Flying can become an exciting part of your life. The sensation of breaking the bounds of the earth and navigating above the towns and fields to see our world in a way that few experience. It can only be understood by those who have done it. Flying challenges you. Provides continuous learning. Builds confidence. And makes you a member of an exclusive and wonderful family called “pilots”. Interested students commonly contact an instructor for an exciting intro ride called a Discovery Flight. The flight time counts towards your license requirements!

Sport Pilot License

After years of lobbying by the aviation industry and key pilot organizations, the Federal Aviation Administration in September 2004 authorized a new class of pilot (called the Sport Pilot) and a new category of airplane (called the Light Sport Aircraft). These so called SP/LSA regulations opened the door for low-cost recreational flying. Simply stated, a Sport Pilot is very restricted as to how, when, what, and where he flies. Consequently, the training required to earn a sport pilot license is significantly less than that required to earn a private pilot license. One of the biggest restrictions placed on sport pilots is that they can only fly light sport aircraft (LSA). Generally speaking, an LSA is a small, two-seat, uncomplicated airplane that is fun and easy to fly. It is limited in size, weight, speed and capacity. The reduced training hours and lower operating cost of a Light Sport Airplane put achieving your dream of becoming a licensed pilot within reach.

Basic Requirements

    • be at least 17 years old
    • have a a valid US driver’s license- no FAA medical required
    • log at least 20 total hours of flight training (not 40 as with the private)
    • have at least 15 hours with flight instructor
    • have at least 5 hours solo flight
    • pass the FAA Sport Pilot Airmen Knowledge Written Test
    • pass a FAA Sport Pilot Flight Exam

Private Pilot License

The requirements for being issued a private pilot license are governed by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation. To get a private pilot’s license, you must meet the requirements to the right. Although the minimum required flight time is 40 hours, the national average is approximately 65 hours and most additional time is due to instruction. The amount of flight time necessary to achieve your license is, in part, a function of how often you fly. Students who fly twice a week are likely to earn their license with fewer logged hours than those flying only two or three times a month.

Basic Requirements

    • be at least 17 years old
    • have a current FAA third-class medical certificate
    • log at least 40 total hours of flight
    • have at least 20 hours of flight with an instructor
    • have at least 10 hours of solo flight
    • pass the FAA Private Pilot Airmen Knowledge Written Test
    • pass a FAA Private Pilot Flight Exam

Instrument Rating

Basic Requirements

  • hold at least a Private Pilot Certificate or be currently receiving training towards one
  • be able to read, write, and converse fluently in English
  • hold a current FAA Medical Certificate
  • receive and log ground training from an authorized instructor (i.e. ground school course) or complete a home-study course using an instrument textbook and/or videos.
  • have at least 50 hours of cross-country flight time as pilot in command
  • make at least one cross-country flight that is performed under IFR and transits a distance of at least 250 NM along airways or ATC-directed routing and includes an instrument approach at each airport so that a total of three different kinds of instrument approaches are performed
  • have a total of 40 hours of actual or simulated instrument time including a minimum of 15 hours of instrument flight training from a Flight Instructor certified to teach the instrument rating (CFII)
  • log 3 hours of instrument training in an airplane that is appropriate to the instrument-airplane rating from a CFII in preparation for the test in the prior 2 calendar months

Commercial Pilot License

Basic Requirements

    • be at least 18 years of age
    • hold a private pilot certificate
    • be able to read, speak, write, and understand the English language
    • if training under Part 61, at least 250 hours of piloting time including 20 hours of training with an instructor and 10 hours of solo flight, and other requirements including several “cross-country” flights, i.e., more than 50 nautical miles (93 km) from the departure airport (which include Day VFR and Night VFR 100 nmi (190 km) between points, with a time of at least two hours; also one solo cross country of at least 250 nmi (460 km) one way, 300 nmi (560 km) total distance, with landings at three airports) and both solo and instructor-accompanied night flights
    • if training under Part 141, at least 190 hours of training time including 55 hours with an instructor and 10 hours of solo flight, and other requirements including several cross-country, solo, and night flights
    • pass a 100-question aeronautical knowledge test
    • pass an oral test and flight test administered by an FAA inspector, FAA-designated examiner, or authorized check instructor