Being a pilot is stressful work. You’re responsible for the safety of your passengers and crew, and you have to deal with bad weather, mechanical problems, and sometimes unruly passengers. Since the environment is already somewhat hostile to you at times, the last thing you need is an employer who doesn’t appreciate you or respect your work.
Bad employers are the main reason why pilots leave their jobs. And a large number of pilots don’t harbor good feelings towards their employers. In a 2021 report by FlightGlobal, 49% of the respondents claimed they were feeling less valued than normal. Granted, the pandemic has been hard on the airline industry, but that doesn’t excuse employers from treating their pilots poorly.
However, not all airlines exploit and mistreat their pilots. In fact, there are some very good employers out there who know how to treat their employees right.
In this article, you are going to learn what are the best airlines to work for. If you’re a pilot who’s looking for a new job, or if you’re considering becoming a pilot, keep reading.
What Makes for a Good Employer?
There are a few key things that make for a good employer, especially in the airline industry. First and foremost, an airline should have a good safety record. This is the most important thing for any pilot. After all, there’s no point in getting paid a lot with great benefits if you’re putting your life on the line every time you fly.
What good is it to have a high salary if you’re constantly worried about your safety? Not only that, but a good employer should also have good working conditions. This includes things like decent pay, good benefits, and a positive work environment.
It’s also important to work for an airline that has a good reputation. You don’t want to be associated with an airline that has bad press all the time. Not only is it not good for your career, but it’s also not good for your mental health.
The ideal would be to ask other pilots how it is like to work for a particular airline. But that’s not always possible. So, the next best thing is to look at pilot forums and read what pilots are saying about different airlines.
Keep in mind, though, that not all pilots will have the same experience. Some might love their job while others might hate it. So, take everything you read with a grain of salt.
What Are the Best Airlines to Work For as a Pilot?
Now that you know what to look for in a good employer, let’s take a look at some of the best airlines to work for. These are all large, well-established airlines with good safety records and good working conditions.
The first airline on our list is Emirates. This airline is based in Dubai and it’s one of the largest airlines in the world. It has a good reputation and it’s known for its excellent working conditions.
Emirates pilots are some of the highest-paid in the world. And they also get great benefits, like free housing and transportation.
Editor’s note: in this article, we will consider companies worldwide, not just U.S. based ones.
Southwest Airlines is great airline to work for. It’s based in the United States and it’s one of the largest domestic airlines. Southwest is known for its friendly culture and good working conditions.
Pilots at Southwest Airlines also get great benefits, like free travel for their families. And they have a very good safety record.
Plus, they offer a hefty salary, to their pilots. Expect to earn around $59,000 as a completely new pilot, going up to $200,000 per year when you get promoted to captain. The average you’ll find on sites like Glassdoor is very high – around $260,000/year, but it’s skewed by how high the senior pilots earn. The most senior pilots earn up to $600,000 per year.
And, most importantly, they’re a good employer to work for. Most people who worked there have left great reviews. The company respects its employees and offers good working conditions. You will be treated with fairness and respect.
Southwest Airlines is one of the best U.S. airlines to work for. The pay is amazing, the benefits are great, and the environment is friendly and respectful.
Lufthansa is a German airline and it’s the largest airline in Europe. It has a great reputation and it’s known for its excellent working conditions. German employers are known for being very good to their employees.
The average salary for a pilot working for Lufthansa €94,515/year. Which is about $95514.97. It would have been way higher in USD a year ago, but the euro has been losing a lot of value against the dollar in recent times.
Benefits-wise, Lufthansa is also very good, with free housing and transportation for its employees. You won’t have to worry about anything but performing your job up to the company’s standards.
Lufthansa is a great airline to work for, especially if you’re based in Europe. But keep in mind that the salary is not as high as it could be, due to the current exchange rate.
Delta Airlines is another great choice if you’re looking for a good airline to work for. It’s based in the United States and it’s one of the largest airlines in the world.
Delta Airlines is known for its good working conditions and its strong safety record. Delta pilots are some of the highest-paid in the US, with an average salary of $108,311 per year. In addition to a high salary, Delta Airlines pilots also receive excellent benefits, including free travel for their families and medical insurance.
And its past employees are very happy about it. On Glassdoor, the company has a rating of 4.3 stars out of 5, which is quite high.
Delta is a great choice if you’re looking for an airline to work for. It has good working conditions, a strong safety record, and pilots are very well-paid.
Virgin Atlantic is another excellent airline to work for. It’s based in the United Kingdom and it flies to many destinations around the world.
If you’re looking for an airline to work for that is based in the UK, then Virgin Atlantic is a great choice. Much like every other company on this list, it has gleaming reviews on Glassdoor. The airline offers excellent benefits and a stimulating work environment.
Pay wise, an average pilot earns about £89,378 per year, which is $106,776. This is a pretty hefty salary , especially when you compare it to the average salary in the UK, which is £25,961.
In addition to a great salary, Virgin Atlantic also offers its employees free travel and medical insurance. If you’re looking for an airline to work for that has excellent benefits and pay, then Virgin Atlantic is a great choice.
United Airlines is another excellent choice for an airline to work for. If you’re looking for awesome pilot work in an environment that treats you fairly and respects your skills, United Airlines is one of the best.
One of the most interesting facts about working for United Airlines is that they have a very good safety record. In the past decade, they’ve had no fatal accidents. This is an excellent record for an airline, and it’s one of the reasons why United Airlines is a great choice for a pilot.
In addition to a good safety record, United Airlines also offers its pilots a very competitive salary. The average salary for a United Airlines pilot is $128,602 per year. But the thing is, United Airlines offers one of the most competitive salaries for new pilots. Elsewhere, you’re looking at a $50k-60k salary at best when you’re just starting out. But the base pay at United Airlines is $99,204, way above what most other airlines are willing to pay.
So, if you’re looking for an airline to work for that is safe and has a great salary, United Airlines is an excellent choice.
I know what you’re thinking. “Alaska? What?” Yes, Alaska. It may not be the first place that comes to mind when you’re thinking about airlines, but it has one.
Alaska Airlines is a US-based airline that was founded in 1932. The company has a long and distinguished history, and it’s been ranked as one of the best airlines to work for by numerous organizations.
In addition to its excellent working conditions, Alaska Airlines is also known for its strong safety record. The company has never had a fatal accident. As long as you follow their procedures and regulations, you’ll be safe.
Alaska Airlines pilots are some of the highest-paid in the US, with an average salary of $137,270 per year. Like many other airlines on this list, Alaska Airlines also offers its employees free travel and medical insurance. You’ll be at peace of mind knowing that you and your family are taken care of.
Past employees talk highly of the company. If you’re looking for an airline to work for that is known for its excellent working conditions and strong safety record, then Alaska Airlines is a great choice. Pilots are also very well-paid, making it a great option if you’re looking for an airline to work for.
JetBlue Airways is another excellent choice for an airline to work for. The company is based in the US and it flies to many destinations around the world.
Pilots who work for JetBlue Airways are some of the highest-paid in the US, with an average salary of $119,806 per year. In addition to a great salary, JetBlue Airways also offers its employees free travel and medical insurance. Pretty standard among good airlines, but still worth noting.
Safety wise, JetBlue Airways has an excellent record. The company has never had a fatal accident, which is quite impressive.
JetBlue Airways is a great choice for an airline to work for if you’re looking for good pay and benefits. The company is also known for its excellent safety record, making it a great choice if you’re looking for an airline to work for.
A regional airline is a type of airline that specializes in flying passengers to and from smaller, regional airports. These airlines typically fly shorter routes and don’t have the same level of service as major airlines like United or Delta.
While regional airlines may not have the same level of service as major airlines, they can be a great option for pilots looking for a job. The pay is typically lower, but the cost of living is also lower in the regions that these airlines fly to.
In addition, regional airlines can be a great way to get your foot in the door of the airline industry. Many pilots start their careers at regional airlines before moving on to major airlines.
The average salary for a regional airline pilot is $75,523 per year. That’s not as high as the major airlines, but it’s still a very good salary. And yeah, the pay will be lower, but also you’ll work in a much more relaxed environment. If that’s what you’re looking for, then a regional airline is a great choice.
Plus, if you’re a beginner pilot, you’ll have a much easier time finding a job at a regional airline. They’re always looking for new pilots, and it’s a great way to get your career started.
Just remember that regional airlines are different from major airlines. The pay is lower and the service is not as good, but it can be a great option for pilots who are just starting out or who want to work in a more relaxed environment.
How to Make Your Choice
Now, you might be wondering how to make your choice. With so many great airlines to choose from, it can be tough to decide which one is right for you.
The best way to make a decision is to think about what’s important to you. Do you value pay more than anything else? Or are you more concerned with benefits and working conditions?
Truth be told, basically every airline on the list offers the same benefits: medical insurance and free travel for the pilot’s family members. So, this is something you can avoid thinking about when making your decision.
The best way to make your choice is by looking at the airline’s safety record, pay, and working conditions. These are the three most important factors to consider when choosing an airline to work for.
Once you’ve decided what’s important to you, you can start to narrow down your options. For example, if you’re looking for an airline that pays well, then Alaska Airlines and JetBlue Airways are both great choices.
Pilot Career Paths
Now that you know what the best airlines are, you might be wondering what your career path looks like. Here’s a quick overview:
Most pilots start their careers at regional airlines. From there, they can move on to major airlines. The pay is higher at major airlines, but the competition is also much stiffer. Plus, the job is more stressful, as you’re responsible for more passengers.
Once you’ve been working as a pilot for a few years, you might have the opportunity to become a flight instructor. Flight instructors teach new pilots how to fly. They typically make around $85 per hour.
There are also opportunities to become a corporate pilot. Corporate pilots fly private planes for companies or wealthy individuals. The pay is very good, but the job is also very competitive.
Or, alternatively, you can rise up in the ranks and become a captain. Captains are the most experienced pilots on a plane. They make the most money and have the most responsibility.
So, there you have it. These are some of the best airlines to work for as a pilot. No matter what’s important to you, there’s an airline on this list that will suit your needs.
Before getting into your job search, take some time to think about what you want and need from an airline. Once you know that, you can start to narrow down your options and find the perfect airline for you.
Our advice for you is to check the company’s reviews on Glassdoor and see what other pilots have to say about the airline you’re interested in. That way, you can get a better idea of what it’s really like to work for that airline. There’s no better way to find out if an airline is the right fit for you than by hearing it from pilots who are already working there.
And be careful – with so many great options out there, it’s easy to get overwhelmed! But if you take your time and do your research, you’ll be able to find the perfect airline for you.