Success rate

Hey all I was just wondering about the success rate for someone who doesn’t have any flying experience. I’ve been on the using flight simulator for the past 8-9 years, with a network called vatsim, and I can say I learned most of ATC terminology and other functions from there, but I never attended a flight school. I was wondering what are the chances of being successful from zero time. I plan on being fully committed.



ATP quotes the current success rate at approx. 80%. While I’m certain you’ve gained some knowledge from the sim you really won’t know until you’re actually in an airplane.


Ok great! I think I can be in that 80% lol


In my experience the 20% were the people who did not truly dedicate themselves to flying and to studying. Learning to fly at any school is a lot of hard work, it takes serious time and dedication, plus a good attitude. Bring all of those things to the table and I am sure you will do well.


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From my experience, only a very small percentage (maybe 3-5%) drops out due to lack of ability. Most of the students who do not finish the program are, like Chris said, students who are not dedicated to the program. Usually these are kids coming straight out of high school that have aviation running in the family, and are ‘sent’ to flight school kind of by default and not because they actually want to.

If you are committed to the idea of having this career, and you’re willing to put in the time and effort, then you should have no problem.


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Hey Earl! I can’t really speak on ATP cause I haven’t started yet myself, but I wanted to say hey to a fellow VATSIM pilot. I was also a controller on the network for about 7 years at DEN ARTCC. I did go on to get my privat pilot certificate and can say my experience on the network definitely helped significantly when it came time to learn navigation and radio communication. Anyways, hello and good luck!