Real Answers from Real Pilots

Prior Part 61 at Disadvantage?

(Justin) #1

Hey guys,

I’ve heard some students from Part 61 schools are at a disadvantage when it comes to the fast-paced training of ATP because they’ve been accustomed to the “learn as you go” style of training. I know all Part 61s are not created equal and that ATP offers PPL as part of some of its packages, but I’m at least 2 years out from enrolling in ATP and I’d like to earn my PPL in the meantime part-time. Is there any merit to these claims or is it more of a personal responsibility issue? I want to be in the best possible scenario prior to enrolling. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.


(Eric) #2

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I did my private license through a local flight school that was part 141. What I found was that while 141 schools claim that they can save you money because they require less flight hours they can actually end up costing you money in the long run because they have so many requirements that they place on the training, such as three “stage checks” before you can even take your private check ride. I don’t know that the studying and instructing is really that different between the two types of schools, at the end of the day everybody studies from the same books, takes the exact same FAA written and the same FAA check rides.

After having gone to a 141 school and then ATP I did not notice myself struggling. I studied very hard with both schools and did well at both. Eric is right that your training is going to involve a lot of studying, but that is going to be true of anywhere. I think your question was a great one as many people focus on the differences between 61 and 141 schools, in reality there is not much difference at all.


(Justin) #4

Ok, thanks guys. I really appreciate your insight and guidance on this question. The short answer is take responsibility for your training and prepare well at all stages. The accelerated training will be fire hydrant-style, but I’d venture to say that those who want it will succeed. Thanks again.




You hit the nail on the head there, nay flight training is exactly what you make of it. That being said, my instructors at ATP were very invested in my success and really wanted me to do well. I am still friends with a few of them to this day.