Confused about PanAM

guido161st

New Member
It is abosulety not cheaper to fail a stagecheck. If you fail a stagecheck you have to go back with your instructor (hopefully only once) then you have to go with the stagecheck pilot, and with Pan Am's rates you are not saving a dime- you're paying a lot more. Also, any of you who have been on a checkride know that you can bust PTS on a manuever and still do just fine. All the Examiners want to hear is what happened, and to make sure you know what you did wrong. Obviously if you blow every one, then you'd have a problem. I don't even know why I'm responding to you, tired. You are obviously an insider. Stagechecks are just another way for Pan Am to suck you dry. Not to mention I have busted stagechecks for things that are not even listed in the PTS but they are in Pan Am's syllabus- explain that one!!
 

FLDiver

New Member
NewPilot,
AWSOME POST !!!!! If it looks like a duck, smells like a duck, quacks like a duck....it sure the hell isn't chicken!!!!
 

FLDiver

New Member
Actually it is a "little" cheaper to fail a Checkride than it is a Stage Check. Lets do the Math!!
Assuming Pan Am's cheapest A/C at $86/hr (Eightysix)
CHECKRIDE:
Examiner Fee: $300.00
A/C Fee for Pan Am 1.5 on the Hobbs: $129.00
Total: $ 429.00
Failed Ride:
Remedial Training at Pan Am: Assuming 1 remedial flight. There are usually more.
A/C fee for Pan Am at 1.5 on the Hobbs: $129.00
The usual 10 minute Brief (20 minutes total): $ 60.00
Total: $189.00
Checkride Retake:
Examiner Fee: $150.00
A/C fee for Pan Am at 1.0 on the Hobbs: $ 86.00
Total: $236.00
Add up ALL totals: $854.00
How much does Pan Am rake in from a busted ride?? $404.00

STAGE CHECK:
Assuming Pan Am's cheapest A/C at $86/hr (Eightysix)
I can't recall if there was a "Ground" charge for the Oral Portion of the Stage Check. Anyone care to help out on this?
A/C Fee for Pan Am at 1.5 Hobbs: $129.00
Brief (Includes Pre and Post total 20 minutes) $ 60.00
Total: $189.00
FAILED STAGE CHECK:
Assume 1 remedial flight, there are usually more, depending.
A/C Fee for Pan Am at 1.5 Hobbs: $129.00
Brief (The usual): $ 60.00
Total: $189.00
SECOND ATTEMPT STAGE CHECK:
A/C Fee for Pan Am at 1.0 Hobbs : $ 86.00
Brief (The Usual): $ 60.00
Total: $146.00
Add up ALL the totals: $524.00
Assuming there is no ground charged (There probably is), and 1 remedial flight, there is a $330.00 difference between failing a Check Ride and a Stage Check. Keep in mind, there are usually more than 1 remedial flights. If there is more than one remedial flight, was the student ready for the Stage Check anyway?? Kind of makes you wonder.
However, a failed Stage Check, $524.00 dollars goes straight to Pan Am. There are 3 stage checks to get to your PPL checkride. Then the additional cost of the checkride itself.
I am not busting anyone out here but it does seem to be a good incentive to make the Stage Checks difficult to prepare for and pass. Is there a chance that Pan Am can capitalize on these Stage Checks? YES !!! Do they actually do it??? Who Knows...very difficult to prove. But the chance does exist and can raise doubts about Pan Am's already shady business practices.
Just something to ponder here.
 

expendableone

New Member
Definately factual information on the stage check vs. checkride. Makes you wonder a little. New pilot summed it up pretty good on the message before this one! We are not the smart corporate types running any show, but you gotta go back to the basic's on a business standpoint. I am gonna do my checkride with an inspector because of the racket that the D.E. 's have. They will fail you on the slightest thing, in my opinion just to gain more revenue.(cash at that, which i am sure none is claimed) Kinda wierd wanting to go up with the FAA instead. I figured it would be a good experience and cheaper in the end if I bust the first time. You would have to be a millionaire to bust with a D.E. by the time you get aircraft costs and his fee's out of the way probably lookin at close to a grand. (rediculous in my mind)
 

guido161st

New Member
Yeah I guess you're right. However when I went there, it was a little different. Examiners fee's were $250 and it was only $50 to retake the test. When I did the math this morning, looking at my old receipts, I spent more on a busted stagecheck than I would if I had busted the checkride, but maybe that was only me. But HELL YEAH pan am capatalizes on these things. I took my final stagecheck three freaking times. ABSOLUTELY NO WAY I should have failed it the first time. I'm sure they are designed to make you a better pilot, and to make sure you're ready for the checkride- but come on!! Like I said earlier, Pan Am has things they bust you for, that aren't even in the PTS. They might have changed now, but everytime I falied, I had to do the whole flight over- so on the next flight I would mess something up that I did perfect on the flight before. Sure, you're probably thinking I was a crappy pilot. But sometimes you just need to pass the student to the next level. It's a confidence thing that you will understand when you become an instructor. When I took my checkride it was a joke. The easiest thing I have ever done. Yes it was because I was well trained at Pan Am, however I was well trained up to my final stagecheck. When I failed for a ridiculous reason- I took it hard. I went up with my instructor for less than an hour and we'd come back down and sign me up for another stagecheck, then I'd bust for another ridiculous reason, and we'd repeat the process and every time it would sink me into the ground- . Keep three things in mind- 1. My instructor was on my side. He went to bat for me with both the administration, and the stagecheck pilots, and 2. that I had the stagecheck pilot write in my logbook exactly what I busted for so that I could show my students how lame Pan Am is. 3. These are strictly my personal events, and show only my opinion of what kind of school your dealing with as far as Pan Am goes. I haven't been to the other huge flight schools. We do stagechecks where I work, and unless the student is horrible, they don't ever have to retake anything- PTS or no PTS. I have never had a student bust a checkride yet, nor have I done a stagecheck on someone who would go on to bust. I have talked to many examiners and they ALL say that they know whether a person is going to fail within the first 10 minutes of the ride! So mabybe it is cheaper to fail a stagecheck, but 9 times out of 10, if you were to skip it and take the checkride- YOU WOULD NOT FAIL- because Pan Am does train you well. They just need to suck some more money out of you-
Good Luck
 

guido161st

New Member
I left Pan Am in June of last year. I went to the one in Arizona, and now I'm working as an instructor here in Phoenix.
 

TunerS

New Member
Thank you all! You have all provided me with a ton of info. I noticed there is not a forum for the Westwind Academy on this site. Is this school any good?
 
G

Guest

Guest
No it is not. a stage check costs about 200 then the retake is 200 and the three practic flights are 600. thats a thousand about the same or cheaper than a retake with the faa.

everyone knows that the stagechecks are easier than the checkrides.
 

guido161st

New Member
actually I think you got that backwords- checkrides are easier than stagechecks- which is a good thing! The stagechecks prepare you for anything!
 

Snow

'Not a new member'
You know I don't know why people are so conserned about the money involved. I mean what's an extra $10,000 if your going to be making a 6 figure sallery in the next 10 years anyhow? I'm more concerned about getting the best training that I can get.

It's realitively cheap if you compair it to say, med school, what's that cost? $40k a year over 8 years, that $320,000!!
 

ScorpionStinger

Well-Known Member
yea.. as long as they graduate med school. Doc's are garranteed to work somewhere; making, at least 100k after residency.. and their no such thing as Fourloug...


oh yea... ever heard on the news " well the medical industry is on a down turn this year; due to the decrease of health related problems. "
or.. " one of the top 5 Hospitals in this country just Filled for Bankruptcy " ..



let's just say Pilots and Doc are way to different to compair.

there jobs are not at risk, when the economy is bad; Airline Pilots are...

dam.. look at all the cancer, Viruses, mental issues, accidents ect... doc's are alwayz going to have a job as a doc.. unless they Fu*ck up...
 

dakovich

Well-Known Member
well, i might as well say a little sumthin sumthin....


the whole deal with failing stage checks and waiting for another stage check pilot for a long time....old news. its a remnant of the 141 program that no longer exists. today, if you fail a stage check for whatever reason its most likely a good thing that you do and avoid getting a nice pink slip from an FAA examiner. if you do fail, you take a practice flight and then another stage. both can be quick, and its super super easy to get an instructor to do a stage check. fail one day(rare to see), review next day, retake day after. thats usually the scenerio.

i have to agree with keephope. on the whole thing that outside instructors (those who didn't fully attend panam) should not take positions that could be filled by graduating CFI's from the Panam program. outside CFI's shoyuld always(almost always) be displaced to make room for "company" CFI's. i believe many of the head instructors no matter where they learned need to keep their positions in many instances. more expereince and stuff. but for lower level CFI's...make room for those that payed their dues at the school. reason one being, CFI's that were taught here, will teach here to the standards that the Panam Career Pilot program instilled into them. i really noticed the difference between those who started here from day one to those who just showed up later. reason two, if a student gets an instructor that began here then they will almost never get screwed on brief costs.....again:

if you have an instructor that started here, they know the brief issue, have been through it, and will be much more aware that you paid for some brief time and deserve to get it. for the instructors i've had that began here....they breifed me like crazy and made sure i got my monies(sp?) worth. those that just came in from somewhere else.....i got charged double sometimes, once by the school and then again by the instructor who didn't understand or want to understand how the brief system works. so, Panam, hire your own...eleviate the negative press over brief time. simple stuff. i know if i get to instruct here that i'll keep crazy tabs on brief time to make sure my students get what they deserve. thats how most if not all students that want to be CFI's here feel when it comes to brief time.


and please, go to college and get a degree. go to school, fly when you've got time and see if this is really for you. so many people come in here with no real education, no real idea of what the "game" is about and end up screwing themselves out of 10's of thousands of dollars. i admit i myself really had no clue when i came in here, but i had the degree, was disciplined enough in college to understand how and why to study, and its all worked out ok for me(thank god). that dgree will teach you how to learn, it'll save you money when it comes to an accelerated program like Panam, and you'll have a back up in case something goes wrong in your flying career. get an education, find your limitations, get some hours, maybe save a couple bucks if you finish a rating or two during school, and then consider an accelerated program. i think you'll find yourself much more staisfied, and prepeared that way.
 

FLDiver

New Member
But med students don't start off at 12-20 K a year when they graduate. There is usually a HUGE demand for MD's too, not really any demand for pilots right now. Doctors dont get furloughed at the first downturn of an economy or a glitch in a contract. You can't compare these two professions. The percentage of MD's out there making excellent money compared to the Professional Pilots out there making good money is just not fair to do. I just wonder how many pilots have filed for bankruptcy AFTER they graduated from one of these "pilot mills" owing thousands and thousands of dollars and no real job waiting for them. Sure you can work as a CFI, IF you find someone hiring OR you are an independent. Working for someone else, you bring home maybe 20 K a year if you are lucky. Take that, apply it to your student loan in the amount of around $700/month on top of your other bills and pray that your car doesn't break down or that the kids don't get sick or YOU get sick...well, you get the point, not a very promising future in aviation at this moment. An FBO would be a great route to go right now, while you are getting that 4 year degree or working and actually making some money. Aviation is just too volatile right now to go into a huge amount of debt that you probably won't be able to pay off if your only source of income is aviation. Just some thoughts to ponder.
 

Derg

New Arizona, Il Duce/Warlord
Staff member
On the doctor thing... My cousin got thru residency, then she ended up going to a small town in California and starting a practice. Then she ended up starting her own clinic and is probably a zillionaire at 33.

The medical profession, just like aviation, requires drive and ambition.
 

Snow

'Not a new member'
well I wasn't really trying to compair the 2 jobs as just, more just to give an example that some educational programs cost a lot more. I'll have my degree next July. I just want to get the training done asap, I won't have a job or family to worry about so might as well get it done in one go. Plus I think you have less time to forget stuff if you do it in close sucsession. Someone I know, it's taken him 6yrs just to get his MEI, I definatly don't want to do that. Mind you he was working full time as well. Anyhow, I'm prepared to go the hard yards and I'm sure I'll make it to the airlines someday, a lot of pilots are gonna be retiring in the next 3 or 5 years, somthing like 60% of them will be reaching retirment age by 2005. Frankly I think this is the perfect time to get into it, do your training durring the downturn and have your resume ready for the airlines when the boom comes around (bad metaphore)
 

FLDiver

New Member
Doug, right now I am working part time in a Dermatology practice. The MD who owns the place only works 2 1/2 days a week and takes an equivalent of 2 months off a year. The office is closed on weekends and the MD does not do rounds at the hospital and is NEVER on call, she has a Nurse Pactitioner and a Physicians Assistant working for her and just HER gross income was well over 400 K last year. Not too shabby in my book...lol.
 

FLDiver

New Member
I said the same thing when I saw her yearly earned income when they were preparing her taxes. I didnt get a chance to see what the business earns as a whole but I am sure its up there......
 

dakovich

Well-Known Member
my buddy is a financial planner, and the lady who hired him makes like $250,000 a year and works about the same hours. in a couple times a week and always leaves early when she is actually there. she hired my bud before he even graduated and he put the degree back burner because she wants him to take over her business for here...wish i could get that kindda break.
 
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