One of the best feelings a human can have is to soar through the sky in their own airplane or similar flight vehicle. No matter what education or professional experience you have, it’s never too late to start your career in aviation.

According to Forbes, the world is bound for a shortage of airplane pilots both in the passenger and private industries, with estimates landing (pun intended) at 790,000 pilots less than what is needed by the year 2037. This will make it more lucrative for existing and future pilots to devote the remainder of their careers to aviation, whether in civilian transportation, overseas shipping, military or another niche.

However, in order to get your career in aviation started, there are several things you should take into account to prepare properly. Let’s take a look at the steps and guidelines necessary to start your flight career successfully and with as little downtime as possible.

Check Your Health Status

Health and flying colors (pun intended again) are an important part of building a career in aviation. While it won’t play a decisive factor with many individuals, it’s still worth checking your current health status before considering a career in aviation.

James Heather, HR manager of Essay Supply spoke on the topic recently: “Having your career dreams come true is a wonderful feeling. However, you should always have a backup plan in case something unexpected happens to your dream development path. In this case, freelancing can provide a momentary safe haven while you decide on what to do next – it’s what I did and it’s where I stayed permanently.”

Illnesses such as photosensitive epilepsy or a tendency to feel lightheaded might impair your judgment and abilities as a pilot. You can refer to your local hospital or doctor’s office and explain your wishes to pursue a career in aviation to the chief examiner.

Ask for a full checkup and make sure that you are medically able to fly an airplane, civilian or private notwithstanding. Even if you end up not being cleared for independent flight, you can still pursue a career in aviation in another sector such as flight control management or airport runway management.

Choose Your Flight Niche

As we’ve previously mentioned, a career in “aviation” doesn’t necessarily have to include direct flight and airplane control. Instead, you can opt for several career paths in the aviation industry, all of which provide different professional development opportunities:

  • Aircraft Electrical Technician
  • Aircraft Manufacture Engineer
  • Aircraft Pilot (Civilian, Transportation, Military, etc.)
  • Airport Operations Manager
  • Airport Traffic Control Management
  • Aircraft Attendant or Stewardess

While a career in aviation includes a lot of travel time (aircraft or work commute), you should consider your local placement opportunities carefully. There is a legitimate shortage in aircraft and airport personnel on a global level, meaning that you can choose a highly lucrative niche to specialize in early on.

As Veronica Wright, CEO of Resumescentre.com put recently: “If no opportunity is available for you to fill, create your own opportunity from scratch. Aviation is a delicate industry to build a career in, but you can make a name for yourself by working as an assistant or part-time helper in a local airfield or passenger company.” Contact your state airports and private runways and try to pinpoint which career in aviation would be most suitable for your skills and aspirations.

Find Local Schools & Courses

Depending on your age, current occupation and monetary status, you shouldn’t stray too far away from your place of residence during aviation schooling. While colleges and academies do exist in terms of building a career in aviation, not everyone can afford to dedicate years of their lives into additional schooling.

Make sure that you are comfortable with the school you choose in terms of your coach, the plane you are assigned to as well as the price of your venture. Jeremy Fields, HR specialist at Flash Essay pitched in on the topic recently: “I myself am an avid fan of airplanes and dream of having my own biplane one day. However, until that day comes, I have to manage my expectations and consider alternative methods of income and professional development. I consider keeping yourself busy does contribute to reaching your ultimate goal, whether it’s flight or something else entirely.”

Don’t choose a course on your own and instead opt to consult flight instructors and local pilots (if there are any). Your career in aviation will start on a school bench, but you will quickly learn that flying an airplane (or managing one) isn’t as straightforward as Hollywood makes it out to be. Take things slowly and learn the ins and outs of an airplane before taking it to the skies in a safe manner.

Start Small, Grow Large

Once you get certified as a pilot, an engineer or a flight control manager, it’s important to take things slow and build your career in aviation day by day. No one expects you to fly overseas flights on your first day as a career pilot or flight expert.

Diana Gomez, career coach at Resumes Expert spoke recently: “Gunning for the CEO or chairman position on your first day at work is impossible. This logic applies regardless of the industry you choose to devote yourself to. Gauge your expectations and set your career goals at reasonable time intervals – the rest involves hard work and dedication.”

Instead, you should apply for entry-level positions at your local aerodromes, flight companies, and other flight industry openings depending on your certification. Express your desires for building a career in aviation and show that you are ready to start small before going big as a flight professional. Remember that you should do what you love, first and foremost, and the right pilots and executives will recognize your passion for flight in time.

In Summation

Building a career in aviation takes dedication and discipline, both of which will often be the decisive factor in your professional development path. Make sure that you are aware of the long journey ahead of you before you commit to aviation as your career of choice. Once you do, however, you will have a plethora of once-in-a-lifetime experiences to look forward to as a pilot, an engineer, a flight control manager or flight attendant depending on your dream career path.