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Old 19th Sep 2008, 22:44   #1 (permalink)
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Spain
Posts: 126
The perpetual 'Am I too old?' thread

I'm 40. Have no family/children (yet.) or mortgage (had one) to concern myself with.

At 37 I started my flight training. When I went for my Class 1 medical the Spanish psychologist asked me "What the hell are you doing becoming a pilot at your age?"

I asked him who he was to tell me what I could or couldn't do. He didn't reply.

Got my FAA and JAA licences. Was away from my partner for 1.5 years and had to move back with my parents for a year. But I finally got there.

Flown commercially in USA/Carib (yes, paid to do a First Officer Programme.) So what! You do what you gotta do to get on in life. It was a strategy to overcome the age aspect. It worked. After that I made a vow never to pay for training again. And I haven't.

On returning to Europe was offered a job in the UK before even had my licence in my hand.

Left that job to return to Spain (for personal reasons). A market where aviation is not strong. "Don't do it!" people in Spain with more hours than me said.

If you're on a desert island, you have a choice. Survive or not. It is your choice. You decide what you want to manifest in your life.

So on arriving back in Spain I boarded planes, trains, cars, got on my bike and visited all aviation companies I thought I could get into. I got two job offers in 6 weeks!

Now I currently have two types current on my licence. I didn't pay for the rating either!

I'm living in a great part of the word, even though I'm in rented accommodation and I'm earning a third of what I used to earn. But hey, I know that as soon as I get to 1500 hours a lot more doors will open. My life has had many changes.

If you don't like change, don't take the plunge. But if you're like me, you now that in life change is inevitable. You want to get there no matter what the nay sayers say. You have to be FOCUSED, DISCIPLINED and SEE yourself there.

There's only so much anaylsis you can do. The fear part is not knowing how things will turn out. That's normal. But if you have faith, are confident in yourself and know how to listen to that voice in your soul, you'll know what to do.

Don't give away your power. Hope this has been of help.
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Old 19th Sep 2008, 22:47   #2 (permalink)
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Spain
Posts: 126
Too much thinking...not enough feeling

I'm 40. Have no family/children (yet.) or mortgage (had one) to concern myself with.

At 37 I started my flight training. When I went for my Class 1 medical the Spanish psychologist asked me "What the hell are you doing becoming a pilot at your age?"

I asked him who he was to tell me what I could or couldn't do. He didn't reply.

Got my FAA and JAA licences. Was away from my partner for 1.5 years and had to move back with my parents for a year. But I finally got there.

Flown commercially in USA/Carib (yes, paid to do a First Officer Programme.) So what! You do what you gotta do to get on in life. It was a strategy to overcome the age aspect. It worked. After that I made a vow never to pay for training again. And I haven't.

On returning to Europe was offered a job in the UK before even had my licence in my hand.

Left that job to return to Spain (for personal reasons). A market where aviation is not strong. "Don't do it!" people in Spain with more hours than me said.

If you're on a desert island, you have a choice. Survive or not. It is your choice. You decide what you want to manifest in your life.

So on arriving back in Spain I boarded planes, trains, cars, got on my bike and visited all aviation companies I thought I could get into. I got two job offers in 6 weeks!

Now I currently have two types current on my licence. I didn't pay for the rating either!

I'm living in a great part of the word, even though I'm in rented accommodation and I'm earning a third of what I used to earn. But hey, I know that as soon as I get to 1500 hours a lot more doors will open. My life has had many changes.

If you don't like change, don't take the plunge. But if you're like me, you now that in life change is inevitable. You want to get there no matter what the nay sayers say. You have to be FOCUSED, DISCIPLINED and SEE yourself there.

There's only so much anaylsis you can do. The fear part is not knowing how things will turn out. That's normal. But if you have faith, are confident in yourself and know how to listen to that voice in your soul, you'll know what to do.

Don't give away your power. Hope this has been of help.
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Old 22nd Sep 2008, 11:31   #3 (permalink)

 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: UK
Posts: 644
Good one Lightheart I am happy to read about your past experiences and pleased to see that you're getting there, well done. However was there really any need to give that poor medical officer a talking to like that ...? He might just have been inquistive or a bit of a tongue and cheek remark perhaps.

Anyway you have proved that with a though-through gameplan and discipline you can succeed I am happy to see it works.

Good luck to all ....
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Old 6th Oct 2008, 07:16   #4 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hot Dubai
Posts: 28
Just another guy...

Hi folks, as an introduction, I tell you all my thing.
Iíve been PPL for 17 years but for different reasons I left the activity years back pursuing other career and interests.
After long time of working on different fields I found out that what I was doing wasnít satisfactory for me, so the flight bug returned and stayed this time.
See, Iím 37 now, I will convert now my PPL to UAE compliance, will do immediately my instruments, multi, CPL and hopefully will get a job doing what we all here like.
Some say Iím mad, especially my girlfriend who only thinks of the long trips and not having me around for daysÖsome other encourage me (less people, honestly) but hey, I donít tell anybody when or what to do with their dreams, do I?
At the end of the day, I donít see any better way of making a living than being what you like, and I just donít want to say ďif onlyĒ one day in the future.
So wish me luck if you will and see you around, air or landÖ
You guys take care.
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Old 6th Oct 2008, 08:11   #5 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Germany
Age: 47
Posts: 10
@Lightheart

Great info !!!
Im now at that age and trying to find the proper way how to achieve the goal, the only license i have at the moment is a gyro-license and i want to achieve much more... but the way to take is sometimes difficult to go.
I have a great job and everything is beeing paid.... am singel and free and also no credits or whatsoever .... and still im trying to go a way with the less riscy one.

I want to go for a PPL(JAA) in the US, hopefully later next year the "extras" like multi and instruments ... then if im still goin on ... ill do cpl/atpl here in europ.

Hope my message broughts some lights to other people too with some crazy thoughts like i have ;-) ;-)

To mention, my psychologist at the medical said ... go for it ;-) ;-) !!!
Heres also the reason why .......

i dont want to ask myself the time im retiring ... why didnt i try it ??!!!!!
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Old 22nd Dec 2008, 21:10   #6 (permalink)
CJ2
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: EU
Posts: 8
Bad advice?

An acquaintance of mine asked my advice some time ago. He's 34 now and has planned to go for CPL next autumn. He asked if I think it is too late to start from zero at that age. Without giving second thought about it I told him to go for it if it is that he really wants. Anyone started at this age? Was it good or bad advice?
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Old 22nd Dec 2008, 21:15   #7 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: A town called Eureka!
Posts: 116
Two guys on my groundschool were both approaching 40 so in short no it's not too old......risky perhaps but te level of risk very much depends on their personal circumstances.
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Old 22nd Dec 2008, 21:38   #8 (permalink)
CJ2
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
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Posts: 8
Well, he is owner of a successful business. So he has no financial issues if getting a job takes time. Told me that this is the thing he always wanted to do and will do it more for himself than making living out of it.
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Old 22nd Dec 2008, 22:22   #9 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: A town called Eureka!
Posts: 116
Well if he is in the situation where money isnt an issue and he's not worried about making a career out of it in the next couple of years then I would say GO FOR IT!!!!! This is a great time to get some big discounts on training, FTO's are all fighting for survival so many will be open to some serious haggling!!!!

Good luck!
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Old 20th Jan 2009, 18:15   #10 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Porto
Posts: 10
Smile Thanks to answer my questions

I think this forum is great.

I am 32 years old and married.

I was looking for answers to my questions:

- Am I to old to become a pilot?
- I'm against the opinions of my parents and friends. Should I go on?

Many people gives their personal opinions and it is GOOD to hear others opinion. Sometimes shows others points of views.

In the end what's matter it's what we are feeling.

I have a though:

We are not lucky, we made our lucky". What I mean is, that we have to search the way to survive is this world and above of all enjoy it. We can stand for good days to go out, do we?

My wife supports me, she add the same fear as I.
Will I have a job when I finish the course?

We never now if we don't try.

We were thinking in buy a house, have kids, but I am not happy with my life, so we when I talk to my wife about this all of this plans have wait for the moment.
I do investigation in an Spanish University, but enough of this...

I need to realize my child dream. Become a pilot.

Thanks to all.
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Old 21st Jan 2009, 10:09   #11 (permalink)
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Brisbane
Posts: 29
Slight topic change here, but I notice some of the first threads were back in 2002! Would love to here from anyone that made it and stuck to their guns
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Old 21st Jan 2009, 10:14   #12 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Porto
Posts: 10
What happen to Doc

I would like to know what happen to Doc. There is a lot of great thread, this can toke me days to read all of them.

By this moment we could have a great point of view of Doc.

I am in a similiar situation right now, so it's very important to me to know how the doc story ends.
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Old 15th Feb 2009, 14:06   #13 (permalink)


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Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: London
Posts: 6
How Old is Too Old?

I've recently been made redundant from another professional career at the grand old age of 40.

I have a PPL, love flying, and looking to the positive am thinking of whether this is the kick up the backside I needed to get out of the 9-5 rut, do something different and do something I enjoy while getting paid for it: flying for a career.

I know that the recruitment market is dire at the moment, but the plan is that by the time I finish an integrated course, the economy will be sprouting some green shoots and the aviation industry, given its cyclicality, should be one of the first out of the blocks.

My only question is: at 40 am I too old to embark on this career change? Realistically, a mature novice FO coming out of a school has how much chance of getting a job (in normal times, not right now)? I've spoken to a few HR people at airlines and for good equal opportunities reasons none have said 'you're too old', but out there on the coal face - what are the real-world experiences of any other 40+ old farts who've tried this?

Thanks in advance.
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Old 15th Feb 2009, 14:13   #14 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: The Desert but shortly to be HK!)
Age: 42
Posts: 474
Read stickies at top of the wanabees forum.
I would say you are pushing it given the current economic environment.
But if you are wealthy enough to not miss the odd £100k then why not have a crack?
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Old 15th Feb 2009, 14:13   #15 (permalink)

 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Cambridge
Age: 28
Posts: 170
Young Nick,

Welcome, and well done on considering your situation. The answer to your question is no, you are not too old - I personally know of a lady aged 52 who began training a couple of years ago (aged 50) who is now FOing with EZY.

Of course I am sure there will be others who will read into this a lot more than I can, and may offer some more helpful advice.

But I've heard many successful stories, and I doubt the airlines will mind too much until you reach the grand old age of 50! Remember, this is a personal decision and nobody has the right to tell you you're too old, or don't have the ability to achieve it. You'll only end up having many sleepless nights when you're 80 - what if?

And personally, despite being only 20, I prefer flying with the older chaps

All the best and good luck,
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Old 15th Feb 2009, 14:19   #16 (permalink)


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Location: London
Posts: 6
Grass Strip Basher: "Read Stickies".

Yup - got it - thanks - and sorry for duplicating q's.
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Old 15th Feb 2009, 18:15   #17 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Nov 1999
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Quote:
And personally, despite being only 20, I prefer flying with the older chaps
A preference presumably borne out of the fact that there aren't many Captains under 20?
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Old 15th Feb 2009, 20:37   #18 (permalink)

 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Cambridge
Age: 28
Posts: 170
Bealzebub,

Point taken In all seriousness, I much prefer flying with fellows of the 40+ age bracket, but then again, I've always got on better with people much older than myself!

Girls, on the other hand
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Old 15th Feb 2009, 21:16   #19 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 567
If you need a kick up the back side at age 40 to "push" you into an aviation career, then perhaps you don't have the level of passion required. Flight training is not the most expensive way to have a midlife crisis, but it's darn close!

If this isn't a midlife crisis for you, then you've got a chance of succeeding. It will be tough, so be sure why you're really doing it before you jump in.
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Old 17th Feb 2009, 08:44   #20 (permalink)
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 68
The most important thing is to be happy, so if you want to fly for a living, best just do it. As far as I am aware, you will still be in the age bracket for turbo prop airlines. They prefer more mature people as there is less chance of them bogging off to a jet airline as soon as they get the experience! Commercial instruction is another good career path.

The benefit you have over the 21 year old daddy funded/massive loan guy out of an intergrated course is that you have other skills to fall back on if you can't get a flying job straight away.
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