Bursaries for Studying to become a Pilot in South Africa (2023)

The aviation industry in any country must be nurtured and strictly regulated this is because it literally put the lives of hundreds of passengers in the hands of a pilot and his crew. It is therefore in the best interest of the country as a whole that the regulators encourage the fittest and best candidates to fill the position of pilots in the country.

Pilots perform such an important job they are among the best-paid workers in any society. Pilots earn an average of R360,000 per month, while some earn far above that figure. Apart from such a huge paycheck, pilots have very good conditions of work, and they also enjoy job security. Studying to become a pilot could be one of the best decisions you could ever make. I listed the bursaries for studying to become a pilot in South Africa that can help you meet up to the financial implications of studying to become a pilot.

So for those searching for how to get funding for pilot training or bursaries for aviation in South Africa, I highlight them with details one after the other.

Bursaries for Studying to become a Pilot in South Africa

ATNS AIMO Bursary South Africa

Air Traffic and Navigation Services Limited operates from 9 ACSA, as well as 12 other aerodromes where they provide air traffic, navigation and even training services. The company is committed to making tangible contributions to the aviation industry in South Africa.  

One of such contributions is the provision of Bursary awards. This particular bursary award is for students studying at the ATNS aviation training academy located in Bonero Park. This bursary award is intended for students of the Aeronautical Information Management Officer.

Part of receiving this bursary includes passing through an ability assessment in order to prove yourself. You will undergo an interview, as well as medicals. You will also be required to maintain a 70 percent pass rate in your academics during your studies. The Bursary award covers tuition, shared accommodation, meals, transportation, and a monthly allowance.

After graduation, you are required to work for the company for one year as per the bursary agreement. After that, you may be offered full-time employment with great benefits.

Requirements for Eligibility:

Applicants must be a minimum of 18 years of age.

Applicants must be a minimum of grade 12 including English and Maths.

Applicants must be South African nationals.

Applicants must be medically fit.

To apply, visit https://talentcentral.cebglobal.eu/player/workflow/start


Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality Bursary South Africa

 The Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality Bursary is open for students who are from the Gauteng area of South Africa. The Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality Bursary is sponsored by the municipal government as a way of encouraging youth development through education.

This bursary programme covers tuition, shared accommodation, transportation, and living expenses. The bursary is open for students who wish to Aviation Engineering, but in truth, this bursary scheme is open to students in a very long list of academic disciplines including Industrial Engineering, Mining Engineering, Civil Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering. The bursary is even open to non engineering students.

This bursary is given to students based primarily on their financial need, although attention is paid to academic performance as well. Furthermore, students who are given this bursary will not need to reapply every year; the bursary payments will run until the conclusion of their studies.

Eligibility Requirements

In order to qualify for this bursary, applicants must be South African Nationals or Permanent Residents.

Applicants must be 35 years old, or younger, not above.

Students must be from Ekurhuleni Municipality. 

Students must be studying or planning to study full time in any of the accepted courses.

Students must have a yearly household income not more than R600,000.

What you need to Provide:

You need to provide your ID documents. Your stated address must be in Ekurhuleni.

If applicable you must also provide your residence permit.

Matric Certificate.

Proof of registration in a tertiary institution.

Outstanding Tuition Fees showing that you need money for studies.

Outstanding municipal accounts.

Parents/guardian’s proof of income showing that they don’t make above the yearly threshold.

Application Process:

To apply for this bursary programme you need to write an application letter to the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality Bursary scheme. In the letter you must then explain your needs and convince the board about your academic abilities. You must also provide sufficient contact details such as your address and phone numbers.

Attach all your supporting documents as stated above.

Submit the application letters to Ekurhuleni public libraries, Customer Care Centers, Youth Offices within the Municipality.


Kwazulu Natal Government Bursary

The Kwazulu Natal Government Bursary is open to students from Kwazulu Natal who are studying, or intending to study. The bursary is awarded to students based on their financial need, but the government wants to see students doing well. The bursary programme is open to for students studying any aviation related studies. The bursary is also open to so many other non aviation related programs.

Eligibility Requirements:

Applicants must be South African citizens, or legal residents.

Applicants must live in Kwazulu Natal.

Applicants must be between the ages of 18 to 35.

Applicants must have completed Matric.

Applicants must be studying, or at least provisionally accepted into a tertiary institution to study one of the accepted courses.

How to Apply:

You may download the form online and then fill and return it.


Mpumalanga Provincial Government Bursary

The Mpumalanga Provincial Government Bursary is a bursary programme provided by the provincial government, for students from Mpumalanga who are studying, or who wish to study. The bursary scheme covers tuition, accommodation, and living expenses. The bursary is open for those studying to become Aviation inspectors or technicians. The bursary is also open to students studying many other non-aviation-related courses.

Eligibility Requirments:

Applicants must be South African citizens.

Applicants must have done matric, even if they have not seen their results.

Applicants must be studying an accepted course.

Applicants must be born or live in Mpumalanga province.

Applicants must have a proven financial need.

The programme encourages female students with disabilities to apply.

The programme encourages rural residents to apply.

How to Apply:

Applications are done online: please visit http://www.mpumalanga.gov.za/education/de-fault.asp?nav=bursaries

Fill the form; please provide correct information. If you are found to have provided false information, your application will immediately be denied.

Provide the following:

Certified copies of ID documents

Parents, Guardians proof of income, showing your financial need.

If you have any form of disability please provide proof.

Please provide proof of Mpumalanga residence such as utility bill.

You may also submit applications by hand by going to:

The Department of Education (Provincial Office)

Riverside Government Complex Building

5 Upper Ground Floor

Nelspruit 1200.


Northwest Provincial Government Bursary

The Northwest Provincial Government is one of the departments of the South African government. This bursary is therefore a government bursary made to boost youth development by encouraging poor kids to get an education. The bursaries are awarded primarily based on financial needs. The bursary covers tuition, accommodation, and living expenses. It is open for students studying aviation, but not limited to them alone. 

Eligibility Requirements:

Applicants must be South African residents.

Applicants must be born or live in the North West Province.

Applicants must have done matric even if still awaiting results.

Applicants must be studying full-time.

Applicants must prove their financial needs.

Applicants must have a good financial record.

How to Apply:

You get a form online by downloading the form.

After filling it you may then take it by hand to the office of the Premier; Bursary Office (Ga-Rona Building, Ground Floor, Dr. James Moroka Drive, Mmabatho)

How much does it cost to become a pilot in South Africa?

It cost around 50,000 dollars to get your CPL and that would take you about 18 months duration in South Africa



Despite the fact that Aviation is such an important subject you may have seen that there are not many bursary programmes in South Africa supporting it. Nevertheless, these few bold bursars have enveadoured to help make your dream of getting free pilot training a reality.