Career outlook for pilot - airline
UK Salary Ranges
Currently employed in Scotland
What's it like?
You would fly people and cargoes thousands of miles around the world. Everyone on board would rely on you to make sure the plane leaves and arrives safely and on schedule.
You'd direct the work of the aircraft crew during the flight and take charge to lead the team calmly in an emergency.
- Carry out pre-flight checks of instruments, engines and fuel
- Make sure that all safety systems are working properly
- Work out the best route based on weather reports and other information from air traffic control
- Follow airport approach and landing instructions from air traffic control
- Check flight data and make adjustments to suit weather changes
- Keep passengers and crew informed about journey progress
- Write flight reports after landing, including about any aircraft or flight path problems
If you pilot a small plane you might help to load and unload luggage or cargo.
On flights taking a short amount of time - short haul flights - you would normally work in a two-person team with a pilot (captain) and co-pilot (first officer).
On long haul flights, you would often also have a flight engineer on board, who would check the instruments. You'd need to be able to read maps and 3D displays.
You might also work in other areas of aviation, such as crop spraying, flight testing and flight training.
UK employment status
Create a qualification route
We've found some examples of the qualifications that could help you get this job.Discover my route
Search course options
Thinking about your future? There are lots of courses available that could interest you. Use our course search to explore course options.Find courses
Search job opportunities
If you're looking for your new career our job search can help you. Discover interesting opportunities and decide your next steps.Find a job
Here are some of the skills needed for this job. Sign in to see how your skills match up.
- Working with technology
- Problem solving
- Attention to detail
- Taking initiative
Your skills can help you choose the career that's right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.
To understand more, have a look at What are my skills?
Our Skills Explorer tool will help you understand what skills you have and match them to jobs that might suit you.Use the Skills Explorer tool
Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you'll need.