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Subject: Visas - Calling anyone UK pilots working abroad
 
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michaelpanterUser is Offline
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Posts:3

02/08/2005 12:26 PM  
I am from the UK and do know whether to gain the CPL FAA or the CPL JAA. I want to study in the US for the first year then hour build in the US for the second. Then my J Visa would run out and I would have to find either another visa or another country. I am not confident that I would be very employable at this point in the UK because it has such a small industry. How realistic is it to stay in the US on a working Visa? Or would other countries be interested in employing me? If it's possible for me to work in the US or another country then I would study for the CPL FAA as this is slightly quicker to achieve leaving more time for hour building. If not a would study for the CPL JAA with a return to Europe in mind.
SupremoUser is Offline
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02/09/2005 7:10 PM  
Michael Your idea to get the license here is a good one for the cost factor. If needs be you can always get a conversion with JAA later. The most typical way to get the experience is getting the CFI rating and building time working as a underpaid flight instructor while you struggle to keep your financial head above water! Its awfully hard to find any kind of decent paying job until you have about 1000 hours in the logbook mainly thanks to the insurance companies. I've worked all over the world on my FAA certificates and have gotten reciprocal licenses by taking a local physical, and the written on regulations. The license was issued based on my logbook times with appropriate ratings. I also went ahead and got the Canada commercial as a "stand alone" license because I was flying in some areas that did not like to see the USA license for political reasons. At last count, I have been licensed in 15 countries as either a Commercial or Airline Transport pilot. Good luck in your flight future. "supremo"

Risk is the price you pay to avoid a dull life.
michaelpanterUser is Offline
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02/10/2005 8:55 AM  
Thanks supremo As discusse dmy main worry was to have a US pilot license and have no visa time left. So if I studied (and passed) my CPL-H with the FAA and got my CFI. Then spent a year or so trying to get to 1000 hrs in the states, you would be confident that I could get a pilot job somewhere around this wonderful globe of ours without too much hassle. If this is the case, there is a professional pilot program run by HAI in Florida which looks just the ticket.
SupremoUser is Offline
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02/10/2005 7:27 PM  
If I understand you correctly, you are talking about Helicopter Adventures Inc in Florida? If so, good school and I recommend them. They have or had an affiliate in UK at Red Hill for the JAA people. I knew them when they were still in Concord on the west coast and I got my rotor II add-on with them. That was 10 years ago and I haven't used it yet! Still, the CFI route is the only practical way to go and HAI can tell you a lot more. They have always been pretty straight shooters with me and I talk to them every so often. As happens, former students who are now in hiring positions will often ask HAI to recommend someone for them. When I last was at their school they had pilots from all over the world. I'm sure they have the latest gen on visas, etc with the heightened security requirements. Good luck supremo

Risk is the price you pay to avoid a dull life.
EDSHOWUser is Offline
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Posts:1

02/11/2005 7:08 PM  
If you want to go back to the UK and work there then gaining your FAA CPL will not help you much in the first instance..........The UK CAA will still require you to take all the written exams.....Once you had done that then the hours you built in the US would help a little but as you say it's a small market in the UK.Unless you got lucky you would have to start at the bottom again get your UK instructors ticket teach at a flight school and hope to work your way in that way.If you had been burnt out teaching in the USA you could well wonder why you bothered to spend time in the USA........ If you do want to do the USA route then make sure you get your ATP if you can......The Uk CAA give this more credit so when you submit your log book to them at Gatwick they might cut you some slack and make you take less written exams......(they are a lot tougher than the USA ones and they charge you a lot for the privellage of taking them!). Another way is to get your USA CPL...go to Canada and convert to Canadian CPL.....I believe that there are some schools which can do that on a two week course.If you go to Gatwick with that in hand you will find the convertion to the UK CPL again easier.....they give that more credit than the USA one. If you think that you can get a visa to carrying on working in the USA after your two years are up...think again...maybe if you had worked at a flight school and they realy liked you they might help out...but no turbine employer is going to help you out........ If you want to stay .....then I guess you might meet someone and fall in love....!!!!!!!!! Good luck in what you choose to do......there is a lot mor varied flying in the USA...make the most of it.
brooksieUser is Offline
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Posts:7

03/10/2005 5:06 AM  
Michael, Flight training for helicopters in the UK has become extremely complicated since the introduction of JAA. You use to be able to obtain a CPL(H) as a qualification in it's own right, but then the JAA decided to raise the bar. It is now necessary to sit all the ATPL exams if you wish to convert a FAA license, swapping the Principles of flight Aeroplanes, for helicopters. Even once these exams are successfully achieved, the amount of flight time required to Unfreeze the ATPL(H) is very precise! Typically 250 PIC, 200 cross country, 70 Instrument and 100 night within a specific time. Therefore, it stands to reason that many CPL(H) pilots remain as such, but have paid the added expense of the ATPL courses. One other thing worth mentioning, to upgrade from a CPL(H) to a ATPL(H) having got the required hours, requires the addition of an Instrument rating. But how do you get real experience, or the chance of a job without an Instrument rating? Your options are severely limited. On the plus side, JAA qualifications are 'the' most recognised throughout the world, and if you want to work in Britain, you will require JAA licenses. Good luck!
michaelpanterUser is Offline
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03/12/2005 8:15 AM  
Thanks for all your input chaps Having digesting a number of not so positive aspects of the JAA-CPL(H) - too many exams, too detailed, too expensive, etc. I was wondering whether anyone could offer some positives. As the concept is pan European, does this mean once qualified as JAA-CPL(H) is the pilot free to roam the EU? Or are there further conversions required for specific countries. On another note, does anybody have any idea (whether just anecdotal or actual facts) of the breakdown between ex military and privately trained pilots in the civilian industry?
MrglassUser is Offline
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Posts:1

01/08/2006 5:49 PM  
"Originally posted by michaelpanter on 2/10/2005 08:55 Thanks supremo As discusse dmy main worry was to have a US pilot license and have no visa time left. So if I studied (and passed) my CPL-H with the FAA and got my CFI. Then spent a year or so trying to get to 1000 hrs in the states, you would be confident that I could get a pilot job somewhere around this wonderful globe of ours without too much hassle. If this is the case, there is a professional pilot program run by HAI in Florida which looks just the ticket. " So, did we decide on whether the above option was a YES or a NO? Or was it a case of - JAA is the only option here. For info: I am a UK citizen. I am in exactly the same situation as michaelpanter is/was. I have $58,800 to get to "employable". I can relocate ANYWHERE in the world upon finish of J1 visa. Does the above quoted plan andmy budget make sense or am I doomed to face up to the JAA no matter what I do? Surely there must be companies somewhere in the world who would consider employing a FAA CPL with 500-1000hrs(?) One more question, how many hours could an instructor log in the year remaining on a J1? 500?-1000? I appreciate you help on this tricky topic.
i4iq-01User is Offline
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JH Veteran
Posts:43

01/08/2006 6:49 PM  
Hi MrGlass I've heard that you can expect to get 40-50 hours per month as a CFII at the moment. Although some have said 80 plus. Don't forget, you are often required to teach ground class as well - which helps with the coffers...
EarthHuggerUser is Offline
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JH Member
Posts:23

02/12/2006 1:40 PM  
Go for a M1 visa: this permits you to stay upto 5 years (renew each year)in the USA at a "trade school" -a flight school that gives you flight experience. State that you are going for yout USA ATPL. In that way you are entitled to stay till you meet your FAA ATPL requirements! You could also throw in a Junior College degree (2 years) for entertainment - for the social life etc ... and then go home to do your conversion. HOwever, after 5 years in the USA, you are entitled to apply for your Permanent resaidence because the USA is expecting a short fall in Helo-pilots. I believe the J1 lets you work 1 year and you have to stay out of the USA for the next 3 years
HillerBeeUser is Offline
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JH Guru
Posts:97

02/12/2006 4:24 PM  
You cannot get a M-1 visa for more than 12 months for flight training. Furthermore you're not allowed to work on a M-1 for more than half of the term you studied. So 6 months study is 3 months of work. A J-1 visa is for a maximum period of 24 months. M-1 and J-1 visas are non-immigrant visa's and the time you've been 'living' in the US on these doesn't count for an application for citizenship! It's all been tried before. The only way to stay in the US is find a girl and marry. And even then they will put you to the test, it's not that simple. Abusing the system is not the way to go and when your caught you will not be able to enter the US for 10 years and you will never ever able to get a work-visa. However there are employer who will offer you an H visa if they like you (flightschools) but you have to sign a contract with them for a couple of years. After that you might be able to find a 'real' job.
i4iq-01User is Offline
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JH Veteran
Posts:43

02/12/2006 7:38 PM  
Even if you go the H1b route, you still have to fulfill the H1b criteria to transfer to another employer. You could get your M1 and do up to 100 hours of training - but NOT take your commercial exam. You then return home for a month or so, whilst your J1 is processed and return to the US for 2 full years, leaving you more time to build hours. Has been done but some think the hassle outweighs the benefits.
EarthHuggerUser is Offline
JH Member
JH Member
Posts:23

02/12/2006 10:30 PM  
You cannot trust that a h1 visa will be granted after your training. I started in AZ with a H1 visa, but this was later denied because a CFI does not meet the "Alien with extraordinary ability" - there are 1000's of US citizens with CFI- what makes you special? Everyone one of us was left orphaned. And there is far less flying then back then in the "happy days". I renewed my M1 three times. Going to college satisfies the vocational training part time work/study. Plus you are entitled to work on campus without too much restrictions. Worked fine for me - BUT this was over 5 years ago - laws may have changed. If you plan to stay in the USA - get a good immigration lawyer - worth every penny. Hope that helps.
JustJimUser is Offline
JH Member
JH Member
Posts:23

02/13/2006 3:20 PM  
This is not the only way, but is increasingly a best-use of time and money. Get PPL (H) either in UK or in U.S. on an M-1 Use the 24 month J-1 to get your JAA Commercial (and FAA Instrument/CFI/CFII if you wish) in the US. If you want the JAA, you'll have to consider HAI in Florida. (You cant get a J-1 if you have already a PPL (H). The smart idea here is therefore to use your J1 time wisely. PPL-CPL, instead of Zero-CPL, gives you more months to gain experience as a CFI on the remainder of your J1) You may expect 40-60 hours a month as a full time CFI as mentioned in an earleir post. Depending on how quickly you complete your training, there could be over a year left on your J1, enough to get 500-800 more hours (?) if you're busy.
HillerBeeUser is Offline
JH Guru
JH Guru
Posts:97

02/14/2006 3:35 AM  
You can get a J-1 if you have a PPL since your going to do career training and a PPL has nothing to do with that. It's up to the flightschool to decide if your prequisites are right or not. The official rule seems to be PPL and 70 hours. But I know people who already held a CPL(H) and still where able to get a J-1! A good way is getting a M-1 and then a status change to a J-1, but it does not always work I know a number of people where the J-1 was rejected and they had to continue on the M-1. Also if you get a M-1 or J-1 at the embassy it doesn't mean you're in. When you enter the country and passed immigration then you're in. Immigration can be very nasty and if your not sincere you will be sent back. Don't doubt US Immigration or the US Justice system. They are very, very strict, as they should be.
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