Steps To Become A Pilot In Nigeria
Who is a pilot? Or more specifically, who is an air pilot? I’m sure you’ll give a simple answer – An air pilot is a person who flies an aircraft. But, there’s more to becoming a pilot than just flying aircraft as pilots undergo thorough education and training to earn that title.
There are several airports in Nigeria, both local and international, with numerous airplanes. Nigerian pilots are tasked with the responsibility of flying these airplanes.
If you have a dream to become a pilot in Nigeria just like Chinyere Kalu (the first female pilot in Nigeria) then, you will find everything you need to know in this article.
Education and Training
The first thing to do if you want to become a pilot in Nigeria is to get educated and this means enrolling in an aviation school. Getting enrolled in an aviation school in Nigeria is not difficult but, there’s some factors to consider.
Most aviation schools in Nigeria are expensive which means you’ll be paying a lot of money for tuition. Also, after graduating you still have to undergo certain hours of flying practice before you can land a good job as a pilot. If you’re sure you can cope with these factors, then you can go on.
The tuition fee for some of the top aviation schools in Nigeria is about 6 – 8 million in Naira. Of course this is expensive but it’ll be much more expensive if you were to attend one overseas.
Often, the best way of going by this if the cost is too expensive is by getting a scholarship. Some airline companies offer such scholarships, others may simply provide financial assistance which you’ll repay after graduating by working for them.
Another important thing is the school you choose to attend. It is important that the aviation school you enroll with should be approved by the Nigerian FAA – Federal Aviation Association.
How much do Nigerian pilots earn?
One of the major reasons why many Nigerians are eager to become pilots is because of how lucrative the job is. This in addition to the excitement that comes with traveling across Nigeria, Africa, and other parts of the World.
The amount of money you will end as a pilot in Nigeria differ and is based on certain factors. A huge part of it has to do with your experience. As a starter pilot, it is normal that your salary will be way lower than someone who has been flying planes for years.
Also, the airline you work for will also determine how much you make. As it is in every other business industry, some airline companies pay more than others.
The average salary of a pilot in Nigeria for starters is about N200,000 (Two Hundred Thousand Naira). With time and as your ratings improve, your salary can get to N300,000 (Three Hundred Thousand Naira). At this point, you’re likely to be handling less major flights.
Nigerian pilot captains are the ones who earn the most. Their salary ranges from N500,000 (Five Hundred Thousand Naira) to N1,500,000 (One Million and Five Hundred Thousand Naira). Some even earn up to N3,000,000 (Three Million Naira).
If you want to earn big as a Nigerian pilot, you should work hard to get to the level of a captain.
Do you need to take JAMB for aviation schools? What are the pilot subjects in Jamb?
Yes, in order to gain admission into aviation schools in Nigeria, you need to take JAMB. Not just taking JAMB, you need to meet the cutoff mark. The cutoff mark differs depending on the school. For some schools, it’s 120 while for others it’s 180.
From the JAMB brochure, the JAMB subject combination for pilots is Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry or Technical Drawing; of course, English is a compulsory subject.
Airplanes are related to technology and engineering which is why the subject combination is science inclined. So, if you want to become a pilot, know that you should take science courses in your secondary school.
Which is the best aviation school in Nigeria?
There are so many aviation schools in Nigeria. There has been no official ranking to determine which one is the best out of the lot but, below are some of the top ones;
- Nigerian College of Aviation Technology
- International Aviation College
- Landover Aviation Business School
- Universal School of Aviation
- Dhaewood Aviation Business School
How to become a pilot in the nigerian airforce
The process of becoming a pilot in the Nigerian Air Force is slightly different because it is not commercial but has to do with the military. Rather than attending any aviation school, you will be required to attend the Nigerian Defense Academy (NDA). After graduating from the Defense Academy, you can then proceed to join the Nigerian Air Force for more training. You’ll be trained not just in piloting but also in military combat.
Flying a plane is fun, adventurous, and the pilot job is a well-paying one even for starters. As a result, it is not surprising that a lot of Nigerian youngsters dream of becoming pilots.
It is important to note that becoming a pilot in Nigeria comes with its risks. You are expected to train and come out with flying colors as you’ll be transporting human beings whose lives may depend on you.
However, it doesn’t have to be difficult so long as you know what you’re doing and you stay focused. There are many aviation schools in Nigeria; go for the best ones.