So, you want to buy a jet…

The question: “If I get my PPL, can I be a pilot in a private jet?”

The short answer: No.

The long answer:

1. If you want to self-insure, the only think you need to legally fly a private jet is your PPL, and a type rating, but without an instrument rating you are almost certain to fail your type rating, and will probably not be allowed to try:

The FAA requires pilots of all turbojets, no matter the weight, to have a type rating. To earn a type rating, you must receive specific training in the airplane or an approved simulator and then pass a check ride with an FAA-designated examiner.

The check ride is really a very detailed instrument flying test with a bunch of emergency procedures thrown in.

McClellan, J. M. (2010). Moving up to a jet: what to expect when you trade the propeller for a turbofan. Flying. Retrieved from:…/turbine-flying/moving-jet/

2. If you want an insurance company to insure you and your aircraft, they will require you to have an instrument rating, as well as a certain minimum number of hours as PIC.

3. Unless your jet is certified for single-pilot operation, you will always be required to fly with another pilot type-rated and current in your jet.

4. Even if your jet is certified for single-pilot operation, your insurance company will likely require you to fly a certain minimum number of hours with another pilot in the right seat who is type-rated in your particular aircraft. They may also require that other pilot to be a CFI/I.

5. Additional licenses, ratings and certifications, such as commercial pilot license, CFI/II, and ATP will, at each stage, reduce your insurance costs. Over time, the cost savings are likely to pay for the instruction you received, though will probably not fully compensate the operating costs.

Updated: February 19, 2021 — 10:43 am