A commercial pilot certificate allows you to carry persons or property for compensation.
The following are current FAA requirements for receiving a commercial pilot certificate.
- Hold at least a private pilot certificate.
- Be at least 18 years old when you take your practical test (check-ride).
- Be able to read, speak, write and understand the English language.
- Pass the FAA computer-based exam, which consists of multiple‑choice questions.
- Pass the practical test (check-ride) with an FAA Inspector or Designated Examiner.
For a commercial pilot certificate with an airplane category and single engine class rating, you must log at least 250 hours of total flight time, which must include:
- 100 hours in powered aircraft, of which 50 hours must be in airplanes.
- 100 hours of pilot in command flight time, which includes at least 50 hours in airplanes and 50 hours of cross-country flight in airplanes.
- 20 hours of training on the areas of operation as listed for this rating that includes:
- At least 10 hours of instrument training, of which at least 5 hours must be in a single engine airplane.
- 10 hours of training in an airplane that has retractable landing gear, flaps and a controllable pitch propeller, or is turbine-powered.
- One cross-country flight of at least 2 hours in a single-engine airplane in day VFR conditions, consisting of a total straight-line distance of more than 100 nautical miles from the original point of departure.
- A cross-country flight of at least 2 hours in a single engine airplane at night VFR conditions, consisting of total straight-line distance of more than 100 nautical miles from the original point of departure.
- 10 hours of solo flight in a single-engine airplane, including:
- One cross-country flight of not less than 300 nautical miles total distance and as specified
- 5 hours in night VFR conditions with 10 takeoffs and landings at an airport with an operating control tower.
- 3 hours in a single-engine airplane in preparation for the practical test within the 60 days preceding the test.
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