So, just what company offers the best rates if you need private pilot life insurance? How about student pilot life insurance? Or flight instructor life insurance? Airline pilots? Those answers depend on certain criteria which I’ll cover in a minute, but keep in mind that the agent you use is only as good as the companies they represent and the knowledge and connections they’ve acquired over the years.

The end result depends on the agent you choose. I’ve made it my business to make sure that all of my clients don’t just get a good rate, but the absolute best rate and product possible given their health and their aviation practices. So let’s look at this in chronological order of experience. I will use a hypothetical pilot who is 45 years old and in excellent health looking for $1 million of 20 year term insurance.

For a pre license student pilot the annual rate would be $2600. If you are truly a serious student and plan to work right on through, I might suggest you go with a 10 year term for $1300 annually. The idea here is that once you’re a private pilot with 100+ PIC hours you qualify for a better rate class. If you started at age 45 and at age 47 had enough PIC hours and were on track for company requirements for annual hours, the policy could be replaced with the 20 year coverage for $1435 a year.

For a private pilot with VFR, 100+ PIC hours and more than 25 annual hours the best possible rate would be $1205 a year for a 20 year term.

Coincidentally if you have your IFR and 250+ PIC hours the $1205 annually would still be the best rate. Before I hang myself too far out there just a quick disclaimer. These rates assume you are flying a certified aircraft, not a home built, experimental, glider or powered glider. It also assumes you are flying right side up, no aerobatics, and that you take off and land from an approved airstrip, not a sandbar in a river.

The IFR rates for a private helicopter pilot would be just slightly higher at $1250 annually and VFR at $1450 a year. Again with a disclaimer. This really has to be private aviation. If you are flying commercially for almost any reason the rates would be higher. CEO’s who commute by plane are considered private.

The exception to that rule would be flight instructors. Whether fixed wing or helicopter, the instructor would pay the same as the helicopter rates above, $1250 for IFR and $1450 for VFR. Most companies assess a $2.50 to $3.50 flat extra per thousand for instructors, so preferred plus and preferred rates with no flat extra are a home run.

We’ve seen movement in rates for just about every aspect of aviation life insurance this year. Prudential has even come forward with no flat extra rates for those who are flying experimental and home built. As always airline pilots can enjoy the best rate class with almost any company they choose. Life is good.

Bottom line. There really hasn’t been a better time for aviation life insurance underwriting. There are plenty of companies in the mix and rates are very competitive.