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Joe Echo-Hawk CFII, MEI, AGI, IGI

Flight Training To-Do List

Private Pilot

The object of this article is to give you some help organizing your flight training from the very beginning. For the sake of this discussion, let's assume that you have already chosen your flight school, set aside your finances for the training, and made time in your schedule for the flying and studying. Now what?

1. Get your medical and student pilot certificate.

- Find an Aviation Medical Examiner

- Research ANY and ALL medications that you are taking. Asthma, migraines, sleep apnea, and many other common ailments can cause major delays on obtaining a medical certificate. Do your research and start the medical process as early as possible so that any delays do not set your flight training back. (You can't solo without a medical and student pilot certificate.)

- Click here to read more on medicals.

2. Buy your books and start reading them. Here are the books I use with my clients.

ASA's Complete Private Pilot, Knowledge Test Prep, Visualized Flight Maneuvers Handbook (high-wing for those of you in Cessnas and low-wing for the Piper folks) , Current FAR/AIM, and the Oral Exam Guide. Start by reading the Complete Private Pilot and at the end of each chapter read the corresponding chapter in the Knowledge Test Prep book.

Click here for a link to the ASA website where you can find all of the above listed books.

3. Show up to your first lesson with a U.S. Passport or Birth Certificate so your instructor can endorse your logbook properly.

4. Start flying!

5. Obtain airplane renters insurance before you begin to solo. For Twin Oaks renters, $20,000 hull for a Cessna 150, and a minimum of $40,000 hull for a Cessna 172, although $60,000 is preferred. Remember, you are liable for the airplane and the 172's at Twin Oaks are worth more than $40,000.

- Avemco Renters Insurance

- AOPA Renters Insurance

- Regal Aviation Insurance

6. Pass that written exam that you started studying for in step 2.

7. Complete your minimum flight requirements for obtaining your license.

8. Prepare for your flight exam by using the standards set forth in the PTS (Practical Test Standards).

9. Take that checkride!



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