What Can I Expect in Private Pilot License Flight Training?

Undergoing flight training is a crucial step in becoming a private pilot.

Amid all the excitement to earn your wings, there are several conditions you must meet first. The FAA has a set of requirements for both flight and ground training that a student pilot must meet before he or she can take a check ride and earn a pilot certificate. These include pre-flight, basic flight skills and a set of maneuvers designed to improve flight skills, take off, landing, navigation and more.

Before you can start training, your instructor will need to verify your citizenship status. You’ll need to provide him or her with a copy of a birth certificate or a valid U.S. passport. If you are not a U.S. citizen but meet some legal requirements (hold a valid green card or specific visa), the TSA must approve you before you can start flight training. The approval process is simple, but could take up to 30 days and involves background checks and fingerprinting that cost $230. You must pay both fees before your flight training begins.

All You Need to Know About Flight Training

Your flight training can be divided to three parts:

  • Pre-solo training: The goal here is to teach you the very basics of flying during this portion of training. This includes straight and level flight, turns, climbs and descents. Once you achieve basic flight proficiency, you’ll move on to learn more advanced flight maneuvers, polish your takeoff and landing skills and learn to fly at the traffic pattern the FAA requires for your solo preparation. Before you can fly solo, you will learn how to deal with air traffic control at your home airport, what to do if the engine quits and some additional emergency procedures.
  • Cross-country flying: Cross-country flying comes with its own distinct challenges. These flights involve landing at an airport at least 50 miles from your take-off airport. During this portion of training, you will learn different techniques for navigating and entering and exiting new airports. You’ll also learn how to work with traffic control during your flight and what to do if you mistakenly divert from your flight path. After this training, you’ll fly a series of solo cross-country flights that will end in a marathon flight of at least 150 miles, which will include landing at three different airports.
  • Check ride: After you complete the first two portions of training, you’ll then focus on fine-tuning your flying skills for the practical portion of the check ride. You’ll mostly be responsible for flying the aircraft on your own, with back up from your instructor. During this phase, your instructor will work with you on increasing your flight proficiency to meet the FAA requirements, and you’ll perform these maneuvers so he or she can gauge how well you fly. These requirements are published at the private pilot practical test standards booklet.

Your PPL training also will include ground training and taking the FAA written exam . You can fulfill this requirement in one of two ways: by enrolling in a class led by a flight instructor or by studying on your own. The approach you choose will depend on your learning style. After you study for your pilot’s license, your flight instructor will need to give approval for you to take the FAA written exam. The exam will take place at a designated testing center close to your location.

Training for a pilot’s license is a multi-step process. It can be a lot of work, but the reward of becoming a pilot is worth it.

To learn more about flight training, contact Gold Seal Aviation today at (407) 391-1116 or via email at info@goldsealflighttraing.com

Comments are closed.