How can we make flight training cheaper

We live in expensive times! Post COVID we have been exposed to price increases in all areas of life almost daily. Food, living space, heating, driving – everything is significantly more expensive than it was even 2 years ago. 

Aviation and flight training are no exceptions. From aircraft acquisition cost to parts, from avgas to maintenance, from instructor cost to student accommodation – huge price increases everywhere! 


The question that not only student pilots but flight schools all over the world ask is this: 

How can we make flight training more affordable, how can we reduce cost – and what are we willing to sacrifice for it? 


And many attempts have been made to capture new students by focusing on a bottom line that looks better than the next school. 


  • Schools have reduced the number of aircraft in their fleet, saving money for leases or acquisition cost. Less planes also meant less insurance cost, less parking spots to pay for and more students sharing one aircraft improved the utilization and profit margins. 

Waiting lists for students and a lack of aircraft availability when the student needed the plane were the logical consequence and many students experienced costly delays in their training. 

  • It is a fact in flight training that cost can be optimized by reducing the types of aircraft to sometimes a single type that the school operates. When a school only offers one type of aircraft, then the maintenance, part supply, developing manuals, check lists etc. can be streamlined and less qualified instructors can do the job cheaper. 
  • Schools can save on the compensation of their instructors. Unfortunately, if instructors are not motivated by fair wages, their only incentive to work is “time building” and they abuse their students with excessive training times. A PPL that – on average should be done in 50-60 hours flight time, often exceeds the 100 hour mark with those schools – and the student will only find out about the huge cost involved once the damage is done… 
  • And the consequences of saving money in maintenance are outright scary! 


Without a doubt, cost of flight training should be reviewed all the time like in any other business, and it is a fair question of students what their potential school is doing to keep flying affordable – but it should not happen entirely at the expense of the student and most certainly not at the expense of safety! 


Ask the school that you consider for your flight training questions like the following: 

  • Do you have a waitlist? If I want to start TODAY – can I do it?  
  • How many planes do you have and what is your student to aircraft ratio? 
  • What variety of aircraft can you offer? What do you have for high wing, low wing, tail wheel? 
  • Do you only train locally or where have your students gone for cross-country experience? 
  • Ask to see the maintenance facility or check the reputation if they use 3rd party maintenance! 
  • How many instructors does the school have and what is the instructor to student ratio? 
  • What system does the school have in place to ensure your training is completed in minimum time?  
  • Does the student offer accommodation and is it less expensive than market prices? 
  • What is the school’s safety records? Any injuries or fatalities in the history of the school? 


Flight training is – and will remain – expensive and only so much can be done to reduce the cost. 

The best cost saving is to make it efficient, streamlined, reduced to a reasonable amount of time, conducted by professionals that – without compromise – make the needs of their students their top priority – and of course their safety! 



If at the end of your training you get a CPL and all you ever flew is a Cessna 172, and if you never went further from your school than for that one 300 NM flight that Transport Canada requires, and when it took you a lot longer than needed, then you know that you got CHEAP training – often without saving any money! 


Learn to Fly!
Pitt Meadows and Kamloops
Office +1 604 946 7744


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