Professional Pilot Training (includes ground studies) A forum for those on the steep path to that coveted professional licence. Whether studying for the written exams, training for the flight tests or building experience here's where you can hang out.

The perpetual 'Am I too old?' thread

Old 11th May 2020, 05:57
  #901 (permalink)  
Educated Hillbilly
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: From the Hills
Posts: 831
All seems quite sensible, however do note your from finishing the ATPL exams you will have 36 months to get the CPL done, as the CPL is only 25 hours of training best to get the CPL out the way earlier than you do in your plan. Plus with the CPL you will need 50 less hours to do the FI(R) than if doing it on a PPL.
Also with the Competency based IR you can upgrade the IR to a full IR. Don't get too wound up about trying to achieve 90 percent average in the ATPL exams, there are probably only about 2 Airlines that have such a requirement and for the sort of roles you are aiming for no one is going to ask or care that much.
Multi engine hour building, you will need 30 hours p1 multi to do the MEI upgrade once you get you FI restriction removed.

Just for reference PPL level instructional pay is around 20 to 30 pounds per hour flown. So with part time PPL level instructing don't expect to make much back.
Working for an integrated school SEP Instructor salaries are now around 35- 40k per yea (with bonus's over 40 is possible). Multi instructors are getting salaries around the 50 to 65k mark.
However it is expected there may well be a surge of instructors in the next year as fresh qualifiers look to do FI ratings and many former instructors laid off from the Airlines return to instructing. So SEP pay rates may decline again. There however does tend to always be a shortage of multi engine instructors.
Also note to be able to teach IR you will need to get 200 hours IFR; you can do the IRI add on to the FI rating and be initially restricted to teaching the IRR only and then use the IRR instructing to build the IFR time.
portsharbourflyer is offline  
Old 13th May 2020, 07:56
  #902 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: UK
Age: 42
Posts: 299
Originally Posted by franks View Post
Hi, I’d like some advice on the below as a modular route. By way of background I’m 36, with a well paid job in public relations. Own my flat in South East London. Gay, so no kids and have had a lot of fun holidays across the world. My living costs are such that each month I could bank £2K in savings. I tend not to; most of it goes on fripperies but the point is it could be spent on other things.


I enjoy my career but the idea of doing that alone full time for another 30 years fills me, if not with dread, then a certain amount of sadness. Keen to populate my life with some additional people, experiences and skills. Frankly I need something hard and a bit scary right now. I considered sailing but it’s too cold around England to be enjoyable year round.

This leads me back to flight. Took a few lessons in my teenage years, loved it but turned 18 just before 09/11. I also remember reading on the early pilot forums how exploitative entry level flying jobs in the US were before the introduction of the 1500 rule. and the emerging European low costs didn’t represent a type of flying that appealed. Always thought I’d want to either fly ultra locally or medium to long haul. All told aviation seemed like a route to heart break. Until C-19 that seemed like a big mistake on my part. But equally I’ve really enjoyed my life till now and also believe I’d have been ill suited to 35 years + in an airline job.

What I’m considering is throwing myself over the next few years into becoming a very competent pilot. Mostly for the sheer satisfaction of it and I’ve no firm goal in mind other than reaching the point where I could instruct to ME/IR level part time, and hopefully get back some of the money I’d spend on this. Equally, maybe if/when the industry picks up there might be a turboprop gig, or I dunno, something in bush flying if this turns into a total mid life crisis. I’ve lurked on here long enough to there’s no point making firm plans as to what the industry might want or need.

This is the timeline I’ve sketched out (doing this on weekends and during my holidays). Does the order seem logical or have I overlooked anything important?

Year 1
Take a class 1 medical. Assuming all goes to plan pursue PPL; night rating; hour building; IMC IR(R). Aim to finish with about 75 hrs. Review

Year 2
Take another class 1 medical. 100 hrs worth of PIC time in the UK and the US. Take some short courses in mountain flying; beach landings, tail wheel training and soft/short field landings. Start studying for ATPL theory tests. By this point have reached 192 hours. Review.

Year 3
Class 1 medical. Take the ATPL exams. Aim for first time passes at 90% or above to keep in contention for an airline job. If fall at this hurdle, accept my options will have narrowed further. Do some light hour building in the UK and pursue the FI (R) rating and have the night restriction removed. Get a part time instructor job. Aim to end the year with about 350 hours logged in total. Review.

Year 4
Class 1 medical. Acquire MEP and MEP/IR ratings. Keep instructing part time and do some ME hour building in the states. Aim to end the year with about 450 hrs logged in total

Year 5

Class 1 medical. Keep instructing part time and acquire the ME CRI rating. Aim to have logged about 630 hours in total.

Year 6
Class 1 medical. Acquire the CPL and do the MCC/JOC courses. Keep instructing. At this point I’d be 43 with a minimum of about 700 hours logged. Either I keep instructing part time or I’m in a position to start applying for FO positions, probably for a UK based turboprop operator. If the airline thing doesn’t pan out, probably keep at instructing, maybe even taking a FT role if the money were decent, or take an unpaid sabbatical and go flying for Wilderness Air or the like for a different experience. Or buy a non equity share in a multi engine piston and go on flying holidays in Europe.

I estimate I’ll spend about £78K at 2020 prices over 6 six years for ratings and hour building but would hopefully have earned some back in instructor fees. My only true red line is I won’t pay for a type rating or line training to keep me in contention for a commercial job.

Does the above seem sensible (accepting upfront that it is rather mad to spend any money on aviation right now). Thanks in advance for your thoughts.
Sorry mate, I'll have to disagree with the guy above (who doesn't seem to understand that a CBIR is a full IR).
Sure, it'll work. But it's an awful plan. You need 150 hours pic to become an FI without a CPL. A CPL only requires 100. It will be a lot cheaper to get your IR then CPL then FI - than it would be to get the FI on its own. You'd be employabe as an FO within 2 years and as an FI shortly thereafter. And for under £50k.
rudestuff is offline  
Old 13th May 2020, 09:53
  #903 (permalink)  
Educated Hillbilly
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: From the Hills
Posts: 831
"Also with the Competency based IR you can upgrade the IR to a full IR", was meant to write upgrade the IRR to full IR; take time to read the context of the statement you would have realised that it was a omission of a single letter.


Last edited by portsharbourflyer; 13th May 2020 at 11:26.
portsharbourflyer is offline  
Old 13th May 2020, 11:37
  #904 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: UK
Age: 42
Posts: 299
Fair enough 👍
rudestuff is offline  
Old 13th May 2020, 13:09
  #905 (permalink)  
Educated Hillbilly
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: From the Hills
Posts: 831
Actually Rudestuff, thanks for highlighting the error (indirectly). It was my error to start with, didn't mean to come across as abrupt.
portsharbourflyer is offline  
Old 13th May 2020, 14:21
  #906 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: UK
Age: 42
Posts: 299
No worries, sorry for being a condescending ****!
rudestuff is offline  
Old 13th May 2020, 18:35
  #907 (permalink)  
Educated Hillbilly
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: From the Hills
Posts: 831
No problem Rudestuff.
portsharbourflyer is offline  
Old 14th May 2020, 10:32
  #908 (permalink)  

de minimus non curat lex
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: sunny troon
Posts: 1,042
One of the consequences of C-19, and the tsunami impact on aviation, for what will be a considerable period of time, the “AM I TOO OLD” criteria will undoubtedly reduce in age.
The curve will move significantly ‘to the left’ to adjust for that, at present, undefined recovery period.

Those at the margins of what was a sensible (perhaps?) cut off age band, have now moved into the ‘probably best forgotten, unless you have money to burn band’. They should consider doing the PPL and fly for pleasure on nice days if they have a real interest in flying.

The paradox is that C-19 might have done a few hopefuls a huge favour, and not incurred a vast cost with hardly any chance of a return on the investment by securing a job. Money better saved & spend elsewhere as a result.

For those of a certain age deep into the process, you have my sympathy. Difficult choices to make.

parkfell is online now  
Old 14th May 2020, 10:37
  #909 (permalink)  
pug
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: A post-punk postcard fair
Posts: 949
Originally Posted by parkfell View Post
One of the consequences of C-19, and the tsunami impact on aviation, for what will be a considerable period of time, the “AM I TOO OLD” criteria will undoubtedly reduce in age.
The curve will move significantly ‘to the left’ to adjust for that, at present, undefined recovery period.

Those at the margins of what was a sensible (perhaps?) cut off age band, have now moved into the ‘probably best forgotten, unless you have money to burn band’. They should consider doing the PPL and fly for pleasure on nice days if they have a real interest in flying.

The paradox is that C-19 might have done a few hopefuls a huge favour, and not incurred a vast cost with hardly any chance of a return on the investment by securing a job. Money better saved & spend elsewhere as a result.

For those of a certain age deep into the process, you have my sympathy. Difficult choices to make.
Can you elaborate as to why that might be? From what I’ve seen the older age bracket (career changers etc) tend to be looked on favourably. You may not have meant it but your post reads that the older candidates are the secondary consideration when experience tells me quite the opposite.
pug is offline  
Old 14th May 2020, 10:45
  #910 (permalink)  

de minimus non curat lex
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: sunny troon
Posts: 1,042
There is an age cut off for most occupations. “Old dog and new tricks”. Aviation is no exception.
For those aspiring to start from scratch after a certain age will find it increasingly difficult.

And your experience contradicts this?

parkfell is online now  
Old 14th May 2020, 10:53
  #911 (permalink)  
pug
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: A post-punk postcard fair
Posts: 949
Originally Posted by parkfell View Post
There is an age cut off for most occupations. “Old dog and new tricks”. Aviation is no exception.
For those aspiring to start from scratch after a certain age will find it increasingly difficult.

And your experience contradicts this?
Of course if we’re talking someone late 40’s/early 50’s then that might be the case, though I’ve seen people that age come through and happily (until recently) flying ‘shiny jets’. I tend to believe people are taken on merit and not on age these days, and not sure whether there has been a detailed study into Type Rating success when age is the benchmark. Operators tend to take a range of people from a range of backgrounds and age brackets. They have done for quite some time. For many people they can only afford to make the jump in their 30’s!

What I do think will matter more is getting first time passes in everything, high average scores in ATPL’s and doing something worthwhile to keep current whilst the market is none existent,

Last edited by pug; 14th May 2020 at 11:15.
pug is offline  
Old 14th May 2020, 12:25
  #912 (permalink)  

de minimus non curat lex
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: sunny troon
Posts: 1,042
Back in the early 1990s, BA Flight Engineers were no longer necessary with fleet upgrades etc.

A number ended up at BAe Prestwick to train for the CPL/IR under CAP509. Various ground school credits due to their FEng qualifications.
Age band 28-44.

The youngest had no problems, whilst the oldest wisely gave up the unequal struggle at the end of the SE phase.

It was certainty the case that on the whole they did learn slower and found it harder than the usual BA cadet in their early twenties. That I doubt would come as any surprise: “old dog and new tricks”

I see no difficulty those in their 30’s starting to train. Modular route is probably best, with the PPL course a good point to assess whether continuing on the route is worthwhile. An experience instructor is best placed to access your potential.
Those with a low golf handicap aged 40 - 45 will more than likely be successful as well. Demonstrating good hand to eye coordination and a sound temperament when playing those difficult shots out the rough or bunker.

Once you pass aged 50, on balance, the odds are not in your favour. Stick with PPL flying and enjoy it. Choose your days carefully.
parkfell is online now  
Old 2nd Jun 2020, 04:08
  #913 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2019
Location: Orbit
Posts: 16
Originally Posted by pug View Post
Of course if we’re talking someone late 40’s/early 50’s then that might be the case, though I’ve seen people that age come through and happily (until recently) flying ‘shiny jets’. I tend to believe people are taken on merit and not on age these days, and not sure whether there has been a detailed study into Type Rating success when age is the benchmark. Operators tend to take a range of people from a range of backgrounds and age brackets. They have done for quite some time. For many people they can only afford to make the jump in their 30’s!

What I do think will matter more is getting first time passes in everything, high average scores in ATPL’s and doing something worthwhile to keep current whilst the market is none existent,
I agree, with your first statement, until recently, guys in their 40s, 50s, and I even knew 1 guy in his 60s who got into a regional jet! So it WAS happening. C-19 has probably changed all that for the next 5 years at least, although it is possible that some airlines may see opportunity in less experienced guys in their 40s/50s, as they may be more likely (than experienced pilots) to accept poor working conditions in order to get their shot. However in general I think (and hope) that they will choose experience over newbies when the time for hiring comes around.

I am curious about your last statement, what would you say are worthwhile ways to keep current whilst waiting for the hiring cycle to begin again?
MADMAX190 is offline  
Old 2nd Jun 2020, 08:20
  #914 (permalink)  

de minimus non curat lex
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: sunny troon
Posts: 1,042
Originally Posted by MADMAX190 View Post
........I am curious about your last statement, what would you say are worthwhile ways to keep current whilst waiting for the hiring cycle to begin again?
Those unfortunate pilots need look no further than Virtual Aviation, Cambridge who are offering simulator time on A320 & B737 at attractive rates. Going as a pair of pilots is probably ideal.....?
parkfell is online now  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.