Skip navigation

Commercial Pilots

Also called: Pilot, Captain, First Officer, Line Pilot

Where in the Air Force? In the Air Force: Rescue Pilot, CSAR-X; Rescue Pilot, CVLSP; Rescue Pilot, Combat Search and Rescue, General; Rescue Pilot, General; Rescue Pilot, HH-60; Rescue Pilot, Other; Rescue Pilot, UH-1N; Trainer Pilot, SUPT-H

What they do:
Pilot and navigate the flight of fixed-winged aircraft on nonscheduled air carrier routes, or helicopters. Requires Commercial Pilot certificate. Includes charter pilots with similar certification, and air ambulance and air tour pilots.
On the job, you would:
  • Check aircraft prior to flights to ensure that the engines, controls, instruments, and other systems are functioning properly.
  • Contact control towers for takeoff clearances, arrival instructions, and other information, using radio equipment.
  • Start engines, operate controls, and pilot airplanes to transport passengers, mail, or freight according to flight plans, regulations, and procedures.

Knowledge

Transportation
  • movement of people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road
Business
  • customer service
Safety and Government
  • public safety and security
  • law and government
Math and Science
  • arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics

Skills

Basic Skills
  • thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
  • listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
Problem Solving
  • noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it

Abilities

Controlled Movement
  • quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat
  • quickly decide if you should move your hand, foot, or other body part
Verbal
  • listen and understand what people say
  • communicate by speaking
Hand and Finger Use
  • hold or move items with your hands
  • keep your arm or hand steady
Vision
  • see details up close

Personality

People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
  • Dependability
  • Attention to Detail
  • Self Control
  • Adaptability/Flexibility
  • Stress Tolerance
  • Analytical Thinking

Technology

You might use software like this on the job:

Data base user interface and query software
  • AirSmith FlightPrompt
  • AV8 software
Information retrieval or search software
  • AeroPlanner
  • Notam Development Group Airport Insight
Route navigation software
  • Navzilla

Education

Education: (rated 3 of 5)

Get started on your career:

Find Training Find Certifications Registered Apprenticeship

Job Outlook

Average Outlook
New job opportunities are likely in the future.
Salary
$74,470
per year, on average
Check out my state Local Salary Info Find Jobs

Explore More

See more details at O*NET OnLine about commercial pilots.