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Ways to pay for lessons??

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Well-known member
Nov 25, 2001
I was just wondering how everyone on here paid for all of their flight lessons when they first started. Did you get financial aid? I am working and saving up money to start flying, but I know that eventually I will need to get some kind of loan or grant or something. Please just give me some input. Thanks.
I got student loans for the private, as I did it at a community college. All of my other ratings were earned and paid for as I went. It took forever, and I would not recommend this method. I wish I could have found a way to finance one of those fast-paced schools. I also had to figure out a way to get multi time, so a program like ATP's that uses twins to train you is a great idea. Hope it works out for you.

I took out two sepaerate loans to finnance flying. It really helped get the ball rolling to my frsit flying job. I did not go to a big flight school, but I still finished throught he CFI in about 18 months. Any flight school can be accelerated if you have the cash. In hiensight however I think I sholud have pursued other financial options. Because even though I am a working pilot right now, I am still hating b/c of all the bills. Be creative when exploring options for flying, Fed-ex remeburses $5000 a year after the private to full-time hub workers. I have had many students taking advantage of this, but you musty live in memphis. Just giving you an example to show you that ther are other ways. Good luck and safe flying.
what worked for me...

I sold aerial photos! I went to people and businessess in my community and asked if they would like one done. Make sure your instructor is on board FIRST! Since it will be his/her commercail that will allow you do do this! I always tipped my instructors, so they were happy to help. Then when I got the film developed I would go to my customers with 4x6 print before odering larger prints. I also went to craft stores and got cheap but nice frames and made a couple of samples to show from then on. I would take my nicest one and do each size. I bought a portfolio case to carry them in and financed my way! You may not take photos first only the gov is allowed to do that! I got a great response from car dealers. They turned out to be my best customers and gave out my cards to customers who asked about them! So it really worked for me. Good luck!
I joined a flying club and flew a Luscombe for $5.00 an hour. I worked at $1.80 an hour polishing a DC-3. For my commercial I found a C-150 for $8.00 and hour and worked construction at $2.00 an hour. For my instructors and instrument I had to rent a Warrior for $18.00 and worked as a lineman for $2.50 an hour. Sectionals cost $.35 at the time. It is all relative, have fun.
old days

TurboS7, were those the days when you had to walk uphill in the snow both ways to get to the airport?
Pay-For-Training by Me

Actually, my parents gave me some money toward my Private. Everything up to multi I earned, saved for, and paid out-of-pocket from my day/night job. I received a little money from my grandmother's estate and that paid for my multi. Everything after that, including $3K of Citation type, I paid for myself. In later years, that included paying for my standardization at Mesa when it hired me to instruct. :(

My situation might be a little different than many people because I was working full time, established in my business and could put flight time on a pay-as-you-go basis. But because I worked odd shifts, my training was irregular, to say the least, and it took me more than six years to finish all my ratings. Moreover, I hadn't decided to pursue aviation full time at that point.

I did it but, clearly, a better way to go would have been to bite the bullet, take out a loan, quit my day job, find a school and devote my undivided attention toward finishing my ratings.

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