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My dream - advice please (collective thread)

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My dream - advice please (collective thread)

Old 16th Dec 2014, 21:19
  #141 (permalink)  
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Considering career change - doctor to pilot

Hi all,

I am currently a medical student in year 4 out of 6 years of study. Basically I always wanted to be an airline pilot, right from my first ever time flying, took a few flying lessons around the age of 16 before I realised that me and my family simply couldn't afford pilot training, modular or integrated.

Anyway, I went into medicine at University because of the above reasons, I also enjoyed work experience in the field and basically around when I started (2011) the chances of getting an airline job were slim and I wanted to go to university anyway. But the thought of becoming a pilot always niggled.

I fully expect to get told where to go when I say I am coming from a guaranteed job in medicine but I'll tell you this: whilst I enjoy the subject matter, medical careers have had a fall from grace much like flying jobs recently: my starting base salary will be around 22k (less than a FlyBe Q400 FO I believe), with around 60k in student debt and endless competition for jobs that will have me moving around every 6 months and maybe not ever getting a job in my chosen field and location. Basically while your job is secure in medicine in your early years (when you're getting married and raising a family) stability is basically zero and it's entirely possible you can end up in a job you hate in a place you don't like. On top of that the government is making a right mess of the NHS in general, morale is low and the future is uncertain. If I walked away from the job right after graduating it would be difficult to get back into it.

A little bit of me died inside when I realised I had missed opportunities like EI's recent cadetship and BA's FPP. EI covered 75% costs I believe; BA offered to act as a guarantor for the 100k loan and then pay it back (or am I missing something?). Basically what I am saying is that whilst I have no intention of doing ab inito training without a job at the end of it, if a scheme similar to these opened up again I would have a hard time turning it down.

My questions therefore are as follows:

1. what are the chances of similar schemes coming along again and is it worth applying? It seems to me that both are good deals at stable, "career" airlines. Also if I was to start with someone like BA, what would be the chances of commuting from EDI or GLA as a junior FO? For people like EI and Flybe, am I right in saying that Scotland/NI bases are easier to get into? (I'm basing that on very very old info)

2. is the industry as bad as PPRuNE makes it sound? Granted paying to fly at Ryanair sounds horrendous and I see a lot are moving out east (many doctors do too by the way), but when the cockpit door closes are you happy or is there a lot of moaning at 35000ft?

3. what are the timescales of schemes like the above? If I was to apply would it be worth sticking out my uni studies in case it all went awry? And is there anything I'm missing that makes them less rosy?

Thanks for reading this long post. I'd really appreciate some honest answers because to be honest I'm sick of turning it over in my head for the last 6 months! Does anyone have any advice for me on where to start? Getting a Class 1 medical before I do anything stupid for instance?
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Old 19th Dec 2014, 00:39
  #142 (permalink)  
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I am 19 years old and have just completed my A-Levels in the previous year. After much deliberation, thought and industrial advice I decided that going to university was not for me. I'd rather utilise the 3-4 years saving up for my ATPL as a degree was not compulsory.

My father already works for a leading UK airliner 'in the air' so travelling with him has given me the opportunity to meet various pilots on the job so to speak. Having spoke to many pilots they have advised that a Integrated route is preferred to the Modular, As airlines favour the 'Full-Time training'.

I have decided to set up my own business as well as accompany my father on many flights to keep the dream alive. I am currently in the process of applying for my Class 1 medical which I would recommend to everyone. This will give you peace of mind:that you can meet the MEDICAL requirements to avoid disappointment in the future.

Good Luck.
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Old 19th Dec 2014, 01:16
  #143 (permalink)  
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There is already a long thread about the debate between modular and integrated so I won't start it again here, but I would urge everyone to make the decision themselves after doing their own research, and not based on what one or some pilots/others tell you.

I was originally told by an instructor that integrated was the only way if I wanted a job. I couldn't afford this so I did it modular knowing that I may have to use some savings doing less well paid work whilst waiting for a job. The result of this is that I have never been out of a job for more than 2 months and where I work now (flying jets in Europe for a mid sized operator) I have had discussions with other FOs who said they felt sick learning that they had paidin excess of 3-4x more than I did.
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Old 20th Mar 2015, 23:31
  #144 (permalink)  
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26 years old and wanting to become a pilot?


I am currently 26 years of age and will be 27 come April. From a very young age i knew i wanted to fly no matter when i turned 17 years of age i started my PPL training at my local flying school, however i did not finish the whole course.

I am currently a Banking relationship manager employed full-time, however i want to reach my go back and commence training for a PPL and possible progress after my PPL so i can make a career out of it.

My question is because of my age and the age i will be when i complete training in a few years time will this be a disadvantage to me because i know a lot of pilots today are very young both male and female.

I have booked my first one hour flying lesson which will take place tomorrow and i I'm extremely excited at the thoughts of even being near the aircraft.

I welcome any advice anyone has to offer.

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Old 30th Mar 2015, 20:08
  #145 (permalink)  
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Where to Start? (For becoming a Pilot)

Hello everyone!

Since I was 12, I have had a deepened interest in aviation. I participate in aviation fourms and enjoy discussing and learning about the subject. I'm now 15, and really considering a career as an Airline Pilot.

The thing is, I've no clue where to start. I've never actually been in the cockpit of a plane and know little of controls etc. I know some of the technical side eg: Lift, Wind, Go-Arounds (which I'll admit isn't much) but I don't know what to do to even half follow my interests.

My end game would be to become a pilot for a commercial airline, preferably for an Irish airline. I would also like to get my training done in Europe.

So where should I start? Should I get lessons on light aircraft for my birthday (June)? What are the requirements for becoming a pilot?

I'm really clueless on the issue.
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Old 31st Mar 2015, 00:36
  #146 (permalink)  
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@aer Ryan

Jobs are very hard to come by once you finish your training. My advice to you would be to go to college and get a degree so that you have something to fall back on. In the mean time, maybe start by getting your PPL, it's the first step and will give you a real sense of what flying is all about. Depending on what part of Ireland you're in there are a few flying schools and clubs around that you can take lessons in.
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Old 7th Apr 2015, 14:05
  #147 (permalink)  
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Zero to ATPL - Where?

Hello, caution, long post ahead!

I would like to ask your advice about starting training in order to be a commercial pilot.

- Some background about me:
I'm a 31 year old, Finnish guy working on my PhD in natural sciences.

It has always been my dream to be a pilot ever since I saw the movie 'Top Gun' when I was 5. When I was 18 I started my training as a cadet in the air force, but had to drop out due to personal reasons (death in the family), and finished my military service in the special forces (sgt. first class). I have no flight hours.

As it happened I abandoned the flying dream and started studying, graduated, started work life, and now doing research and working on my doctoral degree.

Last week my professor and supervisor had his second heart attack, and is still in intensive care, not sure if he will get out of it and in what shape he is going to be if he does. This, as well as the job market for people with my education made me reconsider my career choices.
All I have is degrees, no savings, and no real job (I make the same money as the cleaners who clean the floors in university), no pension (researchers don't get salaries, they are paid grants). I can either continue doing research, or be a teacher.
It means I will have to take a study loan for the entire cost of the training+living expenses.

My uncle and my cousin are both commercial pilots, one captain in SAS, the other first officer in Lufthansa, they both are really happy and make really good living.
I would (and do) consult with them, however they both came from the air force with hundreds of hours and just converted their license, they never had to do the training from scratch.

- Where should I start my training?

I've narrowed it down to three schools, each with its own advantages/disadvantages:

#1: Aeropole Finland:
Cost: 107,000 euros
Time: 16 months
Location: it's in Finland, so housing, paper work etc. are much less of a problem.
Quality of service and teaching: should be high, if they stick to the Finnish standards, also us Finns have a good reputation to keep in regards to honesty and reliability.
Price: 107 thousands + loan interest means it will take me about 8-10 to repay the loan, plus pay for extra hours and upkeep of license, if it takes time to find work, which I expect it will, if I only have 229 hours.
Hours: at the end of the training one has a frozen ATPL and 229 hours.

#2 EFT Florida
Cost: 120,00 or ~100,000 USD
Time: 12 or 24 months
All included approach: no extra hidden fees, accommodation on premises included as well as everything else.
Both FAA/EASA licenses: opens more employment opportunities.
internship: possibility to earn experience, pay, and hours as flight instructor. If their website is to be believed, they claim students are able to pay back 30%-40% of their training costs with internship and earn 1500 hours.
tighter selection criteria: I don't know if I'm too old for them, or how hard is it really to get in, they also have all kinds of strange English tests, but I don't know if I should take them, since I've completed 2 full academic degrees in English, published in English, etc.
American bureaucracy: need to figure out all the issues with Visas and permits etc. probably not a big deal, still a small headache.
Quality of service and teaching hard to verify: They have plenty of testimonials, and positive reviews even on this forum, however, even I can put up a fancy website and flood this forum with positive reviews in a couple of weeks, better be safe than sorry, what do you guys think?
Price(???): seemingly the most expensive, but might be the cheapest overall, it's hard to say because the other schools don't advertise many hidden costs and don't include living costs.

#3 Flying Academy Czech Republic:
Cost: 45,000 euros (ex. VAT)
Time: 16 (+12 months)
Price(???): seemingly the cheapest option, but so many extra costs exist
Instructor internship: Like in EFT you can work as an instructor which is great.
All exclusive approach: no idea what the total cost is. No idea how much the cost of living is in Czech Rep, will have to sort out housing etc.
Quality of service and teaching hard to verify: same as EFT.

I'm still relatively young, healthy, disciplined, somewhat bright, single.
Would love to hear your opinions, experiences, and advice.
Should I even be considering this?
Maybe I should just go and start studying else from scratch?

Thanks a lot!

Last edited by TrojanCat; 7th Apr 2015 at 17:10. Reason: (missing words)
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Old 17th Apr 2015, 17:57
  #148 (permalink)  
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Help needed!

Dear all,

My name is Daniel here, I am 18 this year, a Singapore citizen. I've just completed my GCE 'O' Levels.

Since young, at about age 7, it has always been my childhood dream to be a commercial pilot. Recently, I spoke to an airline pilot and he introduced pprune.org to me.

I need help on what to do next. Some has recommended Massey University in New Zealand to me. Any ideas?
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Old 16th May 2015, 10:26
  #149 (permalink)  
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A few questions related to becoming an airline pilot

Hello folks,

I am a second year university student (B.E Computers) and wanted to know how do I pursue my dream of becoming a pilot.

I did some research around but still have some confusion regarding licenses, Institutes and other stuff.

So here are my questions,

1)So far what I've read here and other websites the path to becoming a pilot is SPL>PPL>CPL>ATPL(After 1500Hrs of flying).?
2)Type Rating means that you're authorized to fly that type of aircraft.?
3)Instrument rating is to be done only once?
4)Every six months you go through a fitness test or some sort of test so that the airlines can be sure that you're fit to fly?

Now coming to the training part..

  • Since I have a degree in Computer Engineering, would getting a degree in some aviation stream made any difference? Basically the point of getting my degree is (1)Fail-safe option (2)My parent's don't have enough money for full flight training. So my plan was to work for 2 or odd years after my degree, save up some money and cost will be divided 50-50.
  • Now about the institute, a few weeks ago I had emailed CTC aviation and they quoted 85,000pounds ~ 85 lacs Indian Rupees which is tooooo damn high!(like Audi A6 high!). Goggling results in some famous top institutes to a shady flying school in some deep corner of the country which is very confusing/. Mostly I do not want my training in India and want to go abroad. Some countries which offer good training will be sufficient. I'm taking German Language next semester so can it be helpful somehow?
  • Also can someone explain the licenses stuff? Is it correct that If I've got an FAA license I can only fly in the US? EASA means only Europe? Then what about Asia? I also read about license conversion, what is that?
  • I know that after training I'm definitely not gonna get a job right-away so what are some tips to get that "first" job?
I had a few more questions(less important) that I'll ask later.

But if someone could guide me or show a way it would be very helpful. I don't come from a family of pilots so I have no practical knowledge, just what I read on the Internet.

P.S I want to become a pilot because It's my passion /dream. It's not about the money. I'm ready to face the initial struggle.

Last edited by AA350XWB; 22nd May 2015 at 14:08.
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Old 17th Jun 2015, 10:08
  #150 (permalink)  
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A 350, you'll need to do a bit of homework if you're actually serious and not just a contrail watcher. It's a fair amount of work, at least as much so as a degree but more expensive...and guess who's paying? 100,000+in UK. And the six monthly proficiency checks go on for all your working life. There are a load of scam artists offering shortcuts -pay this for a guaranteed job. Follow your dreams...but do your homework!
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Old 21st Jun 2015, 19:55
  #151 (permalink)  
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Chasing the dream

Hi Guys,

I am in my early 30's and now considering chasing my dream of becoming a pilot.
Unlike most I am not aiming to become an airline pilot. I would prefer to stick to lighter aircrafts.

I would appreciate anybody who has worked through the ranks to give me an indication on what salary expectations should be, I am UK based.

I would also appreciate if anybody can give some input for ideas to get funding.
I would be able to some save for a portion of the cost but would need funding of some sort.
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Old 22nd Jun 2015, 06:00
  #152 (permalink)  
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lighter aircraft
UK based
salary expectations
You can choose any two out of the three
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Old 22nd Jun 2015, 08:25
  #153 (permalink)  
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There are other threads, equally easily found, which will answer othr aspects of your questions.
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Old 14th Jul 2015, 18:23
  #154 (permalink)  
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Any advice for a keen wannabe commercial pilot?

I'm a 15 year old female, who is about to choose my A-levels. I was wondering what routes into the industry was. I've considered going to uni and studying air transport, and I plan to apply for any airline based in the UK's future pilot scheme. I know that the acceptance rate is extremely low, so I need to have a back up plan. I've been fasinated by aviation for as long as I can remember and have wanted to be a pilot since I was around 10.

Any advice would be helpful, thank you.
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Old 15th Jul 2015, 08:40
  #155 (permalink)  
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18 years old Singaporean

Join the RSAF.
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Old 15th Jul 2015, 08:55
  #156 (permalink)  
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I plan to apply for any airline based in the UK's future pilot scheme.

I may be wrong (often am) but I'm not sure there's any such generic "UK" scheme that feeds all the UK airlines - are you perhaps thinking of the British Airway's "Future Pilot Programme"?

Whatever you choose, good luck....
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Old 15th Jul 2015, 19:43
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Many UK based airlines offer 'courses' like British Airway's future pilot scheme, I just used that as a generic term for all the airlines which offer it.
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Old 19th Jul 2015, 10:09
  #158 (permalink)  
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Ah OK, my misunderstanding, it's just that to me
the UK's future pilot scheme
looked like some form of official title.

..I'd still offer the caution that some advertised "schemes" are much more equal than others , and wish you the best of luck....
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Old 26th Jul 2015, 14:34
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what would you do?

Hi, everyone!
I'm a newcomer in this forum, and I came here for the same reason as all of you guys.
So, for the beginning I want to introduce myself. I'm 17 years old Lithuanian, and soon I will start 12th grade (so it's the last year for all my decisions, which will affect my further life). It's been about a two years since I started thinking/dreaming of a commercial pilot profession as my dream job. And I really got in it.
I want to ask you for your advise in several things, like:
1) Where, in your opinion, is best place to study (prices, perspectives, etc.);
2) What is the major personal characteristics needed in this job.

Thank you
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Old 26th Jul 2015, 20:45
  #160 (permalink)  
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Armin, searching this vast forum is a great place to start. many words of past/current/future students can be found by using the search function. There are thousands of posts to read and form your own opinions.
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