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Commercial Pilot

Minimum Education Required for this Career

Basic Certificate
Advanced Certificate
Associate's Degree
4+ year Degree
4+ Year Degree
$50,479

City Colleges Program Options

Nature of the Work

Commercial pilots typically:

  • 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.
  • Monitor engine operation, fuel consumption, and functioning of aircraft systems during flights.
  • Consider airport altitudes, outside temperatures, plane weights, and wind speeds and directions to calculate the speed needed to become airborne.
  • Order changes in fuel supplies, loads, routes, or schedules to ensure safety of flights.
  • Obtain and review data such as load weights, fuel supplies, weather conditions, and flight schedules to determine flight plans and identify needed changes.
  • Plan flights according to government and company regulations, using aeronautical charts and navigation instruments.
  • Use instrumentation to pilot aircraft when visibility is poor.
  • Check baggage or cargo to ensure that it has been loaded correctly.
Click here to learn more about 53-2012 Commercial Pilots.

Training, Other Qualifications, and Advancement

Future Trends

Career Pathways

Success at City Colleges

Career Disclaimer

Wage estimates are based on Occupational Employment Statistics and the American Community Survey. Wage estimates are also affected by county-level Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. (EMSI) earnings by industry. The Nature of the Work description is from O*Net Online, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor.