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Canadian prospects at 40 for flying career (not big jets)

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Canadian prospects at 40 for flying career (not big jets)

Old 7th Sep 2016, 21:33
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Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
Posts: 10
Canadian prospects at 40 for flying career (not big jets)

So, I'm a UK ex-pat living in AB (Permanent Resident). 13 years ago in the UK I started my PPL with the eventual aim of getting my CPL, and Frozen ATPL. (did around 66 hrs, Got as far as my solo X-Country, then ran out of money and belief in obtaining the end result)

Now I have been living in Alberta for 6 years, I hit 40 this year and still want to fly, I know if I was still in the UK I wouldn't even bother as there are very few opportunities there.

So, having heard of stories of, for example, med evac operators, taking new low hr FO's in their 40's, So having a bit more of a disposable income, and hating my career as it stands at the moment. I have come up with the following plan, but is it worth it:

Jan - July 2017 get PPL.
Aug 2017 - 12 to 18 months to complete CPL

Meaning at 42/43 I'll be looking to take a huge pay, with $55K of debt and a significant pay cut with the aim of flying with smaller operators doing med evac, cargo, private charter, air taxi, bush flying up north etc No real ambition to get on the big jets, just want to be paid to fly. (it was my childhood ambition, I first took controls at 14 with the Air Cadets). I accept that I may also need to instruct to build hours, and I am not adverse to this, and at 42.43 i'll potentially still have 20 yrs of flying ahead.
MapleTopGun is offline  
Old 8th Sep 2016, 03:52
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Canada
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It's doable. Financial and physical health are two big barriers. Many will say don't do it. But if you're healthy (for that Class 1 medical), can take the big hit into your retirement funds, and aren't restricted by family obligations, then why not pursue your dreams.
peekay4 is offline  
Old 8th Sep 2016, 21:26
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Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: N/A
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This is the attitude which brought european pilots their miserable situation.
LW20 is offline  
Old 8th Sep 2016, 23:06
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Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: Canada
Posts: 1,257
I disagree
peekay4 is offline  
Old 8th Sep 2016, 23:20
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Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Usa
Posts: 133
I started flying in 1973 at age 28 and finally got a flying job at age 48 and retired at 67 having flown for a Part 121 carrier and was #2 on the airline's seniority list

Anything can happen with the passage of time
gooneydog is offline  
Old 9th Sep 2016, 10:56
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Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: lagos
Posts: 757
Yes anything is possible but you have to be realistic too. Aviation in Canada is very different from things in Asia. Its good to see that you have been briefed on the route that pilots take in Canada, you'll probably have to instruct and go on road trips up and down the country.

The positives are that theres finally some hiring again but it will still take some time to get into one of the regionals. Your age and maturity might be an advantage.

If this is what you really want to do, dont let anyone stop you but the pay in Canada for the length it takes to get anywhere, it might not be worth it.

good luck to you!
pfvspnf is offline  
Old 9th Sep 2016, 16:43
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Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
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Thanks for the imput guys. I had planned to take a class 1 medical early on, I am ex military so had an active career in my 20's and still keep reasonably fit these days, so I should be able to pass every 6 months.

Financing wise I've discussed with the wife and once I pass the PPL we can use the property equity to move forward, but don't get me wrong it's still a huge amount to gamble as we could have used it to get a rental for example, but my gut tells me do it, but just have check points to evaluate where I'm at and where am I going.
MapleTopGun is offline  
Old 10th Sep 2016, 11:49
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Somewhere over the Atlantic
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Hi!

I would highly encourage you to go for it. You seem to have a good understanding of what you'd be getting yourself into.

It's kind of funny, I am a Canadian living/working in the UK & grew up not so far from where you are now.

I did all my flight training in Alberta. If you would like any advice/guidance with schools and later on strategies for job hunting I'd be happy to help.

PM me if I can help with anything.
broompusher is offline  
Old 10th Sep 2016, 16:06
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Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
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Originally Posted by broompusher View Post
Hi!

I would highly encourage you to go for it. You seem to have a good understanding of what you'd be getting yourself into.

It's kind of funny, I am a Canadian living/working in the UK & grew up not so far from where you are now.

I did all my flight training in Alberta. If you would like any advice/guidance with schools and later on strategies for job hunting I'd be happy to help.

PM me if I can help with anything.
Apparently I can't PM you on here yet (Probably because i'm new, I was a member 15 yrs ago, it wasn't a problem then if I recall).

I'm trying to decide between Edmonton Flying School (Now at Parkland Airport, a new facility in Strathcona County opened 2 yrs back when the Municipal closed), with their brand new fleet and G1000 displays, or Centennial Flying Club at Villeneuve Airfield, & possibly Cooking Lake Aviation. A/C hire is about $30 less with Centennial and their steam gauges.
MapleTopGun is offline  
Old 13th Sep 2016, 15:42
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Somewhere over the Atlantic
Posts: 49
There's no real bad choice. All will get you to where you want to be (commercial license), just the cost will vary a bit. Another good school out of Villeneuve is Namao Flying Club. They are definitely very cost competitive, however they no longer have a multi engine ac so you'd have to switch schools to finish your Multi Engine Instrument Rating.

Best I would say is to visit all the schools, talk to everyone (current students as well) and go with the school that you feel would best suit you. Just don't bite on the BS about going to one school or another will put you in a better position to get a job..that's just crap. Everyone ends up with the same license and hours at the end of the day.

Good luck with everything!
broompusher is offline  
Old 13th Sep 2016, 23:36
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Squamish, BC
Age: 40
Posts: 8
Hi MapleTopGun,


I'm in a similar-ish situation. May I ask if you have children? I have a very supportive wife and two small (under 5 years old) children. I finished my CPL two years ago here in BC, but have found it (so far) very difficult to take the plunge in terms of pay and conditions (I'm pretty well looked after right now in my non-aviation job).
My wife would be ok to move somewhere else in Canada for me to pursue my dream, but I just can't seem to come to terms with what it would mean to my children...


I know, it's best to regret things you have done rather those you have not, but still.


Best of luck to you, I hope you'll keep us up-dated with your progress. I'm currently looking at buying a share in a small aircraft to see if that keeps me satisfied without taking the risk of a career-change. We'll see how that goes!


TS.
Topskier is offline  
Old 14th Sep 2016, 09:42
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Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Timbukthree
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Get your CPL/twin engine/IFR and then instruct! ..and then go north young man! The following is just is rhetoric:


It is interesting to note that age restriction for WW.I Royal Flying Corps recruits was 19-25 years of age, but they had to be honest, Christian, Caucasian, preferably Western European in origin, and be able to ride a horse.

In WW.II, USAAC recruits should be 18 to 22 years of age, able bodied, mostly or somewhat Christian, and have some college education..(preferred).

It is also interesting to note that the USAF is currently not really interested in recruiting aircrew older than 35, regardless of qualifications. The U.S. Navy and Marine Corps don't want you to bother them with your CV unless you are younger than, oh, shall I say mid-twenties..

Just a note: It really doesn't matter how much you jog, eat kale, or perform yoga, the inevitable effects of arteriosclerosis, macular degeneration and presbyopia ultimately effects us all after the age of 40.. All the best anyway. Good luck! A valid medical is EVERYTHING.

P.S. Many more VFR flying training days in Southern Alberta than in Central Alberta. Check out http://flywithexcel.com/

Last edited by evansb; 14th Sep 2016 at 12:12.
evansb is offline  
Old 7th Oct 2016, 02:27
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Join Date: Sep 2016
Location: Edmonton, Alberta
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Up date, if anyone cares,but some did ask for an update LoL. I've picked my school, Cooking Lake Aviation, am going to go for C1 medical in a couple of weeks just to confirm I am as healthy as I think. Then get the ground school started on line. And start the actual flying in Jan (New year, new start etc).

It's a long path with the first obstacle getting the PPL. Once I've done that I'm half way to CPL hrs, as I logged 60 or so hrs 13 yrs ago that I have been told I can use towards CPL hrs building.
MapleTopGun is offline  

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