ATP or Embry Riddle

Good day wonderful people.

As I get closer and closer to starting my flight training I am in serious need for some feedback. Choosing the right school is very crucial, i am still undecided on where to complete my flight training, my top options are obviously ATP flight school and Embry Riddle. Both schools have their pros and cons and I’m not sure which outweigh which

-Embry Riddle is slightly less expensive, if I go this route I would be receiving most GI Bill benefits such as BAH and will only need 1000 hrs to join an airline, however this training will take significantly more time than ATP

-at ATP on the other end, training will be less time, I could take out a loan to help finance training but it will be more expensive than Embry Riddle and I will need 1500 flight hrs before joining an airline, I know it’s impossible to reach those 1500 hrs during the 7 months of training so I’m not sure how long after training it will take to reach those 1500 hrs. I don’t want to go this route if by the time I reach 1500hrs it will be the same time I would take had i gone to embry Riddle.

Any feedbacks will be greatly appreciated admission teams on both schools have not been helpful


Riddle is a fine school there’s no disputing that but I think you’re looking at this wrong.

First off ATP is not more expensive than ER, not even close. It might be more expensive for YOU due to the fact you can’t use your VA benefits to cover the costs and that’s obviously attractive. Problem is neither training program will allow you to build the required time to fly for an airline until you’ve completed the training.

In both cases you’ll finish with approx 250hrs. and then you’ll need a job to build the rest. While a degree from ER will knock the required time down, with only 2 campuses my understanding is there’s a huge backlog for instructor positions. That means you’ll be on your own seeking employment. This is vs ATP’s 80+ locations where there’s almost always an opportunity.

With that in mind let get back to the money. Senior pilots at Legacy carriers earn over $450k a year but pilots have finite amount of time we can work. At ER you’re looking at 4yrs for a degree THEN at least another 10mos to a 1yr to build the rest of your time putting you at 5yrs before you get to an airline. ATP is on the average under 2.5yrs to get to an airline. Those extra 2.5yrs at ER will literally cost your close to a million dollars in potential lost wages (not to mention seniority and all the benefits that come with it). Further with todays hiring bonuses you can pay off the loans almost immediately.

To me it’s a no brainer.


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While things may have certainly changed since 2018-19, one of my friends in Daytona was a veteran who was using his GI Bill to pay for ERAU. What he explained to me is that GI Bill funds only applied to class, books and examiner fees but he still needed to pay for the flight training fees out of pocket. Please confirm that with ERAU admissions prior to making the decision



You need to be comparing apples to apples. ERAU will just supply you with private, instrument and commercial single plus the choice of CFI or Comm Multi over the course of 4 years. Then you will graduate and need to build an additional 800+ hours to get the 1000 R-ATP. So even if you found a time building job soon after graduating thats at least 5 years from first day to R-ATP mins.

ATP on the other hand would be 7 months and 7 ratings finishing with about 250 hours. Then starting right away as a CFI to build the remaining time getting to ATP mins in 18-24 months.

Strictly talking on a timeline basis, ATP would get you two more years of seniority and pay off exponentially on career earnings. You should check with ERAU admission to see what exactly the GI bill would cover. If it’s only tuition, books and examiner fees you could still be paying for a large sum of money for flight training and on a more extensive timeline.



Everyone already provided great feedback, I am going to add some additional thoughts and questions for you.

My first question is: Do you have any flight experience up front in a trainer aircraft? Flying in the back of a Dreamliner is very different than taking control of an airplane. If you have not had any experience or completed introductory (discovery) flights, I recommend taking a few.

While you’re doing your research, I recommend taking an admission flight with ATP and tour ERAU (I don’t know if they do discovery flights). The difference between ERAU and ATP is that one is a university while the other is a flight school designed to fast track you to the airlines.

The nice benefit of ATP like Hannah mentioned is you can receive financing through partnered loan providers. Even though the cost of ATP seems like a bear, the timeline on the other hand is very forgiving. 4 years at a university where you still have to build time like graduates of ATP’s program, if you’re looking to get to a carrier quicker, ATP is the way to go.

Another question: Do you already have any college credits obtained? If you attend ATP’s program you can receive some college credits for your certificates at the end which may help you as well obtain a degree:


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