Posted on April 19, 2017
We get a lot of questions from people on which course is right for them, the Private Pilot’s License course or the Commercial Pilot’s License course? We will explain the difference between the two licenses in this article so that you know which one to select when applying to the Karachi Aero Club.
When concerned with flying powered fixed wing aircraft there are generally four types of licenses you need to be concerned with:
A Student Pilot’s License is exactly what it sounds like; it gives you the privilege to fly as a Student Pilot in order to earn your Private Pilot’s License.
A Private Pilot’s License allows you to fly privately or in other words, for personal pleasure. As a Private Pilot you can fly whenever you like in a club airplane or in your own airplane and you can take friends and family flying with you as long as you have a passenger carrying certification. As a Private Pilot you cannot fly for commercial purposes or receive payment for flying.
A Commercial Pilot’s License allows you to fly for commercial purposes, this means that you can be paid to fly as a Pilot. As a commercial Pilot you can fly for an airline, a cargo company or a charter operator. A commercial pilot’s license is for someone who is considering a flying career in aviation.
An Airline Transport Pilot’s License, or ATPL as it’s commonly referred to, is attained after a Commercial Pilot’s License and is generally a requirement for command of airliners or large transport aircraft. We will not get into the specifics of an ATPL in this article as the requirements and need for an ATPL are a little more complex and generally much further down the line for most people reading this article.
Now that you know what the four main types of licenses are you should also know that they are all earned in exactly the order in which they have been explained. First you get your Student Pilot’s License, then your Private Pilot’s License, then your Commercial Pilot’s License and the your ATPL. So if you’re planning on building a career in aviation on the flying side and you want to earn your Commercial Pilot’s License, you will have to earn your Private Pilot’s License first. Once you have your Commercial Pilot’s License you can move onto your ATPL when you have amassed enough aeronautical experience.
It is important to note that along with licenses, there are also “Ratings”, such as Instrument Ratings, Multi-Engine Ratings and Aircraft Type Ratings. In order to fly commercially most companies will require you to hold an Instrument Rating as well as a Commercial Pilot’s License.
For more details on the breakdown of courses please refer to our course detail pages on this website.