Single mother considering career change

Hi, my daughter is 31, single mother of 3 (8, 5 and 3yrs old) and is considering a career change to become a pilot. She has a great job she loves, with lots of flexibility (even work from home some), people she loves, great benefits, and job security. Problem is she feels stuck because she has advanced about as far as possible in the company as office manager at about 50K/yr, and want to make more . She and her children currently live with us, so her living expenses are minimal. She was close to getting her associates degree in business management, so has some college credits from 9 to 10 years back.
Although I am proud of her for researching alternatives, and wanting to provide for her family, the research I have done leads me to believe it will be quite a while before she sees the opportunity to make more $ (100K?), and she will be gone overnight so much, they will need to continue to live with us anyway! (Which I am fine with, but one of her goals is to be on her own). Sorry to be so lengthy, I don’t want to dash her dreams, but she is giving up so much to go after something I think will be a struggle in many ways. One last thing - this is not a lifelong dream, she just researched opportunities, realized the pilot shortage, tried flying, and loved it. She says she would like to fly for a private company rather than commercial airline. Any rich guys out there with their private jets?? :slight_smile: Any feedback?


Being a pilot involves significant time on the road. A lot of it. Take a look at our schedules in the schedules section to see just how much we are gone. I don’t see any way possible to do it as a single parent (and be a good parent), but that is just my take on it.

In the FAQ section, there is a post that discusses pilot pay in depth. It should be noted though that flying for private operators usually pays significantly less than the airlines do.



I’m not going to lie. While I love my job and couldn’t imagine doing anything else it definitely takes a while and requires a fair amount of sacrifice. It will take before she breaks $100k (prob 5-7yrs and that’s being optimistic) and she most definitely will be away overnight.

You say she wants to fly for a private company which is fine but that often means she’ll be away much more. The max length for most airline trips is 4 days but the are 2 and 3 day trips as well. That’s not the case with corporate flying. I have friend who are often gone for weeks at a clip. Those that don’t aren’t making the big money.

Not trying to give you ammo to shoot down her goal but she definitely has a lot to think about. Ultimately it’s her decision and I trust if she decides to in an effort to better her life she’ll have the support of her family.


Thanks for the info Chris - I appreciate your time. I did look at schedules, but you confirm that is the norm, which only makes sense. Thank you again for this forum and the info provided! Be safe!

Thanks Adam, I agree - don’t want to shoot down a dream, but don’t want to go into under informed and regret her decision. She has such a good job now, it would be hard to replace. Thanks gain for your time and info. It is much appreciated!