Attending flight school is a major step in one’s career as a budding aviation enthusiast. It requires immense preparation to pass examinations and become eligible for pilot training.
Before you join any commercial airline pilot training, it pays to research the compatibility of your personality with that flight school’s learning methods. That said, the research can overwhelm you due to so many bases to cover.
This is where we step in. We went ahead and compiled a list of questions you must ask a flight school before deciding on one. Finding answers to these questions from the flight schools will help you make an informed decision.
So, why wait? Let’s get to the questions.
What are the Training Methods Available?
There’s no one best method for learning to fly, so you must find out your preferred method before joining a flight school. You can ask the school if there are classroom sessions and hands-on flying lessons. Plus, find out whether they’d use any technology like simulators which will give you a taste of what real-time flying’s like.
How Much Does it Cost?
This is the make-or-break question for many students. Be sure to get quotes from multiple schools so that you can compare the prices, discounts, etc. Some schools also have scholarships available or other payment plans and financial aid. If you’re short on cash, it makes perfect sense to ask for a scholarship or any discounts that might be available.
What are the Instructors Like?
Finding out about your instructor can help you learn how they conduct lessons and what past students have learned from them. Make sure the school has credentials to train you to fly. Government organizations regulate how schools must behave with students, so make sure the school isn’t breaking any rules.
You’ll also need to find out if they have any association with local flying clubs or other flight schools. These associations can be helpful for networking and job searches after graduation.
What are the Certification Requirements?
Some schools have FAA certification, while others are under other regulatory bodies. Remember to check if their certificates are still valid before you sign up. It pays to know that some schools have multiple campuses, so make sure they’re branches of the same organization.
How Long is the Course?
The time required for your course will depend on what you want to learn. For example, a helicopter course might get wrapped up in a few months compared to a multi-engine aircraft course that can take a year. So, be sure to ask this question so that you can plan ahead and arrange your finances accordingly.
Moreover, if you’re not able to commit for the full duration of the course in one go, then see if there’s a way you can do it in stages without losing too much time in between.
Can I get a Bob as Pilot With This Course?
If they answer “yes” to this question, ask them how much flying experience they require before applying for jobs. If you want a commercial license, find out whether the school can accredit it so that you don’t have to go through the whole process again.
Are The Instructors Licensed?
The flight school might have several instructors, so it’d be helpful to find out about their educational qualifications. Also, check if they are up-to-date on renewing their licenses every year. Nothing kills your career like an unexpired instructor.
Do You Have a Fleet of Aircraft?
It might not always be possible to learn different maneuvering techniques using the same aircraft type you wish to fly in the future. If that’s the case, what other options do they provide? Does the school have any fleets of aircraft which you can practice on?
Now that you’ve got all the answers, you’ll be able to make an informed decision. It’s important to find the right school that ensures that you get trained well and don’t waste time learning something unnecessary. So go ahead and ask these questions before joining a flight school.