Air pilots, flight engineers and flying instructors (NOC 2271)

High opportunity occupation

About this job

Air pilots, flight engineers and flying instructors work for airline and air freight companies, flying schools and other public and private sector aircraft operators.

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Air pilots fly fixed wing aircraft and helicopters to provide air transportation and other services, such as crop spraying and aerial surveying.

Flight engineers help air pilots monitor, troubleshoot and maintain aircraft systems, as well as with pre- and post-flight inspections.

Flying instructors teach flying techniques and procedures to student and licensed pilots.

Common job titles
  • aerial crop duster
  • instructor, flight
  • navigator - air transport
  • pilot, air patrol
  • pilot, air transport
  • pilot, business aircraft / corporate


Air Pilots:

  • Conduct pre-flight inspection of aircraft and check passenger and cargo distribution to ensure that weight and balance specifications are met
  • Co-ordinate flight activities with ground crews and air-traffic control, inform crew members of flight and test procedures and direct activities of aircraft crew during flights
  • Contact control towers for takeoff clearances, arrival instructions and other information
  • Conduct in-flight tests and monitor functioning of aircraft equipment and systems during flights, maintain communications with flight dispatchers and weather forecasters and respond to and report in-flight emergencies and malfunctions
  • Prepare flight evaluation reports
  • Train pilots to use new equipment, or prepare them for examinations to re-validate or upgrade existing licences
  • May fly new or experimental planes to examine their flight performance and safety
  • May participate in search and rescue operations, forest firefighting, aerial surveying, crop dusting and other services.

Flight engineers

  • Inspect aircraft prior to takeoff according to pre-flight checklist and verify passenger and cargo distribution to ensure that weight and balance specifications are met
  • Assist air pilots in monitoring aircraft systems, equipment and functions during flight
  • Make in-flight repairs, such as replacing fuses and adjusting instruments, and follow emergency procedures to compensate for equipment malfunction or failure
  • Perform post-flight inspections, record equipment malfunctions and corrective actions taken during flight and report required repairs to ground maintenance personnel.

Flying instructors:

  • instruct student pilots in procedures and techniques of flying aircraft and in ground-school subjects such as navigation, radio procedures and flying regulations
  • train licensed pilots for additional certification

Work environment

Work in this occupation is typically performed in a structured environment, such as an office or school, or inside an airplane or helicopter. Also, work circumstances may be treacherous, a potential source of injuries and produce sufficient noise to cause marked distraction or possible loss of hearing.

Career paths and resources

Career paths

At this time, career path information is not available for this occupation.

Additional resources