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Block Time or just a set price???

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Hey all,


in my search for a better world :P one of the issues that has come up that i wonder about is block time. there are four schools in this area, some accept large sums of money down for good deals on flight time. most however do not and have limits on how much they take on account. the average is two to five thousand which i really like, especially with the passing of Silver State.


one school has set flight time prices and does not make different deals for who ever puts down the most money.. making the process completely transparent. everyone knows the price, and everyone pays the same amount. one of the troubles i have seen in the past was four students sitting in the same room discussing flight time only to find out that they all had paid different prices for the same helicopter... some had even put down the same amount of money yet got the ship for less per hour.


i am wondering what the market is like out there, not particularly prices as i can see that can differ for ships (new vs older) and market areas, but how many schools take big chunks of $$ and sell "discounted" time as special deals.


i also wonder how easy it is to get your money back if you have $$ on account and decide to move to another school, state, or just stop flying all together.. can the school hold your money?? and/or what is your recourse for collecting those funds?


thanks for your input,



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The school I work at adds $100 to your account for every $1000 you put down. For every $5000 you get $625 added which works out at 12.5% extra. Our prices for the R22 are $270/hour dual and $250/hour solo. Everybody gets this deal including the people that are using Sallie Mae(although thats over now!!) or other finance companies. That is as transparent as it gets I think.


Most people put down $1000 at a time to avail of the extra 10% deal. There are only a handful that I've seen drop $5000, and they're mostly the R44 guys.

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The helicopter school I trained at didn't give discounts for block time, but I generally paid a bit up front (on credit card, figuring that would give me some sort of formal method for arbitration if needed).


During my fixed wing adventure, I joined a well-established flight club that, up-front, offered a block rate for cash/debit block payments. Those rates were spelled out in the school's policies. After every flight I got a receipt showing my balance. When I left, I had a balance that was promptly refunded, no hassles/no problems. Everything was right up front and in writing.

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Hi. New to VR. Just discovered it.


I think it comes down to trust. If you have a good gut feeling about the school you chose, put down block and reap the rewards. If you don't, you should think twice about your choice.


Maybe look into the school and those who own/manage it. There are lots of cheap ways of doing a background check on people these days. Usually you can find out if there are things in their past that would make you not want to invest your money with them, like if they aren't honest about their past business dealings.


That's what I did, and I feel very confident with my choice.

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OOh DP, you do ask all the politically incorrect questions, now don't you?


Wanna talk religion next??


J/K, Ok every school that I am aware of does some sort of block time discount. There is a real value in a school getting some bucks up front....and its not just about cash flow. See my other post about my neutral third party ideas.....that aside.




Schools have minimum hours to fly each month to make a buck. Blocks of hours help them fill that available time quicker. Students fly more if they have already paid for the service. Money in the bank is just that...money in the bank. It even earns interest now and then....ok, skip that, I was back in the 80's for a moment....


The problem is can you really get your money back if you change your mind? I would say consider yourself lucky if you do. Not that everyone is out to get you, just some schools live hand to mouth, and others are better established. And thats why I recommend to do smaller blocks of bucks...like 3-5K and not 30,50 or 70K....simply just less at risk.


I wish I would have read this post before I commented on the other one....cause my idea of a third party involved is a valid one.


See ya buddy !



Edited by Goldy
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