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aerialcameraman

fulltime skydiving

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I'm posting to ask for those who skydive for a fulltime job to let me know how you do it. I live in Indiana and hate my "real job". I have around 2700 jumps and have a my IAD, tandem, coach, and pro rating. I also shoot video. I also have a family. I'm trying to get info on how some of you who call skydiving your living do it. I love to skydive and that's what I want to call my job. Nothing beats this and I've been doing it for 12yrs. Please good information.

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Grab a tent and move to a DZ for the summer. Don't TELL anyone you want to work there, just jump. Build a reputation as a guy that ISN'T a flake. Jump camera for organized loads and post photos of those fun jumps on a blog so other people can see them. Get to know EVERYBODY, make enemies with NOBODY. Do NOT be a flake. Do not bust the beer line or swoop when and where you shouldn't. Be known as a guy that has the safety of folks in mind.

Once people KNOW who you are and you've established you're not flake . . . talk to folks about jumping for profit.
quade -
The World's Most Boring Skydiver

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Grab a tent and move to a DZ for the summer.



Move far enough south so you can work more than 5 or 6 months per year, be prepared to live a frugal lifestyle, make the tent a really good one (it may be your home long term).;)
" . . . the lust for power can be just as completely satisfied by suggesting people into loving their servitude as by flogging them and kicking them into obedience." -- Aldous Huxley

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I also have a family.



Do you live with a wife and kids? Intend to continue doing so? If so, I presume that narrows the options available to you that hinge on where you live. Anyhow, knowing the answer to that question will help people tailor their answer to your situation.

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in reply to "I have around 2700 jumps and have a my IAD, tandem, coach, and pro rating. I also shoot video. I also have a family. "
.........................................

Do you have access to any $$$$$.
You might be better off starting a small DZ.
Hanging out at a DZ with all the other bums waiting in line for some table scraps might not suit a bloke with a wife and kids...depends on the DZ I suppose.
One way to jump the queue is to bring something with you, eg more students, passengers.
Instead of waiting in line with the wannabees develop your busness brain.

I've known quite a few people who have successfully started and run DZ's. Not just tandem factories but real skydiving DZ's. They were just ordinary skydivers with a decent bit of business sense.
They started small with 182's and built their way up having a great time as they did it.
Might not be rolling in cash all the time but they created a very good lifestyle for themselves and get to skydive every day after breakfast...if they want to.
One guy's family did it with him and their DZ feels like a treat, welcoming, like a friendly country family.


Another successful full-time skydiver purchased his own student and tandem gear and sub-contracted out of a larger DZ.
He did his own advertising and collected his passengers and students and arrived at the DZ all self contained . he made a nice bit of money as well with minimlal overheads to worry about.

Just saying you might not have to work FOR some-one else....might work better if you get to work WITH some-one else.

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Given your background and involvement in the sport. Shouldn't you know these answers by now?

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I'm posting to ask for those who skydive for a fulltime job to let me know how you do it. I live in Indiana and hate my "real job". I have around 2700 jumps and have a my IAD, tandem, coach, and pro rating. I also shoot video. I also have a family. I'm trying to get info on how some of you who call skydiving your living do it. I love to skydive and that's what I want to call my job. Nothing beats this and I've been doing it for 12yrs. Please good information.

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WOW. JUST ASKING if any one does this and makes it work. How hardbis it for people on here just to answer some questions that poeple ask with out have some smart ass comments or maybe not questioning the persons motives, talents or what ever else you want to question. Its so Damn annoying. And I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person on here that thinks that. I've heard of people doing it and was wondering how they got along and made it work. SHIT!

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WOW. JUST ASKING if any one does this and makes it work. How hardbis it for people on here just to answer some questions that poeple ask with out have some smart ass comments or maybe not questioning the persons motives, talents or what ever else you want to question. Its so Damn annoying. And I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person on here that thinks that. I've heard of people doing it and was wondering how they got along and made it work. SHIT!



Outbreaks like this in a public forum never help anyone, and certainly does not show professionalism if seeking a job within the industry. :S

May I suggest next time that you do not immediately respond, but instead take your time to articulate a response, or if you decide not to respond at all - might be the best option at times.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~
---Kollege Kay--,--'-@
Newbie Skydiver

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MAN. I know plenty of stories from back in the golden days. Like early 2000s; when families of four would just come by and drop $1k on Saturday afternoon for a tandem for everyone. Plus video. And yes, here is a $100 tip for your pregnant wife and unborn child! SWEET!!! (P.S.: Biggest pay-off I ever got for a single tandem.)

But even in those days it would have been a scary (and impossible) ride w/ three kids attached!!!



Quote

WOW. JUST ASKING if any one does this and makes it work. How hardbis it for people on here just to answer some questions that poeple ask with out have some smart ass comments or maybe not questioning the persons motives, talents or what ever else you want to question. Its so Damn annoying. And I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person on here that thinks that. I've heard of people doing it and was wondering how they got along and made it work. SHIT!

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WOW. JUST ASKING if any one does this and makes it work. How hardbis it for people on here just to answer some questions that poeple ask with out have some smart ass comments or maybe not questioning the persons motives, talents or what ever else you want to question. Its so Damn annoying. And I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person on here that thinks that. I've heard of people doing it and was wondering how they got along and made it work. SHIT!



Outbreaks like this in a public forum never help anyone, and certainly does not show professionalism if seeking a job within the industry. :S

May I suggest next time that you do not immediately respond, but instead take your time to articulate a response, or if you decide not to respond at all - might be the best option at times.



Quoted simply for my own amusement at the irony of the source of the advice on the original subject while simultaneously demonstrating his point.

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WOW. JUST ASKING if any one does this and makes it work. How hardbis it for people on here just to answer some questions that poeple ask with out have some smart ass comments or maybe not questioning the persons motives, talents or what ever else you want to question. Its so Damn annoying. And I'm pretty sure I'm not the only person on here that thinks that. I've heard of people doing it and was wondering how they got along and made it work. SHIT!



Do you expect less from DZ.com?

Seriously though, having been in the sport for over a decade, holding a couple of ratings and having depended on the sport for my money...well, I'll say it *can* be done. I'll also say never get sick, never get hurt and hope you make more than the average so you can save for retirement.

The majority of full time jumpers (that I've known) at none-destination DZs make around 30-40k a year before taxes. No benefits. No retirement. No vacation or sick time.

If you go to a destination DZ, do tandems and shoot handicam you can make about 60-70k a year (if you jump nearly every day, do at least 10 jumps a day and don't get hurt/sick).

Having had a "straight" job for the last 7 years, I wouldn't go back unless I'm willing to cut out a LOT of things I've grown to enjoy. If I didn't have a family and was willing to take 1/2 pay to what I make now, and live in a trailer on the DZ then sure it would be worth it.

Who knows, if this career takes a dive, it might be worth it then, but right now it isn't. Building my credit, owning a house, having two kids (as of right now) and a high quality of life is more important to me.
--"When I die, may I be surrounded by scattered chrome and burning gasoline."

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Don't do it at all.

There is much wisdom in the answer to the following question--and is especially poignant considering you have a family:

Q: What's the difference between a PROFESSIONAL SKYDIVER and a large pizza?

A: A large pizza can feed a small family.

I've been lucky. I've found a way to make it work for ME, but I also don't have a family. I'd seriously spend the time trying to figure out how to make a career switch to something you'll like better and be happier at. You'll be better off in the long run. Just work your way into a weekend warrior slot at the dz and work a real job during the week.

cheers,
pope

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