Getting Hours w/wo ATP school

Hi Folks,
I see so much about how you can ‘get to a major airline on an accelerated plan’ via ATP but nothing ever mentions how many hours you can get just from the schooling. How many hours of flight time is someone finishing ATP getting throughout that 7+ month accelerated process? Should we expect to find other work to build towards 1000+ or 1500+ hours if our goal is Commercial Airlines?
Does anyone know a better way to quickly/safely get hours instead of going the ATP route?


When you finish the program, you will have about 270 hours logged in your logbook if you started at zero time. Flight instructing is by far the most preferred route to build time. Airlines like to see a CFII rating and providing dual given time using it. If you did well throughout the program, you could be offered an opportunity to begin flight instructing at an ATP location. That route will help you build the remaining 1230 hours to get to ATP mins in safe and reliable aircraft, provide an income and the opportunity for pathway programs with tuition reimbursement.

If instructing isn’t something you want to do, you can take your ratings and run. You’re going to be a highly qualified candidate (in terms of ratings) to go apply for other low time pilot jobs. They can be hard to find but you could do banner towing, aerial photography, sightseeing, pipeline, etc.


Sure it does. The ATP website shows you exactly how many hours you’ll get:

With that in mind, FYI, being a pilot is highly dependent on your ability to find information in the volumes of manuals we’re responsible for being able to navigate. Just something to keep in mind.

While there maybe other routes I don’t believe there’s better than flight instructing. Nothing hones your skills better than sitting next to a newbie who’s trying to kill you :slight_smile:


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All the information you are seeking is on ATP’s website, we all once found it and it’s not going to disappear anytime soon.

The only other avenue other than a flight training school like ATP is to attend a smaller-scale (aka mom-and-pop school). After that you could pursue your instructor ratings or partake in commercial jobs like aerial photography, banner towing, pipeline patrol etc. There is no exact way to get your 1,500 but think about the type of work you will do in the airlines; you will fly 99.9% of the time instrument flight rules (IFR). Unless you’re that one guy flying JFK to LGA via VFR and made a viral sensation being the one airliner to depart JFK as a VFR target. Ultimately, the choice is yours, but CFI is the most common route and the best way to hone in your skills for the airlines.