Getting Started

  • Learning to fly in the Pacific Northwest gives you the added advantage of experiencing the most beautiful yet diverse flying conditions.

  • Introductory Flight Training - Learn to Fly - Pacific Northwest, Bellingham

Getting Started

The process outlined below is for a student seeking a Private Pilots License, but we also offers training towards Instrument Rating, Commercial Pilots License, and Biannual Flight Reviews.

For your Private Pilots License (PPL), the FAA requires a minimum of 40 flight hours, but the national average is between 60-75 hours. Command Aviation students usually obtain their PPL in about 60 hours.

If you are new to aviation or just getting started in your journey, we recommend taking an introductory flight (see below for pricing) with one of our instructors. This will give you a chance to decide if you’re interested in pursuing training and allow you to make sure our instructors are a good fit for you. After your intro flight, your flight training will be split into three phases:

Phase 1: Intro to Flight and Prep to Solo

The initial part of your flight training will focus on specific ground training and basic flight skills that will get you ready for your first solo flight. During this phase you will learn about:

  • Takeoffs and landings
  • Airport Traffic and Operations
  • Turns
  • Slow Flight
  • Safety and Emergency Procedures
  • Radio Communications
  • Situational Awareness

Once your initial training is complete, you will go on your first solo flight! After that, it’s on to cross country training.

Phase 2: Cross Country

Following the exciting milestone of your first solo flight, you’ll work with your instructor to learn the fundamentals of flight planning, navigation aids, weather planning, and situational awareness.

A “cross country” flight is defined as a flight of 50+ nautical miles straight line distance from your departure airport to destination airport. Once you’re proficient in navigating, flight planning, and all other skills involved in the cross country phase, you will go on your first solo cross country flight. After you’ve met all of the cross country flight hours and requirements, you’re ready to start the third and final phase – your checkride prep.

Phase 3: Checkride Preparation

This is the final phase of your flight training. During this time, you’ll work alongside your instructor to prepare for your practical test. These final hours are spent reviewing your flight maneuvers and skills as well as your ground knowledge. You will have a mock checkride with your flight instructor that includes both an oral exam and a flight exam.

**The flight training program outlined above is the standard way we structure our flight training. Actual progression and structure may vary depending on each individual students needs.


Command Aviation has many ways that you can pay for your flight training or the rental of aircraft. Please checkout our current pricing here: 2023 Flight School Price List

** prices are subjected to change without notice**

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