CFI Course vs. the entire program


New Member
I'm considering a professional pilot career and favor ATP as my most suitable option. After reading the newsgroups I'm beginning to realize that I "wasted" lots of time, so for me this means now or never (I 'm 36). Certainly I waited for a tough time and the career outlook might be rather dark indeed.
I got decent multiengine time (66) and FAA commercial MELi IFR (470 hrs total time mostly accumulated a long time ago). I used to live in Europe and finally managed to get a job in the US which I always dreamed about (now I got my greencard lined up as well). However after reaching this intermediate goal I want to pursue my original plan and need to do it fast and efficient.
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1. My fist option would be to sign up only for the ATP CFI Program and then build my time at some FBO as a CFI. I read good stuff about ATP and their ME time as CFI's. Is there any chance at all to land a CFI job with ATP after doing only this course? I guess my chances are rather low!

2. 2nd option is to do the Multi PIC and then the CFI program even if I won't need it right now. Would this slightly increase my chances for ATP CFI eligibility ?

3. Or should I simply start over and sign up for the whole "shebang" 31K program and consider myself quite insane in doing all the commerical and IFR MEL traing again?

I live in Socal and would like to train at the Riverside location. Anybody out there who know of a similar case that could give me some advice.

Great forum and Website, thanks to everybody! Jetcareers has been very valuable ressource.

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Hi Boicontroller,
Wow, doing everything again sounds like a waste of money.
Im thinking about ATP riverside too.
I have just finished my PPL and im earning those 20 more PIC
X/C time they are looking for.
I dont see why to do the whole program.
Do the cfi program and then instructor to gain hours.
Thats my opinion, but im new in the skies so..


When are you planning to attendt ATP?
Hi Giladal,

Congrats to your PPL! The time building surely feels great now. I did mine in a coast to cast X-country with 3 non flying buddies and it was one of the great experiences I had.

Thanks for your comment. Yeah I think I'm just a little desperate of being stuck right in between. Have you actually seen ATP's facility yet ? Spoken to anyone from ATP?
My concern is that doing the CFI hours at a regular FBO gets me essentially only single time and lots of C-150. According to some of my friends it was not the most efficient and useful time they spent as regular FBO CFI's
. See my problem is age and I need to go flying 6 hrs a day and preferably Multi to gain some momentum.

Regarding timing: I had December or January in mind.

Good luck with your X-country flying! Fly safe and professional!
Hi Bio.
First of all this is my email:

I was wondering where are you located in S. California currently?
If you are from my area which is the Van Nuys area I can get you a cfi job set up here in a school that alot of students come and go.
If you are going to ATP, why dont me and you take a trip together to see the facilities.
If its ok with you, email me, and we will get in touch.

Hi Biocontroller,

I visited the Riverside facilities and the instructors there were very helpful (thanks Erik &amp; Helge!) They would probably have good input for you on your situation.

Anyways just wanted to introduce myself, I'm planning on starting at Riverside in January so may be seeing you or Giladal next year. . .


ps to Giladal-
I'm in your boat on the 20-hr XC building - during my phone interview Jim K mentioned that a 172 may be made available at a nice rate, with an instructor if you would like to get some initial instrument experience in while building that time. Thought you might be interested!
Actually I am more interest about what the phone interview was like

Can you give me points?

Phone interview is nothing. It's basic private pilot stuff and to see how you explain answers. Just basically making sure you learned the private material.

Sure - it's basic PPL stuff as Sig said. . . know about the four left-turning tendencies and that they are emphasized during slow speeds at high angle of attack. He'll ask about your training a/c and hours and shirt size
then take a credit card deposit if you're ready to schedule a start date.
Hi Gliadal,

I live in South Orange County pretty much at the other end of the LA Basin (well actually 25 min south of John Wayne). Anyhow I greatly appreciate your thoughts and suggestionslike the opportunity to work as CFI in Van Nuys. Going to see ATP together sounds like a great idea!
I may have time available on short notice. How about next week? I will get intouch with you via email.

So long...
Hi Alek!

Thanks for your feedback on the ATP visit. I'm really looking for an environment that provides lots of career motivation and I hope to find that at ATP. I have seen and heared from to many frustrated CFI's that gave up or left for a better carrer. I'm planning to go visit ATP next week to get things going.

Do you still live in SAC? If so, why do you favor the Riverside location over the local ATP folks? Just curious!

Yeah, always a pleasure to get to know people with common interest. Hope to see you in January...