Hi! I plan on starting with ATP in January at the KAPA location. I’m curious how many of you stayed with ATP to instruct vs seeking employment at outside schools. If you did go to an outside location, do you think your hours were harder to accomplish? I ask, because at this current time (and somewhat near distant future), I do not believe I will be able to relocate to an ATP location, should that be required. Thanks!!
Others will chime in but what you’ll find is D) All the above. Many instruct for ATP, many do not. Some do well outside of ATP and others do not. There are many variables with the biggest probably being where you’re located. If you’re in an area where there’s lots of general aviation you should have no problem finding another job and building time. If there isn’t you will.
What I can tell you is there’s a reason ATP gets calls everyday asking if they’re hiring.
I taught at ATP, but I had some friends teach elsewhere and none of them had a hard time getting their hours. The main thing that they missed out on though was Tuition Reimbursement through ATP’s airline partnerships.
Thanks, Adam. I’m in Denver so I don’t believe a lack of GA will be much of an issue. Fingers crossed.
Ah…I see. I was kinda under the impression the airlines would do tuition reimbursement regardless of having taught there or not. Good to know.
According to the chief instructor at the ATP center I visited, with ATP you can elect to receive the sign-on bonus from the regional to be paid as an hourly stipend added to your CFI pay instead of taking it as a lump sum when you actually get to the regional. So basically you can access that money sooner but the total amount is the same for any of the regional’s new hires.
As far as I know what you are talking about is true for SkyWest, but other airlines offer both reimbursement and bonuses.
Horizon did for me in 2017. It still looks like they do. As do other regionals: Compare Airline Sponsored Assistance for Pilots / ATP Flight School
Ah, thanks for the clarification on tuition reimbursement vs bonus. He was in the SkyWest program.
There are some tax advantages to participating in Tuition Reimbursement vs. the sign on bonus. Be sure to speak with your tax preparer, but generally Tuition Reimbursement is not taxed, whereas a sign on bonus is.
That’s a great point Chris, I hadn’t thought about that.
I’d say the same. Most of my friends as well as I, stayed and instructed at ATP. Having safe well-maintained aircraft, a structured teaching curriculum, steady flow of students and opportunities for pathway programs and tuition reimbursement were all reasons to wait for a CFI spot or relocate to stay with ATP.
A few people I know didn’t wait and took longer building time than the rest of our class. One took an additional 6 months, the other an additional year.
It really just depends on what other opportunities you find. Some will pay you well but you won’t fly a lot. Some you might fly a lot but the aircraft might not be as well maintained or the number of students not as consistent. It’s all a trade off!
I’m also starting in January, Nervous and excited! Its a big career change for me.
Nervous and excited is good, studying and banging out some writtens is better!
Super, I plan on giving it 1000% during my time in the program. I plan on putting in my 2 weeks notice so I can focus on making the dream come true. From what I’ve read on here, the general pathway through ATP to become a commercial pilot is the following : Graduate from ATP, Become CFI for ATP, then Apply to the Majors?
No. That is not the general or common pathway. The norm is:
Work harder than you probably ever have so you can graduate from ATP. Do well and you’ll be offered a position as a CFI and build the required 1500hrs. Get hired by a Regional where you’ll gain experience and build time and hopefully get hired by a Major.
Those who do EXCEPTIONALLY well will have the opportunity to interview and be selected into Spirit or Frontier’s Direct entry program. This again is not the norm.
Congratulations on your start date. There is a ton of info here guiding you through your next steps: Getting as many written exams completed as you can and completing the required day one items given to you by the admission department.
This is an exciting step but a big one. Take one day at a time, one rating at a time and put in the work. It seems like it’s a quick hop skip and a jump to the airlines but it will take more time and effort than you can ever mentally prepare yourself for. We’re here to help guide you so let us know if you have questions along the way.