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American Airlines Pilot Salary – Discover Just How Much They Earn




Curious about an America Airlines pilot salary?

In my experience, one of the first questions future pilots look at when trying to pick an airline to work for is the pay. The high pay many airlines offer is an exciting prospect for potential airline pilots. So in this article, I’m going to share what you can expect to earn as an American Airlines pilot.

I’ve spoken to a number of American Airline pilots over the years and dug through the data available to put together a good idea of exactly how much you could earn as an American Airlines pilot.

American Airlines dates its origins to 1926 when Charles Lindbergh flew the first official American Airlines flight carrying mail from St. Louis, MO to Chicago, IL. Over 90 years later American Airlines is one of the largest in the US, flying thousands of flights every day to over 350 destinations across over 50 countries.

American Airlines Pilots Salary

American Airlines’ pilot’s pay will vary based on the plane you fly and the number of hours you fly during each bid period. They have a 73-hour long call and 76-hour short call reserve guarantee.

I’ve put together these numbers looking at the American Airlines pilot pay scale and then multiplying that by an estimated number of flight house in each bid period. Given the factors above, the salary below should only be considered an estimate of hourly pay based on available sources.

How Did We Get These Numbers

All data used below is pulled from the latest contract between American Airlines and the Allied Pilots Association, the union representing American Airlines pilots. These numbers were updated for 2024.

All pay estimates below don’t include any per diem, profit sharing, override pay, or 401k contributions which will increase overall compensation considerably.

American Airlines First Officer Pay

As a first officer for American Airlines your pay starts at $113 per hour and quickly grows to $174 per hour in year two if you are flying on the Boeing 737 or Airbus A320. The following numbers are an estimate of what you can expect to earn as an American Airlines first officer salary.

Estimated pay range for American First Officers based on hours only: $101,700 to $320,280

Years of ExperienceEstimated Annual Pay (80 hours per month)
Year 1$109,209
Year 5$206,102
Year 12$231.945
Updated as of March 2024.

American Airlines Captain Pay

American Airlines captain pay starts at $324 per hour. Pay for senior captains at American Airlines can reach considerable levels with pay on the 747 at year 12 reaching $460 per hour. The following are estimates for an American Airlines captain salary.

Estimated pay range for American Captains based on hours only: $291,600 to $469,200

Years of ExperienceEstimated Annual Pay (80 hours per month)
Year 1$309,000
Year 5$319,000
Year 12$336,000
Updated as of March 2024.

Calculate Your Potential American Pilot Earnings

We’ve put together this simple calculator to give you an estimate of how much you could earn as a American pilot. This was put together using the 2024 pay scale from the Allied Pilots Association, the group that represents American pilots.

American Airlines Pilot Pay Calculator

American Airlines Pilot Pay Calculator

American Pilot Position

Note this doesn’t include any per diem, profit sharing, override pay, or 401k contributions.

How Many Pilots work for American Airlines?

Currently, American Airlines has a little over 15,000 pilots, and in 2019 nearly 900 new pilots launched their career with American Airlines. Over the next 10 years American Airlines has significant retirement numbers so there will likely be a significant number of new pilots hired by American Airlines.

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Where are American Airlines Pilot Bases?

There are a number of American Airlines bases for pilots across the country. If you become an AA pilot you could be assigned to any of the following American Airlines domiciles.

  • Chicago, IL – ORD
  • Boston, MA – BOS
  • Los Angeles, CA – LAX
  • Arlington, VA – DCA
  • Dallas-Fort Worth, TX – DFW
  • Queens, NY – LGA
  • Miami, FL – MIA
  • Philadelphia, PA – PHL
  • Charlotte, NC – CLT
  • Phoenix, AZ – PHX
American Airlines new 2023 pilot pay

What airplanes are in the American Airlines Fleet?

  • Airbus 319
  • Airbus 320
  • Airbus 321
  • Boeing 738
  • Boeing 752
  • Boeing 763ER
  • Boeing 772ER
  • Boeing 773ER
  • Boeing 778
  • Boeing 789
American Airlines jet tails on the ground

What are the Hiring Requirements for American Airlines Pilots?

Regulatory Requirements:

American Airlines Pilot Requirements:

  • Minimum age of 23
  • Ability to learn and work with PEDs
  • Fluently speak and understand English
  • Must have the right to work in the United States
  • Distance vision corrected to 20/20 and near vision corrected to 20/40 or better in each eye
  • Must be able to secure appropriate authority or Customs security badges
American Airlines airplane at the gate

How Do I Apply for an American Airlines Pilot Job?

In order to start your American Airlines pilot career, you’ll first need to work at a regional and then apply to an open position for American. If your career goal is to fly for American Airlines take a look at the pilot hiring requirements at Envoy or PSA Airlines.

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One response to “American Airlines Pilot Salary – Discover Just How Much They Earn”

  1. Joe

    At age 55 Should I get my licence to fly for the first time. Is it better to go commercial or cargo. I am starting from hour one.

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