Part time training

I am a 41 year old father of 5 that has always dreamed of being a pilot but I’ve never been able to do it. With my family responsibilities, I cannot just quit my job and do full time pilot training. But I work 3 on 3 off, so my question is: Could I do the training on my 3 days off until I finish? Obviously it would take longer than the 7 months or 9 months that’s advertised, but that’s ok. Is that ok? Thanks for the knowledge


ATP does not offer part time training, you will need to seek out a local flight school for that. I will warn you though that that kind of inconsistency will likely end up costing you much more that you think in the long run and will take much longer than you might be told.


Ok thanks. So 3 or 4 days a week of training wouldn’t be enough?


3-4 days would work, the problem is it rarely happens. Most flight schools don’t have the resources (airplanes and instructors) to handle it. You fly one day, the next day there’s no plane available, the next there’s bad weather and you only got a single day in. The following week there’s no instructor, etc etc etc.

This is why so many of ATPs students started their training elsewhere. It’s not easy to take 9mos off from life so they try part time but it doesn’t work.

This question comes up often and my response is always the same BUT set a realistic timeline. If you’ve been training for months and months and aren’t progressing, you need to reevaluate your plan.



If you’re looking at attending a program like ATP, it is a full-time commitment and working is not advised. However, if you’re looking to attend a self-pace program at like a mom-and-pop shop, you may get away with 3 days of flying. Something to take into consideration is what happens if there’s weather, maintenance issues, or an instructor isn’t available, you may miss out on those day. Consistency in training is key because it allows you to build upon the previously learned skills and improve them.

One drawback many have at self-pace is they train as they can afford, this can cause an increase in the training timeline which may cause you more money in the end. If you can set aside a decent chunk that the opportunity comes up to fly the 3 days at a time, then you may be golden.