Real Answers from Real Pilots

Family life/Which school?

Hello,

My name is Ali and I’m currently 22 looking to begin flying and pursue a career as an airline pilot. At 22 I know I’m still young but I do not want to waste any more time than I already have. I was looking for accelerated programs and ATP was a big one that popped up.

For those who completed schooling there, how is the quality of the learning? I understand it’s extremely accelerated and it could be a downfall at an extent. How was the experience completing the program, applying, and getting positions?

Lastly, family life. This topic is huge to me and I’m sure I’ll get people saying that I’m too young to even think of a family or marriage, but it’s always a concern in the future. Is there a balance? Is it what some people say, that you barely see your family and you’ll be gone for a good amount of time and away? I know this certain topic shouldn’t stop me from pursuing a passion, but it is an important thing to me. Seniority plays a big role in the aviation world of course. That being said, with low seniority, does that mean you don’t have some downtime or time spent near home?

Thanks guys

Ali,

I think that is actually a very good question. Yes, being a pilot has one on the road a lot, there is no denying that. However, when a pilot is home, they are simply home. No take home work, no phone calls, no pressure to work on your off days (unless you want to). So to me, the time gone is made up by the quality time spent at home. Low seniority does not mean that you won’t have time at home, it just means that you won’t be home on weekends or holidays.

Take a look at our “Schedules” section, it will give you a very good idea of what our schedules look like.

Chris

Ali,

It’s a matter of being flexible. You’ll actually have plenty of time off it’s just when you’re jr you don’t have much say as to when. What’s good is that you are young. The sooner you start and begin to build seniority BEFORE you have a family, the sooner you’ll be able to gain some control over how much time you get to spend with them.

As for the program being accelerated, the only downside is if an individual can’t keep up. Both the airlines and the military train ALL their pilots using accelerated programs and it’s hard to argue with their results.

Adam

Thank you, Adam. I feel like the hard part is actually starting, and once I start I’ll feel fine. It’s difficult to feel like I want to start over, not understanding how the lives of pilots may actually be. But thank you.

Thanks, Chris. I will go ahead and check that out.

Ali,

This forum has a ton of information that can help you to better understand the lives of pilots. Also check out our “Flying the Line” section for more information on what the lifestyle is like.

Chris