There are many options available that will cover training costs for veterans interested in advancing their flight skills. Types of assistance that pertain to participation requirements of all GI Bills include the Montgomery GI Bill, Reserve Educational Assistance Program, and the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, “Veterans Administration offers flight training benefits to those who want to advance their pilot qualifications. You must have a private pilot license and valid medical certification before you start training.” Flight training benefits are available for the certificates and ratings above private pilot, such as instrument rating, commercial, CFI, ATP, multi-engine rating, etc.

Veterans should contact the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs to determine what types of benefits are available to them. Links and contact information are provided at the end of this article.

Gleim Aviation would like to express our gratitude and appreciation for the service our veterans gave to our country.

Finding an Approved Flight School

After contacting the Department of Veteran Affairs , Veterans should seek out VA-approved flight schools using their online search tool. Students should verify the approval-status of funding with the school(s) they are interested in training with.

That’s how Scott K., a former United States Marine Corps Infantry Machine Gun Section Leader, said he chose Avel Flight School in West Chicago, IL. Scott earned his instrument rating last December. “I had the GI bill left after college and wanted to use it up,” he said. Scott already had his private pilot and seaplane certifications. “I wanted to get my instrument rating so I could fly in a bunch of different conditions,” he said.

Scott has been a law enforcement officer for 6 years. He said he first discovered his passion for flying through the aviation program at his high school in Mundelein, IL. “I eventually want to earn my Flight Instructor certificate so that I can teach part time,” he said.

Scott said he used his Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits by contacting the VA education office, which verified his remaining benefits. Then, he went online to search for Part 141 flight training schools and found Avel Flight School, Inc. “Avel was helpful setting me up with the local VA offer,” Scott said. “I started taking lessons, verified hours, and I flew every month.”

In addition to flight training, Avel Flight School President Prashanth Elangovan said his school is one of only 57 in the United States that offers the FAA Part 65 Aircraft Dispatcher program. Recently, Avel was named a Distinguished Flight School in the Midwest region by the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.

Avel Flight School is a Gleim-Partnered Part 141 Flight School. Elangovan, who has certifications in ATP, CFI, CFII, MEI, AGI and Aircraft Dispatcher, said he chose to partner with Gleim Aviation because, “I wanted to work with a team that is supportive and that I have easy to access to. Gleim has a friendly, more proactive team.”

Avel Flight School uses Gleim for all Private Pilot Online Ground School experiences. “Every student gets a Deluxe Private Pilot Kit,” Elangovan said. He added that, to help Veterans who don’t have a private pilot’s certificate, the flight school offers a 15% discount to help Veterans offset the cost, because the private pilot certificate is not covered by VA benefits.

“We do this to honor their service,” said Elangovan. “The idea behind the VA GI Bill programs is to offer professional training or an education that will lead to a career. Veterans who have served in the armed forces can receive qualifications to get a civilian job.”

Gleim Military Discounts and Flight Training

Gleim Aviation offers a 20% military discount on deluxe pilot kits for sport, private, instrument, and commercial, and the CFI and ATP training kits. To receive your discount, contact an Aviation Training Consultant at 800-874-5346 ext. 471.

Take these steps to use your VA benefits for advanced flight training:

  1. Contact the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs at www.benefits.va.gov or 1-888-442-4551 to find out what benefits you qualify for.
  2. Learn how the GI Bill supports Education and Flight Training.
  3. Choose a VA-Approved flight school by area and name using the Institution Search tool.
  4. Contact a representative at the flight school who can help you enroll and start your training.

To find a Gleim-Partnered Part 141 flight school, visit our flight school directory.

About Gleim Aviation
Since 1980, Gleim Aviation’s team of pilots, instructors, writers, designers, and programmers has helped aviators pass millions of FAA knowledge and practical tests using the unique Gleim Knowledge Transfer System. Gleim is an environmentally friendly company headquartered in Gainesville, FL.