Just joined today. Already read some great advice and gave me a more clear and realistic expectation of becoming a pilot. Thank y’all for that.
I read one pilots outline that said to do a degree first (which with the 60 hours required for ATP, I’m assuming just to at least get Associates) and then look to get into ATP. What can I do in the mean time to get prepared for ATP and just being a pilot in general while I’m going for my degree? Is there courses or tests or just anything that will help me down the road that I can start knocking out in the next couple of years?
Some incite on my goals, I just ETSed from the Army three days ago. I have zero experience with anythint related to aviation. My goal as of now is to work for UPS as a pilot. Just to see if y’all have anymore info for me.
Thanks again for answering other questions. It’s definitely helped me a lot. Looking forward to more info and hopefully joining the pilot family in the future. God bless
The first thing you should do is take an introductory flight. It is one thing to think you like flying from the back of a 737, it is quite another to actually fly a small airplane. You can take an intro flight at ATP or just about any flight school.
By the way, assuming you had an honorable discharge, you should be eligible to attend ATP without any college. I would recommend doing this, then working on your degree while you are a regional pilot. There are many schools out there that will give you credit for your flight training and some for your military experience. College Credit for Airline Career Pilot Students / ATP Flight School
Take a look at those links and let us know what other questions you may have.
As Chris mentioned, an introductory (admissions) flight should be your first step. You could do one at any local airport that has a flight school or ATP, I would recommend taking a few if you have the opportunity. You want to find the best school for you that you feel would value you and provide you the resources and product you need to be successful.
Chris made a really great posting a while ago which helps asks the questions you should when given a tour of a training facility:
If you have a date when you would want to start flight training, written exams are good for 24 months (2 years) after date of results. I’ve seen and recommended students to study for the PAR (Private) written within enrollment which would be plentiful time to accomplish at least the PAR. If time remained, you could then work on the other writtens thereafter.
As the others have said, start with an intro flight and a training center tour. If that goes well and you’re ready to jump all in, apply for financing and get your first class medical.
You didn’t mention your age, but I imagine with military service under your belt you’re at least mid to late 20s. The reason we recommend college before is typically for those students that are right out of high school. Seeing as though you are clearly past that, we recommend you get started right away and play catch up obtaining the degree online while at the regionals.
Once you get your class date set, you can begin working on the written exams and knock out as many as you can. They are good for 2 years after completion.
Thanks Chris. I’ll look into my area ATP and see what they tell me in regards to my military.
I have a wife and daughter and we just bought a house. Is ATP demanding enough that I can’t work another job in those months? I would still need to work at least part time hours to be able to help until I get through the program
ATP takes what usually takes years and compresses it into months of training. Demanding is an understatement and even those who dedicate 100% of their time to it find it extremely challenging. While no one can stop you, working during the program is highly discouraged and most who attempt it fail miserably. Know that there will be no excuses or “I thought it would be ok”, etc etc. Fall behind or bust more than a few checkrides and you’ll be cut.
Most people take out additional funds in their loans to cover living expenses.
You will in no way be able to hold a job while enrolled in ATP. Many have tried and it never, ever ends well. I believe it is actually in the student handbook that working while in the program is prohibited. This is not to be difficult, but because ATP wants to best position you for success in your training and your career.