Real Answers from Real Pilots


How strict is ATP on the 250lbs rule? I’m at 262 currently and am working to get back down. I’ve played football all my life and wear 262 pretty good. (I look like I’m about 225). I fit pretty good into a PA-28.


It’s not about wearing it well or looking good, it’s about weight and balance. If you get two 250+ pilots upfront you may already be out of CG.

You need to give ATP admin a call.


The biggest issue would be restrictions on who you could fly with (Smaller CFIs and DPEs). This could cause delays.

I had a friend who delayed training 6months until he got his weight down. He’s now at the airlines.

Chris F

ATP does have the height and weight restriction for weight and balance issues. It could cause a serious safety concern depending on who else you’re flying with and the type of airplane. For example the 2001 Seminoles with two 190lb pilots are out of CG and can’t take off with full tanks of gas. You can only imagine if you’re trying to fly that plane with a 220lb DPE. You won’t be going anywhere.
With that being said, you’re not a ton off the limit. Work on doing what you can to drop some weight but you should definitely call Admin and see what they say. I have seen students admitted in to the program exceeding those limitations granted they had an extra evaluation flight to determine they could operate the aircraft safely within its envelope. You may be limited with the instructors you can fly with or DPEs, etc.