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Does your flight school charge for these exams?

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Does your flight school charge for these exams?

Old 31st Mar 2018, 10:16
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Does your flight school charge for these exams?

Hi all,

First post here. Currently in the early cross country stage of my PPL. Just wondering if it's normal for flight school to charge for the Pre-Solo Exam, Pre Area Solo Exam, and the Basic Aeronautical Knowledge Exam? So far I've been charged for all of them, the amounts are not too significant, but I'm wondering if this is normal practice. When I say not significant I mean the Pre Solo, Area Solo was under $50, and the BAK is about double as it was a longer exam.

I know I've obviously got to pay for the actual PPL exam which is set by CASA, but the above mentioned exams I understand while are compulsory, are set by the school themselves?

Many thanks
Com Failure is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2018, 12:27
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You're paying for someone to write it, supervise it, mark it and provide a flying school for you to do it in.
Clare Prop is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2018, 13:24
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You're paying for someone to write it, supervise it, mark it and provide a flying school for you to do it in.
Bit of a long bow to draw there. By that same logic, the flying school could also charge a student to use the toilet on the grounds that it costs to have the toilets cleaned and plumbing maintained.

To answer your question OP, I was never charged for any of the in house exams. It isn't a particularly good look to charge a student for items such as this when they could achieve the same effect to their bottom line with less of a sour taste in the students mouth by simply charging an extra $5 per hour for the actual aircraft training time.

So whilst it does seem to be a bit of a sour point, I would just look at the big picture as to whether you think you are getting good value training over all, especially when it comes to the quality of your instructors and aircraft for the money you are spending etc.
mikewil is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2018, 22:25
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Bit of a long bow to draw there. By that same logic, the flying school could also charge a student to use the toilet on the grounds that it costs to have the toilets cleaned and plumbing maintained.

They do! It's covered by their fees and charges. Not all things are itemised....you obviously have never owned a business..
TBM-Legend is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2018, 23:26
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I have worked as an instructor for longer than I care to remember. I have never charged for these exams but I am thinking I should. They should be set by a qualified instructor and supervised by a suitable person. CASA look at this stuff when they audit.
Aussie Bob is offline  
Old 31st Mar 2018, 23:46
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At least they charged you for something you got! My flying school used to charge us for things they never delivered.
pilotchute is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 01:22
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you obviously have never owned a business..
Sums it up pretty well
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Old 1st Apr 2018, 05:10
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Originally Posted by TBM-Legend View Post
They do! It's covered by their fees and charges. Not all things are itemised....you obviously have never owned a business..
What is wrong with you, dimwit?

The point I was trying to make was that not all charges ought to be itemised, as it can cause customers to question them (as the OP did above).

Customer perception = business 101
mikewil is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 05:32
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Originally Posted by YPJT View Post
Sums it up pretty well
Another dimwit who missed the obvious point.
mikewil is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 06:01
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Dim maybe but certainly not dim enough to let
my hard earned skills and expertise be given away.
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Old 1st Apr 2018, 06:37
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Unhappy

......we got to the mudslinging a bit quicker than normal this time!
gassed budgie is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 06:39
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mikewil, think you are the one missing the point here. As pointed out by TBM they already do charge you for it, a toilet (Using your example) is a pretty basic thing that everyone uses, not everyone will necessarily be taking those exams though, if you wrapped things like that up into all the fees or hire rate they wouldn't be getting good value for money, would they?

Com Failure, mikwil did have a good point there, have a look at the overall package and perhaps compared to what others are being charged at other similar schools and then decide for yourself if you're getting good value in your own opinion.
Ixixly is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 10:17
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Originally Posted by gassed budgie View Post
......we got to the mudslinging a bit quicker than normal this time!
Yeah my apologies for the bluntness, bit out of line I admit.

But when someone attacks you and suggests lack of business knowledge when I was using the toilet example to make the exact point about not everything having to be itemized to actually be charged for.

Some people just don't care to read the original post in its entirety.
mikewil is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 10:31
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You lost me at the toilet analogy
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Old 1st Apr 2018, 11:25
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Originally Posted by Com Failure View Post
Hi all,

First post here. Currently in the early cross country stage of my PPL. Just wondering if it's normal for flight school to charge for the Pre-Solo Exam, Pre Area Solo Exam, and the Basic Aeronautical Knowledge Exam? So far I've been charged for all of them, the amounts are not too significant, but I'm wondering if this is normal practice. When I say not significant I mean the Pre Solo, Area Solo was under $50, and the BAK is about double as it was a longer exam.

I know I've obviously got to pay for the actual PPL exam which is set by CASA, but the above mentioned exams I understand while are compulsory, are set by the school themselves?

Many thanks
I say if you'd signed up for a full training course - it is a bit low to charge for these "exams" taking into account amount of money you will end up paying for training. Whatever people may try to argue - they cost only the worth of A4 paper and a printer cartridge.

I'd also be wary of "you need to do a bit more hours to polish this and that..." requests.
ComradeRoo is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 11:46
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"You're paying for someone to write it, supervise it, mark it and provide a flying school for you to do it in."

Fair Point for the prob 20 minutes supervision and the 20 seconds to mark the paper, plus providing the flying school premises to do it in ....but surely you can't justify cost by including writing the exam, how many times does such a basic exam need need to be written?

Shouldn't the "writing" of an in-house exam not get cheaper each time it get used, you know like initial outlay cost amortised over time.

I'd think such a basic exam would be simply a copy, or edited copy, of something written some time ago, seriously how much can a Pre Solo or pre area solo exam change?

And kudos to the OP for bringing it up, students should put such things in their basket of questions when checking out the costs of his/her prospective schools.
Square Bear is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 12:24
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How many Flying schools operating say 20 years ago are still operating today? Not too many I’d suggest, if they are they’re probably still Flying the same aircraft they were 20 years ago. The problem with most schools is they are poorly run from a business perspective. If they’re not charging someone to sit an exam that’ll likely occupy a supervisors time for the best part of an hour, they’re not running the outfit properly as a business. The end result of poorly run schools is a trail of financial disaster - instructors not being paid, superannuation not paid, aircraft owners out of pocket, engineers left with unpaid invoices and students with incomplete training having possibly paid money up front.
Pay for the exam and don’t complain.
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Old 1st Apr 2018, 12:48
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Toilets would come under overheads, which have to be covered as fixed costs from the hourly rate.

Exams aren't overheads. The instructor who is supervising and marking the exam can't be earning an income flying, so that opportunity cost has to be covered by paying for them to be on the ground for a specific activity like an exam.

Unless you think instructors should volunteer to do at their house after hours for free?
Clare Prop is offline  
Old 1st Apr 2018, 12:51
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Square bear, it doesn't take 20 seconds to mark an exam. More like 20-30 minutes if you take the time to go through it with the student rather than just tick boxes.

The exam has a value, would you expect a aircraft rates to be cheaper because the operator has amortised the aircraft?
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Old 1st Apr 2018, 13:18
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Originally Posted by Clare Prop View Post
The instructor who is supervising and marking the exam can't be earning an income flying, so that opportunity cost has to be covered by paying for them to be on the ground for a specific activity like an exam.
Classic salesperson's BS.

As if all instructors fly 24x7 and there are literally hundreds of students per instructor waiting to take these exams.

Reality is quite the opposite

Last edited by ComradeRoo; 1st Apr 2018 at 13:20. Reason: spelling
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