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Newbie & Flying Training Advice (Merged)

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Newbie & Flying Training Advice (Merged)

Old 14th Mar 2023, 03:34
  #901 (permalink)  
 
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Alot of debt

Hey, I'm a new joiner that would like to ask for some advice on jobs and whether anyone else is in my situation on the level of VET debt they have.
Three years ago, I finished the CPL, Instrument Rating, and Instructor Rating (well Instructor Rating was a recent achievement), almost all on VET debt. I also applied for a small loan for some of this training. The total cost of everything from 0 hours to full graduate is $161,000 (AUD).
I'm also 42 years old and made the switch from Call Centre to becoming a Professional Pilot around 39. I am now struggling to get a mortgage because the banks loan against the VET debt (which I didn't know until it was too late).
Before the Instructor Rating, I also drove to Broome and across to Katherine and remained in Katherine for 6 months post-CPL until I got broken into & decided to leave and do the Instructor Rating down south again. Thanks to the helpful advice here, I went "north" but was not successful in a job but didn't like the crime wave moving from Alice Springs (it's worse now apparently).
It is just me but are others struggling to get a Grade 3 job or any type of entry-level flying job? I spoke to a CP on the Gold Coast over the phone who had over 30 applications for a recent Grade 3 position. Unfortunately, I was lured into flight training at my midlife thinking I'd have no problems getting a job at the end, while spending the rest of my life paying off the debt. I've now gone back to my original Call Centre position in the south and not sure on the next move.

Grant

P.s. Thank you everyone for the 'go north' advice. It didn't pay off for me but the experience of the wet season (from the ground), Kakadu, and drive in general is really great.
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Old 19th Mar 2023, 03:22
  #902 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by grant.lebronte
Hey, I'm a new joiner that would like to ask for some advice on jobs and whether anyone else is in my situation on the level of VET debt they have.
Three years ago, I finished the CPL, Instrument Rating, and Instructor Rating (well Instructor Rating was a recent achievement), almost all on VET debt. I also applied for a small loan for some of this training. The total cost of everything from 0 hours to full graduate is $161,000 (AUD).
I'm also 42 years old and made the switch from Call Centre to becoming a Professional Pilot around 39. I am now struggling to get a mortgage because the banks loan against the VET debt (which I didn't know until it was too late).
Before the Instructor Rating, I also drove to Broome and across to Katherine and remained in Katherine for 6 months post-CPL until I got broken into & decided to leave and do the Instructor Rating down south again. Thanks to the helpful advice here, I went "north" but was not successful in a job but didn't like the crime wave moving from Alice Springs (it's worse now apparently).
It is just me but are others struggling to get a Grade 3 job or any type of entry-level flying job? I spoke to a CP on the Gold Coast over the phone who had over 30 applications for a recent Grade 3 position. Unfortunately, I was lured into flight training at my midlife thinking I'd have no problems getting a job at the end, while spending the rest of my life paying off the debt. I've now gone back to my original Call Centre position in the south and not sure on the next move.

Grant

P.s. Thank you everyone for the 'go north' advice. It didn't pay off for me but the experience of the wet season (from the ground), Kakadu, and drive in general is really great.

Haha yeah mate I'm sort of in the same boat here - did all three tickets on VET with a CPL in hand 3 years ago, been all around the top end and never found a job, but loved the experience anyway.

So if the bank considers VET debt in a mortgage application, what do they want to see before they'll give you a mortgage? A higher income than if you didn't have the debt?

I feel like a lot of flight schools are in love with themselves. Ya know the old "we teach it this way and we think it is the best way / better than the school down the road". Funny thing is the schools with that attitude either have no practical experience flying or did their stint in rough and tough GA like 30 years ago. I have cold called and resume dropped a number of schools and whilst some are stand up blokes who will even tell you where else to resume drop, others are super tight and don't seem to care about you.

I don't know about you mate but I'd rather be flying than working in a god damn call centre. I know the feeling though, of not knowing what to do after having been around the whole country looking for a job.

I've come across a bit of work as of last week which will involve some flying, and I found work late last year for about 30 hrs of paid flying. Both these gigs have come from people I know, not from resume dropping, emailing or cold-calling. So with the big entry level operators in the top end, like you said, I'm pretty sure after I drop in a resume somewhere and have a chat with the big dog, another two dozen more charismatic, well connected, skilled people come in after me. Anyway might be good if your next move is to just network a bit more? There are fellas (farmers, tradies, doctors) with planes all round the country that need flying, not just in the top end. If you properly get into the circles around Melbourne ya never know who might have a mate who needs a guy to do some flying.

The worst thing is knowing fellas who have gotten jobs straight out of flight school / a couple months after moving up north. It kind of makes it seem even more impossible and out of reach. I mean, good on em, some of them are working in sh*t conditions, like being shafted with their pay, being based out remote for years, or being psychologically manipulated (yes you know who I'm talking about).

Another thing that helped me not stress so much about not having a flying job after so long of looking / so long post CPL, was broadening my world beyond flying. I started doing my licences in high school and a huge part of my identity was flying. Recently I've broadened out and started doing all kinds of other things and getting involved with other groups. Flying is nowhere near as huge to me now and there are jobs on the ground I'd probably take over jobs in the air.

Also if you have an FPC that is due that's a great opportunity to get a job. Some flight schools seem to hate hiring G3s they don't know...
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Old 19th Mar 2023, 11:34
  #903 (permalink)  
 
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Grant & Blood,
Speaking as an employer, I have found that Grade 3s take a lot of time and supervision to become an autonomous and productive part of the team (no surprises there, but needs to be said). For a smaller organisation, they might simply find it unworkable to devote the attention of a Grade 1 in this way.
My advice to you as a jobseeker is to ensure you can
- offer other valuable skills; and/or
- demonstrate similar skills eg; hospitality skills that transfer into an Aviation/Customer service setting.
We have never employed Grade 3s before COVID but of the 3 since June 2020, all were flying ME Charter as part of their work mix within 12 months.

Ya know the old "we teach it this way and we think it is the best way / better than the school down the road".
Marketing spin and "unique selling points" aside, it is a lot easier to employ you as a Grade 3 if you have learnt to fly AND earnt your Instructor rating using the same briefs, patter, aeroplanes and admin as the school already uses,

Good luck with it
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Old 20th Mar 2023, 06:07
  #904 (permalink)  
 
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Thanks for this! do you think the chances are really slim of getting a G3 job if you do the G3 course with flight school X but apply for a G3 position with flight school Y?
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Old 20th Mar 2023, 06:18
  #905 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by bloodandiron
Haha yeah mate I'm sort of in the same boat here - did all three tickets on VET with a CPL in hand 3 years ago, been all around the top end and never found a job, but loved the experience anyway.

So if the bank considers VET debt in a mortgage application, what do they want to see before they'll give you a mortgage? A higher income than if you didn't have the debt?

I feel like a lot of flight schools are in love with themselves. Ya know the old "we teach it this way and we think it is the best way / better than the school down the road". Funny thing is the schools with that attitude either have no practical experience flying or did their stint in rough and tough GA like 30 years ago. I have cold called and resume dropped a number of schools and whilst some are stand up blokes who will even tell you where else to resume drop, others are super tight and don't seem to care about you.

I don't know about you mate but I'd rather be flying than working in a god damn call centre. I know the feeling though, of not knowing what to do after having been around the whole country looking for a job.

I've come across a bit of work as of last week which will involve some flying, and I found work late last year for about 30 hrs of paid flying. Both these gigs have come from people I know, not from resume dropping, emailing or cold-calling. So with the big entry level operators in the top end, like you said, I'm pretty sure after I drop in a resume somewhere and have a chat with the big dog, another two dozen more charismatic, well connected, skilled people come in after me. Anyway might be good if your next move is to just network a bit more? There are fellas (farmers, tradies, doctors) with planes all round the country that need flying, not just in the top end. If you properly get into the circles around Melbourne ya never know who might have a mate who needs a guy to do some flying.

The worst thing is knowing fellas who have gotten jobs straight out of flight school / a couple months after moving up north. It kind of makes it seem even more impossible and out of reach. I mean, good on em, some of them are working in sh*t conditions, like being shafted with their pay, being based out remote for years, or being psychologically manipulated (yes you know who I'm talking about).

Another thing that helped me not stress so much about not having a flying job after so long of looking / so long post CPL, was broadening my world beyond flying. I started doing my licences in high school and a huge part of my identity was flying. Recently I've broadened out and started doing all kinds of other things and getting involved with other groups. Flying is nowhere near as huge to me now and there are jobs on the ground I'd probably take over jobs in the air.

Also if you have an FPC that is due that's a great opportunity to get a job. Some flight schools seem to hate hiring G3s they don't know...
Glad I'm not the only one, which I suspected I wasn't but congrats on those little "breaks" you got. I've also applied for "operations" and Store Hand jobs at a few operators up north and Alice Springs. I will take anything at this stage.

I definitely don't enjoy the Call Centre life! But I don't really have a choice until something gives in the flying industry.

You are right though, it seems to be a "networking game" and the guy/gal that can network the best will "win" that coveted C210 position :-) When I was in the Top End, I did notice quite a few guys are getting jobs with a GA Ready Course? It's a big sigh as it's another $5,000 (or close to) for C210 time (they claim is 5 to 10 hours) but you are essentially paying for your own ICUS. My next step is to re-charge my savings and do this GA Ready thing. Did you come across this?

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Old 21st Mar 2023, 05:44
  #906 (permalink)  
 
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Hi all,

I am hoping someone may be able to help me out with something.

I started flying in 2020, learning in a PA28, let's just say It took me a little longer to reach solo, I needed 35 hours over the course of 18months. Thank you covid! However I did manage to do 5 x solo circuits.

Anyway, after going solo we had locked down again and I was over it by this point so I took a break and decided I would return to flying once I knew lockdowns were definitely over. Fast forward another 18 months and I am in a C152 starting from the beginning.

Has anyone made the transition between the two and felt uncomfortable in the C152? I was confident in the PA28 (eventually), I didn't seem to feel the wind or turbulence to the level that a C152 feels. Now I feel like I am not in control the same way I was and flying is back to being a challenging experience rather than one I was confident doing.

Is it just one of those things that I've had too long a break and it really is starting again because I felt having previous experience I would be comfortable with switching to a C152. Going solo seems like such a huge hurdle.

I hope someone can share their thoughts, this forum has been a safe and educational space.

Chopz
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Old 21st Mar 2023, 06:09
  #907 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Chopz
Has anyone made the transition between the two and felt uncomfortable in the C152? I was confident in the PA28 (eventually), I didn't seem to feel the wind or turbulence to the level that a C152 feels. Now I feel like I am not in control the same way I was and flying is back to being a challenging experience rather than one I was confident doing.

Is it just one of those things that I've had too long a break and it really is starting again because I felt having previous experience I would be comfortable with switching to a C152. Going solo seems like such a huge hurdle.
Chopz, covid was a hassle for lots of folks, so you're not alone! Starting my training in Warrior, after many long breaks for various reasons up to and after my PPL I had a similar issue struggling to feel comfortable in even a C172, let alone the 152. FWIW, I still haven't made the change!

Cessnas and Pipers (high wing vs low wing) really are very different aircraft and really do 'feel' different. As a low hour student, how you feeI is going to be really important to your ability to learn the important stuff - operating the aircraft - and moving to something completely different will certainly cost you more in hours, so I'd suggest you stay with the PA28 - at least until after going solo.
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Old 21st Mar 2023, 07:17
  #908 (permalink)  
 
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Core stick and rudder flying skills are essential and my opinion is that the Cessna 152 is the best ab initio trainer around to achieve that. I see some types used in basic training which are really unsuitable for that purpose - even the POH of some prohibit manoeuvres required by CASA Part 61.

I get some wanting a tailwheel endorsement who have only flown a PA-28 previously and I know it will take much longer so I advise them to do some dual circuits in a 152 first to save some money.
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Old 21st Mar 2023, 09:32
  #909 (permalink)  
 
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You fellas that did CPL, Instructor and Instrument Ratings on FEE-HELP, who advised you to do all three in quick succession? Did anybody tell you you've got sweet **** all chance of getting an IFR job with a bare commercial and an instrument rating? Did anyone tell you that flight training schools couldn't give a rats arse about your instrument rating when you're applying for a G3 position? Did anyone tell you it'll be at least 3 to 5 years before you use that Instrument Rating? (so why do it?) Did any of you do research on the job market before you committed to a loan that would still buy a house in some regional areas? The historical cyclical nature of aviation recruitment? Did any of you read Fate Is The Hunter? Or Biggles books? Or any cool aviation books?

Do any of you know who Charles Kingsford Smith is? Or Nancy Bird? Or Geraldine Mock? Have any of you done a flight to a really cool outback destination with your mates, like Birdsville. Or the Bathurst 1000?
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Old 22nd Mar 2023, 03:22
  #910 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by tossbag
You fellas that did CPL, Instructor and Instrument Ratings on FEE-HELP, who advised you to do all three in quick succession? Did anybody tell you you've got sweet **** all chance of getting an IFR job with a bare commercial and an instrument rating? Did anyone tell you it'll be at least 3 to 5 years before you use that Instrument Rating? (so why do it?)
In several decades of aviation I know of multiple pilots who've been doing paid IFR flying within 12 months of getting their CPL. May not be the norm for most but it's happened. An advantage to having it done is you may be the only pilot in a company with an IR, and on the day the boss needs an IR pilot as the current ones have all left suddenly then it's easier to take the one with the rating and give them a refresher than train others from scratch.

Did any of you read Fate Is The Hunter? Or Biggles books? Or any cool aviation books?
Not really. I haven't met too many who've read those books today, and of the ones who have that doesn't necessarily mean they are more competent than those who haven't. I'd rather them read the regs, study guides, ops manuals etc.

A passion for aviation is good, but that doesn't necessarily translate to competence.
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Old 22nd Mar 2023, 09:28
  #911 (permalink)  
 
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I didn't ask you.

Chasing me around the boards matey? Careful, I'll have you up for stalking
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Old 3rd Apr 2023, 04:12
  #912 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by tossbag
I didn't ask you.

Chasing me around the boards matey? Careful, I'll have you up for stalking
Alright matey, big fella here, who you asked.

I didn't do all three tickets in quick succession.

Last edited by bloodandiron; 3rd Apr 2023 at 04:35.
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Old 3rd Apr 2023, 09:20
  #913 (permalink)  
 
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Alright matey
He's matey, I'm old mate. ​​​​​​​
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Old 6th Apr 2023, 15:04
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Aviation Degree (e.g., UNSW) vs. Airline Cadetships

Hi everyone,

I'm exploring potential career paths in aviation for when I finish HS. I'm interested in an Aviation Degree (for example, at UNSW) and applying for an airline cadetship. Both options seem to have their unique benefits and drawbacks, and I have some queries.

I noticed that the ATAR entry mark for the UNSW aviation degree is 70, which doesn't seem too competitive when compared to the selection process for airline cadetships. For those of you with experience in the industry or familiarity with these paths, could you please share your insights on the advantages and disadvantages of an aviation degree compared to a cadetship, considering factors like competitiveness, career progression, and industry opportunities?

Why is the Aviation Degree ATAR for UNSW 70 when cadetships are extremely competitive? Most cadetships in Australia don't guarantee employment, for example, students studying aviation at UNSW can apply to the same future pilot program that Qantas cadets apply for.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance,
clamspread

Last edited by clamspread; 7th Apr 2023 at 06:28.
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Old 7th Apr 2023, 08:18
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The only upside in any degree is for the education institutions balance sheet. I worked in recruitment in a previous employer (airline), we did not take a degree into any decision making, nobody cares, I never had a pilot in a interview mention it either, as they know, its pointless and management don't care. The ATAR mark is low because they are after numbers, ie profit. In fact, many education providers are currently in balance sheet repair mode after the previous few years, expect the entry barrier to possible even reduce further.

A Cadetship will be always be competitive. You are essentially bypassing the GA route which is very unattractive (too hard) for many. Financial assistance is also offered.

If you get into a cadetship, then great, if not, it's not the end. Work full time until mid 20s, self fund a CPL, get some 210 time, move to Darwin and they will hire you soon after.
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Old 7th Apr 2023, 11:28
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Thanks for the response,How competitive are cadetships? I've heard that cadet programs may be hesitant to accept recent high school graduates due to their limited real-world experience.

What are the potential drawbacks of obtaining an aviation degree? How does career development differ when comparing earning a Commercial Pilot License independently versus through an aviation degree program? While GA isn't an area of interest, I'm open to necessary options to progress in the aviation sector.



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Old 7th Apr 2023, 23:36
  #917 (permalink)  
 
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The draw back at uni is time wasted on unnecessary subjects that make the course take the required length of time. For example if you go through a small school full time you can easily finish your CPL within 12 months and be out trying to find work where the uni students will still have two or three years still studying. If you can find a job you could be 1000+ hours ahead of the others. That’s IF you can find a job! As many are finding it’s not quite that easy.

I don’t have any figures on how competitive cadet shops are but anecdotally I’ve heard a minimum of 4-5 applicants for every slot (when they are doing them).
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Old 8th Apr 2023, 01:05
  #918 (permalink)  
 
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If COVID taught pilots anything its that the Aviation Degree is worthless when the industry locks down! Self fund the CPL (if you miss cadet) and part time look to do a trade (electrical, plumbing, whatever, take your pick). That time spent telling some uni course admin person in 5000 words or less how "avaition fits in a modern society" or some nonsense will be better spent getting a trade that will pay your bills and fund your flying and life.
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Old 8th Apr 2023, 01:50
  #919 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by engine out
The draw back at uni is time wasted on unnecessary subjects that make the course take the required length of time. For example if you go through a small school full time you can easily finish your CPL within 12 months and be out trying to find work where the uni students will still have two or three years still studying. If you can find a job you could be 1000+ hours ahead of the others. Thatís IF you can find a job! As many are finding itís not quite that easy.

I donít have any figures on how competitive cadet shops are but anecdotally Iíve heard a minimum of 4-5 applicants for every slot (when they are doing them).
Seems like Unis are just money-making schemes; I'll steer clear. How hard is it to find a GA job? I was under the impression that there was a certain level of demand in this sector.

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Old 8th Apr 2023, 02:05
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Originally Posted by BO0M
If COVID taught pilots anything its that the Aviation Degree is worthless when the industry locks down! Self fund the CPL (if you miss cadet) and part time look to do a trade (electrical, plumbing, whatever, take your pick). That time spent telling some uni course admin person in 5000 words or less how "avaition fits in a modern society" or some nonsense will be better spent getting a trade that will pay your bills and fund your flying and life.

Yep, I agree. I'd like to get a degree while also getting my CPL, but I probably wouldn't have the monetary means to do so. So instead of getting a trade, I might consider the police force. Probationary Constable salary is great.

I've seen most cadetships are ab initio; I've got some flight hours. Would that put me at a disadvantage?
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