The Private Pilot Certificate: The driver’s license of the sky

Step 1: Schedule a Discovery Flight. This is an excellent opportunity to learn about…

  • the Flight School
  • the Instructors
  • the Aircraft available for training

Step 2: Choose a Private Pilot Ground Training Course. There is a variety of options available:

  • The traditional classroom/textbook method
  • Home-study online training courses
  • Home-study tablet & phone application courses

After you select a ground
training course that suits your learning style you with work with an instructor
to tailor your flight training to sync with the course selected .

Step 3: Obtain a FAA Medical (prior to Solo).

  • To obtain a medical certificate you will need to complete an application using MedXPress and be examined by an FAA-designated Aviation Medical Examiner.

Step 4: Apply for a Student Pilot Certificate (prior to Solo).

  • You will need to create an account and complete an application through the Integrated Airman Certification and Rating Application (IACRA) website with the help of a Certificated Flight Instructor.  Once processed, the student pilot certificate will be mailed to the address you provided on the application.

Step 5: Begin Flight Training

  • Learn basic flight maneuvers, take-offs and landings, navigation, cross country procedures, basic instrument training, night flight, aviation weather information, aerodynamics and airport operations
  • Complete a minimum of 40 hours of flight training, with at least 10 hours solo flight time. Most students acquire an average of 60 hours of flight time to complete all the requirements.

Step 6: Knowledge Test

  • The FAA requires student pilots to pass a written knowledge test with a minimum passing score of 70%. The knowledge test is valid for two years. All questions missed on the exam will need to be reviewed by a Certified Flight Instructor. The results of the test will also be shared with the Examiner during the Check-ride. It is beneficial for a student pilot to do well on the written test to avoid the scrutiny placed on the student for a low score.

Step 7: The Check-Ride

  • When your flight instructor believes  you are ready and eligible under FAR Part 61, you will receive an endorsement to complete your final exam or “check ride” with a Designated Pilot Examiner (DPE). There are two portions to this exam: An oral exam wherein the DPE will verbally assess your aviation knowledge through guided questioning and a practical exam in which the examiner will observe your ability to operate an aircraft.

The ultimate guide to the check-ride is detailed within The Airman’s Certification Standards

Select the Student Information button below to start flying today.