If you're seeing this message, it means we're having trouble loading external resources on our website.

If you're behind a web filter, please make sure that the domains *.kastatic.org and *.kasandbox.org are unblocked.

Main content

Commercial airline pilot: My budget and planning for the future

Angelo talks about his income and expenses, as well as his financial goals.

Want to join the conversation?

Video transcript

My name is Angelo Bautista. I'm 29 years old. I'm a Commercial Airline Pilot and I make $90,000 a year. Right now, I feel very financially stable. I think that I can afford to go out and eat if I wanted to. Compared to five years ago when I was starting in the airlines when I was making around $15,000 per year, I think I'm a lot more financially stable now. I knew that I was gonna be financially stable that's why I took this route even though it was hard five years ago and it's only gonna get better from here on out. I paid for college by working as a waiter. I could only put half of the tuition fee. My dad put the other half. I left college without any loan and through flight school, I actually acquired a $60,000 loan that I was paying off and has now been paid off and with the help of my dad and now I'm just repaying my dad without the interest loan. Typically, it costs about 60 to $120,000 to attain your flight certificates. It just depends if you want a Bachelor's degree with it or not. I fortunately already had my Bachelor's so it only cost me 60,000. There are programs out there, four-year degrees, that you attain your Bachelor's degree. And after four years you also receive 250 hours and all your flight certificates but it will cost you $120,000. When I first started in the airlines, I was receiving $1200 of net pay. 800 of that went to my student loan which left me with $400 a month. I allotted $100 a week for food. That left me $200 for rent and gas. I really didn't have any savings at that time. I really didn't have any emergency funds. But I knew that if I had an emergency that I'll be able to call home and have my family take care of me. The cost of living here in Los Angeles is very expensive. For what I'm paying for rent here, you can buy a house or mansion in Mobile, Alabama. My monthly gross income is $7,500. Usually 35% of it is taken out by taxes which is Federal, State taxes, Medicare, health insurance, and life insurance. I am now left with a monthly take-home income of $4,875. My monthly expenses are rent which is $1,460 for a two-bedroom, gas and electric, about $100, TV, internet, about $100, phone, $50 a month, car payment which includes gas and insurance, about $700. Fortunately I do not have any student loans as of right now. Food, about $200 a month. Other stuff like gym plans, subscriptions to Spotify, Netflix, about 200 a month. Discretionary, about $500 a month and I use it to treat my crew for a coffee or dinner because I know how much they make because I used to make what they're making right now. I also buy things for myself like clothes just to keep myself up like socks or other stuff. That leaves me about a savings of 1565. I usually use 1,000 and give it to my parents as they helped me out through college to pay their mortgage so they don't have to pay for it. My financial goals is to be financially stable and be able to pay off my parents' house, have $100,000 in savings, and hopefully be paying for a house here in Los Angeles, California. I've personally learned that money comes and go. I know taking a 60 or $120,000 loan looks really really massive in the beginning but look at it as an investment for yourself. If you are looking to better yourself, look at the 10-year plan, 20-year plan of what that $120,000 loan could achieve or that $60,000 loan could achieve down the line. Early on in my career, I was financially constrained and I've learned to prioritize my needs versus my wants. There are certain things that I need which is gas in my car, food, and clothes. Versus the things that I want which is not necessary at that point in time because I wasn't financially stable and I couldn't afford those things. Now that I'm making more money, I am able to buy those wants but I'm also learning that I can actually make my money work for me by investing it or saving it, doing IRAs, and having that financial stability and freedom much later on in life.