Real Answers from Real Pilots

Do I need a Bachelor's or higher education Degree?

(Jesus Alberto Reyes Cruz) #1

Hello everyone :slight_smile:

I am 22 years old currently in college pursuing my 2 year Math/Science Associates Degree I will graduate within the next two years, I would be 24-25 years old by then, after that I will go straight to ATP to start the zero experience to airline pilot program, however, I have some doubts about what education level do I need, and my questions are the following:

Will I be able to work for a major airline in the future if I only have my Associates Degree or do I need higher education?

Is it too late to begin ATP at the age of 25?

Do I need a Private Pilot License in order to begin the zero experience to airline pilot program at ATP?

Thank You.
God bless every one of you.


Hello Jesus and Welcome!

As far as the degree goes I believe Delta is the only Major that lists a 4 yr degree as an actual requirement. However most do list a 4yr degree as “preferred” or “competitive” which means it’s in your best interest to have one. When you’re filling out that application the more boxes you can check the better in order to get that call sooner, that said I do know a number of pilots working at Majors with only a 2 yr and even a few with no degree at all. Ultimately it’s your decision, what I’d say is if your goal is to work at a Major (ANY Major) then you’re probably fine with your Assoc but if you’re heart is set on one specific Major you want to be as competitive as possible.

Jesus 25 isn’t too late to start ANYTHING. Consider the fact a Major won’t even hire a pilot who isn’t at least 23.

ATP requires either a Private License OR at least a 2yr degree, you’re fine.

Bless you too sir.


(Jesus Alberto Reyes Cruz) #3

Thanks Adam.

So I’m planning on going to the ATP flight school in Trenton, NJ in early 2019 after I get my associates degree, ATP is the closest school to where I live, and because they have this fast track program which takes about two years to complete it has really caught my attention, however there is something I don’t understand very well, and I’d like to know if you could help me with it.

They offer these programs, which are the following:

-Start From Private
$74,000 to $80,000 approximately which says 180 day fast track 100 hours multi.

And there is another program that says:

Start with Credit for Private Pilot
$60,995 which says 100 day fast track 100 hours multi.

The fast track program says that I can begin training from zero time, does that mean I can start without having a private pilot license, I mean no experience at all? Or do I have to start with the “Start with credit for private pilot program” in order to get a private license, that’s $60,995 and then go with the other program zero to airline pilot program which is $80,000, and that would make a total of over $140,000, would that be the total cost?

Once again thanks, you’re so kind I really appreciate your time and help.



I guess maybe they could word it better, but the start FROM Private means you’re starting from zero flight time and INCLUDES your Private license as part of the program. The start with CREDIT for Private means you already HAVE your Private license and they’re giving you credit for it hence the lower price. It’s an either or (either you HAVE your Private or you NEED your Private). Btw, it’s $64-74K vs $51-61K. Not sure where you got the $80k?