Skydiving instructors are known to educate people concerning the safety procedures and equipment used while skydiving. These experts teach students about concepts and maneuvers like drop zones, freefalls, and canopy flights. They also cover important information concerning airplanes and landings.

Also, note that skydiving instructors may teach individuals or groups of people. Skydiving instructors often jump in tandem with their students, but they may also prepare students for their own jumps. Skydiving instructors are also expected to meet all licensing requirements and meet a required number of jumps and hours of freefall.

How Much Do Skydiving Instructors Make Per Student?

In the United States, skydiving instructor jobs tend to be seasonal or part-time. And while instructors can be hired as salaried employees, they are more or less paid for each class they supervise. According to reports, an instructor can be paid on a per-student, per class rate of about $20 – $30, although this figure tends to also vary depending on the instructor’s credentials and expertise, as well as other factors.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that self-enrichment education teachers, such as skydiving instructors, could expect a much faster than average job growth from 2018 to 2028, a 12 percent rate. The average salary will also be largely dependent on the reputation of the skydiving company and the location, which can help determine how many people are interested in trying skydiving.

Most skydiving instructors tend to venture into this field with a license and basic education, proving that they are well-versed and experienced in executing safe jumps, easy landings, and other job duties. However, just like was expressed above, the salary can be unpredictable; an increasing job growth rate highlights a very popular career for most people interested in teaching skydiving.

Skydiving is a job in which safety is paramount, especially since it is considered a high-speed activity in which you risk injury and death. If you have a history of epilepsy, obesity, heart problems or other conditions, you may not be able to work as a skydiver.

Howbeit, to stay on top of safety details, you will need to skydive regularly, consistently, and expertly perform all procedures, and maintain good judgment. Skydivers who are trained well, who stay current with safety precautions, and take a conservative approach to the job have very few accidents or injuries.

How to Become a Skydiving Instructor

There are many perks to the job – flying in airplanes all day, daydreaming with your head in the clouds, and of course, freefall. Being a skydiving instructor means getting paid to be a certified commando. Here are the steps to take to achieve this very inspiring feat.

  1. Earn a Skydiving License

In the United States, there are no formal licensure requirements to become a skydiving instructor. However, it might be nice to acquire one or more instructional ratings through the United States Parachute Association (USPA). Before pursuing these ratings, you are expected to earn your voluntary skydiving licensure, which first requires membership in the USPA.

There are four classes of skydiving licenses, which are awarded based on a skydiver’s proficiency. But to get a license, you are expected to submit a log of your jumps that includes the jump number, date, location, exit altitude, and length of time in free fall, as well as the distance you landed from your target, equipment you used and a signature verifying the jump. In addition, logs need to show what kind of jump it was, such as flying, canopy formation, or style jump.

  1. Learn The Ropes

The two basic requirements to become a professional skydiving tandem instructor are 500 skydives and 3 years in the sport of skydiving. So when you first start skydiving it may seem like an impossible number to hit 500 jumps. However, once you get your license to skydive it becomes very easy to make several hundred jumps a season.

In the United States, lift tickets for licensed skydivers are only $27 which makes it much more affordable to skydive several times a day. Aside from requiring 500 skydives to become a Tandem Instructor, note that you need to have been in the sport for 3 years.

This requirement is to help skydivers learn all there is to know about the industry before they are allowed to start taking passengers on their first tandem skydives. There is so much to learn about the sport of skydiving that it takes several years of being around the sport to learn the fundamentals

  1. Pursue Instructional Ratings

In the United States, to earn an instructional rating as a skydiving instructor, you are expected to pass an exam administered by the USPA, have an advanced skydiving license, display mastery of skydiving techniques, and demonstrate teaching proficiency. Note there are three types of instructor positions you could hold, including a coach, instructor, and instructor examiner.

As an instructor, you will mainly teach jump courses in one or more of the following areas: harness holding, assisted deployment, static line, or tandem jumping. You also might oversee coaches, who could instruct students in certain jump and free fall skills while under your supervision.

The instructor examiner is the apex of the USPA instructional rating program. As such, you would represent the USPA regarding specific drop zones. This typically includes offering advice to skydivers and providing administrative services.

  1. Attend USPA Tandem Training Course

At this point, you’ve completed your training: USPA D License, 500 Skydives, 3 years in the sport, and USPA Coach Rating. Now it is time to hit the books and attend your final training course. In the United States, tandem instructors are required to take a course through the USPA. This course is designed to teach the instructors how to take passengers on their first tandem skydives and to learn how to operate the parachute system.


Have it in mind that Skydiving tends to be seasonal work, based largely on weather conditions. You jump out of planes, focusing on the proper body positioning. After jumping, you will free-fall for about 60 seconds, traveling at close to 120 miles per hour. Once you open your parachute, you will enjoy 100 – mile views as you float to Earth. As a skydiving instructor, you will train people in harness holding, assisted deployment, static line, and tandem jumping.

Note that most of your work will take place Earth-bound, more or less requiring you to oversee coaches or serve as an examiner of the instructional rating program of the United States Parachute Association (USPA). Also note that you will spend a lot of time checking and rechecking your gear and that of your fellow divers, making sure all parachutes will function properly every single time they are activated.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What Is The Median Salary Offered As Skydiving Instructor?

The average hourly rate for skydiving instructors ranges from $21 to $26 with the average hourly pay of $23.

  1. What Is The Average Salary Of a Skydiving Instructor?

The national average salary for a skydiving instructor is about $58,036 per year in the United States.

  1. What Does A Skydiving Instructor Do?

Skydiving instructors’ primary job duties are to assist beginning jumpers to learn the safety procedures and processes needed to take their first jump. This can entail teaching courses and supervising the jumps themselves. Instructors might also administer quizzes to more experienced jumpers looking to earn the license that will allow them to pack their own parachutes and jump unsupervised.

  1. How Much Do You Tip A Skydive Instructor?

If your expectations have been met and you had a great experience, the typical minimum tip amount should be $10. If you had a great experience, $20 or more is always appreciated.

  1. Do Skydiving Instructors Get Paid Well?

Yes! On average, a tandem instructor can earn $50,000 or more if they work full-time.

6. What Is The Scariest Thing To Happen While Skydiving?

For a trained skydiver, the scariest part of a skydive is when you open your main parachute. A more precise term would be the initiation of the main parachute opening sequence.

  1. How Many Jumps Do You Need To Be A Skydiving Instructor?

Starting from scratch, it takes about 25 jumps to become a licensed skydiver. You would take a basic course on the ground for the first jump, which is about 6 hours.

  1. How Do You Get A Job In Skydiving?

The first step is to get trained and become a skydiver. Logic dictates that only a skydiver can start a skydiving job.

  1. How Do You Become A Skydive Instructor?

The possible way to become a tandem skydiving instructor is; firstly, you will need to accrue 500 skydives, attend a tandem training course approved by the United States Parachute Association, then obtain a USPA D- license, have 3 years experience in the sport, secure an FAA class III medical, and finally, obtain a USPA coach rating.

  1. Can Anyone Make Money Being A Professional Skydiver?

Absolutely yes! It is very possible to make a living as a professional skydiver, but only if you can live on the cheap.

  1. How Many Jumps Are Required To Qualify For A Skydiving Instructor Rating?

The number of jumps required to qualify for a skydiving instructor rating should be at least 100 jumps and a USPA B license.

  1. What Do You Need To Become A Skydiving Instructor?

The following are required to become a skydiving instructor;

  • Learn the ropes
  • Get your license to skydive
  • Get your USPA coach’s rating
  • Attend USPA tandem training course
  1. How Long Is Training For Tandem Skydiving?

The tandem skydiving training will take approximately 30 minutes. And during this time, an instructor will cover all the information you need to know to have a successful skydive.

  1. How Much Do Skydiving Photographers Make?

Usually, a seasoned skydiving photographer who takes pictures of skydiving competitions or artistic free-fall displays earns over $50 per approved photo, according to (Skydiving Magazine), skydiving photographers generally have hundreds of jumps on the books before pursuing more artful aerial photography.

  1. Is A Skydiving License Worth It?

Absolutely yes!

  1. How Much Does A Chief Indoor Skydiving Instructor Make?

Chief indoor skydiving instructors in the US can make from $48,000 to $72,000, with a median salary of $60,000. While the middle 67% of chief indoor skydiving instructors make about $60,000, with the top 67% making $72,000.

  1. How Much Money Can You Make Being A Skydiving Videographer?

A skydiving videographer can make up to $230.

18. What Should I Eat Before Skydiving?

A light bite will help keep your blood sugar levels consistent. If your jump takes place in the morning, consider a bowl of cereal or foods high in protein, such as eggs. But if you’re skydiving in the afternoon, a sandwich should be fine.

  1. How Long Does It Take To Become A Skydive Instructor?

Becoming a skydiving instructor takes time, it takes up to three years.

  1. How Much Do Skydiving Instructors Get Paid in Australia?

Currently, in Australia, skydiving instructors earn about $27.78 per hour.

21. How Much Does It Cost To Learn To Skydive Solo?

The cost actually depends on the combination of new and used gear though, but generally, everything you need will cost between $4000 and $10,000. And your training will be up to $3000.

22. How Much Does A Skydiving Instructor Make In California?

The average skydiving instructor’s salary in California is about $54,431. But currently, the range typically falls between $49,822 and $60,024.

23. Is Skydiving A Good Career?

Getting a job as a skydiver is not only possible though, but it is a diverse and rewarding profession that is seen in every corner of the globe.

24. How Much Does A Skydiving Instructors Make In Florida?

The average skydiving instructor’s salary in Florida is about $46,293 as of February 25, 2022, but the range typically falls between $42,373 and $51,050.

25. How Safe Is Solo Skydiving?

Skydiving solo is extremely safe with only one fatality in every 220,301 jumps. In other words, you are more likely to be hit by a meteorite than to die from a skydive.

26. Can You Survive A Skydive Without A Parachute?

Not at all. When you fall from a great height, you die due to the damage caused to your body by the sudden deceleration when you hit the ground. If you jumped from high enough, you could possibly die due to a lack of oxygen or a heart attack before you ever hit the ground.

27. How Fast Do You Land When Skydiving?

The fastest speed you will reach on your skydive is usually around 120 mph.

28. Can You Breathe While Skydiving?

Yes, you can. There’s a common misconception about skydiving, that you can’t breathe during free-fall, but breathing during a skydive is actually not much harder than breathing on the ground.

29. How Likely Is It To Die Skydiving?

There is a 0.00045% chance of dying on a skydive. The statistics for dying on a tandem skydive are even less.

30. How Many Skydivers Died In 2019?

Among the almost 6.2 million jumps performed by 519,620 skydivers over 10 years between 2010 and 2019, about 35 deaths and 3015 injuries were reported.

31. How Much Do Chief Flight Instructors Make In The US?

The average chief flight instructor salary in the USA is approximately $60,100 per year or $30.82 per hour. Entry-level positions start at $53,531 per year while most experienced workers make up to $78,225 per year.

32. How Long Does A 15000 Ft Skydive Take?

Skydive lasts approximately 60 seconds. At the appropriate altitude of 5,000ft, the parachute will be deployed. Tandem skydivers can expect to spend around four to five minutes sailing amongst the clouds.

33. Should I Get High Before Skydiving?

No! You should never skydive high, sick, or drunk, and no reputable skydiving dropzone would ever allow you to do so.

34. How Many Skydivers Die Each Year?

About 19 skydivers are recorded to die per year. Fatal skydiving accidents are infrequent.

35. How Long Does A Skydive Last?

A typical skydive lasts five to six minutes, with approximately 50 seconds of that spent in free-fall and four to five minutes on the parachute ride down.

36. Which Is More Dangerous Bungee Jumping Or Skydiving?

The fatality statistics associated with bungee jumping vs skydiving reveal that skydiving is usually more dangerous than bungee jumping with nearly a 5x greater chance of dying. For instance, (Skydiving = 1 death per 101,083 jumps | Bungee Jumping = 1 death per 500,000 jumps).

37. Can You Skydive In Rain?

No! Skydiving in the rain is prohibited.

38. How Much Does A Sky Diver Earn?

The national average salary for a Skydive instructor is $58,036 per year in the United States.

39. How Much Money Do Parkour Instructors Make In Average?

As of Feb 8, 2022, the average annual pay for a Parkour instructor in the United States is about $34,865.