Posted: Fri Sep 17, 2010 3:07 am Post subject: Newbie. Where in the World? US, CAN, UK/EU, SA, AUS? etc...
Hello great people of Helitorque! I want to start off by saying this is a great site that I've truly enjoyed reading about each of you and your advice, you guys Rock
I've been wanting to be a Helicopter Pilot for far too many years and can now finally do something about it. I apologies for writing what a million other people have put but I hope to get some great advise and assurances. So my questions are as follows.
1) I'm 32 from the UK but work as a contractor abroad and have a house in the US so I guess thats my home although I rent it out... I'm not tied to it so I'm happy to train anywhere in the world, where would you suggest? and why?
2) Should I do it as a package to get my CPL with IR etc? or do one in one place like a PPL and then the CPL in another? IR in another? Instructors etc etc
3) I dont mind where I work afterwards either but should I be looking at joint JAA/FAA integrated courses? or do one and then the other if and when I need it? I would love to fly Offshore in Norway at some point, but am happy to spend time elsewhere before I get there. I hear there is more work in the US at the moment... Apparently...
4) I finally have the funding for this and am hoping to do my CPL and instructors in a year, I've seen mention of modular learning but am a little unsure if this is something I would do. Is this mainly for the UK? would I be able to do this or should I just do everything I need to in one go to put me in a position to get a job?
5) The school I've already been looking at is Bristow in Florida because a friend of mine just graduated and is flying pipelines in Pensilvania, plus he has a house there I can rent. I've also read very good reviews about it, He's from Scotland and did his FAA and instructors course and probably one or two others. What schools do you recommend depending on the answers to the other questions? and do you recommend this as an all in one stop shop?
I took a flight a few years back (2004) in Redhill UK and loved it. I was told by the instructor I had a natural ability (hopefully he was being genuine). This is something I am going to do but want to make all the right decisions before I even start!
So if you had to do it all over again knowing what you know now, had no ties to anywhere, the funds to pay for it (obviously not bottomless I do have some limits) and the time, how would you do it?
It was either this or motorcycle racing, again something I've wanted to do from childhood. Mind you I can still to this after I finish training.
1. You may wish to review motorcycle training after you've qualified to CPL/FI/IR level...... you would have spent an awful lot of cash, just for you to then have a tank-slapper!!!
2. You seem to have an idea of where you wish to fly ultimately - best advice I've heard (and am sure will get repeated here) is to train where you wish to fly afterwards.
3. If you have the funds for training, and also to live off for long enough, I'd train straight through - you'll pick things up a little quicker, with last lesson staying fresher.
4. Whilst there are the odd exceptions, most of us newbies will end up going the FI route, simply to build hours at somebody else's expense! I was looking at doing my IR instead of FI, but am still left with the usual problem of not enough hours on type/turbine/twin-time for most operators to look at me.
I think Haggishunter on here is flying out of Norway - he'd be a good person to pick the brains of!!!
If you want to train in the US the best place is for sure california, i've benn flying here for 2 years now and i love it. Got my CFI and now i'm working for a school near Los Angeles called Heli International. Let me know if you want any other information...
Joined: Feb 14, 2008 Posts: 888 Location: Stavanger, Norway
Posted: Sun Jul 24, 2011 7:19 pm Post subject:
Someone mention my name? Cocktail party effect... the only thing I remember from ATPL groundschool.
Welcome to the forum, nice to have new people showing up!
I am not going to repeat any of the good info already given but, I can say that Bristow Academy is a good school. Most of my collegues have trained with them at somepoint or worked for them. The advantage there is that you can do an integrated course, so straight to CPL and the JAA (european) licenses. They don't offer the JAA IR though but, that's something to worry about later.
North Sea flying is a good place to be and you can have a nice comfortable lifestyle from it, with good pay, time off and working conditions. My suggestion would be to go down the FI route first and do some fun flying and get some good hands on experience. This may also give you the opportunity to do some charter work aswell, again good experience.
I instructed for 4-5 years and when I felt like I needed a change I went into offshore flying. Norway is a great place and the working conditions here are nothing to complain about. But the demand on experience is made higher by the oil companies. You will need 1000hrs and an IR to apply, hence gaining some experience by instructing will help you out with getting hours.
All in all it's a great career, alot of hard work but well worth it!
Best of luck! HH _________________ ATPL(H) IR(H): SK92, AS355, EC120, R22/44
"When the tough gets going, the tough eat haggis!"
My suggestion is start by establishing where you can and can't work... the answer to that will lead you to licensing targets, and from there you can refine your choices based on how to maximize your chances of employment early on in your career.
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