Words of Wisdom on Flight Schools


I am currently less than a month from graduating from college and trying to figure out what to do next. I will have my private, instrument, and commercial liscense along with 280+ hours. I’ve checked out some flight schools in Florida specifically ATP and Flight Safety International. I’ve heard good things and bad things about each. Just wondering what everyone on the website thinks. Any helpful info is greatly appreciated!

P.S. I know all the hoop-la about you can’t buy your way into the aviation industry, but you gotta get multi-hours somewhere!

The Dude


I don’t have a direct answer for you, but you are doing the right thing by asking around. Above all else, do your research! Definately don’t make a decision based on who has the fanciest brochure. I haven’t been to either. All my training has been through individual instructors and local FBOs.

I have heard many people with first hand knowledge talk very poorly of graduates from some of the bigger more popular schools. They are unable to function in any environment that is not exactly like what they trained in. I’m sure all of them turn out some great pilots, while all turn out some bad.

If you already have gone through Commercial, you have already done the “hard stuff”. Everything from here will be enhancing and refining what you already have. You might want to be sure to explore possibilities close to home, where ever that happens to be. I’m not sure that there is much to be gained by going to a well-marketed school in Florida over your hometown FBO. While they have the advantage of fast ratings, they also tend to be much more expensive than the local variety. In the end, you get the same license in Florida as you do in Smallville, USA. What counts is the experience that you get along with it, which means flight time. That makes me wonder if an accelerated program is a good choice.

Military aviation is a good avenue for some. At least they pay for your training and pay you while you do it.

Hopefully others might bring some first-hand experiences to this discussion, these are just my thoughts. Someone will undoubtedly disagree!

At any rate, good luck!


Best thing you can do for yourself is to get your CFI, CFII, MEI. That way people pay you to fly. Then move yourself to a metropolitan area that has a reputable, busy flight school. Hours come quickly and you’ll learn a ton. It’ll make you a better pilot as well having the CFI experience. I flew almost 125 hrs the first six weeks I had my MEI.
Good Luck!