Pilot training in the USA for Indian students is standard, yet many Indians intending to go to the USA for pilot training are clueless about where to begin their journey.
Hence I dived deep into this topic here to aid Indian students to enroll in American flight schools.
- Why do many Indians choose to train in American flight schools?
- What is the cost of pilot training in the USA compared to India?
- Does the living cost play a role in your pilot training budget as an international student in the USA?
- Where would you prefer to work as a pilot in the future?
- Why are there more work opportunities in the USA as a fresh graduate?
- Will you be truly ready for your first airline job in India as a novice pilot from the USA?
- Can our DGCA compliant training program help you get a job in the USA and globally?
I answered the most frequently asked questions around this topic, and if you have any other questions, you can leave us a message by commenting later.
Why do many Indians choose to train in American flight schools?
The number one reason is it takes a lot less time to get all the pilot licenses in the USA than in India. In India, it may take four years to get a commercial pilot license, and in the USA, the same license you can get only in 12 months to 16 months.
Getting your pilot license sooner means starting your job hunt quicker and making a living sooner as a commercial pilot.
I can’t tell that the education quality of Indian flight schools is poor. However, everyone agrees that flight schools in the USA provide the most competitive education quality to build competent pilots.
Therefore, a pilot with an American pilot license has wide acceptance globally.
Another reason for Indian students to apply for pilot training in the USA is many students want to pursue a career abroad. With a wide array of opportunities to work in the aviation Industry, Indians prefer to live and work in the USA.
If an Indian gain adequate work experience abroad and get back to India to work as a pilot, it’s also a viable option. There is no restriction on American pilots to work overseas as long as they convert their license and are competent for the job.
However, to become a better pilot, you must choose a flight school with a good reputation for training pilots.
Indians may blindly believe that all flight schools are good in the USA. However, that’s not the case. There are hundreds of flight schools and flying clubs in the USA, and it can be tricky to select an excellent flight school among them just by trusting a fancy website of the company online. Before enrolling in an American flight school as an international student, one must consider numerous factors.
What is the cost of pilot training in the USA compared to India?
The cost of pilot training in the USA is inexpensive. If you compare the price of pilot training with the cost of flight schools in India, you may find there are not many differences.
In reality, the cost of living abroad as an Indian student makes a significant difference in the expense of pilot training abroad.
There are several factors to consider as an Indian pilot training student in the USA. The pilot training cost may be similar in American and Indian flight schools. But the duration of the training might be three times longer in India than in the USA.
Understand that getting pilot licenses and preparing yourself for the airline quicker is essential. Consistently working on your goals is necessary rather than waiting for years just because you want to save some money.
On the contrary, you will spend more money to become a pilot if your training is unnecessarily delayed. It’s a different topic for another article. But prolonging your pilot training can affect the lessons you learn and need extra training to become perfect. As a result, your overall training expense rises.
Hence pilot training in the USA sounds pricier for Indian students on the surface, but in reality, the cost is the same, if not lesser.
Does the living cost play a role in your pilot training budget as an international student in the USA?
As I said, prolonging the training duration can cost you more money in the long run. It is wiser to finish pilot training as early as possible.
Most flight schools in the USA promise that an international student can accumulate 200 hours with a commercial pilot license and instrument rating in 12 months.
Let’s say you couldn’t get your pilot licenses within 12 months. It may take extra six months for you to accumulate 200 hours and pass all the exams to get a commercial pilot license.
Getting a commercial pilot license in the USA as an Indian student in 18 months is more than adequate. Most students get their pilot license within 12 to 14 months. Many reasons can affect this duration, but trust that if you take 18 months to get your license in the USA, it won’t be the fault of your flight school. Taking 18 months to complete your pilot training in the USA may result from a student being lazy or not progressing like a typical student.
Now that we have pointed out how long it may take for an Indian student to get all the licenses in the USA, we can determine the cost of living for 18 months in the USA. Eighteen months is the maximum budget you should allocate for your pilot training duration in the USA.
Some flight schools offer dormitories. However, it is convenient to share apartments or houses with other student pilots in the vicinity of the flight school.
As an Indian student, if you share the accommodation with other Indian students, you can benefit in multiple ways.
If you prepare meals regularly at home, it wouldn’t cost you more than 200 USD in a month.
The cost of shared housing and utility bills won’t surpass 600 dollars.
So as an Indian pilot training student in the USA, you can have a monthly budget of 1000 USD in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The housing is not far from our flight school, and you can have a bike ride daily to travel between house and airport.
This 18,000 USD seems a lot for Indian students to allocate for living expenses in the USA. However, if you have the vision of becoming a pilot and start working quickly, this 18,000 USD is not so much to consider in the long run.
Speaking of which brings to my next point: Your willingness to work abroad as a pilot.
Where would you prefer to work as a pilot in the future?
If you intend to work in India as a commercial pilot, you can train in India to become a pilot.
If you decide that you will work overseas and enjoy a different lifestyle and culture, I recommend enrolling in an American flight school.
If you wish to live in the USA and pursue a career as a pilot, the best place to start is by admission to an American flight school.
There are many opportunities for Indians and international students to work as a pilot in the USA if they can fulfill their requirements.
The requirement to become an airline pilot in an American airline is having 1500 flight hours.
It seems incoherent to accumulate 1500 hours to get an airline job. But there are ways to build hours after getting your commercial pilot license in the USA.
As I said, America is a land of opportunity for those who patiently work hard.
If you choose to work in India after completing pilot training in the USA, you can return to India and convert your license to an Indian pilot license. Nevertheless, getting your first airline job in India is never as straightforward as in the USA. The airline hiring procedure is complicated in India and takes years before getting your first job.
By obtaining licenses from American flight schools, you will open doors to opportunities globally.
Training to be a pilot in the USA as an Indian student is like investing money for your future. I recommend investing money for pilot training in the USA to open more doors of opportunities instead of training in India and keep your chances limited to one place.
Why are there more work opportunities in the USA as a fresh graduate?
Flight schools in the USA are likely to hire fresh graduates as their certified flight instructors. On the contrary, fresh graduates can’t get a flight instructor job in India after graduation.
A pilot must obtain a certified flight instructor license to get a certified flight instructor job.
Most flight schools in the USA have a tailored program for Indian pilot students and often include a certified flight instructor license.
It is common for the same flight school to hire their CFI graduates to work and train future students because flight schools are willing to help novice pilots to build hours.
Beginner pilots with 250 hours of flying time can’t meet airline hiring requirements, and it would take time to get a job in general aviation.
However, American flight schools offer this opportunity to their graduates to at least earn some money while they are working on their dreams.
Usually, a certified flight instructor can earn 1000 to 2000 USD a month and log 80 hours monthly.
Working as a certified flight instructor is not your only option. There are many other jobs available for new commercial pilots in the USA for Indian pilots.
Nevertheless, the safest place to start is by becoming a certified flight instructor as there will be no restrictions on your visa, and your flight school will assist you.
Will you be truly ready for your first airline job in India as a novice pilot from the USA?
Assuming you finished your pilot training in India and have 250 hours. At this point, you have a commercial pilot license without a job guarantee.
Regardless of where you finish your pilot training getting your first pilot job is challenging.
So you’re mistaken if you believe you can make a living after you graduate from your pilot training in India.
To make things easier for new pilots, I recommend training in the USA. You have numerous opportunities with 250 hours and a commercial pilot license, which are unavailable in India. The pay may not be suitable in such pilot jobs, but it’s a great way to build hours.
Building hours are essential to get an airline pilot job.
If you choose Indian flight schools, you don’t have the option to work in the USA, and finding a job will be very challenging in India. Considering you finished your pilot training in India, it’s unlikely to get a job with 250 hours of flying experience. Similarly, your scope to build hours after graduating from India is minimum. Either you pay to build hours or wait for years until you get a job. In both ways, you will spend too much extra money.
Our partnered flight school in the USA offers jobs to novice pilots so that these pilots can build hours to find work anywhere around the world. Though you can’t have an airline job immediately after getting your commercial pilot license in America, you can start working to build hours and earn something.
Can our DGCA compliant training program help you get a job in the USA and globally?
DGCA has slightly different conditions than FAA requires to become a commercial pilot. Our partnered pilot training school in the USA has a tailored program to comply with DGCA requirements for Indian students. Thus, our commercial pilot program offers a great flying experience for Indian students and an easy conversion procedure in India.
With the FAA pilot license and the education standard of our flight school, you’re eligible to go anywhere in the world and convert your pilot licenses.
Image source: just_an_avgeek via Instagram.