Getting Your Private Pilot’s License
How long until I get to fly the airplane?
You will be flying the airplane, with your instructor’s guidance, from your very first lesson. You can Solo in as little as 10 hours of flight instruction.
Is it safe?
While there is some risk involved, your flight instructor will train you thoroughly in all safety procedures, and be there to check your work and back you up until you are ready to solo.
The airplane is maintained constantly to keep it in perfect running condition. Every 100 flight hours, the plane undergoes a thorough inspection by a certified airplane mechanic, and any necessary maintenance is performed immediately.
How much does it cost?
Check out our private pilot program on the Learn to Fly page for details and prices.
How long does it take?
A typical student earns their private license in 40 – 70 hours of flight time. That can take anywhere from 3 to 9 months, depending on how often you can fly.
What do I have to do to get my license?
Fly as often as you can, and complete the at home ground school course as assigned by your instructor to complement each lesson in the air.
Once you’ve completed all your lessons and are feeling confident, there is a written exam,followed by something called a Checkride. That’s an oral exam and practical flight test, given by an examiner certified by the FAA. It’s a little like taking your driver’s test at the DMV!
Can I take passengers?
As long as you are flying an airplane covered by your private license (which is a wide variety of planes!), you are allowed to take as many passengers as that plane is safely allowed to carry.
Where can I fly?
Your license is good anywhere in the world. During your lessons, your instructor will explain any restrictions on where private planes and pilots may fly. Within those restrictions, you can fly as far as you like.
Even better, you don’t have to buy a plane to enjoy one as soon as you are licensed. Flight school planes are available for rent by the hour or day. Take out of town guests for an air tour of the Wine Country. Or get away yourself on day trips to nearby destinations like L.A., Monterey, or Tahoe.
What planes can I fly with a private license?
Your license will authorize you to fly Single Engine, Land planes. With only a small amount of extra training, you could learn to fly Multi-engine or the more powerful “high performance” aircraft.
How long is a lesson? What is it like?
A typical lesson begins with a pre-flight discussion to review material which the student has studied at home, and to verbally plan the day’s flight.
Then it’s into the air to practice what you’ve already learned, and introduce new skills. These lessons will follow a standard syllabus, tailored to each individual student by your instructor.
Once you land, there’s a post-flight briefing to discuss the day’s flying, and let you know what you should review at home for your next flight.
All that takes about an hour and a half, with the majority of the time spent in the air, flying.
At home you’ll have a text book ground school course, with sections that are coordinated with your flight lesson syllabus. That way you can learn as you go, at your own pace.
What are the medical requirements to fly a plane?
The FAA requires that students pass a Third Class Medical exam before being allowed to solo. This is a basic medical examination that tests your fitness to safely fly an airplane. Though there are some conditions which may delay or prevent obtaining your medical certification, the requirements are not as strict as most people think. You’re only flying a small plane, not the Space Shuttle! Special certification is often available for common conditions, including: hypertension, heart trouble, or diabetes. Speak with the doctor performing your exam for details.
The exam must be performed by an FAA authorized Aviation Medical Examiner. In Sonoma, students can see Dr. John Schafer. His office can be reached at (707) 938-3131. Students in other areas can search for local doctors here.
By the way, who did your website and copywriting?
That was our office manager, Zorah Mardesich. She can be reached at the office number, 707-939-8333 or at firstname.lastname@example.org and does freelance work. The theme is Striking from ThemeForest, and is built on WordPress.