TrendingHow To Become A Military Helicopter Pilot

How To Become A Military Helicopter Pilot


Get Your Student Pilot And Medical Certificates

How to Become an Army Aviator Helicopter Pilot – Army Chief Warrant Officer Pilots – Interview

If you dont already have a pilots license and medical certificate, you will need to get both. New pilot students need a student pilot certificate. Follow the step-by-step instructions in our student pilot certificate guide to walk through the process of submitting your application and getting your physical examination.

If you already have a pilots license, confirm that it is valid and that your medical is current.

Finish Army Helicopter Pilot Training

If accepted as an aviation officer, you will enter the army as an enlisted soldier and complete nine weeks of Basic Combat Training. You will then attend the six-week Warrant Officer Candidate School, where you participate in physical training, combat drills and develop leadership skills.

Finally, you will attend Warrant Officer Flight School. Here you learn to fly the Army’s four types of helicopters: UH-60 Black Hawk, CH-47 Chinook, OH-58 Kiowa Warrior and AH-64A Apache. At the end of training you will be proficient in flying these helicopters in combat, rescue missions and for reconnaissance purposes.

Special Message For Fixed

Note: if you already have at least 65 hours of Pilot-in-Command time in airplanes, you can earn a helicopter Commercial Pilot “Add-On” rating for approximately $60,000-$70,000. However, you will only end up with a total of about 80-90 hours of helicopter flying experience as opposed to the 150 hours for the “normal” Commercial Helicopter Pilot. The problem is that most employers and insurance companies don’t give you any credit for your fixed-wing flying time and experience when you are seeking employment. Most helicopter employers are only concerned with your total hours of helicopter time and experience. So you might have 500 hours of airplane time and 200 hours of helicopter time, and they will only consider the 200 hours of helicopter time if you are applying for a helicopter-only position.

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Details About Our Helicopter Flight Training

Our rotor wing program is a five semester program that takes under two years to complete. With previous certifications it can be completed sooner. Youll start to fly helicopters typically within the first two weeks of beginning the program.

Youll fly in real helicopters regularly because we believe you need to learn from the cockpit, not just the classroom. To prepare you for flight well teach you everything there is to know about helicopter safety, and each semester youll have a personal instructor who flies with you and acts as a tutor for your ground classes.

We use state of the art equipment in our flight school, such as our Frasca simulators. Youll sit in a helicopter cockpit replica, with a 180-degree view and real-world maps and terrain. With the Frasca’s map technology you can simulate flight in literally any location in the world.

Want to come for a visit? You’ll see our fleet, facilities and meet the SUU Aviation Team.Schedule a Hangar Tour

How Much Will My Education And Training Cost

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Becoming a helicopter pilot is a costly undertaking. Most pilots can expect to pay between $10,000 and $15,000 for a private license and $18,000 to $20,000 for a commercial license. Flight time instruction generally runs $200 per dual hour and $160 per solo hour. Written exams cost between $200 to $500 and flight exams cost roughly $500.

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How Much Does It Cost To Get A Helicopter Pilots License

The total cost for a private helicopter pilot certificate averages between $12,000 and $16,000. Budget an additional $18,000 – $35,000 for your commercial license.

If one of your career goals includes teaching, you will need to become a certified flight instructor. Factor in another $4,000 – $11,000 for your CFI rating.

When planning your budget, remember that your personal costs will vary depending on where you go for your training, who you train under and how many actual flight hours it takes for you to become a proficient helicopter pilot.

Attend Officer Candidate School

Attend Officer Candidate School in Ft. Benning, GA, and the Officer Candidate course before you move on to pilot training. If you’re enlisted U.S. Army personnel and want to become a pilot, you need to qualify to become a warrant officer and attend Warrant Officer Candidate School in Fort Rucker, Alabama. You also need a score of 90 on the Alternative Flight Aptitude Selection Test and need to pass flight physicals.

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Two Alternative Routes To Go: Military Or Civilian

For most, civilian helicopter pilot training is the fastest and most logical option, but not the least expensive. In the United States, there are many excellent helicopter schools. In order to become a professional pilot, you must first earn your Rotorcraft-Helicopter Private Pilot Rating and then your Commercial Pilot Rating. . If you start helicopter pilot training “from scratch”, you need a minimum of 150 hours of helicopter flying time and you will invest about $60,000 to $80,000 in your education and training JUST for that Commercial license. Rating, which we strongly recommend that you do). If you also earn your Instrument and Instrument Instructor ratings, you will spend in the neighborhood of $70,000-$100,000 for all those ratings to be the most employable you can be. These estimates are just a guideline and can vary widely depending on where you fly, in what make and model of helicopter you train in, etc. College programs can cost even more but can also qualify you for Government-backed student loans, college credit, etc.

Getting To The Level Employers Want

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Although a commercial rotorcraft license technically meets the minimum job requirements, many employers require more experience, according to the PHPA. Employers often require 500 to 1,000 or more flight hours even for entry-level jobs. The most cost-effective way to accumulate so many hours is as a flight instructor. You can qualify for instructor certification with as few as 200 hours and can get paid to gain experience and qualify for other jobs, the PHPA says.

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Check That You Meet The Faas Minimum Eligibility Requirements

For a private helicopter pilot certificate, you must:

  • Be at least 17 years old
  • Be fluent at reading, writing and speaking English
  • Be able to provide proof of identity
  • Be able to qualify for and obtain a 3rd class FAA medical certificate

For a commercial helicopter pilot license, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Be fluent at reading, writing and speaking English
  • Be able to provide proof of identity
  • Be able to qualify for and obtain a 2nd class FAA medical certificate
  • Have already earned a private helicopter license

Warrant Officer Candidate School

Warrant Officer Candidate School teaches individuals how to be leaders.

School lasts 5-7 weeks and is not for the faint of heart.

It enhances capabilities both physically and mentally.

You will be required to take the Army Physical Fitness Test within the first week at Warrant Officer Candidate School.

Most days have roughly 18 hours of training and physical training can include marches up to 10 kilometers.

Students learn to be confident in their decision making and their abilities to lead troops.

They learn leadership skills and the history of warrant officers.

Warrant Officers are highly technically trained in their area of specialty.

After completion, Officers are ranked as WO-1.

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How To Become A Fighter Pilot: Complete Guide

Becoming a fighter pilot will give you the opportunity to fly the worldâs most advanced aircraft. Hereâs a complete guide on how to become a fighter pilot.

To become a fighter pilot, you need to choose either Active Duty or joining the Air National Guard/Air Force Reserve. Then you need to obtain a Bachelorâs degree, pass initial flight training, pass undergraduate pilot training and get assigned to a fighter, and complete specialized training.

If youâre reading this, then the allure of flying the fastest, most advanced airplanes in the world while also defending your country has probably brought you here. But becoming a fighter pilot is not so easy, or else more people would do it. In this article, weâll teach you what being a fighter pilot really means, how to become one yourself, and weâll finish off by discussing a little bit of if itâs worth it or not.

At SkyTough we want to provide our readers with only the most helpful content out there. For a topic like this one, inaccurate information is entirely useless. So this article is the result of countless hours of research and discussion with people who have actually gone through the process themselves to become fighter pilots. When youâre done reading this, youâll know everything you need to know to become a fighter pilot yourself.

Reach Your Highest Potential With A Career In Army Aviation


Pursuing a career in Army Aviation opens you up to an exciting array of many different specialties. From flying planes, to operating drones, to fixing Black Hawk helicopters, and more, youll have an exciting career ahead of youno matter the role.When you take on the challenge to pursue one of these careers, however, it will require skilled training. Youll learn to stay calm and focused in all weather conditions when operating aircraft, while learning to lead all types of vital combat and support missions.

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Attend Ground School & Pass Your Written Knowledge Test

Before you get up in the air, you will receive ground instruction from your flight instructor. This is when you will be introduced to helicopter systems and operations, emergency procedures, navigation, regulations, chart reading, meteorology and more. The ASA Helicopter Flying Handbook is a useful resource to have for this part of your training.

Once they feel you are ready, your flight instructor will sign you off and you can take your written knowledge test. Pass that test, and you are on to flight training.

Interested In Becoming A Helicopter Pilot

Its often said that the best office is a cockpit. Being a helicopter pilot comes with stunning views, incredible freedom and adrenaline-pumping adventure. Taking a machine into the sky is thrilling and sometimes life-altering. Its no wonder there is an exploding demand for pilots starting in 2020.

From 2020 to 2036, the demand for helicopter pilots is expected to soar, leaving shortages of upwards of 49,000 pilots, according to major aviation companies like Boeing and Airbus. But why?

Its because the need for pilots worldwide is increasing, yet there are few FAA approved schools training helicopter pilots. At the same time many pilots are retiring further aggravating the shortage.

This might be one of the greatest opportunities to become a pilot since helicopters were invented. But what does it take to become a pilot?

Still Have Questions?

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The Future Job Market

What does the job market for helicopter pilots look like in the future? According to most of the trade magazines, future prospects for employment are very good. Many of the best civilian helicopter jobs were held by pilots trained by the Armed Services for the Vietnam war. The Services trained tens of thousands of pilots for that conflict. Returning pilots were very experienced and often had thousands of hours of flying time.

However, most of these “baby boomer” pilots are now in their late sixties and seventies or retired or retiring. The services have not trained nearly as many pilots since then, and many of the pilots they have trained are getting out of the service with only a few hundred hours of experience, making civilian-trained pilots more attractive and competitive in the helicopter job market. The military services are also requiring pilots to stay in longer and giving them more incentives to stay in the Military Services and make it a career, so fewer are opting to leave the Armed Services. So civilian-trained pilots with fewer hours of experience will become more employable as the pool of “high time” pilots shrinks.

Top Skills For An Army Helicopter Pilot

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The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we’ve found all of the skills you’ll need so even if you don’t have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 46.9% of Army Helicopter Pilots listed FAA on their resume, but soft skills such as Communication skills and Problem-solving skills are important as well.

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Air Force Pilot Physical Requirements

In the military it’s not enough to have skills you have to meet physical requirements as well. You can find the Air Force pilot physical requirements on its website:

  • You must be younger than 33 when you start pilot training
  • You’ve had no hay fever, asthma or allergies since you were 12
  • Your closeup vision is 20/30 without glasses or contacts. Your distance vision can be as bad as 20/70 provided it’s correctable to 20/20. Even if your vision is 20/20, there are other eye problems, such as colorblindness, that could still disqualify you.
  • You meet the Air Force physical fitness and strength standards.
  • Your height falls within Air Force standards. Height specifications vary depending on the aircraft, though some applicants who are exceptionally tall or short may need a special screening.

Is It Worth Becoming A Helicopter Pilot

Helicopters are significantly more expensive to fly and maintain than fixed wing aircraft. This explains why many private pilots choose to go the fixed wing rather than the rotor route. Unless you have a substantial budget, flying a helicopter can be a cost prohibitive hobby.

That doesnt mean that it isnt worth becoming a helicopter pilot. To negate the high flight costs, many private helicopter pilots simply go on to earn their commercial helicopter pilot certificate. Making piloting your career means your costs are covered and you get paid to do something you enjoy.

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How Long Does It Take To Complete Aviation School In The Us Army

To become a U.S. Army pilot, you need to complete extensive training to prepare you for your role. As an aspiring aviation warrant officer, you need to attend Warrant Officer Candidate School for six weeks, followed Warrant Officer Pilot School and flight training which lasts anywhere from 12-18 months.

Is It Difficult To Become A Helicopter Pilot

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Let nobody lie to youlearning to become a helicopter is not a walk in the park. As we have just hinted above, a pilot is a career like any other and comes with its highs and lows.

Youll need a lot of practice to become a successful pilot who can fly a helicopter on his own. Dont expect to enroll in a flight school and start flying that aircraft in the first few days. It doesnt work like that. Youll need to pump in hours and hours of practice and dedication to earn that pilot license.

But dont freak out.

Learning to fly only feels tough at the beginning. As you continue putting effort into the training, eventually youll start to see results. After you move past that challenging part of keeping a helicopter steady, youll grow more confident and you would be ready to take on any flying challenge.

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Warrant Officer Flight Training Program Requirements

The Warrant Officer Flight Training Program is open to US citizens at least 18 but no older than 33 years, who have passed the Armed Forces Vocational Aptitude Battery with a score of at least 110 on the General Technical section of the test.

Would-be flyers must also take the Flight Aptitude Selection Test and score at least 90. And you must pass appropriate physical examinations and have vision no worse than 20/50 .

If youre accepted, the Army starts you out in Basic Combat Training like any other enlisted soldier. After boot camp comes the six-week Warrant Officer Candidate School .

If youve already read about commissioned officers, then WOCS is exactly what it sounds like a variation on Officer Candidate School tailored specifically for Warrant Officers. After all of this, you are officially promoted to Warrant Officer.

Finally, brand new Warrant Officers head to ten months of flight training at Fort Rucker, Alabama. Like other flight training programs, everyone begins with a single basic aircraft — in this case the TH-67 Creek helicopter thats not used in active service but gives students a firm foundation in piloting.

As they gain experience, student pilots then move on to specialize in the specific helicopter theyll fly for the rest of their career.

Complete Basic Combat Training

Complete a basic training program that helps you learn the skills you need as a U.S. Army pilot. The first phase of this training involves classes that teach you a variety of things including U.S. Army values, weapon basics and land navigation. During the second phase, you can expect rifle qualification drills and obstacle courses. During the last phase, you get exposure to advanced weapon systems.

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Question 6 Of : Download Article

  • Its challenging, but the Army needs more pilots. The training is rigorous, but if you were able to satisfy the initial standards , then you have what it takes to get the job done. It also may be a great time to become an Army pilot, because theres currently a shortage of qualified pilots, so you may have a better chance at getting into flight school!XResearch source
  • How To Become A Navy Pilot

    #178 How I became an EMS Helicopter Pilot

    If you are interested in becoming a United States Naval Aviator, you must first be aware that earning a commission in the United States Navy is very competitive, especially in naval aviation.

    You must determine if you meet the initial requirements to obtain a commission in the United States Navy. So, apply early approximately 12 months before you graduate from college as openings are limited and fill up quickly.

    Note that this is slightly different from applying for a civilian aviation position because Navy Pilots directly affect national security. Know that you will be held to a higher standard of performance and behavior compared to civilian counterparts.

    If that didnt deflate you, you may have the right sense of pride and integrity for this job.

    Below are basic information youll need to know before applying. There will be more requirements during the application process, but these will get you in the door.

    Contact mefor a more personalized assessment and support.

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