What is involved in learning to fly at KCAC?
Learning to fly requires study and practice, and most eager students can fulfill their dream of flight. The
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires a minimum of 40 hours of training (20 hours with an instructor, 10 solo hours and 10 additional flight training hours) to earn a private pilot certificate, but plan on 50-60 hours to perfect your skills and confidence.
Everyone learns at a different pace and the number of times you fly in a given week is a big factor in
determining that pace. You'll learn quicker if you fly every day because you won't have to "relearn" what
you "forgot" between lessons. If you fly every day, you could possibly earn your certificate in about a
month. If you can only fly 2-3 times per week, it may take you six months to earn your private pilot’s
When will I actually begin flying?
You'll be flying on your first lesson, with your Certified Flight Instructor’s (CFI) help, of course. With each
lesson, your CFI will assist you less and less until you reach a point of self-reliance. When you reach this
point, you will make your first solo flight, an important milestone in every pilot's training. After you solo,
you and your CFI will work on such things as flying cross-country. And when you're ready, you'll make
several solo cross-country flights. When you have the ability to consistently demonstrate all of the FAA required
skills, your instructor will recommend you for the FAA checkride.
What is it and how long does it last?
Completion of ground school is not a requirement to begin flight training. Ground school is simply time
spent with an instructor to discuss theories and regulations involved with flying an aircraft. This time can
be in a traditional classroom environment with other students or it can be one-on-one with your instructor
– the choice is yours.
How long does a lesson last?
Most lessons are based on a 1.5 hour flight, but they may take 2 hours from start to finish because there's
more to it than flying. There are pre- and post-flight discussions, where you and your CFI talk about what
you're going to do, how you did, what you did well, what needs work, and what you'll do on your next
What about a medical exam?
If you have a valid driver’s license, then you will probably have no problem passing a 3rd Class medical
exam. You must get it from a FAA approved doctor called an Aviation Medical Examiner (AME). There
are approximately 6,000 AME's in the United States, and KCAC can connect you with a local AME. You
don’t need your medical exam to begin flight training, but you will need your student/medical certificate
before you can fly an airplane solo.
What if I wear contact lenses or glasses?
You can wear glasses or contact lenses so long as your vision is corrected to 20/30 or better; and you must
be able to see red and green. You should be able to hear a whispered voice from 3 feet. If you do have a
problem, it's not the end of your flying career. Depending on the problem, your medical certificate will be
deferred until further testing is done. Your AME will be able to help you in such cases, and if you and your
AME can prove to the FAA that your condition will not make you unsafe to pilot an airplane, there's a good
chance you'll get your medical.
When I get my Private Pilot Certificate,
what can I do with it?
This is a question you should, perhaps, answer before you start learning to fly because it may have some
bearing on the training you need. Flying offers a wealth of opportunities from which to choose. First, there
is the obvious; you can make local sightseeing flights with friends and family on sunny afternoons. You
can also travel to more distant airports for visits or business. If you would like to fly in the clouds or on
overcast days, then KCAC can provide you with training towards an Instrument Rating.
What are the requirements to rent an aircraft?
You will need to fill out a renter application (including credit card information) and KCAC will make a
copy of your driver’s license, pilot’s license, current medical certificate and flight review endorsement (if
applicable.) We require renter pilots to complete an initial checkout in each make and model of aircraft
you wish to fly. The checkout includes a worksheet covering the P.O.H. and at least one flight with a
KCAC-approved flight instructor. Furthermore, we require an annual checkout in the most complex
aircraft you want to fly. Please review the KCAC Flight Academy Rental Procedures and Flight Rules for