Monday, September 14, 2009

Other flying jobs (Cargo) (AskDoug question)

Photo compliments of Kelly Paterson (YYC ramp attendant)
A330 cargo hold

Next three photos compliments of Erik Ritterbach
(FRA Air Canada Cargo)

Antonov 225 (Open wide)

Aeroflot's Md-11

In case someone wants to rent this airplane, here's
contact info. :)

Here's a question that didn't make the cut for enRoute, but it's a good one none the less:

I love your book. Thank you for writing it. As a boy, I dreamt that I was an airline pilot (many years later, I still do at times). And I know many others who have shared the dream. However, I've never met anyone who has dreamt about becoming a cargo pilot. Of course, some pilots opt to fly freight, as opposed to people, and this puzzles me: Freight flying just doesn't seem like a "dream job." Is it -- and what draws some people to it?

I just received your question from enRoute.

I think most people, like yourself, think of the airline pilot position to be the most aspiring. But when you think of it, there are probably 25-30 different types of flying jobs: Airline pilot, connector pilot, test pilot, crop dusting pilot, surveillance, military, helicopter, corporate, charter, customs, police, media (T.V, radio, traffic), and the list goes. Many get into the business, but for one reason or another, fall into the non airline pilot position. One of them is cargo. UPS and FedEx are huge recruiters of pilots. As a matter of fact, both UPS and FedEx pilots make more money than most major American carrier airline pilots.

Even though most of their flying is done at night, their destinations are as exotic as the airlines. They don't have to worry about disruptive passengers, whether the seat belt
sign should go on for turbulence, passenger medical issues, and last but not least, freight doesn't talk back.

Even here in Canada, everyone is drawn to becoming an Air Canada pilot. There are other options (I'll whisper the name Westjet) including great charter companies and airlines from around the world.

It's a finicky business to get into and for many their views/ideals/dreams are altered along the way.

Captain Doug


Memopilot said...

Thats the right stuff captain¡¡¡,

jeje just kidding, the cargo planes have something that is hard to explain.

What do you know about the requirements, dou you need less hours?

Is the payment bigger for the night trips?

Happy landings ¡¡¡¡

From the Flight Deck said...

I think the requirements are much the same. Again, UPS and FEDEX are very well paid in relation to most major airlines. I assume the "night premium" is factored in.

At Air Canada, MOST pilots are paid based on a formula. Part of that long formula is night pay- about 13 percent extra. Night pay starts at 1800 local and ends 0600 local from the departure airport.

Memopilot said...

thks captain,

regards ¡¡¡¡¡