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Mon, Sep 19, 2016

Airlines Offering Good Pay, Bonuses To Attract Pilots

Some Can Make $58,000 Per Year ... Or More

It's no secret that starting pay for pilots, particularly at regional airlines, has been notoriously low, particularly given the amount of responsibility that comes with driving airliners around the sky.

But faced with a looming pilot shortage, some carriers are boosting starting pay and offering significant signing bonuses to lure pilots to their cockpits.

The Philadelphia Enquirer reports that two American Airlines regional carriers will be increasing starting salaries for new pilots to $58,000, and some might command more money. PSA Airlines is increasing its starting hourly rate for pilots to $38.50 per hour, according to the report, and there are $15,000 signing bonuses for new pilots, and retention bonuses of $20,000 for first officers to be paid in installments after a year of service.

Envoy Air, based in Irving, TX will nearly double its starting hourly rate to about $38 per hour, and offer $20,000 signing bonuses along with "guaranteed flow-through" to American Airlines, according to the report.

Traditionally, starting pay for regional airline pilots has been in the $22,500 to $26,000 range, and the cost of training is high. The prize at the end, of course, is the up to $300,000 that can be earned by seasoned captains on international routes.

While the major airlines have a good supply of pilots for the time being, many are closing in on a mandatory retirement age of 65, and fewer people have opted for aviation careers as the cost of training has increased, and the FAA mandated 1,500 hours as a prerequisite for becoming an airline pilot.

(Image from file)

FMI: www.psaairlines.com/Open-Pilot-Position, www.envoyair.com/careers

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