Pilot Licenses and Requirements

Notice to Students:
All non-United States citizens are now required to complete a validation through the Alien Flight Student Program before beginning ANY flight training, including first lessons. Validation includes, but is not limited to: background checks, fingerprinting and a waiting period. The Alien Flight Student Program ensures that Non-U.S. Citizen candidates seeking training at flight schools regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration do not pose a threat to aviation or national security. To begin this process, please visit the following site: www.flightschoolcandidates.gov. For questions, please contact the Alien Flight Student Program Help Desk at (571) 227-4544.

Student Pilot’s Certificate
Student pilots can begin their training at any age. Student pilots are permitted to fly solo (without their instructor) at the age of 16. In order to take passengers along (other than a Certified Flight Instructor), the student must obtain their Private Pilot’s License.

Private Pilot’s License
  • FAA minimum of 40 hours instruction
  • FAA age requirement of 17 years old
  • This license allows the pilot to fly VFR (visual flight conditions) with friends and family to anywhere in the US and Canada.

Instrument Rating
  • Hold at least a Private Pilot’s License, adds the Instrument rating
  • FAA minimum of 50 hours cross country pilot-in-command hours
  • FAA minimum of 40 hours (simulated) instrument instruction. A portion of this can be done in Leading Edge Aviation’s approved Flight Training Device (simulator)
  • FAA age requirement of 17 years old
  • This license allows the pilot to fly in IFR (instrument flight conditions: clouds, haze, etc) with friends and family to anywhere in the US and Canada.

Commerical Pilot’s License
  • Hold at least a Private Pilot’s License, converts the license to a Commercial Pilot’s License
  • FAA minimum of 250 hours total time
  • FAA age requirement of 18 years old
  • This license allows the pilot to be paid for their services as a pilot.

CFI/CFII License
  • Hold at least a Commercial Pilot’s License
  • FAA age requirement of 18 years old
  • CFI allows the pilot to instruct under VFR (Visual Flight Rules) conditions for the Private Pilot or Commercial licenses
  • CFII allows the pilot to instruct under IFR (Instrument Flight Rules) conditions for the Instrument Rating