Real Answers from Real Pilots

Hi! I'm new! And I have a few questions:

Hey everyone, so far I’ve been reading through a few of the posts that were made recently. They made me know a lot more things. That’s great, but I wanna share something to everyone here, and I would like your help. I feel as there is something missing really and I just want to know what that is:

My primary goal is to become a Airline Pilot in a Regional>Major (Or whatever works, I just know that it’s harder to become at a Major at first)

Though I have a few problems, I was reading a few posts on people asking similar questions, but then I always see something that becomes repetitive “Get a 4year degree” and a “BA degree online”. Does that mean you need to get a 4 Year degree in say Business & management then go to Flight School? Or does it mean Flight School must last 4 years?

Sorry if that doesn’t make sense, I’m confused haha. Great forum by the way, I’m going to keep researching here.

Hello and welcome to the forum! To answer your question, you will need a 4 year degree in college. It can be in Aeronautical science or anything you want. The regionals do not require a 4 year degree.

Holy cow, that was a fast response! :smiley:

So basically you’re saying that once I finish Highschool, continue as normal go to a Community College (Example) and then get any degree whether it be Electrical Engineering or Aeronautical science?

Okay, so what about the Bachelors Degree online? or the BA Degree (I just guessed that i twas Bachelors degree, sorry if I’m wrong here!)

Yes you can do that. After you get your community college degree, you may start flight training. You may also go to a college that has a flight training program within it. For example, I am going to ASU which has a flight program that can get me certified with a commercial pilots license. You can also go to a flight school such as ATP (saying you meet the requirements) and then you can fly for a regional. You can do online courses while working at the regional until you get a 4 year degree and then you will be eligible to work for a major. I don’t know about this, one of the pilot mentors will help me, a 4 year degree may be preferred and not required.

Okay, perfect, thanks for your response, really helpful actually :slightly_smiling_face:

If you don’t mind me! I’ll repeat what I understand as best as I can (To make sure I got your words understood properly): I can get any degree in College, then move on to get my flight training with any school. That would be a good option for Major Airline Pilot dreams!

Now I got a few questions here (Thank you again, for answering fast!):

  1. Does it matter if the College Education was 4 years? or does it just have to be a Degree regardless of how much time it took you to get said degree.

  2. How do you get the TOTAL flight hours (1500 Hours)? Do most people get it via Instructing? or do most people get it by working in a Regional/Small Airline and then applying for Majors?..

  3. Do you need 1500 hours to apply for an ATPL or a Airline?

Thank you man, hope this wasn’t too annoying!

Yes. What you have recapped is correct. If you chose to get your license by a college such as ASU, you will only receive 250 hours at the most. So yes, to get your 1500 hours, flight training is a huge part of it. ASU on the other hand, is certified to allow students to only need 1000 hours instead of 1500. But yes, flight training is a huge chuck of hours required. Be aware, ASU is not the only school with these advantages. There are many others, I am only focused on ASU.

Woha, so there are Universities or Aviation academies that Allow students to graduate and be able to join Majors with 1000 Hours?

Can you tell me where ASU is located?
And if you can PM me or if you feel comfortable, how are the costs?
If you have any tips on how I can save up for flight school (My parents arent rich haha)
(As in Loans/Student Loans) then feel free to PM me, thank you man I appreciate it!

Graduates from approved four-year universities with a Bachelor’s degree and an aviation major need only 1000 hours total flight time and 200 hours cross-country time if they:
Complete at least 60 credit hours of aviation related coursework, and
Hold a Commercial Pilot Certificate that was earned through the university’s part 141 training program
If they complete less than 60 credit hours, but at least 30 credit hours, they need 1250 hours total flight time and 200 hours cross-country time

Arizona
State
University

Mesa, Arizona (Polytechnic Campus) right next to Phoenix-Mesa Gateway airport.

I would personally like to thank the Pilots on this forum who have helped me with all my questions. Just a bit ago, I didn’t know anything and they helped me.

Hey! So let’s make this all a bit more clear. Most airlines out there (whether regional or major) do not REQUIRE a 4 year degree. Now, that being said - it would be significantly more difficult to get on with a major airline without one at this point. The majors are still very competitive. Now for a regional, you would have no problem getting on without a degree. As far as your options go:

  1. You could forego the degree completely and go straight into flight training. Like I said, you will have a much more difficult time getting past the regionals, should you want to end up at a major (as most people do). Eventually with the pilot shortage you may have an easier time, but for now, I do not suggest this path.

  2. You could start your flight training right away and work on a degree throughout your aviation career. Whether that is while you’re instructing, flying for a regional, etc. Many pilots have taken this route. Especially those who later on realized how necessary a 4 year degree still is.

  3. You can get a 4 year degree in ANY area ands do your flight training afterwards. Any major - doesn’t make much difference. Some airlines MAY weight a science degree higher, or something closer to skills that are involved in aviation (i.e. engineering, physics, math, etc) but I have not seen this proven anywhere. Really, you just want a 4 year degree. I took this path because I didn’t realize until I was a junior in college that I would end up as a professional pilot. For this option or any of the above, you are required to have 1500 hours for the ATP rating.

  4. You can go to an accredited 141 flight training college such as ASU, UND, Embry-Riddle, etc. I personally instructed for the ASU program down in Phoenix, Arizona. I can tell you now that these programs are wonderful. If you end up coming out of a 4 year aviation program, you will only be required to have 1000 hours for your ATP. If you do a 2 year program, you will be required to have 1250 hours.

All of this being said, you really need to think about the numbers. It may LOOK like 1000 hours through an aviation college is the quickest route, but let’s think about it. You will do a 4 year degree program and come out with about 250 hours, and then spend another year instructing to get the other 750 required. Total of 5 years. OR you could go to ATP and finish all of your training in under 1 year and then instruct for 1-2 years to get to 1500 hours. Total, that would put the ATP route at (more than likely) under 3 years. I was able to do it in 2 years, as were a lot of other ATP grads. That is 3 years shorter than going through an aviation program, and also MUCH cheaper.

Hope this clears things up a bit.

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Thank you for that clarification. Just be advised it may be harder to get to fly for a major without a 4 year degree like mentioned.

Cheers,
Nic

Mother of god! That post Jordan made was absolutely fantastic. Thank you so much for clarifying it, holy cow.

But I got a few questions on a few things really:

  1. What is an Accreditted 141 Flight Training College?
  2. Let’s say I go with a Aviation College and then stay with that College for only 2 years, would I still need to get 2 more years to fit the 4 year college degree? or would it not even count as a 2 year degree (for that 4 year degree thing)

Sorry this part really made me confused, I appreciate you guys staying and not raging at me for not understanding thisl, haha. Thank you! :D.

Mother of god! That post Jordan made was absolutely fantastic. Thank you so much for clarifying it, holy cow.

But I got a few questions on a few things really:

  1. What is an Accreditted 141 Flight Training College?
  2. Let’s say I go with a Aviation College and then stay with that College for only 2 years, would I still need to get 2 more years to fit the 4 year college degree? or would it not even count as a 2 year degree (for that 4 year degree thing)

Sorry this part really made me confused, I appreciate you guys staying and not raging at me for not understanding thisl, haha. Thank you! :D.

-One last thing, how’d you be able to afford the Flight School costs?
Was it with a Student Loan? Paying it normally (I.E Financial Support from family etc…), or did you have to save up beforehand? If you have other methods, please share it if you can! I’d appreciate it truly.

Sohaib,

“Woha, so there are Universities or Aviation academies that Allow students to graduate and be able to join Majors with 1000 Hours?”

First lets clarify, degree or no degree, NO ONE is getting hired at a Major with 1,000hrs (or even 1500). There are thousands of Regional pilots out there with thousands of hours who have degrees and years of experience who’ll be hired first.

Second, if you go to a 2yr school you could then continue your education online or part-time and complete your 4yr degree.

Adam

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How does an Online Education work?..

Does it have to be part of that college that you studied at to get the 2 year degree?
or can it be a seperate college?

Could you also explain roughly how it works? Thanks in advance! :slightly_smiling_face:

Sohaib,

There are many colleges and universities. Some are strictly brick and mortar, others strictly online many offer both. Some will allow you to transfer credits others will not. It’s simply too much information for us to cover here in it’s entirety. Particularly because this forum’s focus is flight training. I recommend you do some Googling on the differences between 2 and 4 yr degrees, traditional and online schools etc. I’m certain you can get all the answers you need.

Adam

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