Commercial Pilots

6.1/10 job score
risk level
by 2030
or $44.85 hourly
as of 2020

What is the risk of automation?

We calculate this occupation to have an automation risk score of 32% (Start worrying)

[More info]
Qualities required for this occupation:
Cramped Work Space, Awkward Positions
Manual Dexterity
Finger Dexterity
Assisting and Caring for Others
Social Perceptiveness
very important
quite important
[Show all metrics]

What do you think the risk of automation is?

How likely do you think this occupation will be taken over by robots/AI within the next 20 years?

How quickly is this occupation growing?

The number of 'Commercial Pilots' job openings is expected to rise 11.4% by 2030
'Commercial Pilots' is expected to be a fast growing occupation in comparison to other occupations.
* Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for the period between 2020 and 2030.
Updated projections are due Sep 2022.

What are the median wages for 'Commercial Pilots' in the United States?

In 2020 the median annual wage for 'Commercial Pilots' was $93,300, or $44.85 hourly
'Commercial Pilots' are paid 122.4% higher than the national median wage, which stands at $41,950
* Data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics

How many people are employed in this occupation?

As of 2020 there were 37,120 people employed as Commercial Pilots.
This represents around 0.03% of the employed workforce across the United States.

Job description

Pilot and navigate the flight of fixed-wing aircraft on nonscheduled air carrier routes, or helicopters. Requires Commercial Pilot certificate. Includes charter pilots with similar certification, and air ambulance and air tour pilots. Excludes regional, national, and international airline pilots.

SOC Code: 53-2012.00

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Leave a comment

Gaurang Ghare (Highly likely) says
The US military already seems to possess unmanned aircrafts & so, if that’s possible, then in the near future, the possibility of the unmanned commercial aircrafts existing is as well feasible.
Nov 29, 2020 at 03:36 AM
Evan (No chance) says
Would anyone buy a plane ticket if they knew no one on the plane knows how to fly the plane
Nov 22, 2020 at 10:28 PM
Erling Haaland (No chance) says
Every plane will need a pilot to make sure the robots run correctly
Nov 22, 2020 at 03:10 PM
Jesus says
People with fear to fly wont believe a plane in which the pilot is not even in the plane
Nov 02, 2020 at 05:45 AM
Juan Pablo Pérez (No chance) says
Human decision in emergencies will never be replaced, so, pilots will not be replaced
Oct 13, 2020 at 01:27 PM
Bob says
People don’t realize here that commercial pilot is not necessarily airline pilot. There is another poll for airline pilot and it’s at 18% chance....
Oct 10, 2020 at 07:46 AM
Anonymous (No chance) says
No way a plane can: start, turnoff, do the right procedures in emergency and everything else.
Aug 27, 2020 at 03:34 AM
matias says
YES, there are already robots that managed to start, land and everything you want
Nov 30, 2020 at 08:15 PM
Ali (Highly likely) says
Considering pilot wages are the second highest cost in airline business after fuel, replacing it with AI really offers opportunity.
Jun 07, 2020 at 08:43 PM
Max (Small chance) says
The public has always been a little paranoid about planes and they will continue to be for the foreseeable future. People would need to fully confident that any scenario the plane faces could be solved by the robot. Therefore, automation with pilot supervision is likely in the next 20 or so years, but not 100% automation
May 17, 2020 at 09:48 PM
Shush shush (No chance) says
Humans will not trust robots to fly a plane any time soon and malfunctions in them will cause the aviation authorities to refuse robots from working as commercial pilots.
Apr 04, 2020 at 04:47 PM
Concerned (Highly likely) says
Autopilot and self driving tech will present an issue for pilots
Mar 10, 2020 at 01:40 PM
ss (No chance) says
I think robots would be actually created for airplanes as there is already one that was tested some years ago however I don’t think anyone would trust a robot to fly an airplane with passengers.
Mar 09, 2020 at 02:34 AM
James (No chance) says
The airline industry takes safety *very* seriously. Replacing AI with a human would not improve safety. For standard, day to day operations, AI would be fine however, for emergencies, humans excel over AI. If the power on the plane is out, a human can still operate, a robot cannot. All it takes is for both engines to fail for the power to go out.
Mar 08, 2020 at 03:29 PM
EM (Likely) says
I do feel like it is very likely that Pilots in general will eventually be overrun by robots. People are already working on planes or smaller aircraft that drive the user to wherever they need to go without being operated by a person. It is likely and I agree that it is something you should be worried about eventually if you are a pilot.
Mar 04, 2020 at 05:12 PM
talib says
its already taking the job it should be around 90%
Mar 02, 2020 at 07:14 AM
Bob says
I don’t think you actually understand how autopilot works.
Also if think 44% was generous check to see what they say for airline pilot (commercial and airline pilot are two different thing) it’s 18% for what they call airline captain
Aug 27, 2020 at 03:57 PM
Bob says
No it isn’t.... autopilot can’t fly anything it can only do what the pilots tell it to do. Also commercial pilot is not airline pilot.
Oct 10, 2020 at 07:41 AM
Tyler (No chance) says
Wishful thinking, I'm in college and plan to become a commercial pilot, please don't make it all for nothing.
Jan 24, 2020 at 05:42 AM
Corey Trevor (Small chance) says
Few passengers will be willing to fly on a pilot-less plane. Maybe some operations, like cargo, will be automated.
Dec 16, 2019 at 12:04 AM
Zio (Small chance) says
It is very likely that there will be job loss because of automation in the aviation industry. From the past 50 or so years we have went to having 3 pilots to 2 in the cockpit. However, there will always be a need for one person there to handle special case scenarios and emergencies which can happen at any time and are unpredictable, which goes against everything AI stands for. So I think in the next 20 years or is we will see some job loss as companies will only need 1 person there.
Dec 12, 2019 at 09:33 PM
Youssef (Small chance) says
From the recent 2 crashes that happened because of AI failure and people paranoid about this idea and people are still scared when humans are flying but air transport is the safest way of travel meaning that it would have HUGE impact if AI took over its possible that they could take over flying but not in two decades like by 2040 or 50
Nov 08, 2019 at 09:02 PM
Thomas (Could go either way) says
Because they will need someone to look after the robot in case something goes wrong so they might as well just have a normal pilot
Sep 02, 2019 at 08:30 AM
belal (No chance) says
I believe that even if the robot takes the job humans must oversee the operation
Aug 19, 2019 at 04:29 AM

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