Loans for Pilot School

I’m 24 and have been attending college part time and working full time for the past several years. My parents have nothing to contribute to my schooling and I live alone in the Los Angeles area so my living expenses are very high and I’ve really not been able to save much of anything so far. Seeing as upon enrolling in ATP I would no longer be able to work, I’d have to rely entirely on financial aid and loans for not only tuition but all my living expenses.
How feasible is it to do this all on loans? How much will I have to take out? Will I be able to borrow the full amount? And any idea what monthly payments would look like after graduating?


It’s definitely feasible as that’s how I and I believe most ATP students do it. Whether you can secure a loan for the amount needed (the training is $65,995 + about $7500 for checkrides and ATPs Training Bundle+ whatever your expenses would be for the 9 mos?) will depend on your credit and may in fact require a co-signer?

I’ll let someone more current tell you about the payments since it’s been a while for me. Keep in mind Tuition Reimbursement is available to ATP instructors who sign conditional offers with one of the Regional partners.


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For answers to specific financial questions like yours you really need to call ATP and speak with one of the admissions counselors, they can give you concrete numbers to go by.

My loan was for $65,000 and my monthly payments are about $600. With
tuition reimbursement I receive $500 a month from Horizon.

You can ask for whatever amount you want. Admissions will help you on that.

Receiving the full amount of the loan will depend on your credit score.
Most applicants require a co-signer. I was 25 when I applied for my loan
and did not need a co-signer.


For the 40ME starting with my credit for my PPL I took out a little over $65,000 loan with my Dad as a cosigner as I’m 19 and while I have some credit history, it is very short. My loan payments will be $750 a month so with tuition reimbursement it should be very doable. I have a few thousand in savings but plan on using the excess loan for my expenses and hopefully not touching my savings in case of emergencies.

Tory, are payments $1,100 a month without the tuition reimbursement?

Well Mr Chris my question its kind of relating to this…as I am an international student and the fee its a lot of money can I get a loan,scholarship or sponsorship for my studies…???


Loans are available for students who are either US citizens or US permanent legal residents. If you do not meet this criteria you will need a cosigner who does.



No. Payments are calculated based on the total amount of the loan plus interest over the course of 15 years.


To try and answer your question I think this might help. I am going to start training in August and I am not receiving any help from family either. I have secured a loan for around 90,000, which is the full amount of training ($65000);checkrides ($6600 which ATP holds onto until you need it); the training bundle like books, iPad, pilot headset,
and flight bag (this expense may vary due to different costs of headsets from $90 - 1100, but for me about the cost was about $2100); and then I have about $1600 a month which ATP will give me in a check for living expenses. My payment is going to be $877 a month. With the loan being a collegiate loan I will not be expected to pay it until 6 months after graduation, during which time it will accrue interest. For this reason I plan to continue with ATP and instruct, as well as look for an airline to join for the tuition reimbursement. Another good thing about ATP, which I had asked another instructor, is that when you are instructing, they have apartments you can share for relatively cheap amounts. For example, in Denver, the instructor had an apartment that was shared for only $300 a month which is really good and it is done through ATP. So, with what you earn from instructing and the effort you put into it, yes it is doable.

90k…Wow. I didn’t know they went that high on unsecured debt. You must have excellent credit!


Well, I do not know to be honest. I asked for a cosigner to help out but never needed it really because of the Wells Fargo loan, and with ATP being a highly successful flight school. One of the few flight schools that have collegiate loans through Wells Fargo as well as Sallie Mae. There might even be a possibility of federal subsidized loans as well. You have to look at all your options.

If you dont mind me asking sir, what was your credit score to achieve the full loan?


I don’t know exactly. Probably better than what it is now! Haha. My guess is somewhere between 750-780

Tory I would very much like to ask you some questions involving your journey financially through all of your pilot training. I’m 24 and looking into beginning my journey. In your opinion is that super late to start? Would loans be able to cover every step of the process before eventually being hired as an aviator?

I appreciate your time and any information I can get,
-Daniel Mendez


Twenty-four is by no means too old to start, in fact it is a great age.

Generally loans are available to cover every step of flight training, including living expenses. That being said, you will need very strong credit, or need to find a co-signer with strong credit. For questions regarding loans, please be sure to contact the admissions department as they are really the experts on this.


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Sorry for the delay. I agree with Chris. 24 is not too late. I was 25 when
I started flying. I’m 29 now and could be at a major as early as 32.

I was able to get a loan for $65k without a cosigner, but I know that’s
rare these days. By working as an instructor and receiving tuition
reimbursement from Horizon I’ve only been able to pay off the interest that
I’ve been accruing over the years. But at least it got me to where I am


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Thank you for your help guys. I will most definitely need a co signer after the hit my credit took after my car loan. I’m motivated and excited for the journey ahead. Happy flying and see you in the skies!

-Daniel Mendez

hi CHRIS, I am about to get 33 next month and will start my ATP course, do you think its late for my age?

hi tory,

how did you get tuition reimbursment? was it after you finished your studies or during the coursE?