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Illinois Flight Schools Selection Process
Use the form below to filter your Illinois Flight Schools based on the options that are important to you.
Filter Flight Schools
Part 141 Training
Does this school offer Part 141 training? Part 141 is a section of the Federal Aviation Regulations that provide additional oversight by the FAA. Typically Part 141 schools are more structured, more professional, and provide additional services that a Part 61 flight school may not. Because of this, the FAA allows pilots to obtain their certificates/ratings with lower hourly requirements. However, a part 141 program does require stage checks. This type of learning environment is better for some, but is not necessarily right for everyone.
Part 141 Training:
Private - Part 61
Does this school offer Private Pilot training under FAR Part 61. Part 61 training is the section of the Federal Aviation Regulations that details the training requirements to obtain a pilot certificate or rating. Part 61 schools may be large professional institutions, or they may be a single instructor operating on their own. It is important that a prospective student look into how a part 61 flight school operates.
Private - Part 61:
Does this school offer training for your Instrument Rating? If you want to legally fly in the clouds, certain airspace, and avoid travel delays, you'll need an Instrument Rating. An Instrument Rating allows a pilot to fly in Instrument Meteorological Conditions. IMC definitions vary based on airspace, but typically are defined as visibility less than 3 statue miles and a cloud ceiling of less than 1000ft.
Commercial Pilot Certificate
Does this school offer training towards a Commercial Pilot Certificate? It is required to receive compensation for flying. Allows you to pursue a professional career as a pilot.
Commercial Pilot Certificate:
Does this school offer Multi-Engine Rating training? It is required to fly any aircraft with more than one engine.
Required to fly rotorcraft category aircraft (helicopters and gyrocopters).
Certified Flight Instructor
This certificate is required to act as an instructor and legally provide flight training, endorsements, and recommendations for pilots.
Certified Flight Instructor:
Certified Flight Instructor Instrument
Required to instruct individuals for their instrument rating or to conduct Instrument Proficiency Checks.
Certified Flight Instructor Instrument:
Certified Flight Instructor Multi-Engine
Required to provide flight training in Multi-Engine aircraft.
Certified Flight Instructor Multi-Engine:
Certified Flight Instructor Sport
This flight school offers the required training to become a flight instructor to conduct Sport Pilot training.
Certified Flight Instructor Sport:
Requires half the flight training hours of a private pilot certificate and you do not require a medical exam. However, you are limited to Light-Sport aircraft that can not exceed 120 knots, may not carry more than 1 passenger, must be single engine, and may not have a retractable landing gear. Other limitations apply. Please refer to the Federal Aviation Regulations.
The recreational pilot certificate requires less training and offers fewer privileges than the private certificate. It was originally created for flying small single-engine planes, and has since been largely supplanted by the Sport Pilot certificate. It is significantly more restrictive than a private pilot certificate. The holder is restricted to 50 nautical miles from his/her field of departure and from operating in the vicinity of airports with a control tower, though these restrictions can be lifted with additional training and endorsements.
Recreational Pilot :
Required to operate glider category aircraft
Float Rating (ASES, AMES)
Required to operate an aircraft on floats.
Float Rating (ASES, AMES):
Lighter-Than-Air: Airship Class
Required training towards an Airship Class LTA rating.
Lighter-Than-Air: Airship Class:
Lighter-Than-Air: Balloon Class
Required Rating to operate Balloon Class LTA's
Lighter-Than-Air: Balloon Class:
Group Training Programs
1 on 1
One on one lessons with an instructor
1 on 1:
One instructor to many students in ground school.
Additional seminars on various topics such as airplane maintanence, checkrides, glass cockpit training...etc.
Home Study Ground School
Does this school offer a ground school option that allows the student to study at home? These courses typically will use a combination of books, CDs, and DVDs. They have the advantage of often being less expensive than a traditional classroom course and can be learned at a students own pace. The disadvantage is that even though an instructor may be able to review your progress online. They are not physically there to answer any questions that you may have.
Home Study Ground School:
Online Home Study Ground School
Similar to most home study courses, the online CBT (Computer Based Training) can be done from any device that is connected to the internet. This gives the student even more flexibility into when and where they study.
Online Home Study Ground School:
Staff and Amenities
Designated Pilot Examiner on Staff
Does the flight school have an examiner on staff. A DPE is an individual that is authorized by the FAA to provide practical exam check-rides (this is the flight test required at the end of your training to receive your certificate or rating). It is almost never a bad thing to have an "in house" examiner that you can ask questions and get to know prior to your exam.
Designated Pilot Examiner on Staff:
A dispatcher is an individual that provides scheduling, payment processing, oversight, and other miscellaneous administrative duties at a flight school.
Can you schedule instruction or aircraft online without having to contact the flight school or your instructor directly
Simulator on Site
Is there an FAA approved simulator on site that can be used to log flight training or to maintain pilot currency requirements
Simulator on Site:
Computerized Testing On Site
Most pilot certificates require you to pass a knowledge exam (often referred to as a "written exam"). These tests are administered using a computer based system at FAA approved locations.
Computerized Testing On Site:
Does this school offer WiFi access for its students and customers.
Does the flight school have a Pilot Shop to purchase things such as headsets, books, checklists, sectional charts...
Is there a place for pilots and students to lounge and relax in.
Is local lodging available or nearby for displaced students.
Training At Your Home Airport
Does the flight school provide the service of sending an aircraft and/or an instructor to your local airport to train you?
Training At Your Home Airport:
Line Service Available
Line service is a term used to describe individuals who are responsible for looking after the fleet of aircraft between flights. They will typically provide fueling, cleaning, preventative maintenance, and other services that are often over-looked till you find yourself at a location that does not provide them. These individuals are almost always a luxury to have around!
Line Service Available:
Maintain their own fleet
Does the flight school maintain their own aircraft.
Maintain their own fleet:
Does the flight school contract out their aircraft maintenance.
Is the flight school also a dealer for any type of aircraft.
Does this flight school offer space within their hangars to store your aircraft.
Operates as a flying club where members usually are required to pay monthly or yearly dues to gain access and discounts on renting their aircraft.
Renter's Insurance Required
Is the student required to carry their own insurance policy as a renter or student?
Renter's Insurance Required:
Does the flight school offer pre-pay benefits like credits when paying in advance. This is typically a % bonus added onto down payments that you make or a 'block rate' when you purchase a number of hours in advance.
VA Benefits Accepted
Students who are active duty, reservist, national guard, veteran or veteran’s dependent (spouse, child) may receive up to 60% of their flight training paid for by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
VA Benefits Accepted:
Does the flight school offer financial aid to students.
Do they accept Visa cards
Do they accept Mastercard
Do they accept American Express
Do they accept Discover credit cards
Do they accept Checks
Do they accept Cash? It may seem incredible, but yes there are flight schools that do not accept cash. For example some university training programs will not take cash on the spot.
Students and Careers
Accept Foreign M-1 Visa Applicants
Does the school sponsor foreign students looking to train under an M-1 Visa.
Accept Foreign M-1 Visa Applicants:
Affiliation with a College/University
Is the flight school affiliated with a college or university? Can your flight training count for college credits?
Affiliation with a College/University:
Is there a bridge program for career oriented student pilots. Bridge programs are in place with typically airlines or charter services that provide an easy and likely route into being a professional pilot.
Disabled Pilot Training
Training specifically designed for the physically disabled individual. With this training an individual who has a physical disability can receive a Statement of Demonstrated Ability (SoDA) from the Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) and are eligible to become a certificated pilot. Typically special flight controls are needed inside the cockpit.
Disabled Pilot Training:
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Boraam Aviation Inc.
Bradley Flying Assoc.
Bresson Flying Service Inc.
Cardinal Aircraft Service, Inc.
Central Air Services, Inc.
Central Illinois Air Corp.
Chicago Business Air Center
Chicago Executive Flight School
Chicago Midway Aviators
Chicago Premier Flight Training
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Dacy Flight School
DeKalb Taylor Municipal
Dwight Aero Service
Easy Flight Powered Parachutes
Elite Aviation Training
Erie Air Park
Flight World LTD
Fox Flying Club
Freeport Flite Center
Galt Airport, L. L. C.
Glass Simulator Center
Great River Aviation, LLC
Illinois Aviation Academy
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