General and Commerical Pilot Licenses


As I have started my first Full Time Job 1 month and 2 weeks ago, I have had thoughts about getting a flying license.

No hands on experience, basic knowledge of instruments and ATC commands by IF and listening on Live ATC.

(btw 18 years old for the topic understanding)

In Australia prices range from $90,000 for the commerical licenses I believe and from $16,000 for an recreational pilot license. (International feedback welcome)

I am wondering what would be the best option and would anyone have any information about the licenses. Also does anyone has any insight on the recruitment phase if passed?

Hopefully this topic will also help other present or future decide also!

Thank You.


I first recommend you take a discovery flight.

This will help you decide whether or not you are truly interested in flying.

Then weigh your options.

Happy flying!


I’m looking at flight training as well, and like @Alec said, I would recommend doing a Trial Introductory flight. At my local airport and the flight school I am most likely going to choose (Bankstown and SFC), the price ranges from about $200 to $2.5K. For the full flight training, it depends on what license you want to get. Since you are 18, you are eligible for all of them. At SFC, the RPL is gonna cost you just over $16K, the PPL will be just over $12K, and I’m not sure about the CPL. Keep in mind that that is just at SFC, so prices do change. Good luck and happy flying!

Just took a look at some and probably will do a TIF firstly. I saw Sydney Avis is about 70k (11k 1st, 17k 2nd and 33k last for commercial if I have looked correctly)

Just wondering if it be a waste of 70k if i do go with it because no airliners wanting people/not with the guidelines of recuritment etc.?

Have you looked into Virgin Australia/Qantas cadetships? Should save you quite a bit and you are almost guaranteed direct entry into the airlines. Spots may open up in the next 2 years.

If you’re willing to travel, Camden should be cheaper.

I havent looked but do know they do it but parents just didnt believe they did and not so encourging towards it.

2 years is a good distance and possibly be better long term with money.

I will look into Camden.

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Pretty sure both cadetship programs are run by Flight Training Adelaide in different locations.

It really depends on what you are wanting to do, you could go the CPL route and then look for jobs to help hour building, the most common of these being flying skydivers and obtaining your instructor rating. If you did want to go straight into an airline, what @EyesSkyward said is a good choice, but they are quite hard to get into.

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Here is all the info for SFC:

Ahhh ok. Checking the CPL costs, does it include the private and recreational licnese costs or its stand alone total purchase?

It depends what flight school you go to. I think most CPLs come with a PPL, but you would have to check with the school

Its better to go with an airline but with me, i would like to finish my apprentice off to be able to have that as an ewcape route(4 years), so it be difficult to do that.

Don’t forget, a majority of airlines then require copious amount of hours so you will most likely be operating regional, light aircraft routes. For example I saw a Darwin (Australian city) company needing pilots to operate a double engine plane, which would add onto your hours to operate as a pilot for stuff such as a dash 8 etc.

Always remember it’s not just the initial cost, it will include many more hours flying after so I would keep your job if it earns a bit until your a bit older and are ready to take it on as it’s big ask.

Otherwise, just apply for the Cadetship even if it is a lot more than usual you will usually land a job within a year of completing it as they don’t have copious amounts of trainees only whay they need plus some extras for dropouts

Yep defiently. Currently looking like non-cadetship program and hopefully after completion, I can pick up a potential weekend/avro job flying something like others said skydiving, instructor, tour etc.

All I see is 1000+ hours needed for an airline.

If you are willing to live in China some airlines are offering direction induction if you have your licence or 200 hours or so

Dahm 200 hours… tempting might actually think about doing that if i do get the license and have 200 hours.

Couldnt find any info on Regional Express hours.

REX is quite a bit if I recall correctly

Genuine question, I’ve done my trial intro flight and I quite like it. What are the best companies that go at your own pace (start whenever, finish whenever)?

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