you to play Nostradamus??? Freaking regional first officers are already being nabbed at USAIR and United. When was the last time that ever happened???

We're all chasing a dream. Don't tell people it's not worth it because of your sour grapes.
 

bizicmo

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With the 1500 hour rule now in effect, what is the best way for someone with zero time to get the minimums to apply at a regional? I am not asking if it should be done, but if it had to be done, what is the best option.
Ramper or plane cleaner would be the fastest way to make it to a regional. Of course the 1500 hour rule didn't affect those routes because you don't need any flight time to work the ramp or clean the plane.
 

airplane wizard

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PP SEL

Buy an old junk Apache

COMM MEL
IR
CFI-ME
CFII
instruct others for their ME rating
split costs with other ME pilots looking to build time

Sell the old junk Apache
 

livin'thesim

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Yeah, marriage is bad news until you've established your flying career.

Oh, she will go along just long enough to make you think you're going to fly for a living, then she will run out of patience, which means you will run out of access to the vajayjay, and - HELLO OFFICE JOB!

Seen it a million times.
 

AirMike

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You may want to try networking with JAPA as well. It's a very small organization but they are very tight knit. They do have certain requirements to being a member whereas OBAP and WIA take anybody. Good luck!
 

pilotyip

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With the continued reduction in military flying, it might take 15 years to log 1,500 hours.
Doesn't need 1500, military pilots get an ATP at 750 hours.

Now back to our regularly scheduled program, go to a puppy mill that trains foreign pilots. Want cheap flight time get a glider, go someplace where the glider will stay in the air for 8-10 at a time with one tow.

It fits with what I have been stating for year. It will take you approximately 10 years to get to a job that will allow you to start making QOL a goal in your job search. Pilots get hired at good places because they have Turbine PIC, you must build turbine PIC to have control over your career. You have to go wherever that job is that gets you turbine PIC. You stay in that job until you can get another job that gives you better turbine PIC, i.e. Bigger airplanes, Turbojet, 121, etc. It is called paying your dues everyone must do it. Some do it in the military, some do it at the regionals, and some do in the on-demand business. Everyone pays his or her dues.
 
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BGSkyGuy

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I love it when pilots drop a steamer on the entire profession just because they're miserable. If it's so bad quit. And by the way, if you want to enjoy your aviation career don't go to the regionals at all. Lots of other ways to earn a buck.
 

PBRstreetgang

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I love it when pilots drop a steamer on the entire profession just because they're miserable. If it's so bad quit. And by the way, if you want to enjoy your aviation career don't go to the regionals at all. Lots of other ways to earn a buck.
Since you have never flown at the airlines, you might not be qualified to opine. The aviation industry has historically taken far more than it's given. I know plenty of dead pilots who were just trying to get a start in the industry and died because the plane was poorly maintained. Ask any CFI if their flight school planes were well maintained, Freight Dog if that piston dog house was cherry, or any number of other entry level jobs. Ask the families of 3407 if they think that it was ok to have a captain with multiple checkride failures running the show. This industry is neither nice nor friendly, just like most others.
 

BGSkyGuy

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Since you have never flown at the airlines, you might not be qualified to opine. The aviation industry has historically taken far more than it's given. I know plenty of dead pilots who were just trying to get a start in the industry and died because the plane was poorly maintained. Ask any CFI if their flight school planes were well maintained, Freight Dog if that piston dog house was cherry, or any number of other entry level jobs. Ask the families of 3407 if they think that it was ok to have a captain with multiple checkride failures running the show. This industry is neither nice nor friendly, just like most others.
I need only to visit the regional page of FI to know that the vast majority of regional pilots are miserable. I did instruct and the mx was at times questionable. Same thing when I flew checks in 310's and barons. I too have lost friends. I didn't take these jobs thinking that aviation is a safe way to earn a living. Anyone who does clearly doesn't watch the news. I fail to see your point.

If I took the advice of the people on this board I would have missed out on a very rewarding and lucrative career.
 

PBRstreetgang

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I need only to visit the regional page of FI to know that the vast majority of regional pilots are miserable. I did instruct and the mx was at times questionable. Same thing when I flew checks in 310's and barons. I too have lost friends. I didn't take these jobs thinking that aviation is a safe way to earn a living. Anyone who does clearly doesn't watch the news. I fail to see your point.

If I took the advice of the people on this board I would have missed out on a very rewarding and lucrative career.
You came out the other side, congrats! On the other side you are just an economic downturn away from being unemployed. Friend of mine was flying a Citation, sweet job, 100K a year, is now swinging gear in a CRJ. Its rewarding and lucrative right up until the floor drops out. Aircraft operators with ethics are like the Unicorn, most are dung eating rodents with mange, SWA, UAL, DAL, UPS, FDX are included. If you think you are immune, I will say good luck, it sucks to be unemployed at 45-50-55, if you aren't prepared, well......My point is this industry isn't safe nor friendly, as far as the Regional industry, many employed in the industry weren't prepared for the financial hardships, 65-100K in training costs only to get a job that pays very little even at 2nd or 3rd year CRJ pay at SKYW means 37.00 x 75 very little cash to pay the student loan interest, much less principal and live in anything other than a large refrigerator box under a bridge.
 
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IBNAV8R

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You can't paint a picture of an industry from a board comprised largely of whiners.

There are those that will make the best of any situation they are in. Then there are those who will never be happy anywhere. If you want to fly, do it. Just keep in mind the sacrifices and the payoff. The sacrifices are great and the payoff, even at the majors, "ain't what it used to be."

If you're doing it for pay, prestige, travel benefits, time-off and hot flight attendants, you're likely going to be disappointed.
 

BGSkyGuy

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You came out the other side, congrats! On the other side you are just an economic downturn away from being unemployed. Friend of mine was flying a Citation, sweet job, 100K a year, is now swinging gear in a CRJ. Its rewarding and lucrative right up until the floor drops out. Aircraft operators with ethics are like the Unicorn, most are dung eating rodents with mange, SWA, UAL, DAL, UPS, FDX are included. If you think you are immune, I will say good luck, it sucks to be unemployed at 45-50-55, if you aren't prepared, well......My point is this industry isn't safe nor friendly, as far as the Regional industry, many employed in the industry weren't prepared for the financial hardships, 65-100K in training costs only to get a job that pays very little even at 2nd or 3rd year CRJ pay at SKYW means 37.00 x 75 very little cash to pay the student loan interest, much less principal and live in anything other than a large refrigerator box under a bridge.
I don't recall saying I was immune. I'm vulnerable just like every other employee aviation or not. I can't control that. What I can control is my personal finances and networking status. My hope is that when the tides turn I will be able to make a lateral move to another department. Time will tell.

You and I are not so different. I've watched the PSA vote with great interest. I was foolish enough to think the NO's would win out for once. MY point is that there are still good jobs with good pay and QOL out there. If you want to fly for a living it can still be done. I personally don't think that the regionals are the place to do it.

I recently heard something that I think is worth passing on. A colleague was talking about his daughter trying to decide what she wants to do after high school. He told her that she could do anything she wanted as long as she was willing to devote every waking moment to it. If you want to be the rich SOB riding in the back of the private jet it can still be done. The govt, gender, education aside there are still opportunities in this country if one is willing to work hard enough to achieve them. Hard work is still recognized.
 

PBRstreetgang

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My point is and was this is a very tough and unforgiving industry, anybody who thinks its hugs, rainbows and puppy dog tails may be in for a rude surprise. While, there is lots of whining here, most if not all of it has a basis in reality.
If you miss the timing bubble and get on on the wrong side of the hiring wave, you could spend decades trying to claw your way out of the toilet, ask any UAL triple furlough.
 

PBRstreetgang

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still opportunities in this country if one is willing to work hard enough to achieve them. Hard work is still recognized.
While I agree, the timing variable cannot be discounted. Any pilot hired 5-10 years from now will spend the majority of their career in the right seat and on reserve. The average airline pilot is 48, today, that means that a good chunk of the seniority lists are younger and will fill the retires shoes, for a long time.
 

pilotyip

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If you're doing it for pay, prestige, travel benefits, time-off and hot flight attendants, you're likely going to be disappointed.
Now where have I seen something like before?

My career has been anything but a success by many's definitions. I have had 11 jobs since leaving the Navy in 1977. But I am coming out of this in good financial condition and I have had a ball in this adventure.

Would change little, so when I see people winning I wonder why they are in this career.
 
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BGSkyGuy

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While I agree, the timing variable cannot be discounted. Any pilot hired 5-10 years from now will spend the majority of their career in the right seat and on reserve.

Sounds like a good reason to consider skipping the regionals and going 135 to 91.
 
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Gulf-front

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Lousy advice and quite impractical. Flying consumes too much of your life to develop anything else worthwhile. You can have an expensive hobby that you think is a side business, but you'll end up hiring too many people to look after the business when you are away and they will invariably rip you off because they can. You end up dependent on them as much as you would your primary job.

Choose flying if you (and anyone you plan to spend your life with) are OK with making the rest of the interests in your life a distant second. Your career will never "owe you" anything, because it cannot and will not ever pay you back. A great landing has to be worth more to you than watching a child in a school play. You'll tuck your flight kit in behind you seat more times than you'll tuck your little ones in bed. Eating Thanksgiving dinner at the gas station across from the hotel in Atlanta or texting "Merry Christmas" before you push back for a 30 hour overnight in Guadalajara will have to be okay with the family because you chose that for you and for them. And after the water cannons stop on your last flight, don't let the fact that those same kids aren't all that interested in calling the man they never really got to know. Maybe they'll text you a "Merry Christmas".
Amen brother!
Young guys don't get it! You one day will want and have a family! If I could, I would do it different. Four airlines later... Not worth it! Good luck to you all. Just remember an airplane will not love you back!
 
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