Commercial Pilot License Cost

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Commercial Pilot License Cost

If you’re someone who has always wanted to fly but felt you couldn’t afford aviation as a hobby, maybe it is time to think about beginning a career as a commercial pilot. A commercial pilot is someone who has been approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to charge for pilot services.


To become a commercial pilot, you must acquire the needed skills and education as required in the qualification of a commercial pilot’s licence (CPL). The CPL comes with certain privileges and these are stated in the sub-qualifications or ratings. While some pilots may receive an airline transport pilot licence, other pilots may also gain aerobatic flights rating. The CPL may also specify the type of aircraft you can fly.



What is a Commercial Pilot License?


A commercial pilot license (CPL), is a type of pilot license that permits the holder to act as a pilot of an aircraft and be paid for his/her work.


The basic requirements to obtain the license and the privileges it confers are agreed internationally by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).


However the actual implementation varies quite widely from country to country. According to ICAO, to be eligible for a commercial pilot license, the applicant must;

  • be able to read, speak, write, and understand English
  • already hold a private pilot license
  • have received training in the areas of a commercial pilot
  • successfully complete the relevant written exams.



The Process of Obtaining a Commercial Pilot’s Licence


Now let’s assume you are starting with no flying experience, which is how most of our professional pilot students began at our flight training school. We will walk you through the steps you need to take to become a pilot;

1. Research flight training schools

Take your time to find the flight training school that best suits your needs and has positive reviews from its graduates. This is a big step towards your aviation career, and you must make a good decision. Then apply when you find the best for you. Also note, you must be 17 years old before embarking on this journey.

  1. Get your medical certificate

All student pilots must pass an FAA medical exam with an Aeromedical Examiner (AME). If you plan to become a commercial pilot, you’ll need a class 1 medical certificate.

3. Get your FAA Student Pilot certificate

This makes it official! You’ll have to apply for this through IACRA, and you will need it to fly with your instructor.

4. Begin Ground School classes

Ground school classes provide you with the practical knowledge you need to know while preparing for flight planning and flying.

5. Begin flight lessons

While in ground school, you will begin training in simulators and airplanes alongside a certified flight instructor (CFI). This lets you turn your knowledge into skills as you continue your pilot training.

6. Pass the “written” test

The FAA Private Pilot Knowledge Test, known as the “written” to student pilots, assesses your knowledge on aviation in areas such as aerodynamics, weather, flight instruments, weather, etc.

7. Pass the checkride

The FAA Private Pilot Practical Exam, also known as the checkride, assesses your flying skills and knowledge of practical applications in the cockpit. Passing this is the final step.


This entire process takes approximately 3 months.

How to become a commercial pilot?

You have already earned your Private Pilot License (PPL). This is the first step

as stated in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) guidelines. Although the implementation may vary with different countries, completion of a private pilot licence is a general eligibility requirement for CPL. PPL allows you to fly single-engine aircraft under Visual Flight Rules (VFR), so you are already on your way to becoming a commercial pilot. Others steps include;

1. Instrument Rating


This allows you to fly in low visibility weather using flight instruments and takes approximately 2 months.
The next step is to begin your Commercial Pilot training. You must be 18 years old and have a 2nd Class Medical Certificate.

2. Commercial Pilot License (CPL)


This includes taking your written FAA exam, logging at least 250 hours of flight time (including 100 hours as Pilot-In-Command (PIC) and 50 hours cross-country), and passing your FAA checkride.

  1. Multi-Engine rating


This allows you to fly multi-engine aircraft. Earning your CPL with multi-engine rating takes approximately 3 months. So, in a total of 8 months, you’ve gone from zero pilot experience to being a Commercial Pilot.

The Cost of a Commercial Pilot License

Now, the main question! As you might expect, getting a commercial pilot license does not come cheap. The total cost for training varies on how well students do in their courses. On average, most students go from having no experience at all to earning a CPL with instructor ratings in 12 months. The cost also varies depending on a number of factors. On average, the cost is approximately $50,000. This is a sound investment in your future considering the median pay for an airline pilot exceeds $100,000.

Tip: There are many options for commercial pilots beyond flying for a commercial airline. Becoming a commercial pilot is a straightforward process. Once you determine your eligibility, you simply follow the training requirements established by the FAA. If you are not from the United States and want to become a commercial pilot in your home country, it is fairly simple to convert your FAA credentials to your country’s Civil Aviation Authority standards.


Final Thoughts

The rewards of being a pilot are very special. You don’t just get a considerable amount of salary but will also get to visit various countries at no cost. Pilots can obtain their commercial pilot’s license even if they don’t plan to fly for a living. The commercial pilot’s license helps you become a better pilot, even if you just want to fly for personal purposes. Acquire the necessary skills and education to be qualified for a commercial pilot licence and pursue a rewarding career in the aviation industry.




Have more questions on how to get a commercial pilot license? We would love to answer any questions you have and help with your aviation career. So visit our website today and let us know how we can help you get your commercial pilot license.

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