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PPL Training

Old 1st Aug 2017, 13:38
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: London
Posts: 7
PPL Training

Hi guys,

Quick question in regards to PPL training, my current situation, completed 16 hours over the course of the last few months, I have completed half of the exams and anticipate to get the rest finished in the next fortnight, I have a class one med from the CAA and I am yet to go solo due to weather constraints and instructor availability, I am getting extremely frustrated by it all and I donít like the sporadic nature of the training as I donít think its benefiting me.

As I work full time I was hoping to get most of the PPL done through the summer months in the evenings but to no avail, now I will be reliant on weekend slots when the evenings become darker which will equate to even less flying.

Basically I have two weeks of annual leave at the end of August start of September, I was wondering is it feasible to do an intensive completion course in somewhere warmer i.e. Spain, but I recall reading that there would be many a hoop to go through, potentially have to repeat air law, also if my Blighty hours would count in Europe

I really enjoy my flying and I know there has been many a thread discussing pros and cons of accelerated training but if I donít use the time wisely now I wonít complete the PPL till next year.

Anyone have any recommendations for Europe or the States if the above is even feasible?

Many thanks for any constructive feedback.
Smithy175 is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2017, 09:36
  #2 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: go west
Posts: 1
don't know about UK, but in Ireland this has been one of the better summers we had by a long mile. I'm in full time employment, my base airfield is 1 hour drive away, yet I've managed to log some 60 hours this year so far, and I'm not even pushing for them.

I don't think weather has been a factor. What I would be looking at more is the instructor availability or willingness to instruct in a light chop. Perhaps you need to sit down with your instructor and talk about your concerns and goals. If your training organization is not able to meet your goals, perhaps there are other organizations near by who can take over.
Martin_123 is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2017, 10:21
  #3 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Mare Imbrium
Posts: 587
Why not book an intensive two weeks at your school? Explain your time constraints to them, I'm sure they'll do their damnedest to make it work for you.

Depending where you are in the UK this summer may or may not have been a good one for training. It's par for the course to lose roughly half your bookings over a period to bad weather.
Heston is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2017, 10:22
  #4 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: London
Posts: 444
Hi Smithy,

I think you need to find an instructor who is able to cater for your time constraints. I assume that you have talked with your current school and explained what your anticipations are, and see what they can offer you? Sometimes it is as simple as sitting down with the CFI or the desk staff, offer them a cup of tea or something, and explain what you expect, and see what they say. This shouldn't be too difficult, especially if you are in the London area (as it states you are). I think it really depends on the school as well as the instructor, but be aware that the prices therefore also vary a little.

You are able to move anywhere in Europe (EASA land) without too much hassle, but ideally you should complete all your ground school exams in one place as this will greatly help with the transfer between schools / countries. I would recommend talking to various schools near London first, as there are so many, and really, weather at the moment isn't that bad at all. End of August / early September is perfect flying weather (or so it has been over the last few years) and I doubt that it would be worth the trip to Spain. 2 slots per day for 14 days, that's at least 25-30 hours that you should be able to log, if your progression is as good as it ought to be, I don't see why you shouldn't be ready for your GFT before the end of the year!

Good luck & let us know how you get on!
alex90 is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2017, 10:28
  #5 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 559
Why is everyone on here always in such a rush to get their PPL done and dusted right now? The British weather combined with most people's work constraints means flying will not be consistent once the PPL is obtained. In my opinion, completing one's training in this same way teaches pilots the kinds of things they need to think about when they haven't flown for a bit. It enables them to develop a list of stuff they tend to forget, or where they tend to get tunnel vision etc., and therefore makes them far safer pilots in the real world of unsupervised flying. I did my PPL(H) over the space of a year, sometimes not flying for a month or so due to weather. Now I can go six months without stepping into a helicopter, and know what I'm likely to need to concentrate on to be safe. My PPL(G) has taken about eighteen months so far and I've only done thirty hours or so; partly due to weather, partly due to work commitments, and partly due to just wanting to do other stuff on a nice day.

My advice is don't be in such a rush - just enjoy it. If you're worried about the fact it might take you a few extra hours to pass your test in this way, you're probably taking up the wrong hobby. Those same constraints limiting your flying during training will still be there once you've passed the test, so part of your training should be about learning how to manage that. An intensive course won't expose you to those problems.
GS-Alpha is offline  
Old 2nd Aug 2017, 13:08
  #6 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2015
Location: London
Posts: 444

I, like you spread my learning over (almost) a year. Dealing with unexpected weather etc... Which I do believe was a good idea.

But I believe that this is a very common issue (a few friends who are currently training also have this issue presently with a few different providers) where you want to progress regularly, and have made the time for it, but due to aircraft serviceability (due shoddy maintenance - ie broken 1970s 25Khz radio gets blown on by engineer and popped back in, rather than replaced), instructor availability (due to schools being overrun), plane availability, on top of weather, and other personal constraints is extremely frustrating. This can mean that someone doesn't go flying for months, not weeks! After months of frustration, you really just want to get on with it - and I understand that fully.
alex90 is offline  
Old 3rd Aug 2017, 09:45
  #7 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Aug 2017
Location: London
Posts: 7
Cheers guys,

The above was very helpful.

I am going to catch up with the flying school owner over the next few days to discuss what we can do.

Apologies I did omit that I started flying in September ‘17 but had to stop training in February due to some issues with my medical which I only received a few weeks ago, I know that’s not the schools fault but it is what it is.

I understand the point in regards to rushing as I said I really don’t want to rush the training but I just really want to fly as I absolutely love it, I am a very level headed objective individual who can reason and evaluate circumstances and not be a starry eyed wannabe who just wants to panic, complete everything, enjoy nothing and then aim to find themselves in a bus or boe RHS.

Ultimately my goal at this stage is complete the PPL, Bristol ATPL Theory, Hr build Europe/States, CPL/MEIR – Bartolini or Diamond, JOC/MCC – Simtech

In the past I got to the final stages of some airline funded cadet schemes but unfortunately didn’t get them over the line and now I am at the point in my career that I can self-fund, if I don’t get a flying job I can still remain in my profession and fly leisurely, however If I do get lucky well that would be a bonus, if it doesn’t work out, the finance career will always be there to fall back on.

Sometimes these itches need to be scratched.

Cheers again for the advice.

Happy flying.
Smithy175 is offline  
Old 3rd Aug 2017, 20:58
  #8 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Cambridge, England, EU
Posts: 3,404
Originally Posted by Smithy175 View Post
I am getting extremely frustrated by it all and I donít like the sporadic nature of the training ...
That's basically how it is for most people - the PPL take up to two years of sporadic weekend lessons, about half of which get cancelled in the summer and about two thirds of which get cancelled in the winter, mostly for weather. In practice you can book a lesson every weekend and fly about twice a month.

If you got the PPL sooner what would you do with it? - many people, er, simply continue to fly about twice a month (the launch rate gets better, to around 2/3 in summer and 1/2 in winter, as you learn to cope with worse weather - but if you're flying for fun you won't want to fly on days when it wouldn't be fun anyway).
Gertrude the Wombat is offline  
Old 3rd Aug 2017, 21:04
  #9 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: UK
Age: 80
Posts: 695
Two weeks to get your microlight Licence in Portugal then get it upgraded to a PPL in the UK, which is quite a quick process. If you get your theory under your belt then before this will go for your Microlight as well.
funfly is online now  

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