Real Answers from Real Pilots

Finishing On Time

Got a question for former/current ATP students. How close to the 100 day time frame do students typically finish, including all CFI certs? I am thinking in terms of the housing, which I factored into my loan. My assumption would be that after 100 days have passed, if a student is not completely finished, they would need to keep paying $200 out of pocket per week for housing. This could get quite pricy if there are delays. What experiences have you had with this issue? Thanks

Jonah

Jonah,

I finished exactly on time, to the very day. That being said, the program length is about increase by 2 months (credit for private) and 3 months for those starting from zero. This is largely due to the FAA not having enough examiners to meet the general aviation community’s needs.

Keep in mind that from time to time ATP offers free housing at certain locations, contact the admissions department to see where they are currently offering that.

Chris

Jonah,

I actually finished in less time but every student I ever had finished within the allotted time. That said ATP recently posted that the timeline will be extended an additional 2 mos for the 100 day program. The problem is in addition to the pilot shortage there also appears to be an FAA Examiner shortage making it very difficult to make the 100 days time frame. I’d contact admissions and discuss the housing as this is a recent change. http://www.flyingmag.com/practical-test-delays-industry-and-faa-search-for-solutions

Adam

So we should be prepared to spend an extra $1,600 on housing?

Also does ATP ever move you elsewhere to take a checkride? Lets say in Tampa you could not schedual for over a month but at another location you would be able to get in within a week. Would they take advantage of that or keep you at your home base?

Yes, I would prepare for that.

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Yes, they frequently send students to other locations if a checkride can be accomplished faster there.

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Wondering if there is any more information about the lengthening of the programs? Primarily when it will go into effect, if it will be affecting all ATP locations, and if the change will be applied to students already enrolled and/or in progress of their programs? Other than the above linked article I couldn’t find any info on ATP extending the program lengths…

James

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This was posted by ATP

Increasing ACPP Program Duration
ATP is extending the duration of the Airline Career Pilot Program by 2 months (credit private) and 3 months (zero time). The new durations are:
Airline Career Pilot Program – 9 Months
Airline Career Pilot Program (Credit Private) – 6 Months
Checkride Constraints

We are making this change due to nationwide FAA Designated Pilot Examiner availability constraints. As a result of the pilot shortage, nearly twice as many pilots are training compared to just a few years ago, but the FAA has not kept pace designating more pilot examiners. This causes delays for all checkrides, but the delay is most acute for the initial Certified Flight Instructor checkride.
FLYING magazine recently published an article that summarizes the situation:
http://www.flyingmag.com/practical-test-delays-industry-and-faa-search-for-solutions13
ATP offers its students a competitive advantage in that we have the ability to obtain checkrides anywhere in the country. Instead of waiting for local examiner availability, ATP often facilitates transportation to available checkride locations, provides familiarization flights, housing, and meets schedule commitments where other flight schools cannot.
Time to Airline Job

The instructor timeline to airline job is still approximately 2 years, weighing heavily on location and activity level as a CFI. Someone motivated to advance quickly should plan to be flexible on training center assignment so we can provide max flight time opportunity.
Current Students Enrolled Under Old Timeline

ATP will make every possible effort to accommodate the original timeline planned by students when they scheduled. Future students should anticipate the updated program durations of 6 months (Credit Private) and 9 months (from Zero Time).
The training outline has not changed, which means that barring checkride, weather, and other delays, it is entirely possible to achieve the shorter timeframe to completion.

My interpretation is they will still try to complete the program in the shortest amount of time but to plan on it taking 6 months due to Checkride delays. I Imagine the people in the program are probably experiencing it first hand, hence why they published the changed time frame.

Much thanks Tucker, just curious where you found that, I was looking on the ATP site and did a few google searches but couldn’t find anything…

James

I’m sure that’s why it has become a big enough issue to warrant the change, unfortunately means 2 extra months (potentially) of rent and living expenses before the ability to make a paycheck again. The money isn’t going to be an actual barrier for me, but it will stretch the reserves a bit thinner than I had planned on, I’m usually quite conservative with monetary planning. Not to mention I was looking forward to NOT having to train for 6 months as I already have the PPL like a lot of us prospects on here… :dizzy_face:

James

It was posted in the actual ATP student login. I am in the same boat. I had planned on having enough cash for being able to live without a paycheck for 8 months, figured twice the length of the program, so now I am bumping up to my limits as well. That also means an extra $1,600 in apartment rental which is not fun. I’m sure it will still all work out, I just need to rain down and redo my budget.

Ahh ok not quite there yet myself, thanks for the info, important for future planning!

Will the price be moved up, or stay the same? And assuming it does get jacked up, if you finish the program early, will you still have to pay for the future weeks, or save money and move straight into the CFI program?

Ravi,

The program price is staying the same. The housing costs will increase with the program length. If you finish early you will not have to pay the extra housing costs, but I would plan on it taking the full length, just in case.

Chris

Ravi,

The course prices shouldn’t change since the hours and curriculum aren’t. This is simply a function of logistics as there’s a shortage of available examiner’s and you can’t advance to the next level without a checkride.
From ATP:
The training outline has not changed, which means that barring checkride, weather, and other delays, it is entirely possible to achieve the shorter timeframe to completion.

Adam

Well we will just have to wait and see what happens! Hope for the best but excpect the worst!

Yea,
I actually left a message with the housing coordinator at ATP to ask about possibly cancelling my housing. I have some connections with people in the Mesa, AZ area and may be able to stay in an apartment nearby for well cheaper than 200 a week. This might save some if the program goes longer than expected.

I have a family friend that lives in Tampa that I plan on contacting soon to see if I could stay with them. I plan on still staying in atp housing for the first 4 months but anything extra I may stay with them.