Air Force Vs. Civillian Flight Training

Sun Aug 01, 1999 11:12 am

Can someone tell me which would be the better way to go to learn how to fly; the Air Force or regular flight school. Does anyone here have experience with the United States Air Force that could tell me what it's like? I think the Air Force would be easier.
What do you think?
DL 604

RE: Air Force Vs. Civillian Flight Training

Sun Aug 01, 1999 12:25 pm

AF training is cheaper. In the AF you'll get a lot of flight time quickly. But the downside to the AF is the risk of dying in combat, thats the suckie part. In my opinion I think civilian training is better. Also the military life sucks, cause you're probably going to be gone 6 months out of the year every year. There are some people that like to be gone for 6 months or more, but those people are wack. My friend knows this guy that volunteers for TDYs every chance he gets and everyone thinks he's psycho, cuz he has a wife and 2 kids. AF training is good training, but so is civilian training. Both supply good training.

RE: Ual1636

Sun Aug 01, 1999 12:45 pm

Oh, no. I'm not planning on being there for a long time, just one hitch (4 years). Just enough time to get my flight training. Plus it'd be better than having to pay for civillian training. Plus my college eduction would be paid for and I'd have a better chance of getting first choice for a job because of my Air Force experience. I think the Air Force would be the best way to go, but I don't like the risk of dying. If I do go Air Force, I'll have to cross my fingers that for four years we won't have any conflicts, like THAT's gonna happen!  
My biggest problem with the Air Force would be how strict it is.   But some of the aircraft they fly are downright beautiful. The B-1B and F-18C are pretty impressive.

DL 604

RE: Air Force Vs. Civillian Flight Training

Sun Aug 01, 1999 12:52 pm

If you think that you're going to get into the Air Force flight program and only serve four years, I think that you may be mistaken. When I was looking at the Air Force Academy, I was told that, once accepted into the flight program, you are required to serve a total of 8-10 years (I don't recall the exact number). This requirement, which is considerably longer than graduates who do not fly, is to cover the exorbitant cost of military flight training. There may be some way to get military flight training without the long commitment, but I don't think there is.

RE: Purdue Cadet

Sun Aug 01, 1999 1:17 pm

Thank you Purdue Cadet, I did not know that. Really the only reason I thought about going with the Air Force is all of the benefits I would get. It is a lot easier to get a job at an airline if you are ex-Air Force and if you have a college degree. Going into the Air Force woulf kill two birds with one stone as I would have the benefits of being ex-Air Force, and they would pay my college education towards aviation. But I don't want to spend 8-10 years there! Maybe Ual1636 has the right idea.

DL 604
Posts: 54
Joined: Mon May 31, 1999 2:46 pm

RE: DL 604

Tue Aug 03, 1999 4:00 am

Hey! Up here in Canada, I've heard that air force is NOT the way to go. The commitment is upwards of 10 years. Our air force isn't as large as yours( an understatement!). I don't know if you can pick what area you want to fly in down there, but here you are placed in either fighters, choppers, transport, or maritime patrol. You don't get a choice. And if you wind up in fighters or choppers, you can kiss your commercial aviation career out the window. The airlines are big on Crew Resource Management now, and a one man fighter doesn't fit the bill anymore. Anyways, civilian training seems to be the way to go, as long as you are determined, as the jobs won't be calling you, it takes a lot of work and patience. By the way, I, like you, thought military would be the best way to go before I looked into it... There's my 2 cents worth.
Glen Purves, Vancouver Canada.

RE: Flyinglen

Tue Aug 03, 1999 7:08 am

Down here you can choose which airbase you want to go to AFTER basic training. However, you cannot choose which aircraft you want to fly. Or so I've heard. I believe you guys are right, the Air Force is NOT the way to go. It was my parents' idea originally, my dad wants me in the service, so I thought about it. But now I see I was thinking wrong. Thanks for the info!

DL 604
Posts: 702
Joined: Tue Jun 08, 1999 3:03 am

RE: Air Force Vs. Civillian Flight Training

Tue Aug 03, 1999 11:16 am

Air Force Training is probably one of the finest in the world. It's Tough as hell and regimented to the core. Speaking from my own training in the Air Transportation side of operations, Technical schools, Survival school, Loadmaster training, Loadplanner training, Hazmat schooling and refreshers, Customs Inspector training, TAC EVAL's, ORI's and ORE's, On top of that --All sorts of OJT--, You name it....the quality is -Top notch-. They weed out the chaff very early also, especially people who might think the training is easy. it's far from it.

For flight training it's tough-tough-tough and Professional as ever.

Dont be under -any- impression that it is easy though. -You- are the key ingredient in whether you succeed or fail. If you are successful you would have witnessed some of the finest schooling in the world to which there really can be no price put upon. The level of maturity is also quite different as well upon successful completion. You look at the world quite differently and I believe in a far more confident, seasoned and prepared manner. They hit you with a LOT. If you can make it thru, you'd be amongst the finest.

That's how I viewed my training and experiences.

Posts: 54
Joined: Mon May 31, 1999 2:46 pm

RE: Air Force Vs. Civillian Flight Training

Tue Aug 03, 1999 3:38 pm

Hi Again!

One thought that I should have put into my original message was that if you want to join your country's forces to serve your country, that's great and should be commended. But to join the forces for a "free ride" to get a commercial aviation job is not a good reason. That's why the military keeps their successful candidates for a long period. As MAC Vet. said, it's a rewarding experience for someone who loves and WANTS to be there.

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