Aircav - what are AD helo pilots typically doing once they leave the military nowadays?
I'm only Active Duty temporarily. (I hope) I kind of thought that I was done with that. I left active duty in '92 and now am just in the National Guard. (One weekend a month my ***!) We are activated for about a year.
I can tell you what I
did when I left the Army. A little bit of everything. Home remodeling, concrete work, Pepsi route salesman, dump truck driver/heavy equip operator, CNC lathe operator. In other words, Do Not
join the military in order to secure a cool civilian job. I'd be proud of you if you chose to serve but make sure that you are doing it for the right reasons.
My civilian flying career took a while to materialize. It's very competitive out here. (It's getting better for helicopter pilots but you're still far from a "shoe-in" after leaving the military) I've been a corporate Bell 206 pilot and am currently (well, in my real life) an EMS pilot. I'm very happy doing that, I feel pretty lucky. I can't wait to get back to it.
Most of us in the industry caution people and sometimes even discourage folks from pursuing our vocation but still, here we
are. Just don't plan on becoming wealthy or getting a lot of respect (to a lot of folks, we're nothing more than flying bus drivers - no disrespect to bus drivers, I'm just saying it's not that glamorous).
There's also not a lot of money to be had. The high-paying gigs are few and far in between. Still, I love it. I'll be doing it until I lose my medical, I'm sure.
As with most pilots, I love to talk about flying so feel free to PM me or ask here if you have any other questions. Good luck to you.