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FAA PPL or EASA PPL?? (as a stepping stone towards EASA ATPL exams + EASA CPL)

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FAA PPL or EASA PPL?? (as a stepping stone towards EASA ATPL exams + EASA CPL)

Old 24th Feb 2019, 22:37
  #1 (permalink)  
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Arrow FAA PPL or EASA PPL?? (as a stepping stone towards EASA ATPL exams + EASA CPL)

Hi

I am planning to do EASA ATPL exams and EASA CPL/IR. And I was going to do EASA PPL for my first step.

However, after reading a lot in the forum, a lot of people talk about FAA PPL being cheaper, easier and faster. I gathered this list:
- Written exams: Just 1 FAA PPL exam, vs 9 EASA PPL exams. (and because you will do EASA ATPL exams... it is not like you are going to miss any content)
- Cheaper hour building in the USA
- Cheaper medical exams and fees with FAA
- Faster license issuing and less papers-burocracy with FAA

Is that true? So, is it worth it? does it sound legit or does it sound like a nonsense idea?
AlexAB is offline  
Old 25th Feb 2019, 13:37
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Join Date: Apr 2004
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Whether it's worth it depends entirely on your priorities and personality. If it's the adventure and sense of fun you want then go for it.

Unless you're a US national you'll need a visa and security assessment. Fees for those are about 500 USD. The training provider must be authorised to enrol alien students which restricts your choices. The unexciting USD/GBP exchange rate combined with travel-related expenses doesn't leave much of a cost saving. Be sure to include the examiner fees in your budget.

Depending on where and when it's done you might find Canada more cost effective. There are no visa or security fees and all training providers are available. The exchange rate is more favourable and examiner fees are lower. The training culture and standards more closely match those in UK.

Your medium-term goals may also be factors. Do you want to work in north America afterwards?
selfin is offline  
Old 26th Feb 2019, 00:57
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Join Date: Feb 2019
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I am in a very similar position to yourself and have been going through the same decision. I work full time as a teacher and have a long summer vacation where I've decided to go to Canada for my PPL. The sense of adventure referred to in the post above played into my decision to do it outside of Europe/UK and the reasons stated for choosing Canada led me to decide to do it there as opposed to the US.

The general consensus is that Canada seems to be cheaper. That plus when factoring in the lengthy and somewhat costly visa process for the US it seems like the better option. Theres nothing stopping you hour building in the states because as so far as I understand it you can get an FAA license issued on the back of your Canadian one fairly easily.
rizzler100 is offline  
Old 28th Feb 2019, 23:22
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Join Date: Sep 2011
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Factor in other costs

Don't forget to factor in the cost of getting up to speed back in your home country in regards to the differences. General recommendation rule of thumb is do your training where you anticipate flying long term.
Gomrath is offline  
Old 28th Feb 2019, 23:54
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Originally Posted by selfin View Post
Whether it's worth it depends entirely on your priorities and personality. If it's the adventure and sense of fun you want then go for it.

Unless you're a US national you'll need a visa and security assessment. Fees for those are about 500 USD. The training provider must be authorised to enrol alien students which restricts your choices. The unexciting USD/GBP exchange rate combined with travel-related expenses doesn't leave much of a cost saving. Be sure to include the examiner fees in your budget.

Depending on where and when it's done you might find Canada more cost effective. There are no visa or security fees and all training providers are available. The exchange rate is more favourable and examiner fees are lower. The training culture and standards more closely match those in UK.

Your medium-term goals may also be factors. Do you want to work in north America afterwards?
Thanks, good point. Visas are not a problem, as I can currently legally live and work both in USA and Europe.
I want to work in Europe afterwards. the only reason I'm asking this it is because I have family in the Florida (USA)... so if it's cheaper training, I could go there to visit for some weeks/months and get a cheaper PPL, and start some hour building while studying for the ATPL exams and getting ready for CPL training.

Originally Posted by rizzler100 View Post
I am in a very similar position to yourself and have been going through the same decision. I work full time as a teacher and have a long summer vacation where I've decided to go to Canada for my PPL. The sense of adventure referred to in the post above played into my decision to do it outside of Europe/UK and the reasons stated for choosing Canada led me to decide to do it there as opposed to the US.

The general consensus is that Canada seems to be cheaper. That plus when factoring in the lengthy and somewhat costly visa process for the US it seems like the better option. Theres nothing stopping you hour building in the states because as so far as I understand it you can get an FAA license issued on the back of your Canadian one fairly easily.
Never though about Canada before. I was just considering Florida (US) because I could stay with family there.
When are you going there?

Originally Posted by Gomrath View Post
Don't forget to factor in the cost of getting up to speed back in your home country in regards to the differences. General recommendation rule of thumb is do your training where you anticipate flying long term.
What do you mean?? I though that going modular like this was a total valid option: FAA PPL, hour building, EASA ATPL theory exams, EASA ME/CPL/IR.
AlexAB is offline  
Old 1st Mar 2019, 01:00
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: FL, USA
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Donít do it because it might be ďeasierĒ as thatís the wrong motivation.
Do it because it benefits you being in your situation.

The USA ( and Canada) have historically been much more aviation friendly then the average European country.
All the southern states from California to the east down to Florida have been the stateís with the most flight training taking place.
Like everything you can do things the right or the wrong way. If you do them the right way youíll have a tremendous depth of experience with hopefully a little cost savings. Cost is obviously important but it shouldnít be the only reason. You donít want to sacrifice good for cheap.

So so hereís the good news.
In the US you can do your IR right after your Private which means you can do a lot of your time building on an IFR flight plan. Flying at night is made more accessible as most airports donít actually close at night and fuel is available 24 hrs.
Which means you can do a lot of your time building at night instead of just meeting the minimum requirements for your EASA CPL.
Find a school that has the same multi engine ariplane that you intend to use as your platform for conversion back in Europe.
In the USA is much easier to go places and gain more valuable experience as there are no borders and the same airspaces everywhere and the same rules everywhere.
So itís much easier for you to fly longer cross countries at higher altitudes then you would be able to in most of Europe.
Go to airports that are big and busy.
Maximize your experience for the money spend.
Now THAT is easier in the USA.
School I used to work for had 90% NW European students doing the same thing you are contemplating.
B2N2 is offline  
Old 2nd Mar 2019, 05:27
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Join Date: Feb 2019
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Originally Posted by AlexAB View Post


Never though about Canada before. I was just considering Florida (US) because I could stay with family there.
When are you going there?

I hadn't thought about it either until I started searching these forums. Spoke to a couple of flight schools in Florida and they said the weather might not comply as well during June and July when I wanted to go. The west coast was also an option, but honestly just emailing back and forth with a few places, I got a better vibe from the Canadian schools so I went with that. Booked my tickets the other day, I arrive at the start June for two months around Vancouver. Just finalising the school I'm gonna go with now.
rizzler100 is offline  
Old 2nd Mar 2019, 07:12
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Originally Posted by B2N2 View Post
Donít do it because it might be ďeasierĒ as thatís the wrong motivation.
Do it because it benefits you being in your situation.

The USA ( and Canada) have historically been much more aviation friendly then the average European country.
All the southern states from California to the east down to Florida have been the stateís with the most flight training taking place.
Like everything you can do things the right or the wrong way. If you do them the right way youíll have a tremendous depth of experience with hopefully a little cost savings. Cost is obviously important but it shouldnít be the only reason. You donít want to sacrifice good for cheap.

So so hereís the good news.
In the US you can do your IR right after your Private which means you can do a lot of your time building on an IFR flight plan. Flying at night is made more accessible as most airports donít actually close at night and fuel is available 24 hrs.
Which means you can do a lot of your time building at night instead of just meeting the minimum requirements for your EASA CPL.
Find a school that has the same multi engine ariplane that you intend to use as your platform for conversion back in Europe.
In the USA is much easier to go places and gain more valuable experience as there are no borders and the same airspaces everywhere and the same rules everywhere.
So itís much easier for you to fly longer cross countries at higher altitudes then you would be able to in most of Europe.
Go to airports that are big and busy.
Maximize your experience for the money spend.
Now THAT is easier in the USA.
School I used to work for had 90% NW European students doing the same thing you are contemplating.
Thanks!! I would do everything in europe, but if in the USA is cheaper/easier... then you are not just saving or making it easier, you are flying in a whole different continent, different airspace, etc. which it sounds really exciting.

but now, after all the details you gave me. sound even more appealing.

I have a couple of questions about your point "Find a school that has the same multi engine ariplane that you intend to use as your platform for conversion back in Europe.":
- in FAA, you don't need to do a multi engine rating course after your ppl course in order to fly a multi engine airplane?
- when you mean conversion back in europe? is there an actual extra process or paperwork for that? I though that the EASA CPL school would count my FAA PPL, and all the USA hours as valid and that's all. or is there an actual convertion procedure?
AlexAB is offline  
Old 3rd Mar 2019, 23:20
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Join Date: Sep 2011
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Originally Posted by AlexAB View Post
Thanks, good point. Visas are not a problem, as I can currently legally live and work both in USA and Europe.
I want to work in Europe afterwards. the only reason I'm asking this it is because I have family in the Florida (USA)... so if it's cheaper training, I could go there to visit for some weeks/months and get a cheaper PPL, and start some hour building while studying for the ATPL exams and getting ready for CPL training.
If you are US citizen passport holder, you might find later employment easier within the US.
Gomrath is offline  
Old 4th Mar 2019, 01:32
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: FL, USA
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Originally Posted by AlexAB View Post
Thanks!! I would do everything in europe, but if in the USA is cheaper/easier... then you are not just saving or making it easier, you are flying in a whole different continent, different airspace, etc. which it sounds really exciting.

but now, after all the details you gave me. sound even more appealing.

I have a couple of questions about your point "Find a school that has the same multi engine ariplane that you intend to use as your platform for conversion back in Europe.":
- in FAA, you don't need to do a multi engine rating course after your ppl course in order to fly a multi engine airplane?
- when you mean conversion back in europe? is there an actual extra process or paperwork for that? I though that the EASA CPL school would count my FAA PPL, and all the USA hours as valid and that's all. or is there an actual convertion procedure?
Under FAA you generally do your training in the following order:
  • PPL Single Engine Land ( SEL)
  • Instrument rating
  • Commercial SEL
  • Commercial Multi Engine Land ( MEL
This will net you 250 hrs give or take.
EASA is a different set of regulations.
Mostly similar as itís based on international agreements (ICAO).

Imagine doing a Law degree in the USA, you wouldnít be allowed to practice law in Europe even though the laws may be the same or similar.

The conversion process required recognizes all your hours flown if they are logged correctly and in accordance with EASA requirements.
You will get significant reductions on training requirements but still require to do 14 written exams and a practical flight test.
This practice flight test will be for the issuance of your EASA Commercial Airplane Multi Engine Land and Instrument rating.

it would therefore be helpful if youíve flown the same model airplane for your FAA CPL MEL.
Start researching conversion requirements and courses.

Hereís a start:

https://www.bristol.gs/atpla/converting-icao-licences/
B2N2 is offline  
Old 5th Mar 2019, 02:46
  #11 (permalink)  
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that's very clear. it makes things so much easier, thanks!
AlexAB is offline  
Old 7th Mar 2019, 19:44
  #12 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Augusta, Georgia, USA (back from Germany again)
Posts: 129
FAA vs. EASA is a common question. As an American I'm happy to have people come spend money in the US. It's a great place to fly; you know all those reasons.

The OP had a couple what I think of as minor errors. "One medical is cheaper" isn't true when you'll need two... "One exam" isn't easier when you then need ten instead of nine...

There is great value in training in the conditions you will later fly in. For people who are "only" looking for a PPL for a hobby, there is great value in being a member/customer of where you will fly after licensed. People like it when you spend locally.

With US weather you can probably make better progress early on, but consider the cost of "converting" later. FAA 40 =/= EASA 40 when you need more at home. I think there's a rule about needing 100 hours to convert...

No mater where you fly, it's a fun and rewarding hobby filled with generally intelligent, likeable people. Good luck!

Terry
LTCTerry is offline  
Old 8th Mar 2019, 02:36
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: London
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Any ICAO PPL is acceptable for enroling in a Part-FCL CPL course. A conversion is only necessary if a Part-FCL PPL must be used to meet the CPL experience pre-requisites. Any outstanding hour building can be done in UK using a US private pilot certificate pursuant to a General Exemption.

Most training towards additional US certificates and ratings will be inefficient with the possible exception of an IR done under a Part 141 syllabus and followed by 50 hours under the IFR acting as PIC with a view to pursuing a Part-FCL IR using the CB-IR route.
selfin is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2019, 04:31
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Originally Posted by selfin View Post
Any ICAO PPL is acceptable for enroling in a Part-FCL CPL course. A conversion is only necessary if a Part-FCL PPL must be used to meet the CPL experience pre-requisites. Any outstanding hour building can be done in UK using a US private pilot certificate pursuant to a General Exemption.

Most training towards additional US certificates and ratings will be inefficient with the possible exception of an IR done under a Part 141 syllabus and followed by 50 hours under the IFR acting as PIC with a view to pursuing a Part-FCL IR using the CB-IR route.
sorry I got a bit confused, what do you mean? I want to to my FAA PPL and build hours in the US, but just in order to meet the requirements to do EASA CPL/MEP/IR..
Are you telling me that EASA CPL won't accept my building hours because a convertion is needed?
And also, about the "any outstanding hour building can be done in UK using a US PPL".... do you mean the hour building that is not outstanding must be done in the US if you have a FAA PPL and want to meet the requirements to start training EASA-CPL?

I thought that after you get FAA PPL, you can build hours anywhere in USA, UK or Europe. And all those hours will count towards the EASA-CPL course requirements (no matter where they have been)
AlexAB is offline  
Old 15th Mar 2019, 14:07
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Join Date: Apr 2004
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Experience required for a Part-FCL licence or rating may be gained in the US or UK using a US pilot certificate. I made the point to assure you that, in the event of your leaving the US without meeting all of the experience requirements, you may act as PIC in UK using a US pilot certificate pursuant to a general exemption. See UK General Exemptions E 4433 and E 4474 notified in Official Record Series 4 (link) as ORS4 No. 1220 and 1228 respectively. These expire on or before 7 April 2019 but it is likely they'll be extended shortly. In other EASA states it may be necessary to hold a Part-FCL licence such as a LAPL or PPL before acting as PIC.
selfin is offline  

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