What Factors Affect a Flight Instructor's Salary?

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  • Written By: K. K. Lowen
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 01 April 2020
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There are many factors that can affect a flight instructor’s salary. The length of time the instructor has been employed by a company and the number of flight hours logged can both be important. Many types of flight instruction exist, and salaries may depend on the type and specialty of the instructor or company. The location and amount of competition in the industry can affect salary rates as well.

The length of time employed by a company can affect a flight instructor’s salary. Some employers may offer a starting salary that will increase after a person has worked for a certain length of time or flown a particular number of hours. Salary increases commonly occur after six months or a year, but some employers may choose to increase salaries at any point during the instructor’s employment.

Location of employment can affect a flight instructor’s salary as well. There may be a higher demand for flight instructors in some places, whereas others areas may not have as much need for them. If there are many qualified flight instructors working in the same general area, salaries may decrease to remain competitive. Conversely, salaries may increase in places where not enough certified flight instructors are available.


The number of flight hours an individual has logged can also affect salary. Instructors with a greater amount of experience may expect to be compensated better than people who have entered the field only recently. A freshly trained flight instructor’s salary typically will be much less than that of an instructor who has been flying for many years. One reason for the increased salary for those who have considerable experience is that some students prefer to work with instructors who have logged a high number of flight hours.

Type of flight instruction also can influence salary. Some flight instructors may choose to only teach in the classroom. Different types of flight instructor certifications exist for different types of planes, such as single-engine and multi-engine instructor certifications. Some individuals also may engage in specialized types of flight instruction, such as teaching students how to operate antique airplanes. A flight instructor’s salary may change significantly if he or she changes the type of instruction given.

The person or company that an individual works for can affect a flight instructor’s salary too. Some people may be self-employed, owning flight instruction schools or giving private lessons, and in this case, a person may determine his or her own salary based on a number of variables. The salary at a small flight school may be much smaller than that at a major company as well.


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Post 1

I believe there should be a way to limit the employer from slaving the flight instructors. Most of the 141 flight schools charge an average of 60.00 USD an hour for ground or flight instruction, and they pay the instructor 15.00 USD. Pilots in general in the US are being enslaved by the employers.

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