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Part-time flying part 91

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King Air

Mar 22, 2002
I have a few friends who fly part time, part 91, right seat. Pay is about $250 per day. Is this the normal amount and is this a good way to work into a full-time job?
And along the same line as my last post, would you use the GI bill benifits to try and pick up the type rating for part time work?
It seems like a shame not to use those benifits that Uncle Sam has seen fit to provide us with.
King Air Pilot Services


$250 per day sounds about right. Here in Southeastern VA, most operators pay $180-$200. $250 for BE58 PIC. It seems to vary though. Some low-timers will do it for nothing, one operator pays $10/hr duty in a E90. Right seat in a C90B can be $150. There's actually an outfit that pays Baron PICs only $85/day. Pathetic!

The way I see it, getting paid to be a passenger isn't a bad deal. The King Airs, being single pilot don't require an SIC. They will almost always buy you lunch too! Sometimes it has to be added to the bill or expensed seperately. The corporate (part 91) and deadhead 135 legs usually go to the SIC, allowing us to log some sole manipulator PIC, except in the 300/350. Then it's SIC - PF.

Whooaaa, there, pal, what do you mean "getting paid to be a passenger isn't a bad deal"?

First of all, a professional pilot is never a "paid passenger". If you really think that way, then you should give up your seat to one of the thousands of professional pilots who are ready to do their job.

The reason you are there is because the flight dept. and the insurance company know that single pilot operations are 30% more likely to suffer an incident or accident. If you are just sitting in the seat and/or playing "Radio Boy and Traffic Watch" you are doing a disservice to the passengers, the other pilots whose airspace you are sharing, and the rest of us who strive to operate in a safe and professional manner.

Safety is an attitude. Being a professional pilot is an attitude. Do your job, do it the best it can be done, and charge for your services.

As for logging PIC time in a King Air- this can get get you in trouble in an interview if you don't know the airplane well. Remember, if you are the PIC, you are required to become familiar with the operating limitations of the airplane, the normal and emergency procedures, and the numbers . . . be prepared to answer questions regarding the above, and you should have a high-altitude endorsement if you are to serve as PIC.
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Hey, I feel that I should probably clarify a bit on what I posted about being a "paid passenger" earlier. I totally agree that a crewed aircraft is safer, but often times the pilots are trained single-pilot and introducing 2 pilot CRM actually disturbs their flow. There are operators that are single pilot 135, who use contract co-pilots when requested by the customers or as required by insurance. I've been through 135 training, but am not acting in an official capacity as an SIC. Legally, as a non-required crewmember, I'm not even supposed to operate the radios. The operator should really hire full-time SIC's, but that is just not practical financially.

I hope I'm not considered a bad guy, since I fly for a fair daily rate when called upon to do so. The opspecs don't require 2 pilots in their King Airs and there is no training program for SIC in them, so when I am used, we pretty much just wing it. Before it starts, let me clarify a little. We always discuss, before flight, what my duties are and what is expected during the flight. I can't openly admit, on a public forum, that I do anything in the cockpit of a 135 aircraft other than occupy a seat. Obviously, as an experienced pilot, my presence is appreciated and in more than a few occasions, it was a good thing I was there.

I guess the "passenger" remark stems from earlier discussions about logging the time. On a round trip 135 flight, I can't log anything. I consider it good experience, and I contribute to the safe and efficient operation of the aircraft, but technically I am only a "paid passenger". I have mentioned to management about offering training and doing a ?8410? ride on me so that I could log it, but that just won't happen for me and the 2 or 3 other independent pilots that they use.

As far as logging the PIC time, part 61 allows for this. Many applications will differentiate between part 1 (signed for the aircraft, acting as PIC) and part 61 (sole manip. in A/C you're rated in, logging PIC) Although I have the high alt endorsement, it's not required to LOG part 61 time. (I realize you mentioned that to ACT as PIC) Now, on the weekends and when I'm flying the B90 with 14 skydivers in the back, single pilot, I classify that as part 1 PIC. I think I'll be alright in an interview, I have access to copies of the FlightSafety manuals for the B90, C90B, B200 and 300/350 and try to keep up to speed on them as much as I can. I met the requirements of 61.55 while flying in the 300. My training has all been "in-house", but I feel pretty comfortable in the aircraft that I am directly responsible for and am the final authority as to the operation of. (acting as PIC)

Fair enough.

Perhaps my post doesn't apply to your particular situation, but your original comment moved me to make my post, which I hope will serve as food for thought for all pilots who are accepting pay to do little more that warm a seat.

Good luck in your endeavors.
Thanks, no offense taken. I'm doing whatever it takes to pay the rent nowadays.

Back to the original topic, what do y'all think would be a fair salary for a 35 hr/month flight time, 70 hr or so duty hour Baron pilot? Mostly trip's in the Northeast. 40% business, 60% personal. The personal trips would be almost always dropoffs and pickups? ie: not a lot of waiting around, except for the business flights. Also discussed a fairly flexible schedule, such that the pilot isn't really always on call but can pick up other part time work when it's available?


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