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-   -   PPL Skill Test fees set too low (https://www.pprune.org/flying-instructors-examiners/645311-ppl-skill-test-fees-set-too-low.html)

Broadlands 21st Feb 2022 22:28

PPL Skill Test fees set too low
 
I was disappointed to hear how much a local examiner charges for a PPL Skill Test. A brief look at the websites of various clubs is even more disturbing. One charges £120, and that was just a first look.

So think about that £120 fee. A skill test takes about 2 to 2.5hrs. Add on the time before flight to brief and allow the candidate to prepare, the checking of all paperwork, the post flight debrief and admin, and then the responsibility for signing off a pilot. For me that takes at least hours and I frequently find errors which need addressing.

All that for £120 which begins a race to the bottom. I am almost of the opinion that test fees should be set by the CAA and booked through flight test bookings.

For any examiners setting low fees, please be realistic and charge a fee appropriate to the experience and professionalism of our position otherwise the end result will be that the good examiners will give up.

Whopity 22nd Feb 2022 10:12

It'll soon be cheaper than the new FRTOL test (CAP 2117)

Edgington 22nd Feb 2022 14:34

PPL Instructing/Examining is not a way to make a living in the UK, it's still considered you are instructing for hour building or giving back to aviation after a career with the airlines. Plenty of places are still paying £25 p/h flying time, but expect you to work for 2 hours and then some. A Plumber, Joiner or Dustbin man makes more than that.

Fl1ingfrog 22nd Feb 2022 19:58

Where in the world is PPL instructing paid better?

TheOddOne 22nd Feb 2022 23:01

Our microlight instructors are paid almost double what I get. How did that happen?

TOO

Edgington 23rd Feb 2022 16:31


Originally Posted by Fl1ingfrog (Post 11188336)
Where in the world is PPL instructing paid better?

10 Years ago in the Netherlands it was €65,- for a 2 hours session with an instructor, every lesson was a 2 hours session regardless of how long you flew

eagleflyer 23rd Feb 2022 19:43

I flew in the US not too long ago, about 5hrs block in an SEP. Got a flight review, two high-performance and complex endorsement. Together with the briefings it set me back about 700$, which comes to an hourly pay off 95$, straight into the CFIs pocket. Just a little more than what you pay in Europe if you go to an ATO. That´s the point....in FAA-land you can go freelance, in Europe you can not. Examiners are yet another story, I don´t think you´ll get a skill test for less than 600 bucks.

Broadlands 23rd Feb 2022 21:48


Originally Posted by Edgington (Post 11188167)
PPL Instructing/Examining is not a way to make a living in the UK, it's still considered you are instructing for hour building or giving back to aviation after a career with the airlines. Plenty of places are still paying £25 p/h flying time, but expect you to work for 2 hours and then some. A Plumber, Joiner or Dustbin man makes more than that.

While I agree a plumber would make more, I disagree that an examiner is hour building on the basis that by the time someone starts to examine they do not need hours in their log book. Yes, new instructors are paid at a lower level as in any profession but experienced and qualified instructors are generally paid appropriately, at least at all the organisations I interact with they are.

That does mean that I accept when I receive training I know it is going to be expensive.

Whopity 24th Feb 2022 14:41


I disagree that an examiner is hour building on the basis that by the time someone starts to examine they do not need hours in their log book.
Requirements have changed, an Examiner only needs 250 hours of instructional experience to become an Examiner for the PPL or CPL! Recently I heard an FTO saying they would not trust a particular Examiner to authorise a first solo!

deja vu 26th Feb 2022 05:27


Originally Posted by Broadlands (Post 11187801)
I was disappointed to hear how much a local examiner charges for a PPL Skill Test. A brief look at the websites of various clubs is even more disturbing. One charges £120, and that was just a first look.

So think about that £120 fee. A skill test takes about 2 to 2.5hrs. Add on the time before flight to brief and allow the candidate to prepare, the checking of all paperwork, the post flight debrief and admin, and then the responsibility for signing off a pilot. For me that takes at least hours and I frequently find errors which need addressing.

All that for £120 which begins a race to the bottom. I am almost of the opinion that test fees should be set by the CAA and booked through flight test bookings.

For any examiners setting low fees, please be realistic and charge a fee appropriate to the experience and professionalism of our position otherwise the end result will be that the good examiners will give up.

If you can't asses a candidate in a 20 minute conversation and 45 minutes in the air you are in the wrong business. But I am sure the game is full of pedantic gits looking for a nice little earner at someone else's expense and to flex their anal know how.

Whopity 26th Feb 2022 20:25


If you can't asses a candidate in a 20 minute conversation and 45 minutes in the air you are in the wrong business.
In the days when a PPL Skill test was just a GST that was probably correct, but today with the implimentation of European Regulations all of the required elements of a PPL Skill test, which is 60% Navigation, then it is simply not possible to conduct a PPL Skill test in much less than 2 hours 10 minutes.

BigEndBob 28th Feb 2022 11:29

We all charge £200 PPL skill test on the field i operate on.
I will be lucky to do 3-4 skill tests per year. (There will be 5 examiners available on field).
I charge £50 for a non club member LPC.
Perhaps i might do 1 a month average.
Now CAA take their cut of ground exams. I'm still charging the same as 10 years ago £20. Can we justify £20 on top of the £10 to CAA.

I keep saying being an examiner is just not viable, financially. Think last renewal will be final one (said that last 10 years).
I paid over £1000 last year to revalidate various ratings, using my own aircraft FOC.
Hourly flight rates are way behind inflation.

Best job is RT examiner, no responsibilities what so ever.

BigEndBob 28th Feb 2022 11:43


Originally Posted by Whopity (Post 11189517)
Requirements have changed, an Examiner only needs 250 hours of instructional experience to become an Examiner for the PPL or CPL! Recently I heard an FTO saying they would not trust a particular Examiner to authorise a first solo!

Minimum i think should be 5000 hours to be considered.

BigEndBob 28th Feb 2022 13:40

Updating RTF, infringements,what a joke.

Couple of years ago tried a simulated lost with Brum. Ask for qdm for home base.
Reply, we can't do that (yet have been doing for years).
Never asked since.
Good way of putting my student off ever asking for help.

Whopity 28th Feb 2022 15:12


Best job is RT examiner, no responsibilities what so ever.
Until you read the new CAP2117, riddled with errors. They don't even know what is written on an Examiner Certificate. It says RTF Examiner authorities will expire and we must reapply as FRTOL Examiners. A bit late, because our authorisations have always said we are FRTOL Examiners, there is nothing to convert, they are all re-certifications not certifications. The terms renewal and revalidation do not apply, Certificates are issued or re-issued.

TheOddOne 28th Feb 2022 17:47


Minimum i think should be 5000 hours to be considered.
...which means I've only 2,000 hours to go, by which time I'll be nearly 80. But wait, that'll be about the right age!

TOO

BigEndBob 1st Mar 2022 12:02


Originally Posted by TheOddOne (Post 11192326)
...which means I've only 2,000 hours to go, by which time I'll be nearly 80. But wait, that'll be about the right age!

TOO

Perhaps left it a bit late in life to want to be an examiner. Years ago we could get 600 hours a year easily doing ga training.
Lucky if i do 200 now.
Got told off once by CAA inspector because i did over 100 in one month.

250 hours is a joke, barely seen one season.

Duchess_Driver 1st Mar 2022 19:44

@TOO - 2900 in MP?

I gave up examining a couple of years back as it wasn’t viable for my lifestyle. Being away as much as I was I think I did 3 tests in the last year of its validity but even when I was based in one place it was probably no more than 5/6 a year with other examiners around.

As it was, word got around that examiner x was cheaper or examiner y was “a soft touch” and candidates chose the appropriate option.

Difficult to see a properly conducted skills test taking less than 90 minutes to an hour and 3/4s, bearing in mind a suitable Nav leg and diversion. Maybe i was doing it wrong!

TheOddOne 2nd Mar 2022 07:21


Can we justify £20 on top of the £10 to CAA.
I've cut my part down to £15, so the student now pays £25. The added faff of logging on and sorting out the on-line stuff is offset by not having to mark it. Then they want to know what they got wrong and why, so it's sorting out the codes for the 'areas of weakness'. Easy when they get 100%!

TOO

Whopity 3rd Mar 2022 12:08

Back in the days when we had standardisation, there were annual meetings where Examiners discussed fees, now those don't happen. It is a free market and Examiners may set whatever fees they like, it may vary between what the market will bear to, if we set too high a fee we won't get any customers. Many schools paid Examiner's expenses so test fees may well have gone to the school rather than the Examiner or simply the Examiner received a token fee and the school made its money elswhere in the training. Independent Examiners are in a different position, but need to be competitive in order to survive. Maybe we have too many Examiners which holds the prices down.


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