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What's the lowest and the highest annual income a professional pilot can earn?

I am thinking about becoming a commercial pilot and would like to know how much I may make if I do go into aviation. #aviation #airline-industry #pilot #commercial-pilot


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James Daniel’s Answer

Civilian regional pilots start out at about $25,000/year on average and gain pay with experience and will max out around $70,000/year (I am not a regional pilot, but my regional buddies say this is a typical range).


Military Pilots pay is public record--you can see it here: http://www.dfas.mil/dam/jcr:81e6bd2c-a106-461b-851d-c77c7066baa5/2016MilitaryPayChart.pdf Look at the "O" rates. You start as an O-1 for 2 years, then promoted to O-2 for years 2-4, then promoted to O-3 for years 4-10, then promoted to O-4 year 10 and onward (further promotions are timed differently and based on other factors than time). In addition to the pay listed there. You also get an allowance for housing (differs by location and your rank, but is usually anywhere from $800-$1200/month) as well as incentive pay as a pilot (look at the top of page 3 of the chart...incentive pay increases as you gain experience)


At major airlines, your first year starts out around $75-80,000/year and increases dramatically, usually you are earning $100,000 your second year, $110,000 third year. First Officers max out around $150,000/year (depending on equipment...pay rates differ between different types of planes...larger ones pay more--some guys earn even more than $150,000/year). Captain pay is anywhere from $250,000 - $400,000 (for most senior, largest aircraft).


On your way to a regional airline, you might have to do "odd jobs" like flight instruction, banner-towing, pipeline inspections, etc to get your hours up. I'm not sure how much they make.


its very useful to me thank you! Hajira N.

Thank you. Holly F.

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Josh’s Answer

You could make anywhere from zero to $400k. In the early stages of your career, you will qualify for food stamps. Later in your career is where you can make a very good living.


Thank you. Holly F.

its very useful to me thank you! Hajira N.

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J J’s Answer

Lowest would be 30,000 us dollars, all the way up to 400,000 usd.
Basically a new hire First Officer at a regional airline to a Captain at Delta Airlines.


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Allan’s Answer

Starting salaries for airline pilots at major airlines is generally about 60,000 dollars for the first year. After pay increases rapidly to near 100, 000 dollars after a couple years. A senior captain flying large wide body aircraft can exceed 300,000 per year while working approximately 120 days per year.


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