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Looking for some general advice

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Old 7th Mar 2018, 07:27
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Looking for some general advice

Excuse the incoming life story!

When I was younger, I started delving into the world of aviation back in Australia, doing a bit of theory here, and some flying there on 152s, until my solo and certification for day VFR. Eventually, I ran out of money. This was back when I was about 16.

Fast forward almost a decade to today. I've been working as cabin crew for over three and a half years, which was initially intended to fund future flying studies. Got a little too comfortable in the job and gave up on pursuing the pilot career.

Things changed on a layover about a month ago. At the end of the night, after the rest of the crew went back to the hotel, it was just me, and this Aussie 777 Captain with well over 20K hours under his belt, who essentially kicked my behind and convinced me to continue the pursuit, saying I was "a fu**ing idiot" for leaving it. He was right. I got lazy and complacent. I basically took the easy option.

Since then, I've been looking into ways I could get back on track. To my understanding, it is possible to do every bit of theory there is and take the exams without having to do any flying whatsoever. First off, is this true? If so, that would work well for me, as I can continue with my job, and focus my free time on reading a bunch of ATPL books. that's the limitation at the moment; I must retain this job until I'm absolutely positive I'm ready to continue.

Next is in regards to the books themselves. Are the topics in ATPL theory inclusive of everything in books related to PPL and CPL? I'd assume so, but I just need some confirmation. If this is true, then there's no point to purchasing books for one license, then another, and so on.

Additionally, if the ATPL books I have are outdated, the only potential issue would be with air law, correct? I don't see the physics of meteorology, or theory of flight changing any time soon, so I'd only need to find books on subjects that change more frequently.

At present, I'm just going through a meteorology book while I'm at home, or on layovers. Halfway through this one, so I started to wonder if there are any practice exams that can be taken. Haven't found anything free so far, and from the quick search on this forum I've only found dead links. EASA, but I guess it shouldn't matter for this particular topic.

Another thing I'd like clarification on with exams is the process for licenses. Suppose I know everything needed for the ATPL theory. Would I need to do PPL and CPL theory exams first, before doing ATPL? Sounds like an odd question, since you can't take one licence without the previous ones, but that makes sense for hours. ATPL theory just sounds like CPL questions, with additional ones, and vice versa for CPL exams. Basically, I'm trying to find the fastest way to speed through the theory. We can assume my flying hours to be zero, since it's been so long since I last flew.

That brings me to the last question, which is in regards to the flying hours. Now flying schools offer packages for flying and theory, but what if you only need a package for the flying itself? Those should exist, right? So I'm thinking:

1: Refamiliarise with flying. Shouldn't be a major issue. Checkride. Boom, PPL. MECIR, Night Rating, move on.
2: Build hours, shouldn't take more than a few weeks if I have the theory down. CPL out of the way.

How's that so far? Anything I'm missing?

Sorry for the sheer number of questions. The archive reference thread needs updating. Dead links and such.
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Old 7th Mar 2018, 07:49
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Free questions for most countries can be found Home Page here.

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Old 7th Mar 2018, 08:10
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That's certainly going into the bookmarks. Much obliged.
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Old 7th Mar 2018, 09:28
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A lot of your questions are, I think, somewhat dependent upon where you may train and hope to work subsequently. The rules on training, exam to flight test maxima, need for structured groundschool (or not) vary with national regime.

So where is home? Australia?

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Old 7th Mar 2018, 10:20
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Well I'm currently living in Dubai for work, but the saying about not limiting yourself to the aircraft you want to fly also rings true for everything else. As long as it has wings and engines, it's fair game, no matter where in the world.

That said, I do plan to go for EASA, but that can just be converted later on if I plan to fly outside of europe. Though I've heard Ryanair is looking for CPL pilots, so that seems like my next step after I get my CPL. Assuming they still need pilots whenever I get my license.

The retirement airline for me would probably be Qantas, but I'll worry about that when (if) the time comes. Bigger things to focus on first.

On an unrelated note, why do I need to keep resetting my password? Every time I have to log in, the password is invalid. I'm using a password manager, so I'm not mistyping anything.
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Old 7th Mar 2018, 11:17
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Hiigaran,

Do you have the right to live and work in Europe? If not, then don't bother with EASA licences. Very expensive.
The Australian lic is accepted in the ME and Asia with a conversion.
If you want to retire on Qantas, you'd better get cracking, it is a strict seniority airline.
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Old 7th Mar 2018, 12:06
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I've got Australian, Hungarian and Swedish passports.

What kind of expenses are we looking at, anyway? How much, and what areas?
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Old 7th Mar 2018, 16:38
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Very general for the UK, full time integrated course you're looking at £100,000. Give or take.
Depending on the job market etc, you might have to pay for a type rating as well, Budget £30,000.
If you go part time or modular in the UK, budget £60,000 and perhaps be ready to also pay for a type rating.
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Old 7th Mar 2018, 23:32
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I typically bring this up with the pilots I fly with, so I can have multiple perspectives, and a lot say that Spain is the place to if you want to go for EASA when it comes to costs. True, or is the difference in price not that significant?

Whatever the case, integrated or modular will include theory, right? If I can pass theory exams on my own at earlier stages, would there be discounts on packages? Or separate ones that are available just for the flying aspect?
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 08:56
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Originally Posted by hiigaran View Post
If I can pass theory exams on my own at earlier stages, would there be discounts on packages? Or separate ones that are available just for the flying aspect?
This is basically modular training. You can do your ATPL theory with one provider, your hour building with another and then your CPL/IR/ME with also a different school. Some schools offer discounts to CPL/IR/ME if you did hour building with them etc.
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Old 8th Mar 2018, 09:09
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I don't think there's much difference in prices between OAA, L3 and FTE (Spain). With regards to the exams, going integrated (full time) there probably is very little chance of a discount. What you must be aware of though, is that their validity expires after a certain time (I think 18 months after the last one has been completed).

Read these.
https://www.airpilots.org/career-mat...ings-alliance/
A different solution to modular v integrated. It has some very good info - especially pros and cons.
FTEJerez | Integrated Course FTE in Spain. Fees and funding should help
https://www.l3airlineacademy.com/career-programs L3 aka CTC
https://www.cae.com/civil-aviation/a...ecome-a-pilot/ just for balance re the "big 3".

One of the biggest risks of going integrated is the market collapsing because of a downturn (or an airline or two going bust dumping a lot of experienced pilots on the market - this has recently happened). If you get your timing right and you're on a tagged scheme, you're ok. If you're a "white tail" - ok, then you want to hope your training goes well and there's a market. Your skills deteriorate pretty quickly if you don't use them and if you miss a hiring window, then your renewals can really bite into whatever money you have left...
Whereas modular, you can pause the training and pick it up when the market improves. Note, unless you manage the training properly, you may have to settle for a turboprop or piston job. It is one of the risks that modular brings.

Note, this applies for UK/Europe, the Australian market is different.

As Council Van has said, get a medical done before you spend a cent.
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 09:34
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If I can do all my training debt-free, I'd be happy hopping around with turboprops or pistons. I'm at that stage in my cabin crew job where I'm sick of listening to self-important supervisors make mountains out of molehills with service-related things.

Pardon the mini rant.

So it seems like a modular route is the way to go for me then. Honestly didn't expect it to be the cheaper choice, which I suppose is a bonus. Figured integrated would be cheaper, since I assumed from a business perspective you'd want to keep customers with you for as long as possible.

Also, I do have an expired Class 1, and I doubt much has changed with my health since I took it about 5 years ago. I was so close to taking an integrated course when I lived in Sweden, but the company kept moving up their starting dates. I ended up pulling out because if they couldn't get their act together on something as simple as a starting date, why should I trust them with my life and money? Perhaps I should have stuck with it, in hindsight, but there's no sense thinking about it now.
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Old 10th Mar 2018, 14:45
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Nonetheless; Get. A. Current. Class. One. First....
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Old 11th Mar 2018, 13:11
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I would get in contact with WingsAlliance they offer progression paths for students looking to do modular at a very affordable price compared to those expensive Integrated schools that charge you the price of a house

Right now I would avoid the UK for the ATPL exams, they seem to be the toughest CAA and are the only country that isn't Germany to have the more difficult open answer process on exams (manually typing in the answer as opposed to selecting A,B,C,D) Also they are incredibly expensive to book exams £70 per exam

Other countries charge €5 per exam like Greece and Poland is about €300 total for all exam fees which will save you about €1000 just on exam fees going to other countries

As the person above me said definitely get a class one medical first, your career will never even leave the ground if you can not obtain one
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Old 12th Mar 2018, 11:42
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Originally Posted by button push ignored View Post
What exactly does Wings Alliance do for you that you canít do on your own.
Hold your hand, kiss your arse, whilst lifting your wallet.
I see one of their partner schools is Stapleford Flight Center.
A great modest priced U.K. flight school.
Why not just go there.
Theyíll give you correct free advice.

I canít stand the U.K. CAA.
But Iíd stay the F away from Greece.
Poland is great.
Spain is a pain.
Ireland is great too.

But studying for exams should be done from your parents house, wherever that may be, that you locked yourself into for six months.
Even if exams are £70.
You canít go to Poland just for the £5 exams.
Too many distractions.
You may end up with a wife.
Ainít that right Agnieszka, and Kasia?
We need to grab a pint some day I would love to listen to your stories!

Back on topic, ideally you shouldn't take the word of a flight school and should do your own research, PPRuNe is a great place for advice and where you can find good training at good prices

A lot of people I bumped into in the UK had this ignorance of UK CAA being the end all and be all for ATPL exams and if you go to Eastern Europe you won't find a job which is no doubt fed to them by the flight schools

A lot of them didn't know the exams are EASA questions and not exclusive to the UK CAA

Why make it harder for yourself? I would stay away from the UK for ATPL exams no doubt about that
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Old 13th Mar 2018, 18:32
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Greece never crossed my mind, but I'm curious as to what it is specifically about it that is a problem.

Can add Poland to the list of candidates then. Hungary was mentioned by one of my pilots a couple of days ago. Opinions?

I've already had my poor experience with one of the two flight schools I was with when I was younger. Second one took me for a ride, but I think I was lucky enough to pick up on it very early on and pulled out soon after. Can't ever trust a business when that much money is at stake.

Oh, and don't you worry about wives. The most common advice I get from the old Captains is to never get married! I think I'll take that to heart the most.
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 03:55
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So I've knocked out the meteorology book and working on general navigation, and a few of the chapters outlines the usage of flight computers. The one referenced is a CRP-5. If I were to buy one, should I go for that exact model, or something else. I've been recommended an E6-B by colleagues. Any other alternatives as well that I should consider?

Also, I'm now set on picking a school in Hungary. I've got accommodation over there that I can use, so that knocks out a good chunk of my living expenses.
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Old 30th Mar 2018, 04:08
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I don't believe the E6B handles compressibility, though I may be wrong. Whatever you get, make sure that the Authority concerned allows its use - for example, the UK only allows the AFE ARC 2, Pooleys CRP-5 and the Jeppesen CR-3

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Old 30th Mar 2018, 20:28
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I assume if the UK allows those, then any EASA country would also allow them, right?

What other differences are there between the three UK approved ones you mentioned? At the moment, I feel like I should just get the CRP-5 because that is what's used in the books I'm using, but if the other two have additional features that might come in handy for something else, I may consider them as well. I'm sure their general operation is more or less the same.
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Old 31st Mar 2018, 06:23
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The UK only specified the above ones because some of the exams are being taken in driving test centres, and the invigilators needed to be told specifically what was allowed and what was not - there are otherwise simply too many on the market.

We recommend the Jeppesen CR-3 over and above any slide computer. You can do convergency and grid nav on the front face for one thing.

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