Real Answers from Real Pilots

Pay while instructing


I am relatively new to this forum, but I have appreciated everyone input! Since I’m new, a little background on myself is I always loved flying/aviation. My Brother is a pilot, did his schooling at Spartan aeronautics in Tulsa, OK. We grew up in Seattle Wa so naturally we were into planes. My mom worked at Boeing building the overhead panels for the 767, and my uncle is one of the managing directors for the 747 project, aviation is literally in my blood! That being said, I am in the process of getting my stuff together to go to ATP in the next couple of months in Dallas and hopefully flight instruct after I’m done. My question is what should I expect in pay while I flight instruct for ATP? I know some instructors in the DFW area that make roughly $40-50/hr but its not that consistent due to the amount of students at their facility. I know from their website (ATP) and speaking with others that it really depends on flights hours per month, but considering that most of us would fly as much as we possibly can what is a realistic annual income during instructing. I currently work for American airlines and would be suspending employment to go after this. I am married so, above all else I want to take care of my family first.




Hello Jordan,

Although you won’t be making $40-50/hr at ATP, you will have a steady flow of students and the hours will be pretty consistent.

Check this post out to get an idea of the pay. I just recently got my 1099 from ATP and it showed close to $30k earned just between January and July. (Thats when I left ATP)


About how long did it take you to get your 1500 hours at ATP?


I began the ACPP in October of 2014, started instructing at KIWA in June of 2015 and was done in July of 2016. So just over a year of instructing.


Thanks! Did you find that you had time outside of instructing to “enjoy” life, or was it busy with instructing?


While I was an instructor I stayed as busy as humanly possible. My goal was to provide quality instruction to my students, build my flight time and get on to the airlines as soon as possible. I voluntarily chose to work on days off because I wanted the flight time. That being said, I still felt like I had plenty of time off and was able to enjoy my time there.

Instruct, Eat, Sleep, repeat… :slight_smile:


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Honestly I was like Chris, I tried to fly as much as I could all the time. I worked 7 days a week most of the time and only took days off when I really felt that I needed it for my sanity. But with that said, I had plenty of time for myself to do other things.