Some people may want to obtain their private pilot’s license so that they can fly family around and as a way to take a vacation. In some cases people may want this license so they can travel to business meetings by themselves in their own plane. There are several steps involved in procuring your private pilot’s license.
You need to be sure that you are first and foremost eligible to even obtain a private pilot’s license. The requirements are as follows: you need to be a minimum of 17 years of age and have enough English ability to understand, take and conceivably actually pass the flight training requirements and exam that will test your knowledge. In the end you will be required to pass both a flight exam and verbal exam. You need to procure a student pilot certificate. Under certain circumstances this will not be necessary, for instance, if you have a sport pilot certificate or a recreational pilot certificate. You will receive an aviation medical certificate in addition to your student pilot certificate. The medical certificate will be granted after you successfully pass a medical fitness test to ensure that you are medically able to fly. You can apply at an FAA Flight Standards District Office as well as going through an examiner.
Depending on the flight instructor or flight school that you are training at, you may have to first pass a written exam before doing anything else. This is the FAA Private Pilot Written Exam, which does need to be taken before you can take your last Private Pilot check ride. It is useful to have the background knowledge before venturing into the cockpit of the plane anyway.When you start to actually fly you will be taught basic maneuvers such as taking off, landing, climbing, turning, and descending. Obviously you need to know more than just the basics, for instance you need to know how to communicate using the radio and how to deal with an emergency situation if one should arise. Before you can solo a plane you need to have spent at least 10 hours flying.
The FAA practical exam is also known as the check ride. In order to take this exam you need to have spent a minimum of 40 hours flying, 20 hours of which must have been done with an instructor present, and 10 hours of which are from solo flights. There are more specific requirements as well for instance you must have spent 3 hours flying at night, 3 hours of cross-country training with an instructor. They also require that you have flown more than 100 nautical miles in distance and have 3 hours of instrument training.A specially designated FAA instructor will administer the verbal exam on the ground, which if you pass will then lead on to the actual practical exam which is the flight.
Once you pass the flight which can vary from 1 to 2 hours in length you will then have to fill out the paperwork online and pay the fee. The examiner will provide you with a temporary certificate until the official certificate arrives by mail.