HELICOPTER FLIGHT TRAINING

Discounts are available for pre-paid Flight Credits. Ask for details!

 

* Our price breakdowns below illustrate the minimum hourly requirements required by the FAA (FAR Part 61) to earn each license. Many students find they need additional flight training to better hone their skills for the final exam. Because of this, we recommend budgeting for about 10% over the total cost figure. However, the more frequently you train, the more likely you will be ready when minimum requirements are met. Furthermore, any previously logged flight training, to include that in an airplane, can count towards your total flight time and help reduce the cost. Additionally, the ground instruction listed for each rating is not an FAA requirement, yet we highly recommend this to prepare for your written and oral exams.

Private Pilot Certificate

Learn how to fly a helicopter and earn your Private Pilot License with High Tide Aviation. With a Private Certification, you’ll be able to fly with friends, family, and take solo flights. During your training, you will not only learn how to fly the aircraft, but will become proficient in navigation, radio communication, aerodynamics, weather products, and several other aviation topics.

FAA minimum requirements per FAR 61.109:

40 hours total flight time, 30 of which must be in a helicopter.

If you are just starting your training (0 hours of previous instruction), you will need 40 hours minimum of flight training.

  • 30 Hours Dual Instruction in R-44 @ $600/hour = $18,000
  • 10 Hours Solo Flight in R-44 @ $550/hour = $5,500
  • 40 Hours Ground Instruction (not an FAA requirement) @ $50/hour = $2,000
  • Required Books & Supplies = $87
  • FAA Written Exam = $175
  • Check Ride (examiner fee plus estimated flight time) = $2,000
  • Total Estimated Cost for Private Pilot Helicopter Certificate = $27,762

If you already have an Airplane Private Pilot License (or at least 10 hours of previous flight training experience) you will only need to meet the 30 hour (in a helicopter) minimum requirement:

  • 20 Hours Dual Instruction in R-44 @ $600/hour = $12,000
  • 10 Hours Solo Flight in R-44 @ $550/hour = $5,500
  • 40 Hours Ground Instruction (not an FAA requirement) @ $50/hour = $2,000
  • Required Books & Supplies = $87
  • FAA Written Exam = $175
  • Check Ride (examiner fee plus estimated flight time) = $2,000
  • Total Estimated Cost for Private Pilot Helicopter Certificate = $21,762

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Instrument Rating

Although often not required to be a flight instructor or tour pilot, many helicopter pilot jobs will require an instrument rating (such as offshore jobs and EMS). The good news is that you can subsidize a portion of the total cost for your instrument rating with airplane instrument training.

FAA minimum requirements per FAR Part 61:

All Instrument-Training Hours in an R44:

  • 47 Hours Dual Instruction in R-44 @ $600/hour = $28,200
  • 40 Hours Ground Instruction (not an FAA requirement) @ $50/hour = $2,000
  • Required Books & Supplies = $50
  • FAA Written Exam = $175
  • Check Ride (examiner fee plus estimated flight time) = $2,000
  • Total Estimated Cost for Helicopter Instrument Rating = $32,425

Cross-Training in a C172:

  • 15 Hours Dual Instruction in R-44 @ $600/hour = $9,000
  • 35 Hours Dual Instruction in C172 @ $220/hour = $7,700
  • 40 Hours Ground Instruction (not an FAA requirement) @ $50/hour = $2,000
  • Required Books & Supplies (estimate) = $50
  • FAA Written Exam = $175
  • Check Ride (examiner fee plus estimated flight time) = $2,000
  • Total Estimated Cost for Helicopter Instrument Rating = $20,925

 

Commercial Pilot Certificate

If you want to fly for hire (get paid to fly), you will need a Commercial Pilot Certificate. This program takes you beyond what you will learn in the private pilot program and introduces you to advanced maneuvers and flight concepts. This training emphasizes professionalism, power management, risk management, and increasing the level of precision with which all basic maneuvers are performed.

FAA minimum requirements per FAR 61.129:

150 hours of total flight time, 50 of which must be in a helicopter. 100 hours of PIC, 35 of which must be in a helicopter.

Numbers below are for a student with a Helicopter Private Pilot License and an Instrument Rating with 90 hours of total flight time:

  • 60 Hours Dual Instruction in R-44 @ $600/hour = $36,000
  • 20 Hours Ground Instruction (not an FAA requirement) @ $50/hour = $1,000
  • Required Books & Supplies = $50
  • FAA Written Exam = $150
  • Check Ride (examiner fee plus estimated flight time) = $2,000
  • Total Estimated Cost for Commercial Pilot Helicopter Certificate = $39,200

Numbers below are for an Airplane Commercial Pilot wanting to add-on a Helicopter rating:

  • 55 Hours Dual Instruction in R-44 @ $600/hour = $33,000
  • 20 Hours Ground Instruction (not an FAA requirement) @ $50/hour = $1,000
  • Required Books & Supplies = $50
  • Check Ride (examiner fee plus estimated flight time) = $2,000
  • Total Estimated Cost for Commercial Pilot Helicopter Certificate = $36,050

CFI & CFII Certificates

If you want to teach people how to fly, you will need a Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) Certificate. A CFI allows you to teach private pilot and commercial pilot students. A Certified Flight Instructor – Instrument (CFII) allows you to instruct for an instrument rating. This program will develop your teaching skills and techniques as advised by the FAA. The training emphasizes different techniques for teaching students how to fly the helicopter as well as being able to teach all the necessary book knowledge.

FAA minimum requirements per FAR 61.183:

No minimum hour requirement. However, to instruct in a Robinson R44 helicopter, you will need a minimum of 200 total hours in the R44 per SFAR 73.

Numbers below are approximate cost of one instruction certificate for a pilot with a Commercial Pilot’s License:

  • 15 Hours Dual R-44 @ $600/hour = $9,000
  • 20 Hours Ground Instruction (not an FAA requirement) @ $50/hour = $1,000
  • Required Books & Supplies = $50
  • FAA Written Exams = $350
  • Check Ride (examiner fee plus estimated flight time) = $2,000
  • Total Estimated Cost for a helicopter CFI Certificate = $11,400

Additional Points of Interest:

We understand that people beginning training at High Tide Aviation have varying backgrounds and degrees of experience. Not everyone takes the same flight training path. If you have prior training, certificates, or ratings, and are interested in continuing your education, please contact us. Our training specialist will be able to assist you in determining your specific hour requirements and clarify the cost estimate for the additional rating you seek.