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9 Pilot Jobs That Help You Build Flight Time

If flight instructing isn't for you, check these out...

1) Pipeline/Powerline Patrol

Do you love low-level flying? Than this might be the job for you. Energy companies across the US hire pilots to monitor their infrastructure from the air. And when construction equipment and natural disasters cause problems, sending an airplane to inspect lines is often times the fastest way to figure out what's wrong.

Josh Beasley

2) Aerial Photography

Even if you aren't good with camera, there are jobs out there for you. Some aerial photography pilots take their own pictures, and others get paid to fly professional photographers around. And, you might even be flying a specially modified aircraft to take better shots of the ground.


3) Glider Tow

Are there gliders constantly flying overhead? Giving them a lift up to altitude is a great way for you to improve your piloting skills.

Joel Hageman

4) Banner Tow

It's not necessarily the safest job on the list, but there's always a need for it. Especially if you live near a beach or a large city.

Geoff Collins

5) Skydiving

What other job lets you kick your passengers out the door mid-flight?

6) Aircraft Ferry

When aircraft are purchased or sold, they typically find a new home at a different airport. If their owner can't make the flight themselves, they'll need you to get the aircraft from Point A to Point B.


7) Part 135 Cargo SIC

When cargo aircraft require a second pilot, they hire a second-in-command (SIC) pilot. And, you can do this job with as few as 250 hours.

Aleksander Markin (w/edits)

8) Part 135 Charter SIC

FBOs and small airlines like Great Lakes sometimes do the same thing. When their aircraft require a second pilot, they hire an SIC. Again, you can get these jobs with as few as 250 hours.


9) Aerial Mapping

Pilots can work for Google too! Get in on the tech boom with an aerial mapping job. Companies like Google hire pilots to criss-cross the nation with specialized cameras and lasers on board to help make cool apps like Google Earth.


Colin Cutler

Colin is a Boldmethod co-founder, pilot and graphic artist. He's been a flight instructor at the University of North Dakota, an airline pilot on the CRJ-200, and has directed development of numerous commercial and military training systems. You can reach him at

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