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Commercial Pilot License Eligible - Total 250 hours of flying, to be for a CPL

Tuesday , Posted by AME at 5:16 AM

Flying aircrafts: A Costly Process

    Where eagles dare:Aspirants have to fly for a minimum of 190 hours, which must include 150 hours solo, 25 hours cross country, 10 hours instrument flying and five hours of night flying, as part of the total 250 hours of flying, to be eligible for a commercial pilot licence.

Having ambition and setting goals in life helps us move in a particular direction and prosper when we are able to achieve those goals. But ambition must be within a set limit. For without considering your time, resources and capabilities, ambition only becomes a fantasy.

For many young people becoming a pilot is their pet dream and ambition. Becoming a pilot is no easy task. It is as tough as clearing the civil services examination or clearing CAT and involves very high costs. Not all parents may be able to afford such heavy fees and other costs involved. Though one may get a bank loan, the repayment may become a burden if one does not land a job immediately after completing the course.

Getting a commercial Pilot Licence is long drawn process and may take anywhere between three to four years before one is eligible for it.

First you have to get a SPL - Student Pilot License.
You will have to pass a theory exam in Air Regulations, Aviation Meteorology, Air Navigation and Air Technical. Take the PABT – Pilot Aptitude and Battery Test.
Eligibility is Class X with minimum age of 16 years. A medical fitness test also has to be undergone. Then you have to obtain a PPL – Private Pilot licence. This involves logging in 60 hours of flying, including dual flying (instructor led), minimum 20 hours solo and 5 hours cross country. Eligibility is 10+2, medical fitness and clearing the Air Regulations, Aviation Meteorology, Air Navigation, Aircraft Engines and Seamanship theory subjects.

Finally, you have to get the CPL (Commercial Pilot License) to be able to fly cargo and passenger aircraft. For this, one has to fly for a minimum of 190 hours (which must include 150 hours solo, 25 hours cross country, 10 hours instrument flying and five hours of night flying) so as to have a total of 250 hours as per regulation. It should include circuit landing, general flying, instrument flying, cross countries, day /night flying and skill tests.

One must also pass examination in subjects - Regulations, Air Navigation, Air Meteorology, Aircraft and Engines and Radio Telephony. The candidate must also have a medical fitness certificate.

After that to be eligible to fly any aircraft the candidate has to get Air Transport Pilot License (ATPL). Only then the candidate will be eligible to start his/her career as a co-pilot. After about 10 years, one can aspire to be a commander.

Each hour of flying during PPL may cost anywhere between Rs. 1500 – Rs. 2000. CPL hourly rate can be as high as Rs. 4000 per hour. Apart from this there will be examination fees and other costs.

The flying academy will have its own admission charges and fees.

Overall you may have to spend Rs. 30,00,000 in India or more than Rs. 50,000,00 abroad to become a full fledged pilot. Depending on the flying school or club you may be able to finish the course in about three- four years time.

There are only a few top rated flying clubs/schools in India. They operate on a first come –first serve basis for allotting aircraft for students. There is a shortage of instructors. Priority is given to foreign students as they pay hefty fees in foreign currency. So getting through the allotted hours may be delayed.

Considering all these factors, now think if it is worth your time and money to get a CPL and become a pilot.
Some of the Flying Schools are:


Andhra Pradesh Flying Club, Begumpet Airport, Hyderabad

Carver Aviation, Belgaum.

Coimbatore Flying Club, Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu



Flytech Aviation Academy, Secunderabad, AP.

Government Aviation Training Institute, Bhubaneshwar

Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Uran Academy, Raibarelly, UP

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