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Archive for March, 2012

Flight Training and Aviation Associates of Science Degree

Flight Training and Aviation Associates of Science Degree

What Is Aviation Science?

If all you need to fly a plane is a pilot’s license, why pursue a degree in aviation science? Though the Commercial Pilot License (CPL) is all that the Federal Aviation Administration requires for the operation of any aircraft, a specialized degree in this field will provide you with a broader and more thorough understanding of aeronautics than you will learn in flight school. As a result, you can qualify for a range of rewarding and exciting positions in this dynamic industry.

Apart from piloting aircraft, the study of aviation science encompasses air traffic control, maintenance of aircrafts and related facilities, flight operations, dispatch operations and communications. Professionally trained pilots often enroll in aviation science degree programs to refresh or deepen their understanding of aeronautics. During a degree program in aviation, you can develop a set of diverse interests that will support your quest for a fulfilling career.

For instance, you may discover that you are interested in the professional development aspects of the field, working with crews on the ground as well as in the air. You may enjoy a mechanically focused career that enables you to develop new aeronautical technology or improved aircraft designs. You may choose a niche field, such as aerial photography for cartographers or aerial firefighting. You could even find yourself piloting a spacecraft for NASA.

If you have a budding interest in the field and flight training, an associate degree in aviation science will provide you with a foundational education on the subject. If you are certain that this is the path for you, then a bachelor’s degree will set you on the right track.

From an employer’s point of view, a degree from a certified aviation science program shows a high level of commitment to the field. Most commercial airlines prefer applicants with college degrees. If you are already a licensed pilot, flight time and certificates can be counted towards your degree, saving both time and money.

What Are the Benefits of a Career in Aviation Science?

A degree in aviation science can be molded to fit your own vision of your professional future. You may envision yourself working on the ground with a team of qualified professionals to maintain order and efficiency within the elaborate workings of the international air travel industry. You may see yourself in a high-powered well-paying managerial or corporate position in the service of a major airline or government agency.

Or, you may see yourself flying low over sub-Saharan Africa in a propeller plane, tracking the movements of wildebeests, or bringing aide to remote areas of the world. The benefit of a degree in aviation science, apart from the wealth of technical knowledge that it promises, is that it can be anything you want it to be.

Career Opportunities for Pilots
  • Cargo Operations. Efficiencies in cargo plane design, along with the increasingly urgent needs of business, have shifted many package delivery services to the air. Less experienced pilots can gain flight hours on large jets without having to worry about planes full of nervous passengers.
  • Charter Operations. As more business executives rely on private planes and shared-time flight arrangements, many aviation science graduates find themselves piloting small, chartered aircraft. Pilots employed by regional charter companies can start their careers with annual salaries of $50,000, while professionals employed as in-house pilots by large corporations can earn six-figure salaries that rival those of commercial airlines.
  • Passenger Operations. Though consolidation and cost-cutting moves within the airline industry have frustrated experienced pilots, many lucrative positions have opened up for new pilots at discount and regional airlines. Federal agencies strictly regulate working hours, working conditions, and flight schedules. New pilots working on small, regional planes often earn $43,000 or more during their first year. As pilots gain flight hours and experience with larger aircraft, they can earn annual salaries of $140,000 with additional bonuses for customer satisfaction and on-time performance
  • Military Pilot. All branches of the military actively recruit aviation science majors to pilot experimental aircraft. Experienced professionals can lead teams of fighters. Other graduates use their scientific skills to run sophisticated refueling craft that support long haul flights and critical missions. Experienced military pilots can earn close to $100,000 in annual salary by the end of their commissions, paving the way for a lucrative career as a commercial pilot while enjoying healthy retirement benefits.
  • Flight Instructor. Many aviation science graduates help private pilots earn their certifications at small flight schools. Instructors develop lesson plans and training techniques, while enjoying the relative freedom of working with smaller aircraft in low-pressure situations. Many flight instructors earn annual salaries of around $41,000.

Aviator College of Aeronautical Science & Technology provides the most cost effective flight training programs and a two year Aviation degree in Aeronautical Science. The College has a state of the art 37,000 square foot facility, featuring a CRJ Level 5 Flight Training Device (Simulator). College student’s receive a minimum of 565 flight training hours in the aviation degree program. Graduates will have the opportunity to stay on as a flight training instructor.

Contact Aviator College today and schedule a visit.

Distributed by Viestly

Flight Training Programs under FAA Part 141 and Part 61

Flight Training Programs under FAA Part 141 and Part 61One of the most basic questions any potential flight student s has is what kind of school to attend. What is the difference between Part 61 and Part 141 flight training? Outlined below are advantages and disadvantages. Courtesy of Eric Radtke and Paul Jurgens.

Part 61 vs. Part 141 Flight Training

When a flight school talks about training under Part 61 or being a Part 141 approved school, it is talking about the federal regulations under which it has the authority to train pilots. Both sets of regulations define minimum requirements for pilot training and certification.
Any FAA-approved flight instructor, whether associated with a flight school or not, may train a student under Part 61 regulations.

Part 141 regulations are related to the structure and approval of flight schools. Training under Part 141 regulations is permitted only by instructors associated with an FAA-approved flight school. In order to become approved, a flight school must meet certain requirements and submit each curriculum it wishes to have approved to the FAA for review. Part 141 approved schools are subject to regular surveillance audits by the FAA and must meet minimum pass rates on the practical exams.

Both methods of flight training require the student to meet the same standard of performance in order to obtain a pilot certificate. Where the methods differ is in rigidity and in some minimum requirements.
Ultimately, the way a student learns and his or her long-term goals may be the best criteria for deciding the regulations under which to train. After making that determination, the student needs to find the best fit among the choices within the preferred regulations. Both excellent and inferior flight instruction may be found under both sets of regulations.

The table below describes some of the potential advantages and disadvantages for the training regulations. It may be noted that some criteria can be both, depending on the student’s training goals.
In short, either type of school teaches to the same requirements. A Part 141 school is particularly focused and perhaps better for a full-time student whose goal is a professional career. A Part 61 school is more flexible. So the important thing is to pick whichever one fits your schedule and flight goals better.

For more than 27 years Aviator has been the leader in multi-engine flight training. We have provided over 5000 professional pilots to the airline industry, both nationally and worldwide, through our Professional Pilot Flight Training Programs. Our FAA-certified Part 141 approved flight programs provide students with the skills and experience demanded by today’s commercial aviation industry. Aviator is accredited by the ACCSC (Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges). Come and take a tour and see the Aviator difference.

Distributed by Viestly

Private Pilot Jobs

Private Pilot JobsAirline pilot salaries are probably one of the most misunderstood aspects of the profession when discussed by the non-flying public. Pilots aren’t paid like any other hourly worker in other professions. Despite the fact that professional pilots work 8, 10, 12 hour+ days just like any other professional, they are only compensated for the time considered “in flight.” For most flying jobs, unless it’s a salaried position, that usually means that they are paid from when the parking brake is released at the departure point until the brake is set upon arrival at the destination.
The law says that pilots who work for an airline cannot fly more than 100 hours a month or more than 1,000 hours a year. Most airline pilots fly about 75 hours a month, and work another 75 hours a month at other parts of the job.

Pilot Job Outlook

Pilots are expected to face strong competition for jobs through the year 2018, especially with major airlines. Opportunities should be better with regional and low-fare airlines. There are several reasons for the strong competition. More and more qualified people are trying to become pilots. This is because they think the job is interesting and exciting. Also, pilots can often travel for personal reasons free of charge. Although the number of pilots is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations through the year 2018, applicants will face competition as very few pilots quit their jobs because they love the work and the pay is very high.

Attention Flight Training Students

The most important step in preparation for a pilot job is flight training. Flight training can be expensive so the best thing students can do for themselves is to find the flight school that offers the best program for the money. One of the reasons is a recent announcement by FAA to substantially raise the qualification requirements for first officers who fly for U.S. passenger and cargo airlines. Consistent with a mandate in the Airline Safety and Federal Aviation Administration Extension Act of 2010, the proposed rule would require first officers – also known as co-pilots – to hold an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificate, requiring 1,500 hours of pilot flight time. Currently, first officers are required to have only a commercial pilot certificate, which requires 250 hours of flight time. The proposal also would require first officers to have an aircraft type rating, which involves additional training and testing specific to the airplanes they fly.

“Safety in all modes of transportation is our number-one priority,” said Secretary LaHood. “This proposed rule reflects our commitment to the safety of the traveling public by making sure our pilots are the most qualified and best trained in the world.”

“Our pilots need to have the right training and the right qualifications so they can be prepared to handle any situation they encounter in the cockpit,” said FAA Acting Administrator Michael Huerta. “I believe this proposed rule will ensure our nation’s pilots have the necessary skills and experience.”

How to Find Private Pilot Jobs

The information below is written by Elle Belmont. It provides an overview of steps flight training students and provate license holders can take to find a job as pilot.

You must be at least 18 years of age to obtain a commercial pilot’s license.
A private pilot’s license allows the license holder to pilot a not-for-pay flight, while a commercial pilot is qualified to fly an aircraft for pay. A private pilot job, however, is considered to be anything other than a commercial airline industry job. Private pilots are employed to pilot non-commercial flights as well as luxury charter, air ambulance, search and rescue, media aircraft, business travel and police and fire-related flights. Finding a job in the aviation industry takes some perseverance, networking and knowledge of aviation or flight companies who employ qualified pilots.

  1. Visit a local general aviation airport. These airports serve private, non-commercial air travel. Larger GAA airports are home to flight schools, fixed-base operations, flight instruction schools and corporate jet charter. Collect business cards from and drop off your resume at businesses surrounding the airport. Find out who is responsible for hiring, and contact them with your qualifications.
  2. Subscribe to aviation magazines and peruse the classified ads section. Aviation magazines have a nationwide circulation; therefore, private jet charter companies from all over the United States advertise their services as well as their open positions. Cultivate a database of phone numbers from the private charter companies listed in the magazine, and contact their human resources departments for possible employment.
  3. Attend aviation trade conventions and air shows. These conventions attract private charter companies that market their services to the trade. Network with collateral businesses that are aviation-related and ask if they have any contacts or know to whom you can send your resume. A large air show can attract hundreds of thousands of aviation enthusiasts over the weekend and is also a draw for aviation-specific marketers and advertisers for flight schools and private charter.
  4. Visit websites such as aviationemployment.com, aviationjobsearch.com or pilotjetjobs.com for listings or recruiter information. The aviation industry is well-served by numerous job boards dedicated to flight-related careers. Some websites may charge a subscription fee, which may well be worth the expensive if you land a lucrative private pilot position. Alternately, perform an Internet search for “private pilot jobs” or “aviation industry jobs.”

Distributed by Viestly

Categories: Uncategorized

Not All Flight Training Is The Same

Not All Flight Training Is The SameBecoming a commercial pilot is a task you can accomplish and the demand for pilot’s due to the growth of regional airlines and corporate aviation travel is making this a great aviation opportunity. Learning to fly and being a student in flight school is exciting time for many aspiring pilots. How do you start? Here is some name dropping to get you excited!

Student Pilot

A pilot that is learning how to fly, at the stage in your aviation training you fly with a flight instructor until you are skilled enough to fly on your own. Usually in 15-20 hours. After about 65 hours then you become a a private pilot.

Private Pilot

This means that you can fly with passengers and go places. “The world will become a smaller place” as the saying goes.

Instrument Rating

The instrument rating will allow you to fly in the clouds and when visibility is not that good.

Commercial Pilot

This takes the most time and cost the most money. You will need some specialized training and it will cost about $10,000, however there are many ways to reduce this cost to make it much more affordable.

Flight education can be expensive. That is why it is important to know that not all flight training is the same. In fact, some are much better than others. Jeffrey Synk, captain at regional airline and is based in Colorado Springs, Colorado, provides future flight students with a valuable report on how to help your find a good flight school.

Like so many other schools, there are great schools, good schools, and schools that should have gone out of business a long time ago. Unfortunately, you won’t find an evaluation on their web site, in their yellow page ads, or in the brochures that they send you. It is up to you to learn to thoroughly evaluate the school before you put your money down for flight training to become a pilot.

Where Do You Find Flight Schools?

You will discover several websites that are dedicated to helping you find any type of flight school you are looking for. Start with looking in your local area and then expand it to areas that you think you may be willing to go to get flight training. Finally, there are several aviation forums that you can post questions to and view the responses. WillFlyForFood is a great forum to join and submit questions, but be careful…you will have to weed out the replies that don’t offer anything useful and look for the information that you need.

Two Qualifications That Must Be Met

There are two clear cut qualifications that will tell if one school is better than another:

  1. The flight instructors depth and knowledge of the airline industry and the technical field of study of aeronautics
  2. The flight instructors ability to teach and their commitment to your success.

A flight school may have wonderful pilots with hundreds of hours of flight time but if they don’t know how to teach, they won’t be much good to you. Similarly, the flight school may have wonderful teachers who can take you from beginner (Private Pilot) to expert (Airline Transport Pilot) in the curriculum but if they don’t have any more than a surface knowledge of what it means to be a professional pilot, their credibility is questionable. Look for schools that have flight instructors that have flown either for charter companies or for the airlines and that aren’t just trying to build hours. These are the flight instructors that enjoy teaching and can guide you on your path to becoming a professional pilot.

More Things To Consider

Furthermore, the flight school itself should be well equipped with the equipment necessary to give you the education to be a pilot and empowers the flight instructors with the material they need to teach you. Don’t be shy to inspect the classrooms, the books and the other equipment that will be needed in ground school to get you ready for the written pilot’s license exams and your flight lessons. There should be several different types of aviation books, computers loaded with training aides, and a library of videos from companies like Jeppensen and Gleim at your disposal.

Also, ask about the airplanes the school has for your flight training. Consider whether they are high-wing (Cessna) or low-wing (Piper Cherokee or Cirrus) airplanes. Some people like high-wing airplanes and some prefer low-wing airplanes. They basically fly the same but in many cases it is a personal choice. Does the school offer complex, high-performance, and multi-engine airplane training?

Are the airplanes equipped to offer both VOR and GPS training? Do they offer Electronic Flight Instrument System (EFIS) training? If you can learn on a variety of different kinds of airplanes, the greater your depth of knowledge will be. Ask how old the airplanes are and how many of each kind of airplane do they have? This is important because sadly older airplanes break more and don’t have the latest avionics. The more airplanes, the more likely you are going to get an airplane when you want it. You want to know that the airplanes are in good repair and that the school always has airplanes available for your training even if some are in the hangers for inspection or repair.

What About Your Flight Instructor?

You should have a list of what you expect of a flight instructor and specifically of the flight instructor who will be your primary mentor for this process. That person should have a good resume of accomplishments both flying for a living and working in the airline industry. You want a seasoned pro to be sitting next to you when you take the controls of an airplane and you also want an instructor who has the heart of a teacher. Be very cautious of the flight instructor that just got their flight instructor rating and you are their first student. I would say pass on that flight instructor. Your flight instructor should love sharing information about flying and should enjoy taking a “civilian” and turning them into an accomplished pilot. You also want an instructor who is confident and willing to let you make mistakes, then help you learn from those mistakes.

Ask Lots of Questions.

During your flight training, if you don’t understand, ask your flight instructor. The instructor wants you to learn but if you don’t understand something they may not know that you don’t understand. You should also ask for details about the flight training costs which will include supplemental costs like books, training materials, briefing fees, flight time fees, and flight instructor fees. You should ask questions about everything that was mentioned above. You should ask about airplane and instructor availability. You should ask questions about scheduling training flights and cancellations. If you have a questions…ask!

By the time your evaluation is done, you should have a firm idea what the school has to offer, what the flight instructors are like and what their experience level is, and a solid base of knowledge to use to compare flight schools. From there you can make the right choice who will be teaching you to take to the air and fulfill your lifelong dream of becoming a pilot.

Distributed by Viestly

Continue Your Flight Training With WINGS

Continue Your Flight Training With WINGSThe FAA sets minimum standards for currency—which has a lot to do with staying legal, but not much to do with being a competent pilot. What does it mean for flight training students and graduates, pilots with certificates in their hands? Flying is not “just like riding a bicycle.” FAA has high standards for pilots and meeting FAA requirements is simply not enough. Practice makes perfect. How you become proficient? More flying and perfecting your skills with flight training programs.

The WINGS – Pilot Proficiency Program

The program is based on the premise that when you maintain currency and proficiency in the basics of flight you will enjoy a safe and stress-free flying experience. Requirements, which include specific subjects and flight maneuvers from the appropriate Practical Test Standards, are established for airplanes, seaplanes and amphibians, rotorcraft, gliders, lighter-than-air, powered parachutes, weight-shift control, and light sport aircraft. You may select the category and class of aircraft in which you wish to receive training and in which you wish to demonstrate your flight proficiency. All training must place special emphasis on safety of flight operations. Proficiency must be demonstrated to the applicable standard, i.e., Practical Test Standards or Industry Course Completion Standards, etc.

The WINGS Program is designed to encourage you to participate in an on-going training program that will provide an opportunity to fly on a regular basis with an authorized flight instructor. With this in mind, three levels have been designed to allow for flexibility in obtaining the level of currency and proficiency you desire. The program is most effective when your training is accomplished regularly throughout the year, thus affording you the opportunity to fly in different seasons and in the different flight conditions you may encounter. You may earn as many phases in a level as you wish.

So here is all the technical information, but remember, this is all tracked here on “My WINGS” for you, so don’t get too worried about which phase or what requirements you must meet just yet.

Basic Level

This level is designed for those pilots who want to establish a recurrent training program that will provide them a higher level of proficiency than merely preparing for a normal Flight Review as required by 14 CFR 61.56. In addition, because the Basic Level addresses primary accident causal factors, every pilot is required to complete a phase at the Basic Level at least once every 12 calendar months. This ensures pilots are aware of accident causal factors and possible mitigation strategies.

Note that when you earn a phase of WINGS at any Level, you meet the requirements for a Flight Review (reference 61.56(e)).
To earn a phase at the Basic level, you must complete three knowledge credits of instruction and demonstrate proficiency when required as shown in the respective PTS. These knowledge areas are designed to cover current subject matter that the FAASTeam has determined to be critical areas of operation, which in the preceding months have been found to be major causal factors in aircraft accidents.

A pilot must also complete three credits of flight activities. Completion of a credit of flight for this level of flight requires demonstration of proficiency in the Area of Operation(s) required for the credit sought, as stated in the appropriate Practical Test Standards.

This level requires the use of the Practical Test Standard (PTS) for the pilot certificate held or the Private Pilot PTS, whichever is lower, for the category and class of aircraft used.

Advanced Level

This level is designed for those pilots who want a training program that will take them a step above Basic. It affords you the opportunity, in concert with your instructor, to tailor the training to fit more specific needs.
To complete a phase of WINGS at the Advanced level, you must simultaneously complete or already hold the Basic level as outlined previously.

The Advanced level requires an additional three flight credits and three knowledge credits using the Commercial PTS for the category and class of aircraft used, or the Private PTS when there is not a Commercial PTS, or if completion of the Basic level used the Sport or Recreational PTS, the Private PTS will be used for this level.

Master Level

This level is designed to give even more flexibility to your needs for specialized training. While most often this level will require the use of higher PTS standards, it will also allow for the addition of specialized equipment and flight environment training scenarios.

To obtain the Master level, you must simultaneously complete or already hold a phase at the Advanced level as outlined previously.

The Master level requires an additional three flight credits and three knowledge credits using the Commercial or ATP PTS for the category and class of aircraft used and the Instrument Rating PTS, if one is available for the category and class of aircraft used. A Light Sport Aircraft (LSA) may not be used at this level. For more information contact FAA WINGS program website.

Distributed by Viestly

Aviation Degree vs. Flight School Training

Aviation Degree vs. Flight School TrainingBeing an airline pilot is a glamorous, exciting, and highly rewarding job. But how exactly do you become one? It can actually many years of flying experience to even qualify for a position. Needless to say, you need to be serious and committed. Where do you start?

Aviation Degree vs. Flight School Training

Aviation College Degree Programs
The Aeronautical Science Program prepares the graduate for a career in the aviation industry by providing a strong foundation in mathematics, physics, aeronautical sciences, aeronautical technology, and the aviation industry. The graduate will receive an Associate of Science Degree, ratings through Flight Instructor Multi-Engine, including the ratings necessary to obtain intermediate level employment. The flight training sequence for this program consists of of four flight-training modules plus additional flight training as specified in each option.

Aviator Aeronautical Science Program includes 565 flight hours and more multi-engine time than any other college or flight school. NO FTDs (Simulators) are used towards flight time requirements. Our large multi-engine fleet is equipped with Garmin 430s, and ASPEN EFIS is being introduced.  Aviator offers job placement assistance for their graduates.

Flight School and Flight Training Programs

For more than 27 years Aviator has been the leader in multi-engine flight training. We have provided over 5000 professional pilots to the airline industry, both nationally and worldwide, through our Professional Pilot Flight Training Programs. Our FAA-certified Part 141 approved flight programs provide students with the skills and experience demanded by today’s commercial aviation industry. Aviator is accredited by the ACCSC (Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges).

Our Professional Pilot Program is set in a flight training, structured environment to ensure the student receives the knowledge that is required to be a professional pilot. This program is from 0 hours to over 250 hours, of which 200 hours will be multi-engine time. The program includes Private Pilot Single Engine through the Multi-Engine Flight Instructor Certificate. Cross Country flying is coast-to-coast, if desired.

When you choose Aviator, all flight training is logged in aircraft. Our Flight Training Devices (FTDs) are used for ground training purposes only. NO FTDs (SIMULATORS) ARE USED FOR FLIGHT TIME TOWARDS YOUR RATINGS!

This “hands-on” approach provides the best flight training environment for pilots of the future. We encourage training in actual instrument conditions. Flying at the Aviator is 24 hours-a-day, rain or shine. Aviator flight training programs offer more actual multi-engine time than any other school in the country. Our fleet of multi-engine aircraft are equipped with GPS and are being converted to EFIS Systems (Glass Cockpits). Come and take a tour and see the Aviator difference.

Pilot Jobs and Employment

The most obvious benefit of an aviation career and serving as an airline pilot is the flying. Any pilot can attest to the joy of commanding an aircraft and assuming the responsibility for, and the challenge of, operating a multi-million dollar aircraft with the trust of its passengers. The love of flying keeps the weathered days sunny. If this seems like a match for your career goals, your aspirations, and your sense of adventure, then begin your journey and start training. The big question:

When it comes to getting a pilot job, will you benefit from an Aviation degree?

The best answer was given by a retired pilot. Here it is:
In the case of pilot employment (with an airline), an airline will hire you as pilot and selecting you because of your pilot license and pilot experience – While most major airlines (in Canada or USA) require a 4-years degree, none of them require an aviation degree.

Many airline pilot applicants are under the impression that an aviation degree improves their chances of getting hired by an airline – It is absolutely false.

That is the reason why it is highly recommended to get a degree offering employment outside aviation in case you would have a medical problem (and loss of your pilot license) or if the airlines economy (or a recession) would have you on furlough and force you to seek employment outside aviation – And for helicopter pilot, it is NO different.

You need a degree that gives you an alternative to a pilot career – What will you do, if you cannot get pilot employment – An aviation degree will NOT help you get a job as accountant, legal assistant, or meteorologist.

Distributed by Viestly

Types of Pilot Certificates

Types of Pilot CertificatesThere are two primary certificates, commonly called licenses, that you can earn in order to enjoy the privileges, challenges, and beauty of flying. They are the recreational pilot certificate and the private pilot certificate. To be eligible to receive either certificate in a single-engine airplane, there are a few minimum requirements.

You must:

  • Be 16 years old to solo.
  • Be 17 years old to receive your pilot certificate.
  • Read, speak, and understand English.
  • Hold at least a third-class medical certificate.

The recreational certificate is a good choice if you fly in rural areas and don’t foresee traveling large distances by airplane. If you plan an aviation career or want to fly long distances for business or pleasure, the private pilot certificate is the better choice. You can start with a recreational certificate and later receive the additional training for a private certificate.

The Recreational Pilot Certificate

The recreational pilot certificate requires fewer training hours than the private certificate and can be earned in as few as 30 hours as compared to the 40 hours needed for the private. The reasoning behind this is that as a recreational pilot you receive fewer hours of cross-country navigation flight training because you must remain within 50 nautical miles of your home base. You also won’t have to learn to fly in airspace requiring communications with air traffic control. And night operations and flight by reference to instruments, which are part of the private pilot training, are eliminated from the recreational pilot’s curriculum.

Because of the reduced flight training requirements, recreational certificate holders are subject to certain limitations and restrictions. As a recreational pilot, you can carry only one passenger in single-engine aircraft of 180 horsepower or less with up to four seats. That means you’ll just be taking one friend or family member at a time when you go for a joy ride. It won’t be a problem finding aircraft that meet the aircraft type requirements. Most general aviation aircraft that are inexpensive to rent or purchase fall into the above-mentioned categories.

As a recreational pilot, your flying must be during daylight hours in good weather. These weather conditions are defined under the FAA’s visual flight rules (VFR). Is there anyone who doesn’t like blue sky and sun? You can fly no higher than 10,000 feet above sea level unless you happen to be flying over terrain, such as a mountain, that is higher than 10,000 feet. In that case, you can go over the 10,000-foot limit as long as you stay within 2,000 feet of the ground. Speaking from experience, when you go up really, really high, you can’t see much of interest anyway; flying at high altitude doesn’t fit with the point of recreational flying.

One limitation that may be a problem for some is that, without additional flight training and an endorsement (written authorization) from an instructor, a recreational pilot is restricted to flights within 50 nautical miles from the departure airport. In addition, you cannot fly in airspace that requires radio communication with air traffic control. Again, this limitation can be withdrawn if you get additional training and endorsements in your logbook from your flight instructor.

The Private Pilot Certificate

A private pilot certificate is like a driver’s license. It allows you to fly anywhere in the United States and even outside the United States when you comply with regulations of the foreign country where the aircraft is operated. You can carry any number of passengers, and you can share certain operating expenses with your passengers. There are fewer limitations for a private pilot then there are for a recreational pilot. Although, there are currency and medical requirements to make sure you stay proficient and healthy, only a few other factors affect when and where you can fly. Once you earn your license, you are free to wander around in the skies below 18,000 feet above sea level to your heart’s content. You might take the family on a trip to see relatives in a distant state or use an airplane to shorten the time it takes to make business trips to another city.

One restriction to a private pilot’s freedom of flight comes from Mother Nature — the weather. There are certain weather conditions you can fly in and other’s you can’t, at least without additional training. As a private pilot without an instrument rating, FAA regulations allow you to fly only in weather classified under visual flight rules (VFR). You can, of course, overcome this limitation by earning an instrument rating for flying under instrument flight rules (IFR). Simply put, if it’s raining outside and you can’t see the neighbor’s house through the fog, you shouldn’t be wandering around in the sky unless you’ve been trained in the fine art of flight in instrument meteorological conditions. The instrument rating is something you can add later. Aviation Services has an information package on obtaining an instrument rating. Call 800/USA-AOPA for this free informative package.

With a private pilot license, you can fly at night as long as you have received the required night training. Training for night flying is almost always included as part of a private pilot training curriculum. Without a doubt, a crystal-clear, moonlit night is one of the most spectacular and beautiful times to fly.

Pilot Certificate Comparison

Pilot Certificate Limitations
Of the more than 600,000 pilots in the United States today, more than 247,000 hold private pilot certificates. The vast majority fly because of the fun, challenges, and opportunities that aviation offers.

If you are interested in an exciting career as a pilot, contact Aviator College and begin your flight training today.

Distributed by Viestly

Categories: Uncategorized