What is the best career path to becoming an airline pilot, I was planning on trying the air force to get some time in but is that an efficient way? if not what is the best rout to becoming an airline pilot?
I encourage you to visit our FAQ section as we address this and many other common questions. The Airforce is an outstanding organization and serving your country is a noble path. It is not however a flight school. Military service requires a huge commitment and if that’s your sole reason for enlisting it’s not a good one.
Short answer the best path to the airlines is ATP flight school.
If i came out of the Air Force after about 20 years could i become an airline pilot or would I still need to go to school?
If, and that’s a big if, you fly for the Air Force then you will have a good chance of flying for the airlines, but you will also have to meet their hiring requirements. You may need to start at the regional level depending on your AF flying exp.
More importantly, there is no guarantee that you will even receive a flying position with any branch of the military. If you are seriously considering that route I suggest you speak with a recruiter. Your primary objective for joining should be to serve. Flying is secondary.
As Tory said there are a whole lot of “ifs” in there and there are also many variables. As stated you must meet the hiring minimum requirements and simply having flown in the Air Force won’t necessarily accomplish that.
A great example is fighter pilots. While they fly some very cool and sophisticated equipment, they actually don’t fly that many hours. Many are surprised when they don’t meet the mins.
ok thank you
If you want to be in the Air Force because you want to serve the country, that is a great path. If you are looking at it as free flight training, you will be miserable. The military is a lifestyle, some enjoy it, others do not. If your goal is to be an airline pilot, then I would look at the civilian route.
Do you need a bachelors degree to become an airline pilot?
If you’re trying to find a quick easy and cheap way to become an airline pilot you won’t find one. Flying is expensive and if it were easy then anyone could do it.
Even if you were to pursue your Air Force route you would need to join as an Officer, which means you would need a degree. Even then, there is still a huge if to deal with and that is just because you serve doesn’t mean you will receive a flying assignment. The Air Force, as a matter of fact, doesn’t do most of our military’s flying. That would be the Army.
If you choose to train as a civilian pilot you would still need to earn your degree. I know that there are paths that claim that a degree is not required, but the reality is that most pilots do have a degree. So, not only would you be putting all of your eggs in one basket if you were to sign up for one of the flow programs, if for some reason you aren’t part of a flow program the absence of a degree could be the only thing that stands between you and getting that job at a major airline.