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Which country for training?

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Which country for training?

Old 10th Nov 2004, 13:19
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A while back i thought about doing the ppl and hour building at HAI in the states, then coming back and doing distance learning at Oxford and then their CPL add on.
I figured that would be about:-
20k at HAI
2.5k OAT distance Learning
8K OAT CPL add on plus Vat I expect.
Don't know if this is possible or not though, and as said before there's the other costs while abroad.
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 13:29
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helicam, is that 250 hours total time? i was under the impression in the uk it was 250 hours after a certain point. Not really sure where to look though tried the CAA website but its not exactly user friendly.
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 14:25
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I am one of the people who went over to the states on a j-1 visa and are now working as a flight instructor.

For insurance some schools require their instructors to have 300 hours and some only 200.

The school I work for requires any pilots they train to have only 200 to be a CFI but if they are hiring from outside there own School they require 300.

While I have do not have a JAA certificate, I am more than happy with the standard of my training, and the people I have spoke to say there is not much real word difference between the FAA Vs JAA if you go to a good school.

Give me a shout if you have any questions.
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 15:17
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PhilJ,

It is 250 total time at which the instructor's course can be commenced..

The information is to be found in LASORS; if you haven't got a copy, then get it. Costs about 10 from various avaition suppliers or you can download it and print it for free (aside from the cost of the paper, ink and download time).

Most people I have spoken to believe that it is best to do your training in the country in which you wish to work. Also be aware of any FAA conversion costs in the UK.

Cheers

Whirlygig
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 15:36
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As whirlygig said 250 hours total time as per Lasors. Working in the states is all very well and good fun, I did it for two years but was shown the door when my J1 Visa expired. I know when you get home its tough finding a job.

I only found work because I had done my PPL(h) in the U.K because my face was known. In my experience the Chaps who have conducted training in the U.K always find work over here first. I have a drawer full of ex HAI students C.Vs. Its not that I have anything against them but when someone has invested 250 hours in your school you want to give them something back.

Every single person that I know who has conducted a UK CPL(H) and FIR rating in England has found work as an instructor in this country.

Last edited by helicam; 10th Nov 2004 at 15:56.
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 16:39
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helicam,

I take it you run a training school in the uk? How much would it cost to train from scratch based on minimums inc vat to FIR?

My ambition is to get into offshore/utility work and it seemed the J-1 visa would be a good way to gain experience quickly, although it does beg the question where the turbine time comes from.

More generally, do employers who are not training establishments favour people who have trained in the uk? of those that train abroad does the specific school or location make any difference. For example would Oregon or Florida make a difference.
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 17:24
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PhilJ,

Whilst I accept that my name is not Helicam, Im sure he wont mind me butting in.

From zero to FI(R).

Based on the following rates (from the website of a reputable school in the South)
R22 training 261.44, R22 Self Fly Hire (for hour building) 202.69.

PPL(H) 45 hours = 11.764.80
Medical (Class 1) = 480.00
- you might as well get Class 1 now cos if you fail, you aint gonna do it.
PPL(H) Licence issue from CAA 148.00
Exams (8no.) 280.00
Studying materials (books , equipment, charts etc) 150.00

Hour building a further 110 hours at 202.69 each = 22,259.90

CPL(H) 30 hours @ 261.44 = 7,843.20.
Groundschool (say) 2,000
Other CAA costs which I am not too sure about.

Hour building to instructor level = 65 hours @ 202.69 = 13,174.85

Instructor course = 35 hours @ 261.44 = 9,150.40 plus licencing costs and study materials.

OK total = 67,251.15 plus those bits I am not too sure of, say 70k.

Of course, very, very few people ever do it in the minima allowed reckon on 20% increase. Of course, these are for R22. You would be best to get some other ratings and turbine.

All this information is freely available on the internet you are going to have to do your research and make your decisions based on your circumstances and ambitions. Try talking to few schools and/or operators.

Cheers

Whirlygig
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 17:45
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dont mind who replies the more the merrier!

I had costed it at a local place up here to be around 47K to commercial (hadn't costed the FIR). HAI have the cost at around $50 plus exams but leaving aside the JAA it would be possible to do FAA CFII with mountain external load etc for $45 and then (if the blurb is true) work for a year to get up to about a 1000 hours.

Bearing in mind i intend to move to australia after this Im not sure how beneficial for me the JAA route is. However as I want to work offshore there is a good chance i will end up working tours and i'm having difficulty finding out what the employers actually prefer. The JAA would provide a safety net though for working in Europe if my visa application fails. I am very much keeping my options open at the minute.

What opportunities are there for low hour pilots in the uk who are not instructors?
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 17:53
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What opportunities are there for low hour pilots in the uk who are not instructors?
Square root of diddly-squat.

At the moment.

But the employment situation, as with many things, is cyclical (no pun intended). Could well be on the up by the time you've a CPL. But then again...?

Cheers

Whirlygig
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 19:13
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There are a number of things to consider. Will the school in the USA employ you as a CFI when you have completed your course with them? I have heard that HAI employ only one in ten of their new CFI's. I certainly get lots of resumes from CFIs who are not placed by their school. Having said that if you do get placed you should get around 1,000 hours a year from a good school.

It's all about experience and hours. As said in previous posts you are almost unemployable with low hours. If you have 1 or 2,000 hours you are very employable. All of your helo flying in the USA counts towards a JAA licence despite what some people are suggesting. The FAA licence is an ICAO licence.

Costing is of primary importance to many people. Do the UK costs include VAT, landings etc? Any extras? To suggest that it is cheaper in the UK, even after accommodation costs are included is simply not true. The J1 visa is a good opportunity to live and work in the USA gaining those valuable hours.

Finally anyone suggesting that the training in the USA is an inferior product probably have their own agenda. Don't be afraid to question the record of the school and do speak to ex-students about their experiences. Any school that does not supply that information when requested should probably be avoided.

I have operated under both systems so I feel qualified to comment. I am not hiding my interest in this subject. My website is listed on the message.

Regards,

Chopperpilot47
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 22:27
  #91 (permalink)  

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Chopperpilot47,

My figures most certainly did include landing fees and VAT. The ex-vat rate & ex-landing rate for training and SFH were 210.00 and 160.00 per hour with landing fee at 12.50.

Since I have got a PPL and am currently hour-building, I am fairly certain of my costs to date but still unsure as to what future costs could bite me on the bum later on!!

For everyone,

Just to nail my colours to the mast - I did my PPL(H) in the UK on a S300. Plan to hour build in UK and South Africa. CPL in UK. This is because the UK is where I wish to work - simple as that.

Cheers

Whirlygig

PS - I have no connection with the school whose prices I quoted but I have heard they have a good reputation so my emphasis here was also on quality instruction which MIGHT not be the cheapest.
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Old 10th Nov 2004, 23:09
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I'm currrently training at HAI. The standard of their training is extremely high both FAA and JAA.

They want their students to pass with high grades and that also counts for FAA students.

European flight schools always like to say that FAA is very easy. Well the helicopter is the same and you will have to fly it. So 40-60 hours of training for your PPL. The theory part might be a bit easier but don't forget you have to take an oral exam as well, and the examiner will find your weak spots. So basically you still have to study a lot.

The total costs won't differ much from the UK but, you fly more in a shorter period of time and when you do the CFI route you will fly about a 1000-1200 hours in 24 months.

If you want to go to Australia I wouldn't get a JAA license. As you said yourself hours are more important and converting FAA->CASA is the same as JAA->CASA.

The last note to FAA versus JAA. When pilots are trained so bad in the US, why is the accident rate compared to Europe so low............
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Old 11th Nov 2004, 00:26
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I agree wholeheartedly with the comments about the quality of the FAA licence. There are over 30,000 licenced helicopter pilots in the USA with about 25,000 of them with professional licences. I really think that speaks for itself.

Chopperpilot47
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Old 11th Nov 2004, 00:27
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I agree. I took my PPl in the UK and then did all the FAA stuff at HAI. Having qualified, I am now working in the US in a school flying brand new helciopters and with over 600 hrs will probably end up with over 1000 by the time the J1 is over.
Don't let cynics tell you that HAI is all marketing hype - actually, they are very forthright and honest, and try hard not to be misleading in any way.
Of course HAI only employ one in every 10 students - how many ships do you think they have? (they do have 70 odd students at any one time.) At least HAI isn't promising anyone any jobs. They do help you find one though.

If you are considering doing the JAA at HAI concider this - after 14? months you'll have a frozen JAA ATPL and only 135 hours of flight time. When you return to the UK what job can you get - squat. You don't even have the QFI. Why not go to the US, do the FAA right through to CFII, work for a year and return to the UK if you wish and convert to JAA if you want. At least you'll have the 1000 hours.

Having done FAA and JAA I consider there to be little difference - FAA radio work is a little less strict - but apart from that you'll be just as good an instructor doing the FAA route.
Job opportunities are actually pretty good in the US for CFI's as well - and not in schools where you'll only fly 2 hours a week either.

With all the vietnam pilots retiring there is a massive demand for helo pilots in the US and so the interest and student numbers are really high. Therefore demand for CFI's is also high, and the hours at each school pretty good for the most part.

Went to an FAA safety seminar last night and they talked about how the FAA and the CAA/JAA are all in negotiations for a "world license" which means that in not too distant a future any license will do - FAA or JAA in any country - and the only ones who will be cheesed off at that are the ones that paid the most for it......ie: not the FAA ones.

Finally there is absolutely no way anyone can say that living and studying in the UK will work out cheaper than in the US. It is simply a falicy. Living costs etc are extremely cheap, fuel is cheap and training is half the cost in the UK. Coupled with that the fact that the weather is never really too poor to fly - your training time is shortened massivly - how many UK schools are flight training for 340 days of the year - None. At this time of year most are usually fog bound till noon, and then the rain sets in.
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Old 11th Nov 2004, 00:37
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PhilJ,

Having done my PPL(H) in the U.K, I did a lot of research into where was the best and most cost effective place to do my APTL(H).
I unfortunately came to 2 conflicting conclusions...
1. As the industry in the U.K. is so insular I would have better contacts and therefore better job prospects if I chose to continue my training in the U.K.
2. The overall training cost is considerably less outside of the U.K.

I chose to come over to the states because after talking to many in the industry they said that HAI was, along with a couple in the U.K. , one of the best schools around and nowhere in the U.K. could match their prices.

Since arriving my original plan of going back to the U.K ASAP has had to be changed due to the fact that nowhere seems to want to employ newly qualified commercial pilots. I am therefore now doing the FAA commercial/instructors course in order to build hours before heading home. My fear of not getting my face known to potential UK employers has subsided somewhat as I
am now at a school that has a truely international reach.
On the whole graduates do not find much trouble finding work.

In reply to your JAA vs FAA - 2 different systems that produce the same result- i.e if the level of instruction and final exam is good then you will become a good pilot.

Hope that helps,
Barotrauma.
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Old 11th Nov 2004, 15:08
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One of the reasons the US is less expensive is that the dollar continues to fall relative to other foreign currencies. Look at the conversion rate of the euro to the dollar 2.5 years ago and you will see you can buy close to 50% more dollars with your euro. The pound has also appreciated but not as much.
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Old 16th Nov 2004, 03:53
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Another thing you may want to consider is that you will not be able to get the J-1 visa if you already hold a professional licence. This tripped me up as I went to Australia and got my CPL. Then returned to UK to get a PPL plus build a few hours whilst studying for ATPL exams with BGS. I am now in USA doing FAA I/R and hours building to 250. I will then return to the UK to do the Instructor rating as I can't get the J-1 work visa in the USA. I am hoping I have a better chance of employment if I do the FI back in the UK, which is where I want to work.

I wish I had gone to HAI in the first place and done the full FAA/JAA course, got my FAA CFII and worked for a year as an instructor and come home with 1000 hours. There does seem to be good opportunities for fresh CFI(I) out here.

Getting work in Australia will be very difficult. The Oz visa is not on a plate either.

The reason I went to Australia in the first place is because my girlfreind wanted to go there and not to the USA. I am no longer with that girlfreind. Take my advise - do it alone!!!

If you're loaded then do PPL to CPL + FI in the UK with a busy and reputable school. If your going to scrape everything you have together to do it then HAI looks the best way to me.

Good luck.
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Old 18th Nov 2004, 04:55
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hi
I am currently training in New Zealand for my CPL(H), the reason i came here was simple, its somewhere i've allways wanted to come and second the cost of the training over here is far less than in the UK.
I will end up by the end of jan with a full CPL(H) @ 150hrs, and i will have mountain, sling and night ratings on the lisence which as i understand it if you train in the UK you will not.
Also if you want to work in OZ they do not have any cross over exams for the lisence from NZ due to the trans-tazman agreement.
Training here including living for 9 months will have cost me in the region of 30-35k, and when you consider that 24K of that is course fees i dont think its too bad a deal.

Dont get too hung up on the whole usa Vs UK thing, sometimes you need to think more laterally.

As for employment the only way i can see to do it is to get your ATPL(H) one way or another and go to the states to find work, its what i am going to do..
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Old 25th Nov 2004, 16:54
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Hi

This is for Whirlygig or Helicam or anyone elae who knows. This is on a similar thread.

I am a 500 hour instructor on the old CAA system i.e. no commercial licence. Nobody wants me do you think it worth going to the states to get my CPL and then coming back?
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Old 25th Nov 2004, 19:04
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I m biased as trained in US... and sure if you search my previous posts on the subject you ll see my views...

I have FAA CPL(H) - no work and low hours but that's down to not having the or $$$ to hit the IR or CFI... could recently have walked into a job if I d had the CFI - with less than 250 hrs. And don't have a problem flying in either country... the controls work just the same and it ll hurt just as much if I get it wrong whatever side of the pond I m flying!

But without being big headed - some of the UK trained pilots are frightening... but then some of the FAA one have been a little worrying...

However if the FAA test is so easy - how come I know of people who fail it yet are deamed competent in the UK? Both PPL and CPL...

What I will say though is I spent less on my CPL than several people spent on their PPL by doing it in the US and that includes my rent/airfare/alcohol/car hire/alcohol/food/alcohol...

Oh and last but not least when I started back in late 1996 I called/faxed/email every school I could find - 50 odd in the US - 49 responed, 30 odd in the UK - 2 responded.... customer service still matters to some people...

PW
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