Helicopter Private Pilot Course
Obtaining your helicopter license is really rewarding. With a helicopter private pilot license you are able to fly the helicopter as pilot-in-command. The helicopter private pilot course is intended as the starting point for new pilots that want to start flying as a career or for people that want to fly as a hobby or for personal business.
Standard Helicopter Private Pilot Rating / Initial Private Helicopter Rating
Our standard Private Pilot course is 60 hours in length. This course for pilots that do no have a helicopter rating in another category or class of aircraft. The regulatory minimum is 40 hours. However, the national average for a person with no previous training is much higher. The additional 20 hours allows for the student to be adequately prepared to fly the helicopter safely. We have broken down the cost of the course with two options, fixed price and pay-as-you-go. Other pricing options, such as block rates and member rates, are included on on our pricing page.
Private Initial – Standard Program Length: 60 hours
Private Initial – Fixed Price: $24,170.00 (60 x $402.00)
Private Initial – Pay-As-You-Go: $31,950.00 (75 x $426.00) see note 1
Standard Helicopter Private Pilot Add On Rating
This Helicopter Private add on program is for a pilot that already has an existing private rating or higher for fixed wing airplane or rotorcraft gyrocopter and they want to add a private helicopter rating rating to their certificate. The program standard length is 40 hours. The regulatory minimum is 30, but the additional hours provides adequate time to develop a safe helicopter pilot. We have broken down the cost of the course with two options, fixed price and pay-as-you-go. Other pricing options, such as block rates and member rates, are included on on our pricing page.
Private Add On – Standard Program Length: 40 hours
Private Add On – Fixed Price: $16,080.00 (40 x $402.00)
Private Add On – Pay-As-You-Go: $21,300.00 (50 x $426.00) see note 1
Note 1: We have found that when students opt for the pay-as-you go, they generally take longer to complete the required training.
For those pilots that are interested in flying helicopters for a career, please review our Professional Helicopter Pilot Program.
Eligibility Requirements for the Helicopter Private Pilot rating
The following items are a summary of the eligibility requirements listed in 14 CFR Part 61.103 for obtaining a Private Pilot Helicopter license.
- Be at least 17 years old
- Be able to read, speak, write, and understand the English language.
- Pass a written knowledge test
- Receive flight training
- Meet the aeronautical experience listed below
- Pass a practical test (i.e. a Checkride)
- Hold a student pilot certificate, sport pilot certificate, or recreational pilot certificate.
Aeronautical Experience for the Helicopter Private Pilot rating
The following items are a summary of the aeronautical experience requirements listed in 14 CFR Part 61.109 for obtaining a Private Pilot Helicopter license.
- At least 40 hours of total flight time
- At least 20 hours to flight training
- At least 10 hours of solo flight time
There are specific flight requirements to complete, such as cross country, night flights, that will be required during the hours listed above.
Limitations of the Private Pilot Helicopter rating
The following is a list of key limitations, but is not an exhaustive list. Review 14 CFR 61.113 and 14 CFR 61.117 for all the specific limitations related to the private pilot helicopter license.
- With some minor exception, cannot operate as pilot in command for compensation or hire
- May not pay less than pro rata share of expenses related to a flight
- Cannot act as a second in command that is type certificated for more than one pilot
- Cannot act as a second in command for an aircraft that is carrying passenger or property for compensation or hire
Private Helicopter Rating Questions
The primary factor is the amount of flying you do. The regulatory minimum is 40 hours, but most people accomplish the rating within 60-70 hours. Flying once or twice per week is a good schedule to complete within this timeframe.
This is going to depend largely on the student, specifically the time devoted to flying. The regulatory minimum is 40 hours, but most people complete their training within 60-70 hours. We base our fixed-price courses on 70 hours, but you can alway train via pay-as-you go. View our flight training pricing options here.
Yes, a helicopter pilot with a private rating is able to fly the aircraft at night, assuming the aircraft is equipped for night flying.
Yes. The recreational helicopter rating is the least expensive rating to obtain.