Training at Ari-Ben Aviator---1st Rate

Cruise

Well-Known Member
I've been reading all the posts regarding Ari-Ben Aviator. So, I'll offer up my experience. I recently quit my job in the medical field because I wasn't happy. Life is much to short to be miserable...regardless of how much money you make. Anyhow, back in November of 2003 I came to FL to visit several different flight schools. Some very large schools in the area, with all the bells and whistles, others not so large. My last stop was Aviator. After visiting with everyone at the Aviator, back-seating a training flight, looking at the student housing. It was a done deal. Aviator has the most to offer for the best price going!

As a result, I starting my training (0 time) at the beginning of the new year. Since that time, I finished my PPL in only 24 days (including weekends and bad weather days) with the minimum allowable hours 40. Then it was on to the multi- engine add- on. I am scheduled for that check ride in a couple of days and should complete it with approximately 13- 15 hrs.

It has been my experience that everything that was promised regarding the training here is true. This is the best deal out there. There is somewhat of a familial attutide throughout the school. Yes, it is small, but that's fine. Yes, the planes are old, but well maintained. A person needs to ask themselves, do I want someone to hold my hand during the process, and is it worth the extra money (considerably extra, that is). It's the quality of instruction that counts. After all, the check rides for the ratings are done with an FAA examiner....these people examine (to the same standards) students from the big pilot factories with all the glitz and the students from the small schools as well. Bottom line, you must posess the proper knowledge and exhibit the flying skill to pass the check ride/ oral exam. If you are able to do this for thousands of dollars less, why would you want to play the game the big schools offer?

I'll keep you posted on my progress.

Ari-Ben Aviator is the way to go!

M. Green
 

ShoreFly

Well-Known Member
I'll drink to that! I'm a couple weeks behind MG at the Aviator (we have the same CFI) and my experience has been very good as well. As a VA student, the entire cost of the program would've only been $10K more if I had enrolled at my other choice, FSI, but I'm really happy to be here.

What appealed to me most when I visited the Aviator is the flexibility of the schedule, the laid-back atmosphere, and the lack of bad attitudes and large academy B.S. I also noticed that there are quite a few students and instructors here that have switched from other schools like PanAm, Sierra, PEA...etc after they were clued in to the deal.

There's a flight school out there for everyone, and even though the Aviator might not be right for you, it's definitely worth a look.
 

Aviator737

New Member
Sweet!

I've been really impressed by how positive the Ari Ben forums have been. It seems very easy for flight schools to be bashed and flamed to heck over the Internet. Which is good in many ways, but all the more admirable that Ari-Ben should defy that trend.

I've spoken with Julian a couple of times over the phone, and for fairly extended periods of time. I've found him to be very cool, and appreciate the 100% frank and open dialogues we've had. The vibe and impression I've gotten has been very strong. I've toured the Delta Connection Academy and spoken with Regional Airline Academy, PAIFA (amongst others) and have been put off by how "slick" their marketing campaign is. It's certainly not to say they won't deliver on quality training, but how do they justify such exorbinant prices, aside from fancy uniforms and a brand name (i.e. Delta)? Even DCA has a reputation for aging airplanes. I didn't even get to see their flightline while touring there! Bad sign ...

Anyhow, I will be touring Ari-Ben (coming from Oregon) early next month, in addition to some other Florida schools, but am already pretty assured in my school of choice!
 

RPM

Well-Known Member
I'm still totally back and forth between Ari-Ben and ATP, they both have advantages. If it wasn't for the 10K price difference, which is actually even more after financing/interest, I would definately choose ATP but thats a lot of extra cash, for not too much different of a program. I'm running outa time to make up my mind for my summer start date.

I was going to put my deposit in a few weeks ago at ATP but when I noticed the latest price increase, it made me stop and think, are all these little things at ATP really worth the price difference - so I held off on the deposit and am still highly considering Ari-Ben.

So please keep us updated on how things are going at Ari-Ben, this Ari thread has been pretty dead for months. So it's good to hear new comments- positive or negative from people that are currently attending.
 

Flugmaschine

New Member
There are two reasons I chose ATP over Ari-Ben (I say chose because I have paid the deposit...won't start for another month): one was because Ari-Ben pays their instructors so poorly. (I know, I've talked with people about it and I understand the "taketaketake, then givegivegive" thing, and that's cool). I know life won't be a bed of roses as a CFI, but I can make 1000+/month stretch pretty fairly. $500/month as an ari-ben CFI, however, I cannot with a family. If you're single, that argument goes out the window.
The second reason was that ATP offers the program at a location that suits me. I'll live in south FL if I HAVE to, but as long as I have another option..

I would love to have used my GI Bill at Ari, but I think of it this way...now I can use it to pay for another fallback option (ie law or speech pathology) or for type ratings later on.

Just my $.02. Oh, there was a third reason, too... ATP offers sim time, and I think that's quite valuable.
 

RPM

Well-Known Member
Your reasons for ATP are similar to mine - First I think being an instructor for ATP would be much better- better pay, 200 dollars a month housing if your at a career location, possible help with getting an airline job after instructing for a while ...thats what I've heard anyways/ strong letters of rec. from the owners etc... don't know if thats true or not.

Second- I also think the simulator time would be very valuable as a learning/teaching tool.

Third- I think that the x-country time at ATP is much better, nationwide etc... but I don't know if thats really that important?

and time is also a consideration of mine, I don't know if you can get through the Ari Ben program as quickly as with ATP?

I don't really even care about the silly 3 hours Citation Jet time at ATP, as far as i'm concerned, I would rather not have it and save some money.


Some disadvantages of ATP for me - The chance of not being hired as a CFI is risky, because thats one of the main reasons I want to go there, to become an instructor for them afterwards. I talked with a couple of people who were NOT hired as CFI's for ATP, and I thought they had good personalities, and they said they never caused any problems with dispatch or anything like that.
At least Ari will give you a chance to prove yourself with 2 students, thats worth a lot to me, at least give me a chance- If i'm not a good instructor then fire me.

Then the price difference, ATPs price is about 10K higher, yeah I know housing and a few other things are included, but that doesn't change things much, it's still considerably higher.

Other than the instructor position afterwards, the x-country time, the aircraft age(doesn't matter to me), and the program time frame - I feel Ari Ben is pretty equal to ATP.


...so right now, I don't know what to do, ATP or ARI??
 

Aviator737

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
Second- I also think the simulator time would be very valuable as a learning/teaching tool.

[/ QUOTE ]

ShoreFly made a good point in a previous Ari-Ben thread that the money you save in going with Ari-Ben could be put towards simulator time. That would be in addition to all the actual time you receive at Ari-Ben.

[ QUOTE ]
and time is also a consideration of mine, I don't know if you can get through the Ari Ben program as quickly as with ATP?

[/ QUOTE ]

To my understanding, Ari-Ben is pretty self-paced. Meaning you have the potential to complete it very quickly, just as you would to complete it very slowly.

Then again, ninety days is hard to beat! From what I've heard, six months seems to be an average at Ari-Ben.
 

RPM

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
ShoreFly made a good point in a previous Ari-Ben thread that the money you save in going with Ari-Ben could be put towards simulator time. That would be in addition to all the actual time you receive at Ari-Ben

[/ QUOTE ]

Yeah, but if I wanted to spend the extra money I'd just go to ATP in the first place, Getting sim time somewhere else would just be a big pain in the ass IMO, and I don't think it would even be helpfull that way, different instructor, wouldn't know what concepts that I might happen to be having a hard time with etc, etc...

If I choose Ari Ben- it will be to save money, I don't wanna spend the difference on sim time. I think that would be pretty dumb.

[ QUOTE ]
To my understanding, Ari-Ben is pretty self-paced. Meaning you have the potential to complete it very quickly, just as you would to complete it very slowly.

Then again, ninety days is hard to beat! From what I've heard, six months seems to be an average at Ari-Ben

[/ QUOTE ]

Thats what I've heard to, about 6 months - I don't know if the people at Ari are just lazy and slackers or what? I've never heard of anyone finishing Ari Ben's program in 90 days or less, If their is someone out there please chime in. What are the reasons for so much more time than ATP if your a dedicated daily student??

I'd just like to be able to finish over the summer.
 

flyallday

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
Thats what I've heard to, about 6 months - I don't know if the people at Ari are just lazy and slackers or what? I've never heard of anyone finishing Ari Ben's program in 90 days or less, If their is someone out there please chime in. What are the reasons for so much more time than ATP if your a dedicated daily student??


[/ QUOTE ]


I think one reason why at ATP people finish in 90 days is because all your writtens are done so there is a lot less studying at ATP

And 6months is not all that bad, if you talk to poeple at other flight schools it takes anywhere from 9-12 months to finish
 

Flugmaschine

New Member
[ QUOTE ]




I think one reason why at ATP people finish in 90 days is because all your writtens are done so there is a lot less studying at ATP


And 6months is not all that bad, if you talk to poeple at other flight schools it takes anywhere from 9-12 months to finish

[/ QUOTE ]

T'ain't necessarily so. Plenty of people show up with no writtens done at all and finish in 90 days...I've spoken with several such students. Tell them there's not much studying going on and you'll be ducking heavy objects.
The 90 days just comes from adhering to a set schedule. You basically sign your life over to them when you go...not unlike boot camp, I suppose. It's my opinion that people will use flexibility when it's offered, and that may be why it takes the average person a little longer at Ari- they are a little more flexible. That doesn't necessarily make them lazy, though. I think you'll see people at ATP start taking a little longer now, too, now that they're offering the 'at-your-own-pace' flavor of the ACPP. I'm shooting for 70 days or less, barring nasty illness.
 

ShoreFly

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
"...$500/month as an ari-ben CFI, however, I cannot with a..."

[/ QUOTE ]
Mike just raised CFI pay to $15/flight-hour across the board last week. While CFI's normally do not get paid for ground training (unless they're training a VA student or something), I'd say the average CFI flies 60-80 hours a month here. My CFI flew over 100 hours in January, I'll let you do the math.
 

RPM

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
"...$500/month as an ari-ben CFI, however, I cannot with a..."

[/ QUOTE ]
Mike just raised CFI pay to $15/flight-hour across the board last week. While CFI's normally do not get paid for ground training (unless they're training a VA student or something), I'd say the average CFI flies 60-80 hours a month here. My CFI flew over 100 hours in January, I'll let you do the math.

[/ QUOTE ]

Wow, thats great news- a 50% pay increase is substantial! Thats the first I've heard of that!
I've heard last year that they avg. about 40-60 hours but if their getting more now, thats good. Maybe buisiness is increasing.
 

RPM

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
The 90 days just comes from adhering to a set schedule. You basically sign your life over to them when you go...not unlike boot camp, I suppose. It's my opinion that people will use flexibility when it's offered, and that may be why it takes the average person a little longer at Ari- they are a little more flexible. That doesn't necessarily make them lazy, though. I think you'll see people at ATP start taking a little longer now, too, now that they're offering the 'at-your-own-pace' flavor of the ACPP

[/ QUOTE ]

Your probally right, so I'm assuming I could finish in the same time at Ari as long as I don't start to slack off as well


My writtens are finally all done anyway, so at least I don't have that to worry about.
 

ERJ-135

New Member
The main thing I would investigate is why doesn't this school have self-examining authority? What is the extra cost for books, FAA written and flight tests? This is not to bash the school, just to raise the question of what is the real cost of attending?
 

Aviator737

New Member
[ QUOTE ]
The main thing I would investigate is why doesn't this school have self-examining authority? What is the extra cost for books, FAA written and flight tests? This is not to bash the school, just to raise the question of what is the real cost of attending?

[/ QUOTE ]

About $2200-2800 was what I was told as being additional costs for the books, writtens, and checkrides.

ATP does the same thing. The fine print on allatps.com details an additional $2,400.
 

Cruise

Well-Known Member
Ok, as previously promised, I'll give you the update on my progress.

I had my private, multiengine add-on check ride today and it was great! I completed this phase of my training in only two weeks (including weekends and bad weather) and with only 15 hours time.

Again, the level of my training had me well prepared for the check ride/ oral exam. So now it's on to instrument training which is also conducted in the Duchess. I'll keep everyone posted on my progress. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

M. Green
 

Aviator737

New Member
M. Green, keep up the updates! Always fun to read about the progress of a pilot-in-training.

Question: Do you know how many students are enrolled at Ari-Ben?
 

GatorFC

Well-Known Member
M. Green, are you roommates with the Swedish commercial pilot student? If you are, I think I might have met you when I was taking a tour of Ari Ben. I was the asian guy touring the school and housing with Scott, one of the CFI's.

In any case, I'm glad you are enjoying the training there, and I hope to be there soon as I have just sent in my application.
 

Cruise

Well-Known Member
In response to the question posed by AV737....no, I don't know the official figures on enrollment. For an official answer to that, I would recommend contacting the school directly via the 800 # on the website (800-635-9032).

In response to Gator's question.....yes, that's me! I'm glad to hear you've chosen the Aviator.....hopefully you will enjoy it as much as I am/ have.

As always, any questions, feel free to contact me.
 

Cruise

Well-Known Member
Ok, some time has passed and my thread is ready for an update.

Instrument training is going well. There is a ton of knowledge to be learned and the flying is VERY procedural oriented. Shooting approaches has a ton of things to think about and look at,and it all happens at the same time.
However, with practice, it becomes easier and you learn what is important and when to do and not to do certain things.
After all, when you were just learning how to fly, the pattern work was difficult and the ground was coming at you very fast. At this stage of the game, landing is practically second nature; instrument training is no different, just a new stage of learning.

As for my personal progress. I recently started working to slow the bleeding from my bank account....so this has also slowed my training progress.
However, I'm only working just enough so I can pay my rent without using borrowed money for it. Works out to be around 20 hours (rarely less....sometimes more) per week.
That being said, I will still have my instrument rating completed in only 5 weeks (provided I pass my checkride on the 9th
).

All together, I am still on track to finish the program in no more than 6 months (0 to Hero....ie. all my ratings: private to instructor included), and maybe less if I keep up the hard work....





On a different note, I've noticed people talking about ATP on this thread and how they can finish everything in 3 months......
I don't doubt that it can be done.....In fact, I'm fairly certain that it is true, but I question your ability to retain all this information if you're just cramming it down your throat. More power to you, if you can.
However, I'm no dummy and I can't imagine being able to retain all this information in that short amount of time. Completing it in twice as much time is pushing the envelope IMHO. And yes, I realize everyone learns at a different rate.....and there might be someone out there who will have no problem with knowledge retention.....however, they will be the exception, not the norm.......so don't attack me for my opinions.
I have a friend who did his instrument rating in 10 days and he doesn't remember $&!#. So what good did it do for him?....Not much.
The question you should be asking yourself is: Are you trying to be the weekend warrior out for a joyride in your plane, or do you want to do this for a living? Makes a big difference.

As always, question, comments, concerns are welcome and can be directed to me via the thread or e-mail.

M. Green
 
Top