Do you have a dream of become a pilot, but you’re not exactly sure how to pay for your training? You’re not alone. Flying a plane, whether for fun or as a profession, is a lot of fun and can be a very fulfilling pastime or career. It’s also expensive to learn how to fly and get all the proper training that will allow you to advance in your career or safely operate a personal aircraft. As you start exploring your flight academy options, here are some helpful tips to finance that education.
Banks and credit unions will sometimes offer personal loans for schooling or similar programs. However, the requirements to qualify are usually pretty stringent, which means not everyone will be able to get these loans. These loans are also usually unsecured, which means there isn’t a tangible piece of property that the lender can repossess if you fail to pay so the interest rate and monthly payment will be higher.
Low-Interest Credit Cards
Depending on your financial situation, you may have a low-interest credit card to pay some or all of your tuition. Make sure you clearly understand repayment terms, including minimum monthly payments to pay interest and pay down the principal. You might be able to find a credit card with an introductory 0% interest rate for 12 to 18 months, so you won’t accrue interest until after you are finished with your training program.
FLT Academy also has a special financing program available for students. Meritize Bank offers loans that take into account your academic performance, military service, and other work achievements to help you get approved for a loan. Having a good credit score and a co-borrower can make it even easier. It only takes a few minutes to apply and get approved, and you can choose from fixed or variable rates depending on what works for you. Plus, you can choose from multiple repayment options—deferred, interest only, or full payments—while you are in flight school.
Other Loan Options
If none of these work for you, there are a few other options:
- Private loans from friends or family members (make sure to put the loan amount and repayment terms in writing to protect both parties)
- Loans from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) or Pilot Financing Inc.
- Discounted tuition for people who work at a flight school (this is not available everywhere and depends on job openings)
- Scholarships and grants through government and private organizations or foundations (this website also has several scholarship and loan options with links)
Financing your dream of becoming a pilot is possible, so don’t put off your plans to start flight school because you’re worried you can’t afford it. Talk to FLT Academy today to learn more.