How Long Does It Take To Become A Commercial Pilot?

A prospective pilot who has little to no experience often enrolls in a school for three to four years before earning their commercial captain’s license. 

The time you spend studying to be a pilot depends on your financial situation, present obligations, and professional goals. 

Because training programs are demanding and expensive, it’s critical that you be certain that this is the correct career for you. 

In this essay, we examine pilot training programs at their core and their general criteria. 

Since you were a young child, have you always loved the stars? Ever wanted to fly like a bird? If so, you can convert your interest into cash. 

You can accomplish this by learning to fly and becoming a commercial pilot.

A commercial pilot can work in many capacities. He or she must operate the aircraft at a predetermined and scheduled time. 

The responsibilities of a commercial pilot also include carrying out several additional tasks and acting as an airline pilot. Commercial pilots fly charter flights, rescue missions, or emergency planes.

They keep the plane at its ideal weight in order to fly it as efficiently as possible. 

Additionally, he or she gains knowledge about how to interact with air traffic control and manage several emergency procedures.

It’s challenging to pursue a career as a commercial pilot. The actions of the career affect many people’s lives. As a result, to pursue this career you must fulfill several qualifications.

To fly for a living, you must have a Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL). Both an airline transport certificate and a commercial pilot certificate are necessary for the airline pilot.

So, this article on how long it takes to become a commercial pilot is for you.

Check this out: How Long Does It Take To Become An EMT?

What is a commercial pilot School Like? 

It is often required to have a high school graduation or the equivalent, as well as a commercial pilot’s license.

Completing flight instruction with independent, FAA-certified flight instructors or at institutions that provide flight training is the most typical route to becoming a commercial pilot. 

Some colleges and universities with two and four-year degrees also house flying schools.

Numerous civilian flying schools, from tiny fixed base operators (FBOs) to state universities, are accredited by the FAA. A two- or four-year aviation degree may include pilot training at some colleges and institutions.

Check also: How Long Does It Take To Become An X-ray Technician?

Is Attending a Commercial Pilot School Worth It? 

It can cost upwards of $50,000 just to enroll in a flight school and pursue a certificate as an airline transport pilot. 

When you add that to the price of a four-year college degree, you doubt whether being a pilot is really worthwhile.

Fortunately, airline pilots make over six figures a year and are extremely well compensated. 

Commercial pilots may not always earn as much money as airline pilots, but flying for a charter, corporation, or individual operator can still be quite lucrative. 

You might frequently make over six figures annually as well. 

Becoming a pilot is worthwhile financially. 

The tuition reimbursement program that some airlines engage in may somewhat offset the expense of flight school.

It is also doubtful that you suddenly pursued a career as a pilot after waking up. 

Since you probably have a lifelong interest in flying, becoming a pilot and spending your days in the air might bring you a lot of happiness and job satisfaction. 

See also: How Long Does It Take To Become A Sonographer?

What Schooling Do You Need to Be a Commercial pilot in 2023? 

A commercial pilot license applicant must be at least 18 years old and have a minimum number of flight hours. 

Student pilots keep meticulous records of their flight time in a logbook. 

To be eligible to sit for the FAA knowledge and practical tests, the student’s logbook needs to be approved by the flight instructor. 

See the FARs for specifics on specific requirements, such as the types and amounts of required knowledge and flight experience. 

The fundamental guidelines for pilot certification are covered in Part 61 of Title 14 of the Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR part 61). 

Flight schools can teach pilots in line with part 61’s regulations or part 141’s regulations. 

To get a commercial license, candidates must pass the relevant medical examination, satisfy all specific knowledge and flight experience criteria, and pass both a written exam and a practical flight exam. 

The physical examination finds no physical impairments that could affect the pilot’s performance and verifies that the pilot’s vision can be corrected to 20/20.

If a commercial pilot wants to fly for hire over 50 miles from their point of departure, or at night, they must have an instrument rating.

Also check: How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse Anesthetist?

How Long Does It Take To Become a Licensed Commercial pilot? 

For those interested in pursuing flying as a career, after obtaining their Private Pilot License they will move on to the next steps of obtaining their instrument rating and then their Commercial Pilot License.

This is a process that may take approximately 3–4 months after their PPL is completed, bringing the total time to 7-10 months, depending on the path that they take.

–However, be warned of the differences between a Commercial Pilot and an Airline Pilot– they do not mean the same thing. 

While airline pilots are a type of commercial pilot, being a commercial pilot means you now have a CPL certificate from the FAA and can be hired and paid to fly.

An Airline Pilot will not only need this Commercial Pilot License, but they’ll also need an instrument rating and between 1000-1500 hours of flight experience. 

Read: How Long Does It Take To Become A Massage Therapist?

How Much Does It Cost to Become a Licensed Commercial pilot in 2023? 

If you have no prior experience and want to become a pilot, it will cost you $91,995, but if you have a private pilot certificate, it will only cost you $71,995. 

The flight training and certification required to obtain a commercial pilot certificate are included in both pricing. 

For student pilots who need financial help, there are funding options and loans for flying instruction.

Also read: How long does it take to get a Student Loan?

Salary and Job Outlook for commercial pilot after Study 

In May 2021, the annual median pay for commercial pilots was $99,640. The bottom 10% earned less than $50,080, while the top 10% made more than $205,940.

Their schedules may also be unpredictable. 

Even though most of them spend the night close to their homes, is because they occasionally work unusual hours.

Here also: How Long Does it Take to Become a Lawyer, Salary & More

Job Outlook 

Between 2021 and 2031, we anticipate that the employment of airline and commercial pilots would increase overall by 6%, which is about average for all occupations.

Over the next ten years, there are expected to be, on average, 18,100 opportunities for the airline and commercial pilots. 

Many of those positions are anticipated to be brought on by the need to replace workers who change careers or leave the workforce due to retirement.

Check: All Best Paying Jobs in Consumer Non-Durables


The minimum time required to become a commercial pilot is 4 years.

While aspiring commercial pilots must get a Private Pilot License after two months of instruction, a Bachelor of Science in Professional Flight degree takes at least three (3) years to complete at a recognized aviation school.

However, the applicant must fly for over 250 hours and meet additional standards, which can be met in at least 5 months.

However, self-assurance, cooperation, and ongoing professional growth are extremely important elements for attaining this in order to become a successful commercial pilot.

Great one; I hope this article was able to answer your query.

Check also: How Long Does It Take To Become A Nurse Anesthetist?

Frequently Asked Questions 

How much does it cost to become a commercial pilot?

The upfront, fixed-cost pricing that ATP offers sets us apart from most other flying schools and academies. 
ATP designed our flight training programs, which have over 30 years of expertise, to include enough flight time for the vast majority of students to succeed. 

How long does it take to become a commercial pilot? 

To obtain a type rating and become a commercial pilot, at least two years are required. 
Training and courses take roughly 18 months to complete, and your type rating takes an additional 6 months. 
For those who devote to learning and training full-time and who are not pilots of any type, this schedule is often appropriate. 
Many pilots decide to learn in their spare time, in which case it can take them up to five years or more to become commercial pilots.

How much does a commercial pilot make? 

Commercial airline pilot pay varies widely from airline to airline and is based on seniority and experience. 
Pilots working for commercial airlines might earn between $25,000 and $200,000. 
The average decreases to about $100,000 each year. Of course, everything depends on the airline you work for, the number of hours you put in, and your level of experience.

Do I need a degree to become a commercial pilot? 

There is no requirement for a college degree in order to earn your credentials, training, and type rating. 
But some commercial airlines do demand that their pilots hold a bachelor’s degree or some other type of advanced training. Therefore, even if a degree is not required to fly for a commercial airline, it will provide you access to additional work prospects.



Leave a Comment

Scholarsly is an educational blog which aggregates study abroad, scholarships update, VISA application and and other important info for our readers. We do not offer direct employment, scholarship, VISA procurement or offer physical travel assistance. We also do not charge you or request money and would not refer you to any agent either. Find more info on our Privacy policy page below and kindly contact us if you need further information.