The first step if to get out to a club and book an intro flight. This allows you to see if you are comfortable in the smaller planes and if the training really interest you. From here you can book some flights with an instructor and get your training started. The next big step will be to solo. To get ready for that you will have to get a medical certificate, pass your PSTAR and Radio operator test. Both test can be written at the club whenever you are ready. There is lots of material to help you study for these online or in apps.
Funding is available the same way as it would be for students taking post secondary courses. The PPL does not qualify for funding but once you start your commercial training more options are available. Many aviation groups offer scholarships or grants to use towards your training. The government of Alberta and Canada do offer loans and grants for commercial students. Up to 60,000$.
There are many more options than just flying for airlines. Here are some of them: regional airlines, cargo, business or corporate flying, government, law enforcement, military, fire fighting, tours, float plane pilot and test pilots.
No. You can do your ground school at any time during training. You will learn things in ground school that will help with your flying. Getting some flying done will also help to understand what you learn in ground school. Once you complete your ground school write your Transport Canada exam. Your flight test and written exam must be completed within a year of each other.
This permit allows you to fly solo under supervision of an instructor for training purposes only in day VFR conditions. No passengers may be carried. To obtain one you must pass your PSTAR and Radio Operator test, hold a class 1 or 3 medical and get signed off by your instructor and Chief Flight Instructor. You must also bring your passport or valid government ID if you do not have a passport with you the day you will be receiving it. You will determine what day that is with your instructor.
To get your student permit and later your Private Pilot Permit you will have to obtain a medical certificate. For your PPL you require a category 3 medical. For your Commercial Pilot Licence, you require a category 1 medical. Many students opt to get their category 1 right away to ensure they can hold a category 1 medical if they are planning on continuing their training past PPL. The doctor will be checking that nothing will prevent you from flying an aircraft safely. All the qualified aviation medical examiners can be found on the Transport Canada website. free to call Dispatch if you have more questions.

For more information about medical requirements, see our Aviation Medical Exam page with an article written by Dr. Brendan Adams.

The PSTAR, originally standing for Pre-Solo Test of Air Regulations but now called Student Pilot Permit or Private Pilot Licence for Foreign and Military Applicants, Aviation Regulation Examination, is a written examination that a student studying for their Private Pilot Licence in Canada must pass before being awarded their Student Pilot Permit. All students must achieve a pass mark of 90% before commencing their first solo flight.

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Visual Flight Rules (VFR) are a set of regulations under which a pilot operates an aircraft in weather conditions generally clear enough to allow the pilot to see where the aircraft is going. Specifically, the weather must be better than basic VFR weather minima, i.e. in visual meteorological conditions (VMC), as specified in the rules of the relevant aviation authority. The pilot must be able to operate the aircraft with visual reference to the ground, and by visually avoiding obstructions and other aircraft.

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As in any industry, aviation employment is dependent on many factors.  The most important one is YOU!  Like any career, the greater the network of contacts you build, the more doors will open for you.  During your training at the Club you’ll be exposed to people from every facet of aviation – first impressions count and your effort, attitude and skill will be noticed.

The economy plays a role as well.  Today the industry is gaining momentum, many manufacturers and journalists are again forecasting a shortage of pilots.  Back in 2006 the market was red hot, pilots with less than 500 hours were finding work in turbo-props and light jets.  A year later, airlines were furloughing pilots and new graduates had difficulty finding work.

So is there a good time to get a commercial license?  Yes, the ideal time is: when you decide that this is the career for you and you plan to commit the time and effort to earn the license.  The industry will always be in flux, so graduates with their license completed will always be a step ahead of candidates who wait “until the time is right.”

We’ll spend about one hour with you, 30 minutes or more will be actual flight time.  Once in the plane, you will see how we taxi the aircraft to the end of the runway (you steer with your feet!).  The instructor will go through the various pre-flight checks, talk to ATC, and then you’re off on a flight around some of the most spectacular scenery in Alberta.  Once we have left the Springbank Airport control area, your instructor will introduce you to basic flying maneuvers – Straight and Level Flight, Turning, Climbing and Descending. For the remainder of the flight you will take the controls and fly the airplane, earning your first minutes of flight time towards your PPL.

As we said, your introductory flight counts as time toward your Private Pilot License, so after the flight we’ll provide you with all the information you need to log the flight if you decide to pursue training.  But it’s not all work – remember to bring your camera to capture the scenery and yourself at the controls!

For more information or to book a flight, please Contact Us.  Price for intro flight can be found on our Rates page.

This is probably our most-asked question, but the answer is based on you.  If you have the time set aside to fly and study you could complete a license in two or three months.  The closer together your flights are, the faster your learning will progress and you’ll spend less time reviewing previous lessons.  Ideally, two or three flights per week will keep your skills sharp and it would take about six months to a year to earn a license (the average is just under one year).  Staying on top of homework and reviewing flight training exercises before each flight will ensure your training goes smoothly.

Cost is closely related to the amount of time you commit to training.  Keeping flights close together results in fewer review flights and will reduce the number of hours required to complete your training.  Transport Canada requires that private pilots complete 45 hours of flight training, but 60-80 hours is typical.  The average cost to complete a private pilot license is $15 – 20,000.  Check out our Rates page for more information.

Basically the doctor will ensure that nothing will prevent you from flying safely.  You don’t need to be in perfect health but you should have good vision and hearing, a healthy heart, and you should be able to operate an aircraft’s flight controls.  We recommend that you see an Aviation Medical Examiner before you start training to ensure nothing will disqualify you.

For more information about medical requirements, see our Aviation Medical Exam page with an article written by Dr. Brendan Adams.