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Getting Hired in AK

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Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby TriPacer » Tue Aug 23, 2016 5:27 pm

So of course I was totally enamored with Alaska's beauty and now want to be a bush pilot!

OK, maybe not today, but I often think it'd be awesome to retire from my existing career (in 10-15 years or so, when the kids are all grown up) and start a new career involving aviation. The idea would be to build up a safety net with the existing job to strike out and try something new...

In any case - for those of you that do fly for hire out in AK - what kind of experiences/training/etc. would you recommend for someone who would like to be out there eventually? What are some typical hiring requirements you've seen? How successful are the part 135 mom and pop touring outfits you see scattered around? Any general advice? Should I just stay home and quit adding to the surplus of seaplane pilots up there? :)

Thanks guys!
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby KeithSmith » Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:51 pm

The rule of thumb is pretty much the same in aviation no matter where you go. If you want to get hired, the best thing to do is to find a Chief Pilot with an ugly daughter and marry her. However, it sounds like you already messed up that approach by marrying someone else.
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby TriPacer » Wed Aug 24, 2016 11:43 am

I guess I could convert to Mormonism! On a side note, I have a hard enough time with one wife's demands - how on earth do some guys want to add more?!
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby RKittine » Wed Aug 24, 2016 12:59 pm

You have to understand the position that a Mormon Sister Wife is in to understand.

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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby jjbaker » Thu Aug 25, 2016 11:27 am

Here's what works best in getting hired as a pilot in AK. Forget the others with their stories...

Have 9000 hours total time
Of those, 8700 should be PIC in type on seaplanes

A minimum of 12000 hours AK time as well a maximum age of 22.
Do all that and find that if you know the right people, everything will work just fine.

:-)
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby TriPacer » Thu Aug 25, 2016 11:42 am

What "position" is that? :o

In all seriousness, though, I have no clue what those relationships are like - were you being serious? If so, I'd like to understand better.

RKittine wrote:You have to understand the position that a Mormon Sister Wife is in to understand.

Bob
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby TriPacer » Thu Aug 25, 2016 11:43 am

Well, I suppose I'd better start my own flightseeing business, then! ;)

jjbaker wrote:Here's what works best in getting hired as a pilot in AK. Forget the others with their stories...

Have 9000 hours total time
Of those, 8700 should be PIC in type on seaplanes

A minimum of 12000 hours AK time as well a maximum age of 22.
Do all that and find that if you know the right people, everything will work just fine.

:-)
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby RKittine » Thu Aug 25, 2016 1:10 pm

And check the commercial insurance rates first as well as the 100 hour inspections and other permits and requirements. Plus, either hire some more pilots, or never get sick or take a vacation etc.

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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby KlausNW » Thu Aug 25, 2016 1:55 pm

There is an overwhelming shortage of pilots and mechanics in Alaska right now... (around the world). The FAA requires a commercial license with total 500 hours minimum to fly commercial. The insurance company request 1000 hrs total/200 Alaska time or they will charge the carrier an extra fee after they make the exception.

Many of these websites say they are not hiring at this time, but that just means they haven't updated their website. Pilots are always jumping from company to company to get a little better pay. I talk to dispatchers all the time and they tell me they turn down flights everyday because the pilots are timed out.

https://www.flyravn.com/employment/

http://www.flyalaskaseaplanes.com/usefu ... yment.html

http://www.flygrant.com/about-us/careers/

http://www.flyrusts.com/summer-employment.html

http://www.taquanair.com/pages/about_jo ... ptions.htm

The good news for pilot is the pilot/mechanic shortage is getting worse each day as the number of total world wide commercial pilot inventory drops by 15 per day. Even the airlines are creating schedules based on the availability of pilots not the number of planes available.

The Chinese are also hiring: http://www.avweb.com/avwebflash/news/Ch ... 832-1.html

If you get attitude with a Chief Pilot when you contact them it's because they have been unhappy with a large number of their hires and they want to see how serious you are. Many times pilots show up half-hearted and under experienced. Either show up with the intentions to fly 8 hour days within 14 hour duty days 6 days a week or go work for the airlines.

P.S. The last 5 years pilot and mechanic pay has come way up. Many of my friends flying for even the smallest air carriers are raising a family, own a house and saving money. You want to make even more money you have to live in hotel rooms. More nights away from home the more money you make, just that simple.
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby TriPacer » Fri Aug 26, 2016 12:58 pm

Thanks Klaus - with all the flightseeing outfits and planes (and purportedly pilots) I saw up there, it's hard to believe there's a shortage (though I do). I have a lot more time to build and quite a few years before I'd consider trying to make the move, but it's good to know where things stand today at least. I've been heavily considering pursuing an A&P sometime down the line, too.
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby KlausNW » Fri Aug 26, 2016 1:45 pm

I personally will push you into the A&P. One of the first things I discovered while doing my flight training was the aircraft needed maintenance. Being a good farm boy I decided if the plane is broke I'll have to fix it. Farmers hate counting on someone else to keep them operating and getting the job done.
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby KlausNW » Fri Aug 26, 2016 3:53 pm

More evidence that there is a shortage of aviators:

http://money.cnn.com/2016/08/26/news/companies/airline-pay-raises/


Airline employees are getting huge pay raises

Wages have been stagnant for years -- but that's not so in the airline industry.

Pilots and ground crews at the major U.S. airlines are winning huge raises and have locked in more hikes in the years to come.

American Airline (AAL) pilots got a 23% pay hike last year, and United Airlines (UAL) pilots won a 16% pay hike in January of this year. Both are slated for smaller annual raises going forward.

But some employees are fighting for even more.

Delta (DAL) pilots are picketing the company's headquarters Friday to demand a 37% raise over the course of three years, while Southwest (LUV) pilots demonstrated earlier in the week for a 32% hike through 2019.

And its not just pilots who are getting fatter paychecks.

American Airlines reached a deal earlier this month to give 30,000 ground workers raises ranging from 15% to 55%. United ground workers (except the mechanics) ratified a deal earlier this year that gave them a 30% wage increase over five years.

In separate negotiations, United mechanics rejected an offer of a 33% wage hike over seven years. The Teamsters, who represent the mechanics, report it is now close to a tentative agreement.


:Mr.Money: :chickendance: :Mr.Money: :chickendance: :Mr.Money: :chickendance: :Mr.Money:
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby akavidflyer » Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:20 pm

KlausNW wrote:I personally will push you into the A&P. One of the first things I discovered while doing my flight training was the aircraft needed maintenance. Being a good farm boy I decided if the plane is broke I'll have to fix it. Farmers hate counting on someone else to keep them operating and getting the job done.


I second that. While most every operator here has an A&P IA on staff, it never hurts to have the A&P to get your foot in the door! Not to mention you can make a few bucks on the side as well during the off season from flying. It is getting harder and harder to find a good A&P around here that really cares about your plane as much as you do!

:cheers:
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby TriPacer » Tue Sep 06, 2016 2:55 pm

Sounds like a plan - definitely something to keep on the radar.
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby Float Pilot » Mon Sep 12, 2016 6:06 pm

A good WRENCH usually has a more stable job than the part 135 pilots around my area. Around here there are only a few 135 guys who have worked for one outfit for any meaningful period of time. Most of them are young boneheads who show up in the spring and get laid off in the fall, or sooner. Meanwhile the mechanics are working year round in a nice warm hangar.
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Re: Getting Hired in AK

Unread postby TriPacer » Tue Sep 27, 2016 4:46 pm

Sounds like the gearheads have it right!!
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