Hello so I’m rather new to the flight world and have been doing a great deal of research but I’m struggling to fill in several blanks that I’m hoping I can get some assistance with.
To start with a bit of background, I’ve completed 60 hours of undergraduate coursework but had some issues completing my degree due to making mistakes and failing to commit yet I’ve corrected my previous mindset and won’t be making the same mistake again (I don’t have the money to make anymore mistakes anyway). At this point I was intending to enter ATP’s flight school, cosigning with my parents to pay the cost because I don’t have cash to pay out of pocket and want to begin my career as quickly as possible (please give input on pros/cons of this plan).
Now, as I understand it, I can complete the Fast Track Program in 9 months, at which point I can, and most tend to, become a Flight Instructor with ATP and accrue flight hours throughout that period of time. My questions here are how much flight time can I reasonably expect to gain each month with ground school in the mix and will I have to pay for fuel? Will these hours be limited by the number of students available or are there typically a surplus available simply depending on the work I’m willing to put in?
Also in regards to my time as a CFI are my financial questions namely: How do quarterly 1099 taxes work (or should I be speaking with a tax advisor on this)? What other fees and expenses outside of regular living expenses can I expect to incur as a CFI in regards to certificate management and health certificates and how much can this cost annually? Lastly, after flight school I’ll have ~150k in debt… (yes, I know) so is the worst case pay as a CFI (Maybe ~20k?) and eventually a Regional First Officer (Around ~24k on low end?) possible to manage loans of that volume or will I have to supplement with some other method of income or find a way to lower payments for the first 5-10 years?
Finally, in regard to pursuing a career as a pilot for a major airline, what is the process truly like for someone going from a ATP to a regional airline with aspirations of reaching Captain at a major airline because some people scoffed that that transition was even a possibility, much less a likelihood which had me confused on if I’m missing something? I’ll be completing my bachelors during my time as a regional pilot (already completed 60 hours and told I can transfer up to 35 from completion of flight school) so there shouldn’t be anything else holding me back outside of experience, correct?
Thank you so much for any information you can provide. I know my questions are numerous and a bit scattered but if you can answer even a portion of one I’d greatly appreciate it. If you could simply point me in the direction of a good place to research that would even be enough as I’m certainly not opposed to research, just need a bit of guidance if possible. Thanks again!