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Commercial Pilot Course

The commercial pilot certificate allows you to fly passengers, cargo, or the aircraft itself for hire. Certain flying operations may have their own additional requirements, but they all require the commercial pilot certificate. The commercial pilot certificate will give you a greater appreciation for your aircraft, its systems, and handling.

The career opportunities for a commercial pilot are diverse.  Some examples of roles you can be paid to perform along during your aviation career are:

Cargo Pilot
Agricultural/Crop Duster Pilot
Banner Tow Pilot
Sky Dive Pilot
Pipeline/Wildlife Patrol Pilot
Corporate/Charter Pilot
Airline Pilot

The first step in pursuing any of these exciting positions is to earn you Commercial Pilot Certificate!

“M​an must rise above the Earth, to the top of the atmosphere and beyond, for only thus will he fully understand the world in which he lives." – Socrates​

FAA Certification Requirements

•Must be at least 18 years of age
•Hold a current private pilot certificate
•Be able to read, write, and understand English
•Hold a current 2nd class medical or greater
•Accumulate 250 hours of flight time
•Accumulate 100 hours of pilot-in-command time
•Accumulate 20 hours of flight training
•Pass the FAA knowledge test and practical test

Typical Cost to Earn Commercial Certificate

Total Program Cost Maneuvers Training Only


Total Program Cost w/ Time Building


20 hours flight training with an instructor-$4,100

20 x $150/hr aircraft rental + 20 x $55/hr flight instruction

10 hours Ground instruction-$550

10 x $55/hr ground instruction

130 hours Solo or shared cost time-building-$19,500 ($9,750 if shared)

130 x $150/hr aircraft rental (divided by 2 if sharing cost with another student)

Designated Practical Examiner's (DPE) Fee-$800

Payable to the FAA representative during your checkride.

What to Expect in the Course

In order to gain the extensive number of hours necessary to qualify for this certificate, a significant amount of time will be spent outside the course flying cross-country with no instruction given. Once in the course, you will receive structured classroom and flight training, broken up into 3 stages, each with different core objectives. The following are partial lists of what to expect in each stage:

Stage 1

Commercial pilot regulations

Advanced maneuvers

Flying by reference to only instruments


Stage 2

Advanced aircraft systems

Flying complex aircraft

Cross-country flying

Flying at night

Stage 3

Further develop flying skills

Build knowledge in all subject matter areas

Pass the FAA knowledge test

Demonstrate proficiency during an end-of-course check

Core Objective: Develop proficiency in advanced maneuvers and scenarios. 

Core Objective: Receive endorsement to operate complex aircraft as pilot-in-command and complete required cross-country flights.

Core Objective: Pass the Commercial Pilot practical test

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