Real Answers from Real Pilots

Quit my job, joined ATP. Starting Soon!

So I thought I’d finally post on the forum here!

I am extremely excited, and a bit nervous, to start at ATP. I obtained my PPL through a flight club I am a member of, and while I feel I did very well, and I had very good instruction, I am ready to fly, and train like a pro. Meaning, everyday. I had some start/stop issues through my private mainly due to maintenance issues and VERY long annuals.

While working on my PPL, I started working the line at an FBO. Fueling, and servicing all kinds of aircraft and I got to meet so many new pilots, and constantly asked for career advice and wisdom. I was dragging through the beginning of my IFR training and realized that I am just not making headway. So, I started saving as much money as I possibly could. I saved tax returns, and pinched every penny possible.

Recently, a new ATP location opened at the airfield I work at, and I discussed with them about the FlexTrack program that is offered. Short answer if your thinking of doing it? Just don’t. It’s going to do more harm than good. So with the scheduling issue cause of my job, I was down for a little while because I had high hopes that I would be able to work and flight train.

I crunched the numbers, and with a little help from my wife, I have about 7 months of living expenses saved, plus I learned you can use your loan to pay for some living expenses so even better, put in my resignation notice at my line job and Feb. 7th I start ATP FULL TIME with credit for my private. I stayed active in my flying and flew at least 3 times per week so I didn’t get rusty, and this greatly helped with my entrance.

I wrote all this because if anyone is thinking that they can’t quit their job, and flight train full time, or that this is impossible to make it work, ITS NOT! I promise that you can do this and it is possible.

I have a few more days of work left, and then I am very honored, and excited to put my head down and learn to fly like a professional. Dream come true.

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Nice post Lucas,

Thank you for sharing your story. I’m sure others will read it and hopefully it will help them to make a decision.

The only thing of course is many people are in many different situations and what worked for you, might not be an option for others. Everyone obviously must do what’s best for themselves and their families.

Have you started your writtens?

Adam

Thanks Adam,

I know my situation will not work for everyone, and rightfully so. I do have many pilot/student friends who are very “down in the dumps” about professional flying and rightfully so, there’s a lot of difficulty out there. I just hope I can share a tiny bit of positivity, and show appreciation for the opportunities I’ve been given.

As for written exams, yes I have started working on them. I lot approximately 2-4 hours per day for ground while I’m still finishing my last couple weeks of my job. Scheduling the written exams has been difficult. With the “world health situation” testing centers have very limited hours in my area, and only allow 2-4 students in the testing center at a time and last week, my local center closed their doors for 2 weeks due to people getting sick.

Trying times these are…

Warm regards

Lucas they are indeed!

Great job doing the studying, keep it up. Worse case, if you’re ready you can bang them out once you start at ATP. The idea is you don’t want to spend a ton of time studying for them while you’re there.

Adam

Lucas,

Congratulations on beginning your journey to becoming a professional airline pilot and thank you for sharing your story on the forum.

I am busy studying for a 737 written exam myself, so I get what you are going through with the writtens.

Thanks for the update, please keep them coming.

Chris

Thanks Chris,

Best of luck on your exam. I’m sure you’ll excel.

Lucas

Lucas
I figured I would put this here because I am following a similar process as you. I have no questions (yet) just wanted to add to your story in case there is a future pilot on the fence. I have been in Pharmacy for 11 years. I have reached the highest pinnacle I can achieve. But I have recently decided to follow my passion and become a professional pilot. To anyone reading this post, I understand your fears and apprehension. First, if you are thinking about becoming a pilot for money, you will be disappointed. After doing some research, it will be a few years before you start to see significant paychecks. The road to becoming a pilot is not cheap and will cost you money and time to start. Second, you are in the right place, this website has answers to most, if not all, the questions you have. Adam (Pilot Mentor) and Hannah (Pilot Mentor) will give it to you straight and honest. They are not recruiters or get paid for endorsing any path or airline. It took me many nights of calculating my budget, time, and family commitments to decide if this was something I wanted to pursue. Then something Adam mentioned; made me decide. “A pilot has to make life altering decisions.”
I have fully committed to enrolling in ATP (Paine Field). I have obtained my First Class Medical. Once I secure financing, I will be on my way. My advice to any potential pilots out there is this, nothing is certain. There is a wealth of information on this website to help any level of pilot get started. I currently have Zero flight time, but my own path will start with taking the written exams to get a solid background before touching any flight controls. This website, and the very generous and talented mentors, will always mention, nothing is certain. Aviation can and will always change. There will be pilot shortages, gas supply issues, and many other issues that will affect the future of aviation. Just remember the old adage “No risk, No Reward”.
Good luck and clear skies to all the airmen in the sky and those of us who are starting out.

Angel,

Thanks for your input! Let me know if you have any questions about ATP or flying in general.

If you haven’t already, I’d recommend you begin studying ground as much as you can. Since you’re starting from zero time, private pilot course will have lots of new material and you will be “drinking from a firehose”.

Some free resources I’d recommend is YouTube channels like MZeroA, fly8ma, and the finer points. Free textbooks online like “Pilots handbook of aeronautical knowledge” “the airplane flying handbook” are great things to thumb through.

Good luck, here if you need help

Lucas

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Angel,

Glad I could help but you sure that was me? :wink:

Adam

Lucas
Thanks for the information. I already have the Airplane Flying Handbook and cant wait to start the videos. Wish you the best of luck in your training

Adam
I dont think you said that quote verbatim, but you did mention that pilots need to have critical thinking skills and must make decisions or “be in command” which made me realize that I need to believe in my decision and execute. I am very grateful for all the help. I will honestly pay it forward once I have achieved FO and beyond. Thank you for being truthful and straightforward.

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Hello! Congradulations. I quit a 20 year career to do the same, it can be done and you’ll do fabulous! nothing compares to the feeling of this accomplishment. I’m finishing in the Seminole this week and have already been hired at a flight school right near my house.

If you get really bored i’ve blogged the majority of it on my tik tok account

Jeremy,

I looked thru a few of your videos. Very interesting how you documented it! I noticed your first day was some time in July, I assume you came in with credit?

Ben

Congrats Jeremy! Very cool.

Please keep us posted on your progress.

Adam

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Jeremy,

I saw on one of your videos your “favorite place on earth”. Would that be Capri?

Chris

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Yes! Absolutely

Yes sir, had PPL for about 12 years no intentions on it being career related :slightly_smiling_face:

I thought so, Via Krupp to be more precise.

Great place. My favorite hotel there is the Tiberio Palace, but last time we stayed at Hotel San Michelle in Anacapri. It was a different experience, but we did enjoy the quietness of Anacapri.

If you have yet to read The Story of San Michelle by Axel Munthe, it really should be on your list.

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Jeremy,

It’s nice to see success from someone like you. Thanks for the encouragement, and it really helps me feel like I am on the right path. It’s very refreshing to see your videos and meet someone, who after a 20 year career, made the change. An inspiration!

Lucas

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Congrats Jeremy! What an accomplishment! Good for you for not letting the “is it too late?” bug get you. You went out and did it and now you’re at the start of a brand new exciting career as a professional pilot.
-Hannah

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