How to Become a UPS Cargo Pilot

United Postal Service, or UPS, is one of the biggest shipping companies in the world. It offers all types of shipping, and a few of the options include flying items in aeroplanes. This is where the job of a pilot comes in; with all the cargo in the world, someone needs to move it. It's your job, as a UPS cargo pilot, to move these items. According to Pilot Jobs Network, UPS pilots fly around 80 hours a month and make anywhere from £32,500 to more than £130,000 per year. Becoming one of these highly paid professionals involves logging long hours in aeroplanes, lots of aerospace certifications, and a desire to fly.

Attend a four-year aviation college and earn the following certifications: a private pilot's license, instrument certification, a commercial pilot's license, and a jet rating. These four ratings will get you the bare bones of what you need to become a UPS pilot, according to the UPS Pilot Career Guidelines. In addition, you will also need to receive a bachelor's degree in aviation or aerospace.

Get hired as a pilot or first officer in a commuter airline industry. These pilots make a low income (as little as £13,000 per year in some cases), but you will build up hours quickly while making money, according to Aviation Jobs Online. In order to become a pilot for UPS, you need at least 3,000 jet hours. To be competitive, you should have at least 5,000 hours. A commuter airline will help you get these hours quickly.

Apply to become a UPS pilot online at You will fill out an online application, then, possibly, be called for an interview. If selected, you will start off as a second officer, then progress up the ranks to pilot, where you will make the most money.


If money is an issue, consider going into the Air Force or Navy. The military can cover all the fees for schooling and certifications in return for a few years of active service.

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About the Author

Sam Surgalski is a writer in Traverse City, Mich. His articles have appeared in The iPhone App Review, Winners Within Us, and on various other websites. Surgalski has a passion for all things aviation and writing, and enjoys playing the piano.

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