Over the past few months (and years) at SimV, numorous people have ask the question "How do I become and airline/military pilot". Being away from work for a while, and as one of the few "professional" pilots on the forum, I thought maybe it may be a time to put together a thread that gave useful links to this information, and current opportunities that exist, and could be left as a sticky and updated as required, particulary as and when things such as airline sponsorship opportunities change.
I'll start with an apology; it will initially concentrate on UK based, and then European based opportunities. I'm no expert on the US education system and the way most of their airlines recruit.
To be a professional
pilot there are some pre-requisites. Most schools will require evidence that you will be able to cope with the academic requirements to pass groundschool exams and learn and retain a lot of information. Hence (in the UK), 5 GCSEs A-C (or equvalent) are normally a requirement. Airlines may naturally require, or give preference, to those with A Levels or higher too - hence A Levels are normally a requirement of a sponsored scheme.
You must also be able to pass a JAR Class 1 (Professional Pilot) Medical Examination
. Although one of these is quite expensive (about