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A Commercial Pilot Certificate is similar to your Private Pilot Certificate except it allows you to fly an airplane and carry passengers and/or property for compensation or hire under certain conditions. The FAA requires the applicant to hold a private pilot’s license and most students obtain an instrument rating so that their commercial privileges are not limited. The FAA also requires 250 hours of accumulated flight time, including specific hours of experience in several areas such as night flying, cross country, etc. The flight hours earned to obtain the private and instrument rating are credited towards the required 250 hours.  This is also a required rating for all flight instructors.

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Commercial Pilot Certificate Requirements

Aeronautical Experience Required

  • 250 hours total flight time including:
  • - 100 hours in powered aircraft (50 hours in airplanes)
  • - 100 hours Pilot In Command flight time
  •      - 50 hours cross-country
  • - 10 hours instrument training
  • - 10 hours complex dual
  • - 2 hours dual VFR day cross-country
  • - 2 hours dual VFR night cross-country
  • - 300 NM solo cross-country with landings at 3 points
  • - 5 hours solo night VFR w/ 10 takeoffs and landings
  • - 3 hours dual within the 60 days preceding the flight test

Other Requirements

  • - Be at least 18 years of age when training is complete
  • - Read, speak, write and understand the English language
  • - Obtain at least a third class medical certificate
  • - Hold at least a Private Pilot certificate
  • - Pass the commercial knowledge test
  • - Successfully complete a Commercial Pilot course
  • - Pass a practical test with FAA Designated Pilot Examiner.