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The cost of training.

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The cost of training.

Old 1st Feb 2016, 13:32
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The cost of training.

I was just wondering how much the cost of training varies around the UK.
A short while ago I commenced my PPL (H) at 260 per hour on a Robinson R22 and at that time my FTO was one of the most cost effective in the country but subsequently the rate has substantially increased to 390 per hour.
I'd be keen to know how this compares with other training establishments.
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Old 2nd Feb 2016, 13:18
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I cannot answer your question specifically as I have no idea what other local FTO's charge out for a R22, however, during the era you commenced training
crude oil was hovering around the $100.00 a barrel.
At every single slight $1.00 increase, we saw FTO's immediately jumping upon the bandwagon increasing Avgas even on old stocks.

Fast forward 2 years with crude at it's knees at around $30.00 a barrel [and falling ] and we do not see much in comparison of the savings. Interesting to see what happens when crude plummets to $16.00 - $22.00 a barrel shortly.
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Old 4th Feb 2016, 08:16
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I got a trial lesson for Christmas, and on the FTO's website they were offering 315/hr in an R22 (block booking discount offered).

After my trial lesson I pulled out my bank card to make a block booking, but was presented with the '2016' price list. It was now 365/hr

Looks like my flying career is taking a turn in the fixed wing direction :/
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Old 4th Feb 2016, 10:51
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Students are being priced out of the helicopter market, for example 390 per hour is way above an average persons weekly wage here in the UK.
I must add DD, I'd be very wary about paying for any sort of block booking, FTOs seem to come and go on a regular basis.............and that could mean you never see your money again.
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Old 4th Feb 2016, 12:11
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I was gobsmacked at how they could justify the 50/hr price hike.

Rotary was definitely my preference due to working 60hr weeks on fixed wing maintenance, but the local (established) flying school, at my base airport, offers 45hr packages at less then 1/3 the cost of the rotary FTO thats 40miles from my house.
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Old 4th Feb 2016, 19:51
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I've always wondered what magical formula was used to create the hourly wet hire rate, so I asked. It is a mixture of fuel costs, insurance, storage and maintenance/compliance. Fuel tends to take up a large percentage, but inflation of the other costs all add up to a hefty price tag per hour. In the 12 years I've been flying the rate of the 172R I went solo in has gone up by 48%.

Flying is fast becoming a rich persons hobby, and I am not rich.
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Old 4th Feb 2016, 21:11
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Hi Dougie,

We are a bit more than a third of the cost of a 360ph heli, but we do offer free cups of tea and a chat!

Come and see us sometime!
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Old 4th Feb 2016, 22:04
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In general, (because I'm not in the UK, nor the aircraft rental business) I think that you'll find that aircraft providers are not raking in tremendous profits in that business. Indeed, when you consider that a rental pilot turns up, signs out the aircraft and goes out flying, there is a lot that that pilot does not have to concern themselves with - which is still costing money. When you consider the unplanned costs of a mechanical away from home, and aircraft which gets weathered out, and cannot generate income until it is picked up, but still costs money, and a number of other surprise costs, you might think that you're getting a deal not having to make any investment, nor take any risk.

I know that when I took my helicopter training (Sw300) the school told me well off that they were not making money on the rental of the helicopter. They would honour the agreed hourly price, and they would keep the two helicopters until myself, and the one other student had completed their training, and the machines would be sold. That is what happened - and I lost the opportunity to fly them further (unless I wanted to buy one!).

When you consider the number of people (jobs) required to keep an aircraft flying, and the fact that each of those people expects to be fairly paid for their time, it's not surprising that flying is costly. Which of the many aviation service providers could you look in the eye, and say "I do not wish to pay you for the work I expect of you."?

I took a different route: I bought a plane 29 years ago, which I have paid to maintain, insure, repair and upgrade all these years. I bought 100 acres upon which to build my runway and hangar. Other than gas, insurance, and maintenance costs, I don't pay anyone for my flying, but I sure invested a lot to do it that way! I won't work out the costs, and I hope that I am still ahead of rental costs, but I'm not certain. In the mean time, I have to cut the grass, plow the snow, and pay the taxes on the property - what is my time worth!

It is what it is. If the school down the road offers a better deal, maybe it's worth the journey, but flying is voluntary in any case....
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Old 5th Feb 2016, 11:09
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Thanks xrayalpha, I do love a cuppa!

I'm all booked up locally now, but you might see me on my cross country when the time comes!
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Old 5th Feb 2016, 17:26
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Always welcome: not much else to do with this blinking weather!
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Old 6th Feb 2016, 13:27
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Xrayalpha,
Nice to see a proactive FTO, I've emailed my local one, even left messages on their answer machine and still no reply.
Business must be booming!
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Old 8th Feb 2016, 08:33
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KINEVEL,

Much the same here.

I emailed the FTO, repeatedly, giving them the chance to revert to their (still advertised) 2015 price list, but after 7 days of no replies I booked up for fixed wing.

Such a disappointing service.
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Old 8th Feb 2016, 10:08
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subsequently the rate has substantially increased to 390 per hour
Bloody hellfire... for an R-22... !?

Seems only yesterday that was what you paid for an R-44

Not a chance of a rotary career for me now, unless I move to the States.
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Old 8th Feb 2016, 17:42
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DD,
I might also have to consider Fixed Wing but I just can't understand why the rotary FTOs don't seem to want you business.
Business must be booming!!!!
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Old 18th Feb 2016, 19:40
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I'd be interested to find out the exact current rate of an hours training in a Cabri as it seems as though some of the published rates are out of date.
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Old 18th Feb 2016, 20:50
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Given the price difference between Europe and the US, I think it's very clear that the sole reason for our rip-off prices in Europe are the governments we've chosen and their onerous regulations and taxes.
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Old 27th Feb 2016, 11:49
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Well my local FTO has just quoted me 450 per hour in a Cabri and 390 in an R22!
That's a lot of money!!!!
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Old 27th Feb 2016, 20:24
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KNIEVEL77

Get yourself down to Rand Airport R3500 = 156Hr.
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Old 28th Feb 2016, 01:11
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I took a different route: I bought a plane 29 years ago, which I have paid to maintain, insure, repair and upgrade all these years. I bought 100 acres upon which to build my runway and hangar. Other than gas, insurance, and maintenance costs, I don't pay anyone for my flying, but I sure invested a lot to do it that way! I won't work out the costs, and I hope that I am still ahead of rental costs, but I'm not certain. In the mean time, I have to cut the grass, plow the snow, and pay the taxes on the property - what is my time worth!
How much has that cost you? So you just land at your own runway? You don't run into any problems with red tape?
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Old 28th Feb 2016, 03:39
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How much has that cost you?
Well, capital costs about $250,000 (property, planes and hangar), and a few hours of my time every week in grounds care. So capital cost per flying hour (4000 hours of flying in my two planes over 29 years) = $62.50 per hour. BUT, I could probably sell, and get most of the money back - so less really... So, le$$ + direct operating costs as usual.

So you just land at your own runway?
Yep, I just land on my own runway - day or night - as I wish. I do consider my neighbours though, and carefully avoid over flying their homes, or flying night circuits.

You don't run into any problems with red tape?
Zero problems with red tape. I thank those who fought for my freedom during a couple of gruesome world wars - and I exercise that freedom with great appreciation!
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