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9 Things You Need To Prepare For Your Pilot Interview

Getting ready for your interview? Make sure you've got these things down...

1) Your logbook

Your logbook is one of the most important snapshots of your pilot career that your interview team has. Make sure it's organized and up to date. Also, consider identifying your checkrides and other important events with tabs. Making your logbook easy to review lets your interview team know you're prepared and ready for the job.

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2) Do your flight times add up?

They should. And if they don't, make sure you have a good, easy-to-understand reason why the columns in your logbook don't match up. That will make it easier for your interviewer to understand, as well as help them verify that the hours in your logbook are correct, and not padded.

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3) Your previous employers

Most companies perform a background check on you, and that might include previous employers. Make sure you've got a clear history of your past jobs, as well as contact info for each of them.

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4) The ATP written

Most companies have a written exam based on the ATP written. The good news here is that you know exactly what to study for - just grab a copy of an ATP written study guide and dig in.

5) Any training failures?

It's usually not the end of the world if you've had one. Just make sure it's clear what checkride it was, and what happened. And be ready to talk about what you learned from your mistake.

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6) How about a reference?

Most employers ask for a personal reference. Make sure you have a good one, and that you've asked their permission to be listed as a reference before you write down their name and number. Nobody likes a surprise phone call!

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7) General pilot knowledge

Almost any interview will have questions about being a pilot, and the type of airplane you fly. Make sure you have a solid understanding of the FARs, weather, regulations, and the aircraft that you're currently flying.

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8) Tell me about a time when...

  • You had a disagreement with another pilot during a flight.
  • When you made a mistake in an airplane.
  • When you broke a regulation.

Any of these are fair game. Just make sure you're ready with a few stories that you can talk about. Your interviewer is looking for good judgment, as well as your ability to handle stressful situations. And remember to always finish your story with what you learned, or what you took back to your organization.

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9) Jeppesen charts

You might not use them now, but you're going to use them at your airline. Make sure you know the ins-and-outs of Jeppesen charts and their symbols. They're similar to NOS charts, but there are some differences that can cause hangups in an interview. Practice up and you'll fly through any chart questions your interviewer can throw at you.

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 colin@boldmethod.com.

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