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Airplane Lessons - Pilot Courses


FAR Part 61 defines the requirements for certification of pilots and flight instructors. It describes the eligibility requirements, aeronautical knowledge, flight experience and limitations for each of the certificates and ratings a pilot may receive. Many general areas such as logging of flight time, testing requirements and flight currency requirements are also covered.

FAR Part 141 details the regulations governing FAA-approved flight training schools. Part 141 includes the specific qualifications needed by the personnel, aircraft and facilities the flight school uses.

When training under Part 141, a student follows a training syllabus that has been tested, proven and approved by the FAA. This ensures that all necessary training areas are covered in a logical and expeditious manner. Some time savings are possible when training under a Part 141 program compared to a Part 61 program. The determination of whether a student trains under Part 61 or Part 141 is based upon the most advantageous path for meeting the student's flight training objective.

Private Pilot Certificate

The adventure of flying begins with your Private Pilot Certificate. Whether you plan to fly for fun, give rides to friends and family, provide yourself with transportation or gain knowledge and experience for future ratings, it all begins with the Private Pilot Certificate.

While achieving this certificate, you receive instruction about the basic operations of an airplane. We integrate the ground training with the flight training, and you are in the cockpit from day one getting hands-on practical experience. Ground training covers diverse topics such as airport operations, radio procedures, weather and navigation.

Your first major goal is to fly the airplane solo. During your solo flight training, you learn maneuvers such as emergency procedures, takeoffs and landings and how to operate safely at a tower-controlled airport. After solo flight training, you move onto more advanced lessons such as night and cross-country flying.

During the final stage of this training, you sharpen and polish your skills in preparation for the FAA’s practical examination (checkride) conducted by an FAA-designated examiner. Upon successful completion of the checkride, you are issued a Private Pilot Certificate.

The FAA minimum hourly requirement for Part 141 Private Pilot Certificate is 30 hours of ground training and 35 hours of flight training, although the average completion time is 50-60 flight hours. We cannot guarantee a specific amount of time for your private pilot training because each individual learns at his/her own pace. We do not compromise your safety to guarantee a minimum number of hours towards your certificate.

Instrument Rating

The Instrument Rating is necessary for flying in adverse weather conditions, and our instrument training program teaches you to control and navigate the aircraft solely by reference to the instruments. Obtaining the Instrument Rating opens avenues for greater challenge and functionality.

The training begins with the basics of attitude flying and progressively moves to advanced approach and landing procedures. The Pacific Northwest’s weather provides a great opportunity for pilots to get experience in actual instrument conditions.

The FAA minimum hourly requirement for Part 141 Instrument Rating is 30 hours of ground training and 35 hours of flight training.

Commercial Pilot Certificate

Whether your professional goal is to fly a Boeing 747, a crop-duster or a Cessna 152, you must obtain a Commercial Pilot Certificate which is required to fly for hire. The commercial training focuses on advanced aerodynamics, professionalism, passenger considerations and rules and regulations governing commercial operations. Additionally, the commercial training program teaches you to fly an airplane to higher and more precise standards than were required in the private training program. As a commercial student, you also learn to master the operation of a complex aircraft.

The FAA minimum hourly requirement for Part 141 Commercial Pilot Certificate is 35 hours of ground training and 120 hours of flight training.

Multi-Engine Rating

The Multi-Engine Rating is a key part of any professional pilot training because it is focused on aircraft with more than one engine. The training process begins with a discussion of the performance characteristics of the multi-engine aircraft with special emphasis placed on the performance and safety factors required to fly the airplane with only one engine functioning.

For pilots with no previous flight time, our airplane professional pilot program is recommended. For pilots who already have a Private Pilot Certificate or Commercial Pilot Certificate, there are no specific FAA flight time minimums for an add-on Multi-Engine Rating. Customized multi-engine training programs are available.

Certified Flight Instructor Rating

A Certified Flight Instructor Rating (CFI) is required for a pilot to give instruction to other pilots. Our CFI program is designed to provide you with the skills to instruct both airplane flight and ground lessons. The primary focus of our CFI program is to train you to be an effective educator, evaluator and motivator.

The FAA minimum hourly requirement for Part 141 CFI Rating is 40 hours of ground and 25 hours of flight training.

Certified Flight Instructor Instrument Rating

The Certified Flight Instructor Instrument Rating (CFII) is one of our advanced instructor training programs. This rating teaches you how to instruct students to fly airplanes by reference to instruments only.

The FAA minimum hourly requirement for Part 141 CFII Rating is 15 hours of ground training and 15 hours of flight training.

Multi-Engine Instructor

The Multi-Engine Instructor (MEI) training is another one of our advanced instructor training programs. You learn how to instruct students to fly multi-engine aircraft.

The FAA minimum hourly requirement for Part 141 MEI training is 20 hours of ground training and 25 hours of flight training.

Airline Transport Pilot Certificate

The Airline Transport Pilot Certificate (ATP) is the highest level of aircraft pilot certification. Those certified as Airline Transport Pilots are authorized to pilot an aircraft in air carrier service with a max gross weight over 12,500 pounds or 5,700 kg and/or over nine passenger seats. To achieve an ATP, you must have at least 1,200 hours of flight time.