Are Pilots Overpaid? Not Likely….


It is one of the most trusted occupations in the world. Everyday, these men and woman are responsible for getting hundreds of people to their destination safely and in a comfortable, timely manner. People are constantly begrudging those who earn significant amounts of money from lawyers to doctors. Why? Why shouldn’t someone who is entrusted with the lives of people they do not know earn a good living? Are Pilots overpaid?

It is astonishing that an airline pilot for a major airline in the US can earn as little as $35,000. That is a basic wage for an unskilled worker here in Australia. Sure, the cost of living is higher but, we here are fortunate enough to receive universal health care, first home owner grants, baby bonus’, solar electricity rebates….The list goes on……..

Back to the topic at hand, I personally think that pilots are paid what they are worth. Just look at the requirements in time and money to get an ATPL. These guys and girls have a schedule that makes it near impossible to plan things. I mean, they are constantly missing birthdays of loved ones, Christmas and other events, not to mention being away from home for days at a time. I would like to say that I do not forget the devoted folks from the cabin crews who help to make sure we have a comfortable flight and take care of our well being. They deserve high accolades also.

Average salaries for a Qantas captain are as follows for three aircraft types (international):

A380 – $420,000 per year
B747- $365,000 per year
A330-$330,000 per year

Fantastic pay but, they really do earn every penny. I mean, their high level of skill and knowledge is worth a fortune in its own right. Even a second officer on an A380 can earn $180,000 with little fuss. Good on them I say. They work hard to get to the highest level. I doubt any of us would work hard to get to a level of expertise in something only to be paid a measly wage. Are Pilots overpaid? Not likely!

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