FAQs


Am I eligible for a pilot certificate?

To be eligible for a pilot certificate, you must be able to read, write, speak and understand the English language. To be eligible for a Student Pilot Certificate, which allows you to solo, you must be at least 16. To be eligible for a Private Pilot Certificate, you must be at least 17. To be eligible for a Commercial Pilot Certificate, which allows you to be paid for flying, you must be at least 18. You must also be at least 18 to become a Certified Flight Instructor

You must hold at least a 3rd class  FAA medical certificate, which is issued by an Aviation Medical Examiners (AME).  There is an AME office one block from the airport  which performs a basic hearing, eye exam and blood pressure check and can issue your medical certificate on site.


Do I need to learn how to fly airplanes before moving on to helicopters?

Not at all. Helicopters and airplanes fly using different principles and controls. Although the general aviation knowledge you acquire while flying airplanes will prove useful in your helicopter training, some fixed-wing habits actually make learning to fly helicopters more difficult.


Why do you train in Robinson helicopters?

Robinson helicopters are fast, cost-effective and extremely reliable — traits that have made Robinson the most popular training helicopters in the world. Most professional pilots start their careers as flight instructors. By training in Robinson helicopters you open yourself to the largest number of potential employers. Because of their versatility and low operating costs, Robinson helicopters are an extremely popular choice with private owners too.


What is a Part 61 school?

Part 61 training is proven to be more cost-effective for students. A part 61 program has lower hour requirements than the equivalent 141 program. We strive to offer the highest standards of training at the best possible value.

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How is your ground school conducted?

Our ground school is conducted one-on-one between you and your instructor. This way students are able to learn at their own pace and receive their instructors’ undivided attention. Like our flight training, our ground training is scheduled entirely at the student’s convenience. Free test prep software is provided so the students will pass the FAA knowledge exams quickly and easily.


How often can I train?

As often as you’d like and at your convenience. During your training, we recommend that you fly at least three times per week, though again, this is up to you.


Do you conduct check rides at the Long Beach airport?

Yes, the Pilot Examiner is located on the airport. You will have the advantage of being able to take their FAA practical exams in familiar airspace, without incurring any travel expenses.


Can I finance my training?

No, due to the financial crash several years ago it is extremely difficult to obtain a career training loan. Nearly all students choose to pay with cash, personal check or credit cards which offer lower financing options and rewards.


Why is helicopter training more expensive than airplane training?

Helicopters are substantially more complex than airplanes and require specialized maintenance. They are inherently more expensive to acquire, maintain and insure. Robinson helicopters are the most cost-effective helicopters available for training.


Are there hidden costs?

No.  All of your costs will be explained to you prior to beginning your training to ensure there are no surprises and you are financially able to reach your goal.


Can you work around my busy schedule?

We offer flexibility with your schedule, open 7 days a week, one-on-one training, pay as you go training and no contracts required.  It is strongly recommended that students fly two to three times per week in order to progress at the highest level.


What is the current job market like for helicopter pilots?

Now is an excellent time to become a helicopter pilot. Demand for pilots continues to increase as more and more Vietnam-era pilots retire.  This group is not being replaced by younger military pilots. Since 1995, the number of active civilian helicopter pilots (Commercial and ATP) has declined, while the amount of helicopters has increased.  Also due to the lack of available career training loans and financing less and less of those interested in becoming pilots can afford the training, thus contributing to the world wide shortage of helicopter pilots.


Where will I train and where can I fly on my own?

You will be flying out of the Long Beach airport, a very busy Class Delta airport in Southern California, just 20 miles south of  downtown Los Angeles.  During your training you will fly all over the LA basin and throughout Orange County.  You will learn how to navigate from Newport Beach to Malibu and throughout the LA Basin.  The entire coastline and LA basin is covered with controlled and uncontrolled airspace.  A typical cross country training flight will involve talking to four different towers and making 10 self announced radio calls while in uncontrolled airspace.  We will train you to be comfortable and confident by yourself over downtown Los Angeles while communicating with the LAPD, LA Sheriff, News, EMS and other helicopter traffic.   Flying in Los Angeles is demanding and you will be a better pilot for doing it, guaranteed!

Once you are signed off to solo you can fly all over Orange County and Los Angeles as long as your instructor has flown the route with you.  Once you receive your private pilot certificate you may rent a helicopter and fly anywhere you want…even Catalina Island.


How do I get started?

The best way to get started is to call to discuss the training options that are right for you.  Then schedule a demo flight, come out to the airport and go flying…


I have a DUI.  Can I still be a pilot?

Yes!  Everyone makes mistakes.  A DUI means nothing in the world of a private pilot or a foreign pilot returning to their home country.  It can, however factor in when applying for a commercial pilot job with a major airline or tour company and other part 135 operators.   Good news is that all DUI’s will eventually be removed from your record and unable to be seen by the average background check.  We have extensive experience assisting fellow pilots clearing their record, expunging arrests and clearing DMV records.


 

Do you accept the GI Bill?

Sorry, we do not participate in this program.  Feel free to give us a call and we can recommend some quality schools in the Western US.

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