No matter what your ultimate goal in aviation is – be it recreational flying or a more sophisticated training program – you must start by taking a private pilot’s license.
Once you have gained a private license, you can work toward other certificates: a commercial certificate allows you to be paid for your flying, a flight instructor certificate enables you to teach others, and an airline transport certificate allows you to fly an airliner. You can also add varied ratings that allow you pilot multi-engine airplanes, navigate using instruments in bad weather, and fly diverse aircraft like seaplanes, gliders, helicopters, and balloons. But before you even think about doing that fun stuff, you gotta get your basic private license.
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The prerequisites for a pilot’s license are basic enough that almost anyone can earn one:
You must pass the initial medical exam that all applicants are mandatory to undergo, attesting that you meet the medical criteria for safely operating an aircraft.
All applicants for the private license have to be able to read, speak, and understand English the international language of aviation.
The FAA says you must be at least 16 years old to fly solo with a student pilot certificate, and 17 years old to get a pilot’s license. There is no upper age limit, provided that you are healthy enough to pass the basic medical exam discussed above.
It’s gonna take quite a bit. A private license necessitates a minimum of 40 hours of flight time, with most student pilots logging closer to 60-80 hours before their final check ride, as well as extra time for study on the ground in preparation for an FAA written test. The length of your training depends in part on whether you want to study full- or part-time. Intensive full-time programs can be completed in as few as two weeks or a month, while a part-time student typically takes between four and six months of flying several times a week.
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August 17 2010 09:15 pm | Uncategorized