Best way to become a Commercial pilot

Hi, Im a 15 year old girl and I was wondering what the best way to become a commercial pilot would be. I have been considering applying to Embry Riddle since there is one located in my state, but I have also heard that going through the military, airforce or army could help and make me a more desirable pilot in the eyes of commercial airlines and would possibly be cheaper in the long run. My school offers a Jrotc program that I am planning on taking.


There are many routes to the airlines. I recommend you visit our FAQ section and do some reading The military is a fantastic way to go but if you talk to anyone who’s served they’ll tell it’s a huge commitment and you need to have a strong desire to serve your country, not just to get free flying lessons. Riddle is a great school as well but know that going for an aviation degree you’re limiting your potential should flying not work out (medical, simply change you mind, etc). At 15 the best thing you can do is work hard and do well in HS so you can get into the college/university of your choice. I also recommend if you’re serious about flying for a living you should at some point take an Intro flight. Many people like the “idea” of being a pilot but if you’ve never flown a small plane you need to give it a try.



Now this website is sponsored by ATP, so disclaimer aside, we recommend going to a university and getting a degree in anything OTHER than aviation. This way you have a degree to fall back on should the flying thing not work out. Also, aviation colleges tend to be very expensive, much more so than they need to be. While I have a lot of respect for ERAU, their prices are ridiculous.

Joining the military is something different altogether. You should do it for a desire to serve your country and be part of the military lifestyle, not to save money. On that note, while the military does provide free flight training to those it selects, there is a lengthy commitment that is required because of that. The major airlines like both military and civilian pilots.

Before you make any career plans, you need to schedule an introductory flight and see if flying is really something that you want to do. You can do this at almost any local flight school.