by Nigel Hilton

A career as a helicopter pilot is something which is assured to bring a lot of excitement, adventure, and responsibility. If this is something that you want to get involved with and you can see yourself having a career flying helicopters, then you will need to get your commercial pilots’ license. In order to obtain this, you will obviously require a certain level of training and you will need to meet the criteria required.

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Before delving into the ins and outs of the training programmes involved and how to find the best ones, it is first important to decipher whether you fit the bill of what is required from someone looking to obtain their commercial pilots’ license. First and foremost, you must be over 18 years old to get your license. In addition to this, you must already hold a private pilots’ license. This allows you to fly helicopters but not pursue a career in doing so, therefore if you do not have this license you must work on getting it before you can progress to the commercial option. Furthermore, you must have completed the following; 155 hours flying time in a helicopter – including 50 hours of Pilot in Command, with ten of those being cross-country. You must have also passed all of the commercial pilots’ license theory exams beforehand. And finally, you need to hold a CAA Class 1 medical. If you tick these boxes, you can become a helicopter pilot. It is also worth looking at CFII requirements too, so you can see how you can extend your career beyond this in the future.

If you can tick all of these boxes then you are in the right position to get started on your commercial pilots’ license training course. Nevertheless, when it comes to picking a school or a company to do your training through there are a lot of things that you need to consider. After all, you need to make sure that you go for a top quality option in order to give yourself the best possible chance of passing.

One of the first things that you should do when considering any helicopter pilot training course is whether they are accredited or not. You need to make sure that the training provided has been approved. Once you have discovered this, you can then begin to delve a little bit deeper.

An important factor to consider is obviously the cost of everything. It is advisable to sit down and calculate how many hours worth of training you think you will need for this career and so how much it is likely to cost you on the whole. After all, there is no point starting this training only to find that you cannot afford to complete it halfway through. If you are at a loss regarding what sort of prices you should be looking at then a good deal would be something from $250.00 - $300.00 per hour. Moreover, it is worth noting that you should not let price be the determining factor over everything else. After all, quality is more important because you want to have the best chance of getting your license.

An additional point worth considering is the feedback left by previous clients. After all, this is the best way to get an honest opinion as to whether the company and helicopter pilot training is good or not. If a company has generally positive feedback then they will have a testimonial section on their website whereby you can read everything that has been said.

All in all, if you want a career in helicopter flying you will certainly need your commercial pilots’ license. Make sure you use the points mentioned to find the best helicopter training for you.