I’ve been working for a small but well structured charter/freight company located in Florianópolis, SC-Brazil. When they hired me I had logged 1,800 TT and nowadays, 2 years later, I have logged 2,600 TT. The basic training was fast, which one I had classes of cockpit resource management, meteorology, performance and weight & balance. After finishing those classes I flew with a training captain, who gave me flight lessons about company’s operational standards. On my previous job I had logged 1,100 TT in the same type of aircraft, so the transition to this company was easy, but demanding. I got in the company as a captain but nowadays the company hires only co-pilots and the transition to the captain position depends on seniority and experience. New hires are frozen for a while because the aviation market is slow.
Each flight is a new experience, in which we must have good knowledge about the weather because it’s a region of cold fronts. The company has a contract to transport bank checks for which we fly from Monday to Friday. My job starts at 05:30 am when the plane is refueled, loaded and we have the weather brief for the route and destination, which is 1,5 hrs west of Florianópolis. After completing the abandon check list we have some free time, because the returning flight departs at 06:00 pm and the estimated time of arrival in Florianópolis is at 07:45 pm. A typical duty day is 15 hrs long in which we fly for 3 hrs. The fleet consists of 3 Piper Senecas and 1 Beech Bonanza, but nowadays I’ve been flying the Seneca fleet as a Training Captain. The Piper Seneca is a great plane, easy to handle and very safe, even in bad weather. The scheduled revisions are done in each 50 flight hours and in case of any abnormal operation all we need to do is to call the maintenance team and the appropriate repairs are done. This company is worried about three main things: updates in training, aircraft maintenance and crews well-being, which I think is the right formula for a successful company.
Living in Florianóplis is wonderful. I have free time to enjoy this island full of natural beauties with great quality of life. During the summer season, the city gets a lot of tourists, becoming crowded and much more exciting. There is a night life with many options, which include good bars, night clubs and restaurants with delicious sea food.
The pilot's career is full of challenges and in Brazil is too hard to get the first job. We spend a lot of money to have the pilot’s licence and join in a very competitive aviation market with increasingly low salary. But we’ve chosen this career because of the passion for flying and not for money. In spite of anything, I love flying and I love my career. I think when we do something with love, we do it well and the result is always the best for everyone.
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