There are a number of routes or ways to reach that Airline First Officer seat. First of all, you of course need a good foundation and that starts with achieving good grades at school/college especially in mathematics and sciences. This helps later in better understanding and grasping with the ATPL course. You can choose to first go to university as this also acts as a good back up or fallback. To become an a pilot you can choose to self fund the ATPL training yourself at a flying school however the biggest issue is mainly funding. The course can cost from $50K upwards so if you’re lucky to have the funds then you can elect to start training at your convenience.
The other two ways are better financially but way more difficult to achieve as it can be very competitive for limited positions but you should no doubt give it a shot and try your best. These are either going with a fully or partially funded airline cadet scheme or via joining the national airforce for a full scholarship to train as a military pilot. An airline scheme will also include later training on the specific type aircraft as a First Officer and a military route may mean to serve for a certain number of years before you can retire and join the airlines. Also not all airlines run such schemes so this relies on where you’re coming from and secondly may be open to only local national applicants. Often the large main national airlines will run such cadet programmes.
It’s not an easy journey but I tried all three options again and again even after failing initially due to lack of experience but the more you attend selection procedures the better and more confident you get and as long as you just don’t quit, believe me there comes a day where the course of your career suddenly begins!
Photo by Martin Adams at Unsplash
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