Real Answers from Real Pilots

Separate Courses?

Is it is possible to get just a private pilot certificate, an instrument rating, and a commercial pilot certificate through ATP? I want to be commercially certified in summer of 2018. I would like to proceed further with the ATP course, but since I will be back in college during fall and spring, I am not sure I can. In addition, I have already taken and passed the PPL and instrument written exams. Will that reduce costs at all for me through ATP? And will it save me time by not needing to attend ground school?


Yes, but there will be an early cancellation fee if you drop out after



The CFIs are included in the tuition so you’d be forfeiting that money. Summer 2018 is less than a year away. If you’re going to school full time I honestly don’t see how you’ll get your CPL by then? ATP’s program is accelerated and training full time it would still take 9mos (maybe 7 or 8 without the CFIs?). ATP would reimburse you for the writtens taken but you’re talking maybe a $100 each so where not talking about much money. Also the studying for the writtens is not part of the ground school and is done with self-study on your own time so that won’t save you any time. I am curious how you plan on building time after your CPL as there aren’t many pilot jobs for 250hr pilots.

That all said it doesn’t seem that ATP fits your plan but as I said there are many fine flight schools in the country and Google is a wonderful tool. I was actually going to train at American Fliers but one of their managers convinced me I’d be better off at ATP if my goal was to be a professional pilot. Nice people there and seemingly good equipment. You might want to check them out.