Learning to fly a plane is not as hard as you may think
If you have ever wanted to fly an airplane, it is well worth getting your Private Pilot License. I did this two years ago and it has afforded me and my family freedom like nothing else can. Flying is challenging, fun, exciting, and an experience that can't be understood until you actually start travelling in a small plane. Below I will teach you how to get a Private Pilot License In Canada.
If you want to become a commercial pilot in Canada, you first need to get a Private Pilot License. This is not as hard as it sounds. The training can be done over any length of time and you can spread out your training and payment schedule however you like. This makes flying an obtainable reality for most people. Although the theory you will need to learn is difficult at times, it's not too much to overcome. I was a steady C- student all the way through school and I did quite well in ground school.
Here is how to get a Private Pilot License In Canada.
First, understand how pilot licenses work. For airplanes, there are several different types.
Recreational Pilot Permit
This is a barebones permit for folks who just want to fly strictly for fun. You are restricted to daylight hours, one passenger, and can not add on any endorsements or upgrade to a commercial license without first getting a Private Pilot License.
Private Pilot License
This license enables you to fly single engine aircraft in daylight hours with 3 passengers. endorsements can be added to this license such as:
- Multi-engine rating
- Night rating
- IFR rating (flying in reduced or zero visibility)
- Float rating
Commercial Pilot License
A commercial license gives you all of the privileges of a private license, but you can be paid to fly. Endorsements can be added to a commercial license as well.
Airline Transport Pilot License
This license permits the holder to fly wide-bodied jets and is the license held by all pilots of large airliners around the world. If you want to fly for a living, you will need either a Commercial Pilot License or an Airline Transport Pilot License.
Now that you understand the types of licenses available, here's how to get a Private Pilot License in Canada.
1. Take a discovery flight from your local flight school
A discovery flight is a 30-60 minute short flight to give you a feel for what it's like to fly an airplane. The instructor will let you take the controls and experience the aircraft for yourself. If you decide to pursue a Private Pilot License in Canada, you can use this time towards your training. This is typically offered at a rate that is well-below the hourly rental for the plane so it's worth taking as many discovery flights as possible.
2. Sign up for ground school
You will need some supplies for this. A notebook, flight computer, and usually some text books. Most flight schools offer a complete ground school kit for a fixed price with the tuition. This course usually runs for a few months and you can choose either weekday evenings or weekends.
3. Start flying!
Choose an instructor. If you don't connect with the first, try another. You don't have to use any one instructor for your training. You will have to build up several hours before you can fly alone and this first while will be just developing basic skills.
There are several small things you will have to do along the way such as a medical exam, radio operators certificate and test before you fly solo. These are easy, just take them one at a time.
4. Final written and flight exams
Before you get your Private Pilot License in Canada, you need to complete both a written and a practical (flight) exam. You will do practice exams for both with your instructor so don't worry. A good instructor will never let you go to your final test unprepared.
This is of course, an over-simplified explanation of how to get a Private Pilot License in Canada. It really isn't that hard though. I did mine over two years with a full-time job to spread the cost out and didn't have much trouble. For more information on how to get a Private Pilot License in Canada, go talk to somebody at your local flight school. Not quite bold enough to start flying real planes yet? You can have almost as much fun with RC planes!