Training Pathways to the Flight Deck

Which training pathway is right for you? We’ll examine the two most common pathways: civilian and military. Both require significant commitments of time and resources, and each has pros and cons. There is also a third pathway, ab initio training, which some European carriers have used. While currently an option internationally, the multi-crew pilot license is not an option in the United States as it doesn't fulfill current U.S. training criteria.


Training and certificates are earned through flight training schools and programs.

Get Civilian Path Details


Apply your military flight training toward earning the proper commercial certificates.

Get Military Path Details

Ab Initio

Airline hires and trains candidates with no prior experience (not recommended).

Multi-Crew Pilot License

First officers operate with little training/knowledge, not available in the United States.