Cost Overview


Basic facts

  • Average cost per lesson: $185-$200
  • Instructor rate per hour $45
  • Total cost for a Private Pilot’s license: Varies and below is why
  • How long will it take: Most pilots get their license within one year. But examples below could drastically change this.
  • Need cost information beyond your Private Pilot’s License? Click here!

Rental Rates:

Type PA-28R C172N C172N C172M C172M C150L C150L J5 Cub
Identifier N300PA N545DS N738FD N80347 N80678 N16221 N19298 N35400
Year 1974 1980 1977 1976 1976 1972 1973 1941
Engine HP 200 160 w/ GPS 180 180 150 100 100 100
Wet Rate $150 $125 $120 $120 $110 $85 $85 $85

Overview

Talking about the cost of your private pilot’s license is a dry topic. Aero Maintenance would like to make this a bit more interesting, and hopefully we can explain it in a way that you can relate to. You’ll hear from many people that “the more frequent you fly, the less it will cost”. This is very true, and we will try to explain why through these three sample pilots: The Navigator, The Explorer, and The Wanderer (you may even relate to one of these pilots):

The Navigator: Total Cost: $6,500

 

The Explorer: Total Cost: $8,900

 

The Wanderer: Total Cost: $14,000+

This studious type of person is focused on completing the training (and not much else) and in the most efficient way possible. Like a true aviation navigator, academics is the primary focus in life and has all the time to dedicate to an endeavor such as learning to fly. The Navigator’s career aspiration is in aviation. You can find this person at an airport 3-4 times a week. This person is as determined as the Navigator, except that in addition, this person may have a full time career or family life. This person is usually available 2 times a week to fly. Often times, there is little time away from the airport for self study. This person has a challenging schedule to work with and may not be able to dedicate a consistent time to flying. However, this person will become a pilot, and will do whatever it takes, as long as their busy schedule can make room for it. Usually this person can fly maybe once a week, or even less.

 

Budgeting

 

Funding Option Pros Cons Total Cost of Training
Pay as you go
  • Overall cost will be lower than a loan
  • Fly as much as you want
  • If you run out of money, you will not be able to fly
  • Overall cost of your training WILL be high unless you budget at least $2,000 per month
Minimal amount because you are paying face value for training.
Your savings account
  • Overall cost will be lower than a loan
  • Fly as much as you want
  • Your savings account will be affected
Minimal amount because you are paying face value for training.
Credit Card
  • You can fly as much as you want
  • Lower interest rates than traditional loan options
  • Payment amounts are not consistence
  • Can affect your credit score.
You pay for lessons plus interest accrued, but can complete training with a lower capital investment.
Traditional Loan: Pilot Finance or AOPA Loan
  • Fixed payments, no surprises
  • Most expensive way to fund your training
  • Higher interest rate
You pay for lessons plus interest accrued, but can complete training with a lower capital investment.
Crowd Funding
  • You can fund as much as you think you need for training
  • Your funding is based on everyone else’s motivation.
Minimal amount because you are paying face value for training.