If you are planning to fly as a career, there are certain training and certification requirements you must meet. First, you cannot begin getting paid as a pilot until you earn your commercial pilot certificate. However, a commercial pilot certificate is NOT the same thing as an air transport pilot license which is required to become an airline or charter pilot.
Age and Legal Status
Before applying for Sterling Flight Training’s Career Pilot Pathway, make sure you meet the following requirements:
For a career pilot you must make sure you can qualify for a First Class Medical Certificate.
The medical is performed by an Aeromedical Examiner (AME). You can find an AME near you through the FAA directory. Once you have found an AME you can complete the initial portion of the application at FAA MedXpress. Note: Please ensure your name on your medical certificate matches your driver’s license exactly.
Certain medical conditions and medications are disqualifying. Please educate yourself to ensure you do not have a medical condition, psychiatric disorder, or take medication that could render you unable to earn a First Class Medical (required to be an airline pilot). Ref: FAA Disqualifying Conditions; FAA Disqualifying Medications; AOPA Medical Resources.
Sterling offers a few options to ensure you can fully fund your training. The most popular option for career pilots is the tuition-based Career Pilot Pathway program and financing through Meritize. This allows low interest rates, up to 100% funding and flexible repayment options including deferment while training. Financing options can be found here.
Minimum hour requirement
The FAA’s current requirement for an Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) Certificate is roughly 1500 hours, which includes 500 hours of cross-country time, 100 hours of night time, 50 hours in the class of airplane for the rating, 75 hours of instrument time and 250 hours of time as pilot in command.
However, if you flew in the military or complete a college flight program, you may qualify for a Restricted ATP Certificate (R-ATP). Restricted ATP hours are as follows:
Ready to be a Professional Pilot? Want to experience our Redbird FMX Simulator, or join our ranks via your university’s aviation program? Let’s get you in the air.