Q for ex-pan am students


Well-Known Member
Hey guys,
I know i am gonna get some really mean replies, but please be aware that i am not trying to offend anyone or put anyone down.

So here is my question. OF all the people on this forum who have quit panam and hate their school, How many of you are 4 year college graduates? the reason I ask is that I hear alot about pan am being an accelerated program and people arent able to hang. But if you have a college degree, I am assuming you know how to study and be responsible and take of your ish, when need be. So i figure if you have a 4 year degree you can handle the accelerated pace because you are used to studying and being responsible.

The word quit is not the word for many who leave Pan Am. Someone who quits Pan Am or any other school would said to have quit if they didn’t finish what they were working on. What I mean by that is, I signed up for the program walking in with my private, but after finding out what kind of crap they pull, I made a decision to leave. I finished my instrument and multi ratings then left the facility so as they couldn’t steal from me anymore. I “FINISHED” the ratings that I started-I didn’t quit! I passed the ground schools just fine and received great training. It’s the few idiots that are calling the shots that ruin the program. A student starting from 0 time could be scammed out of $20k easily. I found out how they ran business right away but since I didn’t want to quit a rating after starting one, I decided to finish my instrument, multi and route. Route is great and is something I was looking forward to. They advertise for their commercial rating 13 dual hrs Arrow $131($1,703), 7 dual Archer $121($847), ground school $546, 24hrs preflight/postflight/stagechecks $32hr ($768), 1.5h flight test Arrow $99 ($148), 1hr commercial written exam $70, total price of $4,082.50 and 4 weeks to finish. They make you start flying on the first day of ground and ground is 17 days. I believe the average time is 6 weeks with a many taking 8. Every time you screw up on a check ride it will set you back a week and more money. So what on paper looks to be 4k will end up being 8k. What a DEAL! The commercial rating is just one of many that you can anticipate on doubling the cost of your tuition. Notice the cost of briefings. Double the flight hours and you can expect to pay around $1,500 for about 3hr of briefs. The best part is when my instructor would charge for a scheduled ground session after I have been charged plenty for the previous briefs that I had never received. Some instructors just don’t get it or they want more money-I think they want more money. Anyway, I have been ranting plenty.
a 4-year degree doesn't mean you are intelligent in any way, but for the most part the college experience does teach you to study more effectivly. of course if you study hard in high school you'll get the same experience.

oh, i have a 4-year
A college degree is totally irrelevant. The only thing that matters in being a pilot is determination--how bad do you want it? The college degree will help you get a good paying pilot job later though. However, I did have a bachelors degree in English before I started at Pan Am if you really want to know.
Yeah, all it takes it determination. Things like ability, finances, and study habits have nothing to do with it. Just take your determination down to the local FBO and you’ll be a pilot in no time.

Student’s with college degrees are, on average, more successful then those without.
Ha, consider jetcareers the no spin zone where we rely on facts and do not let them become distorted. I challenge you to find any FBO in the Phoenix area (and I did say any!) that will not get you done faster and and for thousands of dollars less than Pan Am. There, I've thrown down the gauntlet.
While we're on the subject of students leaving Pan Am, can anyone justify for me, what the purpose of the $2,000 fee is for anyone wanting out of the program? That would draw an immediate red flag for me. I can see how the school wants people to stick with the program and does not want several people to start and leave after a short period of time (which happens anyways), but $2000??? Where did that number come from? Do any other flight schools do this? Oddly enough, I know many people who have wanted out of PanAm so bad and would pay anything to leave. Is this just another way to squeeze out a few extra dollars for someone leaving and to kick them on their way out the door?
Unfortunately Toolbox, that's exactly the why they do it.

There is no justifiable reason for charging $2000 for a student to leave, but thats just another one of those things that Pan Am does that isn't good business practice.

What really burns is when you realize you don't have enough money to finish the program, yet you want to finish, but have to leave because of that, and STILL have to pay the $2000.

But its all part of the contract, and we all have to sign it to be admitted so what can you do about it!
Do Not attend pan am.


1. The total amount of money that you will have taken from your account in the form of "Brief Costs" alone, will be equate to thousands. (of wich you can have saved otherwise by going to an FBO and excelling at the same rate)

2. You do NOT determine your schedule, nor any facet of your day to day activitives. If you are either not in the mindset to fly, feeling ill, or simply not ready at that moment to fly a particular day you will be repremanded as well as charged for a lesson reguardless. The managment is there for only one thing. To keep the aircraft flying, thus the result of how students are simply a number.

3. The Ground Schooling at Pan Am is simply a JOKE. The Lessons consist of a rehash of the "Gliem" study book.
The classes are fast paced, highly lack any form of Depth, and serve only the purpose of getting past the FAA written.

3A. The Ground school classes are HIGHLY overpriced for what one can ACCOMPLISH through means of self study.
That was precisely my question when they busted my butt for all that money when I left Pan Am. What is the justification for that cost? I understand that it costs money to break a contract and to wire money back to a bank, but not 2K worth !! Also, Pan Scam will sit on the remainer of your money for 60 days and collect all the interest they can, before they wire the money back to Key Bank. Keep in mind that this is interest that YOU will eventually have to pay back. Oh...if you question them as to why and what reason (s) they are keeping money that is not theirs to keep, they will be rude and tell you its none of your business what they do with YOUR money. Just my experience, PROSPECTIVE STUDENTS BEWARE !!!!
That is correct! The contract says 30 to 60 days, but they keep it for the full 60 days. When I asked why it would take them so long they replied by saying that there are others ahead of me in the paperwork department for refunds. It does not take that long for them to do the paperwork and send the money back. It is all about the interest, unless someone out there knows otherwise.
I have a 4 year degree and left PanAm. I finished up mult and route and then went elsewhere. I did not leave because I was unable to keep up. The truth was PanAm was holding me back. 5 days for a stage check and another week for a checkride was not acceptable to me. I finished comm and instructor ratings in a month elsewhere and just got hired as a cfi.
I was in the same boat as Hutch. Except I finished all of my comm. se flying before my stagecheck then left. And instead of 1 month for se and me it only took 4 days and less money than it would have been to stay and finish. Figure that one out. The training was very good the red tape and politics suck.
My leaving pan am has nothing to with the fact that I do have a B.S. Pan am's price and time quotes are extremely underexadurated. Students who start their private there end up running out of money before they do there commercial or CFI ratings. People leave because their getting screwed, not for lack of intelligence or a college degree.
hello all. This is my first time writing on here, but I saw all this Pan Am crap and just had to put my two sense in. First of all(just to respond to what this thread began with) I have a 4 year degree and am currently a student at Pan Am. Having a degree has exactly jack sh*t to do with anything, least of all excelling at pan am. The only thing it could possibly help you with(which it doesn't)would be the ground schools. However, the ground schools are useless, and if you can basically memorize the gleim, you can accomplish everything the GS does. As far as the flying goes....a college degree means sh*t. I think I'll stop here for now. You don't want to get me started on what I really think of Pan Am.
easy turbo.............

<<<Having a degree has exactly jack sh*t to do with anything, least of all excelling at pan am. >>>

-I have to disagree, tho i havent started a flight academy yet, I would have to think that going to college has to have an effect on your study habits, willingness to succeed, and level of responisbility. If you can get a 4 year college degree, then an accelerated 1 year flight program should be easier than someone who did not attend higher education.

<<<As far as the flying goes....a college degree means sh*t.>>>

-Try getting a job at a major airline without a college degree.

<<<I think I'll stop here for now. You don't want to get me started on what I really think of Pan Am. >>>

-Tell us what you really think, that is what this forum is for.