Hello my name is Duwayne Ewing, I’m interested in becoming an airline pilot but don’t know where to start. I am currently serving in the Army and ETS in early November this year, I’m just wondering if I’m able to use the GI Bill to help cover the cost of ATP flight school? Or if there’s anything that is provided for veterans regarding the financing for ATP?
Unfortunately, due to the accelerated nature of ATPs program and the limit the govt puts on how much you can get per year, other than checkride fees (approx $8-10k depending on your area), you will not be able to use your VA bennies.
On a positive note, while I understand and appreciate your desire to have the govt pay for your training, in most cases using your benefits will result in you getting to the airlines years later than training with ATP. Those years will cost you many times more in lost income than the cost of training. Not to mention the loss of seniority which governs every part of our job and quality of life.
Thank you! That was a very helpful response, I’m looking forward to attending ATP. I have one more question if you don’t mind, I’m currently in the Seattle, Washington area and would like to move back to the Henderson, Nevada area but I don’t know if I should complete flight school before the move or after. I’m wondering if weather plays a part in the timeline of getting everything I need? For example if I stay here in Seattle where the weather isn’t always great vs Nevada.
Normally I say train wherever you like BUT in your case it may very well matter. The reason is to train in SEA, because of the weather, you must already have your Private Pilot license to begin the program. If you don’t the decisions been made for you.
The Seattle location is in the process of closing, primarily due to weather. So, Nevada it is!
Fellow Vet here, I’d recommend looking into RTAG Nation on Facebook as they have some pretty comprehensive resources for the best way to use your VA Benefits. They were originally for Helo pilots who are trying to get to the Airlines but have expanded and have a lot of info for E2A (Enlisted to Aviation) and maximizing the use of your benefits. They also have an RTAG event every year, usually in Florida if I recall correctly, and they give out scholarships of varying amounts, both online and in-person. There are a lot of good resources there as well as support from fellow vets that have made it to Airlines and can provide guidance and mentorship.