What is a Private Pilot Certificate?
As a private pilot you are authorized to carry passengers in single-engine aircraft, under visual flight rules day or night.
A private pilot certificate (license) is one of three possible initial pilot certificates – the other two are the sport and recreational pilot certificates. There are more requirements for the private pilot certification process, therefore it takes more time. But private pilots can also fly larger and faster aircraft than sport or recreational pilots.
How long does it take to become a Private Pilot?
The FAA requires a minimum of 40 flight hours to apply for a private pilot certificate (license). However most people want and need more practice and training to be safe and secure in their abilities.
While the national average for attaining a private pilot certificate is about 70 hours, with consistent training and a structured syllabus it is possible to finish in fewer hours.
How Often Will I Take Lessons?
The most efficient training will involve a minimum of one lesson each week. Since the flight knowledge is cumulative, the more frequently and consistently you can take lessons, the quicker you will see results.
You will work one on one with your instructor integrating the ground training curriculum with the flight lesson. The ground school material will not only help to prepare you for each flight training session but also with the knowledge needed to pass the FAA Knowledge written test.
Fast Track training is available for the student who wants to obtain their certificate as soon as possible and is able to devote several days a week to training.
How Much Does It Cost?
The overall cost is determined by the number of hours of aircraft rental and hours of time you spend with your flight instructor (flight and ground) plus training materials, pilot supplies, and required tests.
It is difficult to say precisely how much you will invest to obtain your pilot certificate (license). Some people need more time and practice than others along with fluctuations in fuel prices and weather, certainly making it difficult to give a specific figure. However, if you are of average ability, come prepared for each lesson, fly at least once a week, study your assignments, pass the FAA knowledge test in the required time, and have no large breaks while you are in training, then you can expect to invest approximately $10,000.
1 – Pay As You Go (Cash, check or credit card kept on file)
2 – Creative Financing (Personal Loan, Home Equity Loan etc.)
* There are some people who have chosen to use a home equity loan therefore being able to deduct the interest at the end of the year.
3 – Flight Training Financing via Pilot Finance or AOPA