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Student Visas for Flight Training

Student Visas for Flight TrainingMany chose to study with a flight school abroad. To do this you are often required to obtain a visa from the country you wish to study in. In the United States everyone not holding a green card is required to have a student visa or higher. Listed below are different visas you can hold to fly in the Unites States.

M1- Vocational Visa – 1 year and on

Many part 141 flight schools accept international students on M1 visas. This is strictly a student visa and is usually obtained for one year at the time as long as you undergo training. It gives you the privilege of living in the United States and studying with the flight school issuing the visa application. Meaning the school has made a guarantee for you to the INS and you can therefore only study with that particular school on that particular visa.

You cannot work on an M1 visa; this includes part time work to cover your living.

J1 – Foreign Exchange Visa – 2 years

J1 is a visa offered by some flight schools through an exchange program. To you this means studying and later working as a pilot. The real difference from an M1 is that you can do practical job training; working in your trained profession to build more experience (building flight hours in other words).

Practically on a J1 visa you do flight training and are later intended to work as a flight instructor with the school. If you can’t get a job there you will be assisted in finding work elsewhere, but are still guaranteed for by the school issuing the visa and have to report all flying done on a regular basis.

The visa is issued for 2 years (24months) and can only be issued ones in a lifetime. Further to qualify you cannot hold any higher then an FAA private pilot license (PPL) and an instrument rating (IR). Not all countries are qualified for the J1 visa. If the flight school you wish to study with issue J1 visas they will tell if you qualify or not.

F1 – Academic Visa – 1 year and on

This visa is issued by a college or university and covers the length of your study. The benefit this visa has is that after the first year you can work part time to cover your living as long as you stay a full time student. This is done on the discretion of the college/university guaranteeing for your visa. If you want to get a degree in aviation as well as doing flight training it may be an idea to look for a university offering F1 visas.

The visa is not renewed after you graduate and will therefore expire. So if you want to build hours flying you also need to keep studying full time. This can be expensive and you don’t build hours very fast. (source)

US Visas Required for Flight Training

There are two types of U.S. visas available for international students’ flight training: The M-1 Visa and the F-1 Visa. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security requires all international students to conduct all their flight training only at a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) flight school which has been approved under Federal Aviation Regulation (FAR) Part 141. So be sure the U.S. flight school you are considering is an approved FAR Part 141 school.

The M-1 Visa is recommended for students interested in taking individual flight courses. The M-1(I-20 form) allows you to stay in the U.S. for up to 12 months; it can be extended, if needed for training. NOTE: The U.S. tourist visa is NOT allowed for flight training in the U.S.

The F-1 Visa is recommended for students interested in careers as professional pilots and who desire to complete a professional training program, which typically starts with study for a Private Pilot Certificate and progresses through the Commercial Certificate with Instructor Ratings. The F-1 (I-20 form) is 12 months in length and can be extended, if additional time is needed for training. Upon completion of a full professional flight training program, an F-1 Visa enables students (upon application and approval of DHS for your work authorization) to be eligible to work as flight instructors to build additional hours; this allows pilots to build up to 1,000+ hours of flight experience, which is advantageous when applying for employment with airlines.

All non US citizens planning to begin their flight training in USA should notify the flight school of their choice in advance that they intend to start flight training because the flight school also needs to register online with TSA before you begin flight training.

Student Visas Information for Aeronautical Science Degree Program
Aviator College of Aeronautical Science & Technology

If you are planning to come to the U.S. for the Aeronautical Science Degree Program (including flight training), you must enter on a Student Visa. The College is approved by the INS to issue paperwork for visas under the Foreign Student Exchange Visitor Programs.

Aviator College provides a certificate of eligibility (I-20) to all admitted international students. The form is used to apply for the F-1 or M-1 Visa. The form verifies to U.S. immigration officials the student is academically qualified to attend the College, and has sufficient funds to cover the required period of study, and that subsequent funds will be available for the future. Students must demonstrate proof of financial support at the time of application.

Aviator policy states that students are required to attend for one full semester when entering the United States on a College provided I-20 form. Aviator College will not release a student to another educational institution until the student completes one semester.

Upon receipt of your deposit and the Application for Enrollment, you will receive the original I-20 or IAP-66 student visa form via overnight mail at the address provided. Remember you must provide a complete physical address in order for delivery to occur.

You must take the original visa form to the U.S. Embassy in your country for approval. Please inform admissions of your tentative arrival date and your flight information so a representative may meet you at the airport to welcome you to the USA and Aviator College of Aeronautical Science & Technology.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

If you have applied for a visa you will also need to register with S.E.V.I.S . at http://www.fmjfee.com – see their website for details.

Contact your local US embassy to make an appointment, and ensure you have the required documentation and follow the correct procedure for the visa interview. READ Your local US embassy website extremely carefully!

Distributed by Viestly

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