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Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics
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Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2021

53-2012 Commercial Pilots

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. Excludes “Electro-Mechanical and Mechatronics Technologists and Technicians” (17-3024).


National estimates for Commercial Pilots
Industry profile for Commercial Pilots
Geographic profile for Commercial Pilots

National estimates for Commercial Pilots:

Employment estimate and mean wage estimates for Commercial Pilots:

Employment (1) Employment
RSE (3)
Mean hourly
wage
Mean annual
wage (2)
Mean wage
RSE (3)
42,770 2.6 % (4) $ 115,080 1.6 %

Percentile wage estimates for Commercial Pilots:

Percentile 10% 25% 50%
(Median)
75% 90%
Annual Wage (2) $ 50,080 $ 75,370 $ 99,640 $ 134,110 $ 205,940
  (4)

Industry profile for Commercial Pilots:

Industries with the highest published employment and wages for Commercial Pilots are provided. For a list of all industries with employment in Commercial Pilots, see the Create Customized Tables function.

Industries with the highest levels of employment in Commercial Pilots:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Nonscheduled Air Transportation 16,160 33.25 (4) $ 128,070
Support Activities for Air Transportation 4,940 2.53 (4) $ 123,650
Other Ambulatory Health Care Services 4,720 1.51 (4) $ 87,210
Technical and Trade Schools 3,570 2.73 (4) $ 89,730
Support Activities for Crop Production 1,360 0.41 (4) $ 85,620

Industries with the highest concentration of employment in Commercial Pilots:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Nonscheduled Air Transportation 16,160 33.25 (4) $ 128,070
Scenic and Sightseeing Transportation, Other 350 18.44 (4) $ 79,010
Technical and Trade Schools 3,570 2.73 (4) $ 89,730
Support Activities for Air Transportation 4,940 2.53 (4) $ 123,650
Other Ambulatory Health Care Services 4,720 1.51 (4) $ 87,210

Top paying industries for Commercial Pilots:

Industry Employment (1) Percent of industry employment Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Merchant Wholesalers, Nondurable Goods (4244 and 4248 only) 60 0.01 (4) $ 198,980
Credit Intermediation and Related Activities (5221 and 5223 only) 30 (7) (4) $ 195,440
Navigational, Measuring, Electromedical, and Control Instruments Manufacturing 80 0.02 (4) $ 183,040
Scheduled Air Transportation 890 0.23 (4) $ 177,550
Scientific Research and Development Services 130 0.02 (4) $ 169,120


Geographic profile for Commercial Pilots:

States and areas with the highest published employment, location quotients, and wages for Commercial Pilots are provided. For a list of all areas with employment in Commercial Pilots, see the Create Customized Tables function.



Map of employment of commercial pilots by state, May 2021


States with the highest employment level in Commercial Pilots:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Florida 5,190 0.60 1.99 (4) $ 109,600
California 5,090 0.31 1.01 (4) $ 157,990
Texas 4,720 0.39 1.27 (4) $ 107,990
Ohio 2,230 0.43 1.41 (4) $ 124,370
Washington 1,530 0.48 1.57 (4) $ 94,340


Map of location quotient of commercial pilots by state, May 2021


States with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Commercial Pilots:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Alaska 1,010 3.40 11.21 (4) $ 124,440
Montana 440 0.94 3.08 (4) $ 92,810
New Mexico 640 0.82 2.71 (4) $ 92,570
Wyoming 200 0.76 2.51 (4) $ 99,850
Florida 5,190 0.60 1.99 (4) $ 109,600


Map of annual mean wages of commercial pilots by state, May 2021


Top paying states for Commercial Pilots:

State Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
California 5,090 0.31 1.01 (4) $ 157,990
Maryland 370 0.15 0.48 (4) $ 144,460
New York 810 0.09 0.31 (4) $ 134,070
Georgia 880 0.20 0.67 (4) $ 133,460
Hawaii 180 0.33 1.08 (4) $ 129,930



Map of employment of commercial pilots by area, May 2021


Metropolitan areas with the highest employment level in Commercial Pilots:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 2,280 0.40 1.32 (4) $ 184,260
Miami-Fort Lauderdale-West Palm Beach, FL 2,070 0.85 2.78 (4) $ 116,980
Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 1,750 0.49 1.60 (4) $ 120,230
Columbus, OH 1,180 1.15 3.79 (4) $ 137,300
Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 1,010 0.35 1.15 (4) $ 106,920
Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ 930 0.44 1.44 (4) $ 104,230
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA 910 0.48 1.57 (4) $ 103,640
Anchorage, AK 770 4.77 15.70 (4) $ 123,610
New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA 750 0.09 0.29 (4) $ 134,700
Denver-Aurora-Lakewood, CO 710 0.48 1.59 (4) $ 130,160


Map of location quotient of commercial pilots by area, May 2021


Metropolitan areas with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Commercial Pilots:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Anchorage, AK 770 4.77 15.70 (4) $ 123,610
California-Lexington Park, MD 130 2.88 9.50 (4) $ 175,650
Ann Arbor, MI 440 2.17 7.14 (4) $ 88,310
Deltona-Daytona Beach-Ormond Beach, FL 360 1.85 6.10 (8) (8)
Houma-Thibodaux, LA 140 1.82 5.99 (4) $ 117,250
Billings, MT 130 1.49 4.90 (4) $ 91,660
Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent, FL 250 1.45 4.79 (4) $ 84,180
Crestview-Fort Walton Beach-Destin, FL 160 1.37 4.50 (4) $ 128,470
Bend-Redmond, OR 110 1.36 4.48 (4) $ 78,720
Las Cruces, NM 80 1.19 3.91 (4) $ 79,830


Map of annual mean wages of commercial pilots by area, May 2021


Top paying metropolitan areas for Commercial Pilots:

Metropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA 360 0.16 0.53 (4) $ 185,920
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA 2,280 0.40 1.32 (4) $ 184,260
Savannah, GA 80 0.43 1.43 (4) $ 177,450
California-Lexington Park, MD 130 2.88 9.50 (4) $ 175,650
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA 310 0.32 1.05 (4) $ 165,400
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA 220 0.73 2.40 (4) $ 160,930
Urban Honolulu, HI 110 0.28 0.92 (4) $ 143,720
Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV 480 0.17 0.54 (4) $ 138,770
Columbus, OH 1,180 1.15 3.79 (4) $ 137,300
Richmond, VA 70 0.11 0.37 (4) $ 135,400

Nonmetropolitan areas with the highest employment in Commercial Pilots:

Nonmetropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Southeast Alabama nonmetropolitan area 480 5.73 18.86 (4) $ 108,490
Southeast Coastal North Carolina nonmetropolitan area 240 0.99 3.28 (4) $ 104,890
Eastern New Mexico nonmetropolitan area 220 1.51 4.98 (4) $ 105,730
Alaska nonmetropolitan area 210 2.15 7.09 (8) (8)
Kansas nonmetropolitan area 120 0.31 1.02 (4) $ 68,060

Nonmetropolitan areas with the highest concentration of jobs and location quotients in Commercial Pilots:

Nonmetropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Southeast Alabama nonmetropolitan area 480 5.73 18.86 (4) $ 108,490
Alaska nonmetropolitan area 210 2.15 7.09 (8) (8)
Southwest Oklahoma nonmetropolitan area 90 1.53 5.03 (4) $ 108,360
Eastern New Mexico nonmetropolitan area 220 1.51 4.98 (4) $ 105,730
Arizona nonmetropolitan area 100 1.11 3.64 (4) $ 92,610

Top paying nonmetropolitan areas for Commercial Pilots:

Nonmetropolitan area Employment (1) Employment per thousand jobs Location quotient (9) Hourly mean wage Annual mean wage (2)
Northeast Coastal North Carolina nonmetropolitan area 40 0.44 1.46 (4) $ 113,810
Eastern Utah nonmetropolitan area 40 0.51 1.69 (4) $ 111,660
Nevada nonmetropolitan area 70 0.71 2.35 (4) $ 109,850
Southeast Alabama nonmetropolitan area 480 5.73 18.86 (4) $ 108,490
Southwest Oklahoma nonmetropolitan area 90 1.53 5.03 (4) $ 108,360


About May 2021 National, State, Metropolitan, and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

These estimates are calculated with data collected from employers in all industry sectors, all metropolitan and nonmetropolitan areas, and all states and the District of Columbia. The top employment and wage figures are provided above. The complete list is available in the downloadable XLS files.

The percentile wage estimate is the value of a wage below which a certain percent of workers fall. The median wage is the 50th percentile wage estimate—50 percent of workers earn less than the median and 50 percent of workers earn more than the median. More about percentile wages.


(1) Estimates for detailed occupations do not sum to the totals because the totals include occupations not shown separately. Estimates do not include self-employed workers.

(2) Annual wages have been calculated by multiplying the hourly mean wage by a "year-round, full-time" hours figure of 2,080 hours; for those occupations where there is not an hourly wage published, the annual wage has been directly calculated from the reported survey data.

(3) The relative standard error (RSE) is a measure of the reliability of a survey statistic. The smaller the relative standard error, the more precise the estimate.

(4) Wages for some occupations that do not generally work year-round, full time, are reported either as hourly wages or annual salaries depending on how they are typically paid.

(7) The value is less than .005 percent of industry employment.

(8) Estimate not released.

(9) The location quotient is the ratio of the area concentration of occupational employment to the national average concentration. A location quotient greater than one indicates the occupation has a higher share of employment than average, and a location quotient less than one indicates the occupation is less prevalent in the area than average.


Other OEWS estimates and related information:

May 2021 National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2021 State Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2021 Metropolitan and Nonmetropolitan Area Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2021 National Industry-Specific Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates

May 2021 Occupation Profiles

Technical Notes

 

Last Modified Date: March 31, 2022