Flight Training Financing
High prices for flight training courses make costs the greatest obstacle on one’s path to becoming a commercial pilot. Training costs from scratch to getting your CPL(A) licence vary from EUR 30,000 to EUR 50,000. Costs are most often way out of reach for a regular Joe. Considering all the above, how can you manage to finance your training?
In the old days, aeroclubs used to receive co-financing from the military and they covered flight training costs for their members. However, these times are long gone. At present, training at aeroclubs is based on commercial grounds – similarly to private flight training centres, where prices correspond to market prices.
At times, you might hear about flight training being co-funded by various institutions, yet these are rare and the number of training places is always very scarce. Most often, the financial support provided to aeroclubs is allocated to members who satisfy criteria specified in a funding scheme. For that very reason, I wouldn’t count on finding a co-funded training if I were you.
Aviation college – the least expensive option
If you’re a teenager, you can make the attempt to apply to an aviation college. If you’re successfully enrolled and then satisfy strict requirements for being considered eligible for flight training funding, the college shall cover the costs of your CPL(A) licence course including all ratings. Obviously, this takes diligent studying at the college, yet, given the horrendous costs of training you won’t be expected to bear, it’s worth it!
Nevertheless, aviation schools usually require their candidates to already have some experience in flying, which is a vital condition for being accepted into the enrolment process. Therefore, you should complete PPL(A) training or/and a sailplane pilot training on your own. The cost of a SLP training is about EUR1,000, whereas the cost of PPL(A) training is another EUR 6,000 including additional costs. Where do you get money like that from? As you’re under 20, you’re most likely not employed yet and your savings are most probably not that big. Unfortunately, to be frank, there’s no other way and you’ll have to ask your parents to finance the training.
What if I don’t get into an aviation school?
It’s not the end of the world if you won’t get into an aviation school or if you’re already studying at some other college. You can still become a good airline pilot, though you’d have to cover the costs of the flight training yourself, unfortunately. First, take up a university course that will give you the profession owing to which you’ll be able to cover the costs of light training by yourself. At the same time, the obtained degree will serve as a ‘collateral’ source of income in case your plans and dreams of becoming a pilot won’t come true.
At the same time, it’s worth to have a serious adult talk with your parents on your plans for the future. Ask if they’re capable to offer you a financial support. Don’t expect too much of your parents, though, as the costs of commercial pilot licence courses are very high. Financing your training might be beyond their financial ability.
A well-paid job or a credit for the training
If your job doesn’t allow you to regularly save amounts that will let you complete subsequent training courses in a sensible timeframe, consider taking a credit for flight training. It’s the most certain form of financing and, with a low credit instalment, it won’t be that burdensome for your monthly budget. When planning a credit, have in mind, that training courses and building hours for your commercial pilot licence are distributed in time.