Posts Tagged ‘new student pilot requirements’

What You Need to Know about the New Student Pilot Requirements

Monday, April 4th, 2016

Last week, the FAA put forth new rules in order to receive a student pilot license. While the student still must visit an Aviation Medical Examiner (AME) for their medical, they must visit a Flight Services District Office (FSDO), Part 141 flight school or a flight instructor to apply. The application will then be vetted by the TSA through their anti-terrorism program. After a few weeks, the student will receive a plastic student pilot certificate in the mail. Unlike previous student pilot certificates, the new format has no expiration date. There is no cost for this certificate.

How does this affect me?

While the new procedure takes a little more effort, the main concern with the new rule-making is the turn-around time receiving the student pilot certificate. Many accelerated pilot training programs would have to wait for the certificate to arrive prior to allowing the student to solo. The current estimated wait time is three weeks, although other sources estimate longer.

There is another issue with the new certification process that is causing some backlash. The applicant must be at least 16 years of age in order to apply for a student pilot certificate. Therefore, the long-celebrated 16th birthday solo may be a tradition of the past. Currently, work is being done to allow young students to apply prior to their 16th birthday.

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