How old is too old to start commercial airline pilot training?

Answer by Leon Wilde:

The short answer:

Yes, they pretty much can't keep qualified pilots and 45 means 20 years of flying left in your career.

Be sure you understand what you are getting into with most Regional carriers.

  • Deplorable quality of life
  • Horrible schedule 
  • Zero respect as a valued employee
  • Pay equal to about 1/2 of what a manager at Mc Donalds makes.

I love flying, but you should really speak to people that have been there for some time before spending the time and money to get your commercial and 1500 hours.

How old is too old to start commercial airline pilot training?

From where can I start to be a commercial pilot?

Answer by Trevor Kincy:

So traditionally speaking you would go to flight school to get your required ratings:

  1. Private Pilot
  2. Instrument
  3. Commercial
  4. Multi-Engine/Jet Rating (optional)
  5. Certified Flight Instructor or CFI/Instrument (optional)
  6. Air Transport Pilot (ATP)

So typically you'll start in a single engine prop, like a Cessna or a Piper. You'll do 1 and 2 in those before getting into 3. Generally this is when you get bumped up to a Multi-Engine prop (if that's in your budget). Once you have your commercial, you can technically fly for profit. But no carrier cargo or otherwise hires pilots with under 1000 hours, 1500 is the general industry minimum.

So you need more hours. Become a CFI or CFII. Build your hours while someone else foots the bill. At 1500 hours (1250 if you go to a Part 141 program) you can get your ATP License. Any major airline is going to require you have your ATP. Type ratings can be accomplished though various companies. No one expects you to have flown a 777 in flight school, lol.

Ballpark costs: 65,000+ and that's if you don't need remedial lessons. Flight hours cost money.

Alternatively if you're a Veteran, the Post 9/11 GI Bill will pay for Part 141 a Degree programs in full or 60% of regular flight training.

Hope this helps, good luck!

From where can I start to be a commercial pilot?