Desperate times call for desperate measures, or so the saying goes, and the U.S. Air Force must be in pretty dire straits when it comes to retaining their drone pilots, so much so that these drone pilots are being offered up to $125,000 in bonuses so that they will continue to fly these machines remotely for the next half a decade. Sounds like a good deal, right? After all, you get paid more than decently, and you do not have to risk life and limb on the battlefield while you get to obliterate your enemies from afar, video game style.
The drone pilots who qualify for these bonuses would be those who have half a dozen years of service under their belt, and also after completing their undergraduate remotely piloted aircraft training. It will not be a lump sum, but it will arrive in five annual installments of $25,000 each. Not only that, there is also the possibility of them receiving 50% of the bonus up front, which would make for a very jolly Christmas, don’t you think so?
Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James mentioned, “It is important to ensure RPA pilots receive a bonus that is equitable to other pilots. These airmen are making extremely important contributions to the fight; we need these professionals to stay with us and we’re committed to retaining them in our force.”