If you are an international student and want to study aviation in the United States, We welcome you. There are many career paths available to you,including that of a commercial airline pilot. Working as a commercial airline pilot is a fascinating and rewarding career, and many people who study aviation intend eventually to become an Air Transport Pilot (ATP). There are several steps ahead of you to attain this rating and we will guide you.
Certificates and Ratings
In order to become a commercial airline pilot (ATP), there are several certificates and ratings that you will need. Your Private Pilots License (PPL)is your first step as the PPL will allow you to fly on your own under Visual Flight Rules.
Commercial pilot certificate
Next, you will need a commercial pilot certificate, which allows you to receive payment for your flight services. You earn this certificate by passing commercial pilot ground school and logging at least 250 flight hours, with allotted time dedicated to certain conditions and maneuvers. After you have passed your written ground school test and logged your hours, you will be required to pass a check-ride. This is a lot like the driving test required in order to receive a driver’s license. During the check-ride, a Federal Aviation Administration Designated Pilot Examiner will ask you to plan a flight, quiz you on aviation matters, and then accompany you on a flight. You will be asked to execute certain maneuvers and your examiner will direct your flying throughout the flight. After the test, if everything goes well, you will have earned your commercial pilot’s certificate.
Additionally, in order to become a commercial airline pilot, you will need an up-to-date first- or second-class medical certificate. To receive this, an Aviation Medical Examiner will need to verify that you meet the health and fitness requirements to be a pilot. Upon request, Pilot Training America will connect you with qualified physicians who will perform these examinations.
You will also need to earn an instrument rating in order to fly in Instrument (IFR) conditions. You receive this rating by passing instrument ground school, logging a specified number of instrument flight hours, and passing an instrument rating check-ride.
Next, you will need a multi-engine rating. This will allow you to fly airplanes with multiple engines, which is most likely what you will fly as a commercial airline pilot. To receive this rating, you will take some lessons, show proficiency and pass a multi-engine check-ride.
Airline Transport Pilot Certificate
At one point or another, most commercial pilots earn their Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) certificate. This is the highest pilot certificate available in the United States and allows you to be the pilot in commend (captain) of a passenger airlines. For this certificate, you will pass a written test, have a first-class medical certificate, be a high school graduate, and have logged 1,500 flight hours, including 250 hours as the pilot in command