View Full Version : How long for a Full Time PPL?

31st Aug 2018, 14:50
I've been having a debate with colleagues about the approriate duarion of a full-time PPL.

This is one opinion:

While a part-time student may well cope with two trips in a day, they have time between flying days to think through/prepare and consolidate what they have learnt. 2 trips/day may well be only 2 trips/week. However, the full-time student will get maxed out; there is so much to take on that they need downtime/ground time between flights to work on their checks, R/T and go over what they have learnt and what they need to do to prepare for the next flight that anything more than the occasional 2 flights per day is asking for trouble. 2 trips/day could be 10/week if the weather is good and that’s too much. One per day is a much more sensible plan.

Flying for 5 days per week, a PPL with 35-40 flights will therefore take 7-8 weeks, longer if the weather is not good.

More intense PPLs, involving 2 flights/day run the very real danger of the student either not coping, or coping but not really taking on board what they are learning, to the long-term detriment of their flying.

An alternative view is:

See how it goes…plan for 2 trips per day, expect to lose some due to weather etc, and see how the student copes. If they struggle with the workload, back off. 6-week PPLs, which is only 7.5 hours per week, are quite possible, although anything shorter is probably pushing it somewhat.

What is your experience and view and why?

31st Aug 2018, 16:11
At the end of the day it takes what it takes with numerous variables. I recall in the days of flying scholarships continuing with one student after her 20 days/and 20 hours and completing the PPL in another 15 days, so 5 weeks in total. She then did not fly for another year by which time much had been forgotten. I have always regarded 6 weeks as a practical minimum. If you have 2 or 3 students it keeps you busy.

31st Aug 2018, 16:20
Depends on what you’re trying to achieve. Teach to pass, PPL question bank for the exams, 6 week’s feasible with good wx. To lay a solid foundation and turn out a knowledgeable and capable pilot in my view takes longer. Even the best students benefit from taking time to study the exercise they about to fly and to analyse what they’ve done. They should also be understanding the theory and how it relates to their flying not just learning to pass the exams. Perhaps the exceptional student could cope but only the exceptional in my view.

1st Sep 2018, 12:27
The other factor here is currency. Because the time between lessons is less, performance tends to increase. With a good student 5/6 weeks start to finish if the immerse themselves in the books.

Charlie Foxtrot India
2nd Sep 2018, 13:03
MY record is 21 days but that student was exceptional and had already done all the exams. Then did something to his ear and never flew again which was a great shame.

6 weeks is more practical.

3rd Sep 2018, 09:49
I did mine as an ATC cadet on a Flying Scholarship in 1981, first flight 19th August last 14th September, so a month is possible if you are totally immersed and are lucky with the weather, or it was maybe the hours requirement is higher now?

4th Sep 2018, 08:16
A PPL in 6 weeks in the summer, and the student, once the skill test passed, is left alone to discover the three other seasons? I would certainly not recommend it.