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Old 1st Aug 2013, 10:07   #1 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Bluegrass
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FAA ATP to EASA (JAA) ATPL Conversion Course

Im looking at Gulf Coast Training Solutions and Naples Air Center in FL and would like to know pros and cons for each with regard to quality of the refresher/cram course as well as the courseware. NAC has an iPad app and GCTA has one in beta testing. I'm particularly interested in the apps as I must do the studying while traveling. Any other thoughts about each school in general are appreciated.

Last edited by LongBeachTrijet; 1st Aug 2013 at 23:33.
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Old 6th Aug 2013, 14:27   #2 (permalink)
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There are a number of Ipad apps available, mainly for the question banks.
Studying whilst travel will take some doing.
A few of the 14 are quite in depth.
I personally found the atplonline.co.uk site very useful and they have an app also.
Hope that helps.
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Old 9th Aug 2013, 09:37   #3 (permalink)
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I understand that the courseware for these 2 schools are more than question banks alone and are more methodical like textbooks.

Both are also under the UK authority for testing....which is preferable to me when considering my other option.

Thank you for the link and the reply.
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Old 20th Aug 2013, 02:02   #4 (permalink)
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Gulf Coast

I recently did my full ATPLs with Gulf Coast and I can not complain at all,

I went for the full time course and passed all 14 exams first time comfortably, the website was very easy to use and towards the end of my course the App became part and parcel of everyday life as you don't need WiFi to use it.

The instructors were fine, I found that some in particular were more than happy to answer questions even when classes were over and even a quick email was responded to.

I am now onto my CPL stage and wouldn't change a thing with how my ATPLs went. EFT (the school I am training at) use Gulf Coast exclusively and with the high standards that EFT have I trusted Gulf Coast also. I am now friends with some 737 drivers that used GC and if its good enough for them then it is good enough for me.

All in all I don't know if this is the info you are looking for but compared to the Prices Bristol ect are charging and the quality, I would say Gulf Coast is up there right alongside them, If any of the Management/Instructors from there read this; Its a big thankyou from me (Clue: Eyebrows)


Last edited by seymoreskye; 20th Aug 2013 at 02:12. Reason: Crap at spelling
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Old 29th Aug 2013, 19:42   #5 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Singapore
Posts: 71
This is what i have so far:

1. Bristol Distance Learning Course: $2000 (includes 2week pre-exam course)
2. Gulf Coast: $800
3. atplonline.co.uk: $300 for annual subscription.

atplonline is still the cheapest - but in terms of quality Im unsure what Im getting head to head. Not really inclined to look at full time courses since I don't have the time and also geographically not feasible as I reside in Asia, but rather sit the exams with self study and get them out of the way!!

Any thoughts on Bristol or atplonline anyone?
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Old 30th Aug 2013, 09:24   #6 (permalink)
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Since you have an ATP you are not required to do the groundschool. You could just sinscribe to the atplonline question bank, hammer those questions and take the exams.
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Old 30th Aug 2013, 17:17   #7 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2008
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Some say the exams are quite involved and Im a little concerned about self study... do u think the online question bank is sufficient? Has anyone else been through atplonline.co.uk who can vouch for them?
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Old 30th Aug 2013, 19:05   #8 (permalink)
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You could just memorize those 11000 questions and probably pass it. Obiously its not the best method but possible.
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Old 1st Sep 2013, 15:54   #9 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 43

I recently completed the ATPL theory exams with GCTS.
I had a good experience with them and passed all exams 1st time which as a professional pilot is important in money and time as every trip to the brush up and exam center all told came to $1000 a trip.

Steve at GCTS knows his stuff and Phil who is a retired navigator knows more about his subjects than I care to mention.

It's all well and good subscribing to atplonline but when you look at a question and say to yourself "what the hell are they trying to say" and there will be plenty of those, it's good to have someone explain it to you.

Don't think for a minute you can just memorize questions and pass as the examiners are wise to that and make small changes to get you.
You need a combination of understanding, experience and some memorizing to get through and don't get hung up on the fact some questions are well out of date.

I would call Steve at GCTS as he has a huge depth of knowledge of the process and will help steer you in the right direction.

I would finish by saying that it's tough and you have to be disciplined studying and working but it can be done.
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Old 2nd Sep 2013, 07:24   #10 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Singapore
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Thats great feedback thanks steve. Im unable to make those trips from Asia although I would love to get a crush up prior to sitting these exams!! I have also come across aviationexam.com. Anyone have any experience with these guys? I heard the question bank is far more comprehensive than atplonline and well updated!! Not to mention cheaper too!!
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Old 2nd Sep 2013, 17:49   #11 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: USA
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I have a friend in KL using GCTS and does not come to the brush ups.
He took 4 and failed one Aug. I managed to get through without failures, hard work and good support I put it down to.

Also I am selling off all my study material if your interested.
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Old 2nd Feb 2014, 15:25   #12 (permalink)
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Red face

Ok so the theory part seems clear but could someone shed light on how exactly to go about the flight skill test portion? In my case I would need a CRJ sim to do the flight test. Can you do it in the US or does it have to be in the EU/UK (no I don't consider flying the examiner to the US and all that)? Would anyone know a school/training center where they do this regularly in the US or the EU/UK? Any idea on the cost for the flight test in a sim?

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Old 3rd Feb 2014, 15:02   #13 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: USA
Posts: 43

I have just finished the DL course with Gulf coast, I also looked at NAC before deciding on GC. The main thing at the time that made me choose GC was Steve Gibbin's knowledge of the subject and the time he spent with me to help me understand the process.
NAC really did not impress me on the phone with there knowledge of the process which is important when your trying to demystify the CAA.

As far as Ipad, the manuals can be downloaded as PDFs and you can currently go online for the question bank. They were working on the Ipad offline version a while ago so i assume its close to completion.
Steve Gibbin is easy to chat with so I suggest you call him 188 966-2875 or 1 772 672 899.

I would recommend them, don't hesitate to ask e more questions.

With the distance learning and a 1 week brush up in Ft Pierce before exams I completed in 3 sittings with and average of 89% no fails.
I put this down to a lot of time sitting in my study and Steve's tireless help explaining things I was stuck on.
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Old 3rd Feb 2014, 17:17   #14 (permalink)
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: USA
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Unhappy Skills test

Well in some ways that seems to be proving less cut and dried as it seems us conversion candidates seem to be a bit of an anomaly for the jolly old UK CAA.

However one of our number did complete it in a GV at FS Farnborough.

I'm in a similar boat with trying to convert the EMB135 BJ.

First you need a EASA sim and TRE or a centre which have one.
Now FS in St Louis tell me they are shipping over some EASA instructors thats for me they have a EASA sim. But don't hold ya breath and then they will probably be SFIs not TREs.

The checkride would be an IR, ATP and Type ride all in one from my understanding and the UK CAA should authorize a TRE to complete the ATP check or can insist on attending on a case by case basis.

I get differing answers from the various centres, FS LBG say they will have to do a full recurrent, of course at FS prices, Jet Stream say no problem we can do that, Baltic say we could do it but the CAA need to give us the requirements so talk to them.
FS in HOU when my company asked said yeah no problem we do that all the time, when I called and discussed it they told me the sim runs out of EASA certification Dec 2012 and we don't have EASA instructors, my guess would be the salesman said they could do it without asking the "EASA Focal" who you should ask for when inquiring.

Of course you have 3 years after you pass to work this out but the other thing that stops me is that if there is no job at the other end why spend the money when one may be training on another type..
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Old 4th Feb 2014, 03:11   #15 (permalink)
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: philadelphia,pa usa
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I agree 100% with Stevegg5 about Steve Gibbin. I know him personally, and the dude is " for real ". You get what you pay for, and they do run a professional operation in Ft Pierce, Fl.
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Old 17th Feb 2014, 00:34   #16 (permalink)
Join Date: Jan 2005
Location: atlanta georgia
Posts: 20
I'm also seriously looking into converting to an EASA ATPL and heading back home.My question to you guys is what kind of jobs are you getting once you convert your licence.Ive got about 13,000 hours total of which about 7,000 is tpic mostly on the crj700/900.Once I complete the process what are my chances of getting hired on to something without paying for a type rating(A320/B737) etc
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Old 18th Feb 2014, 07:19   #17 (permalink)
Join Date: Feb 2007
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Once I complete the process what are my chances of getting hired on to something without paying for a type rating(A320/B737) etc
Sorry, in EASA land it's all about type with the exception of the corporate/business side that occasionally hands out a type rating.
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Old 4th Mar 2014, 19:58   #18 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: us
Age: 38
Posts: 112
What is out there for a guy with 1500+PIC in the 737 with a JAA? Thinking about converting from FAA but want to know if it is worth it.
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Old 1st Apr 2014, 12:05   #19 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct 2001
Location: Buckingham, England
Posts: 11
Re: FAA ATP to EASA ATPL conversion:
I'm hearing rumours that EASA will shortly remove requirement for FAA ATP holders to sit the 14 APTL TK exams.
Anyone else heard anything?
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Old 1st Apr 2014, 21:59   #20 (permalink)
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Location: Pennsylvania, USA
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April fools ;;)

That's the best April fools joke I have heard
That's a lovely thought though
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