Step 1: Research The Types Of Pilot Certificates
There are different types of pilot certificates that will allow you to fly. Some have restrictions, but have less stringent requirements. If you just want to fly for fun, here are the different types of certificates you might want to consider:
Recreational Pilot Certificate
This certificate has so many restrictions that it’s almost not worth the hassle of obtaining it. For example, you can only take one passenger at time, you can’t fly at night, you can’t fly longer than 50nm away from your airport, you can’t fly at airports that require radio communication with a control tower, etc. For more information on the recreational pilot certificate, Click Here.
Sport Pilot Certificate
Just like the Recreational Pilot Certificate, this one is also full of restrictions, but will at least allow you to fly more than 50nm away from your airport. This certificate was designed for people who cannot obtain an FAA medical certificate. Instead, you can use your driver’s license as proof that you are medically fit to fly. However, you cannot have had a medical denied to you in the past in order to obtain a Sport Pilot Certificate.
You are also limited to the type of airplane you can fly – it has to be categorized as a Light Sport Aircraft (LSA). An LSA cannot weigh more than 1,320 lbs, and cannot have the ability to fly faster than 120 knots in level flight. For more information on LSA’s, Click Here.
Private Pilot Certificate
A Private Pilot Certificate allows to fly with more than one passenger and there is no limit to the speed of your airplane. This is what most pilots choose to obtain. For more information on the Private Pilot Certificate, Click Here.
Now go on to Step 2: Get an FAA Medical