Student Pilot Certificate - How To Get One & What You Can Do with It

Student Pilot Certificate — What You Can Do & How To Get One

Have you been toying with the idea of learning to fly a plane or helicopter? Maybe you’re thinking it could be the career move for you….

Before you can take to the skies, though, you need to be well grounded in:

  • Basic requirements to be a flight student and pilot
  • How to get your student pilot certificate
  • What you can and can’t do with a student pilot license

Hope you’re ready for takeoff because here we go!

Requirements for Eligibility

If you want to know how to obtain a student pilot certificate, it all starts with understanding and meeting the eligibility requirements.

Not everyone who wants to learn to operate an airplane or helicopter can. And there are very good reasons for this. Minimum standards help to ensure that only those who are capable and responsible enough to operate these vehicles are in the pilot’s seat.

So, what’s it take to get a student pilot certificate?

FAA Student Pilot Certificate Requirements & FAQs

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is the governing body that dictates the rules of the “road” for becoming a pilot. Here’s what they have to say on the matter.

To get your student pilot certificate, you must be:

  • At least 16 years old
  • Able to read, speak, and understand English

You should also know that:

  • Your Student Pilot Certificate is your student pilot license
  • You don’t need a student pilot certificate to take flying lessons
  • Your student pilot certificate doesn’t expire (It gets replaced by higher-level certifications.)

How to Get Student Pilot Certificates

You have to apply for a student pilot certificate. Applications can be taken by a variety of authorized channels but ultimately go through the Airmen Certification Branch.

If approved, it usually takes a few weeks to get your certificate in the mail. It’s often recommended to start the application process early so that you have the certificate in hand to continue your training without delay.

There may or may not be an application fee — it depends on the route you take to submit your application.

LET US HELP YOU!

How to Get Student Pilot Certificates

You have to apply for a student pilot certificate. Applications can be taken by a variety of authorized channels but ultimately go through the Airmen Certification Branch.

If approved, it usually takes a few weeks to get your certificate in the mail. It’s often recommended to start the application process early so that you have the certificate in hand to continue your training without delay.

There may or may not be an application fee — it depends on the route you take to submit your application.

how to obtain a student pilot certificate

What Can You Do With a Student Pilot Certificate?

Fly solo!

This is a big deal — and probably one of the most exciting steps on your aviation journey. Plus, no flight training program is complete without testing and honing your skills with soloing.

Soloing

You need the student pilot certificate (and a medical certificate) before you can fly without a flight instructor onboard.

If you’re working towards a private or commercial pilot’s license, you’ll need to accrue plenty of flight time to qualify. But, even if your intention is to be a hobbyist pilot, having your student pilot certificate and being able to solo opens up a whole new world of fun, freedom, and adventure.

Regardless of your end goal, soloing affords you the opportunity to learn in a new and different way, perhaps accelerating your progress towards the next certification.

Got Endorsements?

The more you fly, the more endorsements you’ll earn. With the accumulation of certain additional endorsements, you’ll be able to expand your flight privileges. For instance, you might be allowed to fly greater distances, at higher altitudes, or in and out of more airfields.

And this is the perfect segue to barrel rolling into the limitations of a student pilot license.

What Can’t You Do as a Student Pilot?

At this stage, you’re still learning how to handle a plane or helicopter. So there are some restrictions on what you’re allowed to do while flying with a student pilot certificate.

Among the things student pilots are prohibited from doing are:

  • Being the designated pilot in command or a co-pilot
  • Carrying passengers
  • Piloting models of aircraft for which you aren’t endorsed
  • Flying into, out of, or too far from airports without proper endorsements
  • Flying for hire
  • Attaining too great an altitude for your endorsement level
  • Flying internationally
  • Flying out side of the visual flight rules (VFR)
  • Renting an aircraft

Additionally, you’re still required to conduct yourself in accordance with any limitations placed on you by your certified flight instructor.

But remember — even with just a student pilot license, your privileges grow as you gain skill and experience. With every new endorsement in your logbook you’ll be able to spread your wings even more!

how to get student pilot certificate

Get Your Student Pilot Certificate with Precision Aviation

For the best and easiest path to piloting, people from around the world choose Precision Aviation. As a student pilot at our acclaimed flight schools in Newberg, Oregon, and Klamath Falls, Oregon, you’ll benefit from personalized training, expert instructors, and the chance to fly the latest fixed-wing and rotary aircraft.

To learn more about our aviation programs — which are replete with exciting flying lessons and other real-world flight training for students of all levels — contact us today.