Tips for Airline Pilots Approaching Retirement

At Wiser Wealth Management we work with many pilots nearing the end of their careers in aviation. For pilots approaching retirement, we always focus on making sure they have enough in cash reserves. During working years, we recommend having 3 to 6 months worth of cash set aside for expenses. However, as you get closer to retirement it’s important to have about two years of cash reserves. This money doesn’t necessarily have to be in a savings account, it could be inside your retirement account or a stable-value fund. Ultimately, the goal is to be in a situation where you don’t have to withdraw monthly from your 401k plan. Instead, you can have a more aggressive approach in regard to your investment choices. During retirement, most setups consist of 60/40 or 50/50 stocks and bonds. That way, you can probably go as high as 70/30. If you want your wealth to continue to grow, your IRA or brokerage account could take on slightly more stock risk inside the portfolio. Therefore, we always recommend using low-cost index funds when building portfolios, so it mitigates any specific company risk that you have in investing. 

Additionally, airline pilots approaching retirement need to find a sense of purpose. What would you like to do after you’ve set the parking brake? It is not uncommon for people to develop health issues related to their mental state after retirement. Having a purpose that’s not related to your career can help you enjoy your retirement years. There are many different types of organizations you can get involved in, and there are a variety of things that can bring you joy aside from aviation.

Have more questions? Contact Us

Casey Smith
President, Wiser Wealth Management

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By Published On: August 4, 2023

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