The cost of flight school is not enough reason for you to give up on your dream of becoming a pilot. There are opportunities out there such as fully funded sponsored pilot training programs that will help cover the entire cost of flight school and never worry about paying back.
Aviation schools or flight schools, whichever one you want to call it, are expensive for those who want to become pilots. This, of course, has made many prospective pilots give up on their dream and if you are on the verge of giving up as well, wait, there is an opportunity for you.
This opportunity is a rare chance for prospective pilots to achieve their dream without having to spend a dime or worry about paying it back like some sort of school debt. This opportunity is the fully sponsored pilot training program that covers your entire tuition and fees for flight school.
Being a fully sponsored scheme, it goes above covering only tuition but also covers your living expenses. Opportunities like this are rare to find and even if you find some, they are either fake or have expired meaning you can no longer apply for them.
The fully sponsored flight training programs curated in this blog post took extensive research to get because we had to ensure that they aren’t fake nor are they expired.
These programs are different, they are offered by different organizations therefore each has its own specific requirements and eligibility criteria. It is necessary that applicants meet these eligibility criteria and satisfy all the requirements in order to be considered for the award.
Just in case you have not decided on which flight/aviation school to train as a pilot there are many options for you to choose from such as the aviation school in the Philippines or the pilot training schools in South Africa. And if you want to add more to the list, you should check out Canadian flight schools and the aviation schools in Germany.
Having said that, let’s dive into the main topic of the day…
Fully Sponsored Pilot Training Programs
The following are fully sponsored pilot training programs and their details to help you find one that is right for you. Let’s get started…
- AE Memorial Scholarships
- EAA Flight Training Scholarships
- TUI Fully Funded Pilot Training Scheme
- AOPA Foundation Scholarship Program
- American Flyers Fully Sponsored Flight Training Program
- Emirates Pilot Training Scholarship
- LeRoy Homer Foundation Scholarships
- Air Pilots Flying Scholarships
1. AE Memorial Scholarships
Five separate scholarships are offered in memory of Amelia Earhart to sponsor those who wish to become pilots and help make their dreams a reality. Firstly, is the Flight Training Scholarship which offers up to $20,000 to complete an additional pilot certificate or rating or pilot training course. Secondly is the Academic Scholarship which offers up to $10,000 towards students one year of colleges in aviation or aerospace.
The third is the Technical Training Scholarship offering $20,000 to complete an aviation or aerospace technical training course. The fourth is the Vicki Cruse Memorial Scholarship for Emergency Maneuver Training which is a fully paid scholarship and the last is Kitty Houghton Memorial Scholarship which is targeted only at women who want to become pilots.
2. EAA Flight Training Scholarships
The EEA offers over $1 million in scholarships annually to help individuals achieve their aviation dream. The award is split into different funds and the minimum value of each award is $5,000. Scholarship recipients can apply for the award to any flight training school in the US or Canada. Applicants must be, at least, 16 years old to apply for this scholarship.
3. TUI Fully Funded Pilot Training Scheme
TUI is a UK-based airline and they are offering prospective pilots a rare opportunity of having their pilot training program fully paid for the duration of the training. 30 cadet pilots will be recruited and trained for 19 months without making any upfront financial payment. The aim of launching this scheme is to spark interest among people who want to be pilots but do not have the financial capacity.
To apply for the program, applicants are requested to submit their CV on TUI Airway’s website, complete online assessments, take the online interview, be present for physical assessment, and take a flying test in a light aircraft. Other requirements include obtaining a class 1 UK medical certificate, being at least 18 years old, being fluent in English, being 1.58cm tall, ability to swim 25m, and having eligibility to work and live indefinitely in the UK.
Cadets who are accepted into the program will work as cadet pilots with TUI Airways.
4. AOPA Foundation Scholarship Program
AOPA stands for Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association, a foundation that offers over $1 million in scholarships to sponsor members to reach their aviation goals. Members have to be US citizens or permanent legal residents. The value of the aid ranges from $2,500 to $14,000 for primary flight training, advanced ratings/certificates, and aviation maintenance.
Applicants must be 16 years old at the time of application and must hold a student pilot certification to be considered eligible for the award.
5. American Flyers Fully Sponsored Flight Training Program
American Flyers is offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to those who wish to train and work at the same time in the aviation industry. This program lasts for 12-18 months and during this time, selected candidates will work either in operation and customer service or as an A&P mechanic while on scholarship and earning a monthly salary. Further opportunities are in place for candidates who complete the program.
To be selected for the program, you must have completed a 4-year college degree or have an equivalent experience, possess an A&P certificate for the mechanic position, or have a private pilot license for the administrative position. Fluent English speaking and writing skills are required, ace the phone and physical interviews, and be able to work in the US, as well as, be able to relocate to any of the company’s locations in the US.
6. Emirates Pilot Training Scholarship
The Emirates Pilot Training Scholarship is one of the fully sponsored pilot training programs from Emirates Airways, one of the world’s largest airlines. The funding is set aside for individuals who want to pursue careers in aviation management, IT, cadet pilot, aircraft maintenance engineering, AI, finance, and logistics. Accommodation, tuition, feeding, and training materials are covered by this fund.
To be eligible for this sponsorship, you must be a UAE citizen between the age of 17—26 years old and have either completed high school with a minimum of 80% or earned a college degree with a 3.0 GPA or higher. Applicants must be 160cm tall, be medically fit, and be fluent in English.
7. LeRoy Homer Foundation Scholarships
The LeRoy Homer Foundation offers annual scholarships only to US citizens and permanent residents who wish to become pilots. Applicants are requested to be between the ages of 16 and 23 years old and it applies only to those obtaining a private pilot license.
If you are pursuing an aviation program at a university or college this scholarship will not apply nor will it apply to instrument ratings or any other aspect of flight training.
8. Air Pilots Flying Scholarships
Air Pilots is offering a Private Pilot license scholarship that covers all aspects of the training up to the license issue. The scholarship is awarded entirely on merit and the candidate must be at least 17 years old at the time of receiving the award. The airline is in London, UK and that is where the training will be held.
The scholarship only covers the training cost, candidates will have to pay for their own accommodation, transportation, and cost of living. Candidates are required to have a Class 2 medical certificate issued in the UK in accordance to Part Med, have a travel visa and have excellent academic record.
These are 8 fully sponsored pilot training programs for you to carefully look into and apply for the one whose requirements and eligibility criteria you meet. Also, read the application process carefully and ensure that you meet the application deadline. Fortunately, these programs are offered annually so if you miss the current year, you still have another chance in the next year. Good luck in your applications.