Real Answers from Real Pilots

Mike - Introduction and Question

(Michael McCann) #1

Hi, my name is Mike and i don’t have a 4 year degree.

So at 44 should i attempt this long term idea? I have 22 years in construction and flying has always interred me. How much is the time needed for this? 10 hours a week 20 hours, what is the estimated time? Life is hard adding a new thing on life is a financial and time management weight going into it with a real idea is success or attempt.


Living after school with debt


Welcome to the forums and thanks for posting! I think that at the age of 44 you really need to decide what your goals are in aviation. If you started training now you would be 45 or so by the time you finished, then after roughly two years of flight instructing you would be eligible to be hired by an airline at the age of 47, meaning that you have 17 years left to fly (pilots must retire before they reach the age of 65), which is not bad at all. In 17 years you can certainly accomplish a lot. You could easily end up retiring as a pretty senior captain at a regional airline. If you finish up a four year degree along the way you could even end up working for a major airline for several years. Airlines are seniority driven, so you won’t end up as a international captain for a major, but you could be an international first officer if you play your cards right.

The time commitment to go to a fast paced school like ATP is six months of being available to train all day, seven days a week. It would be impossible to work while attending this program. There are of course other schools that offer the ability to train in smaller increments, such as ten hours per week, but it is going to turn the length your training program into years, not months.

Think about what your goals in aviation are and how much time you are able to dedicate to training. Feel free to come back here and ask any questions that you can think of. I look forward to working with you.