Frequently Asked Questions

Common Questions

How much does learning to fly cost?

  • Detailed cost breakdowns can be found in our Licences and Ratings section at the bottom of the page. During the first approximately 40 hours, each lesson will involve approximately one hour of flight time. Dual training rates for each aircraft can be found in our Aircraft section. 

How long does it take to obtain a PPL?

  • A private pilot licence typically takes 60-70 hours of flight time compared to a commercial pilot licence which will take 150-200 hours of flight time. The time to obtain the licence is dependant on how frequently you fly, and your commitment to study. We have completed private pilot licences in as little as 6 weeks.

Are there different types of licences?

  • Yes. You can obtain a Recreational Pilot License (RPL), Private Pilot Licence (PPL), or a Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL). A CPL is required if you intend to obtain work as a pilot. Details of paths to each licence can be found in our Licences and Ratings section.

Where can I fly when I have my licence?

  • Having obtained a PPL through Air Queensland your licence can be endorsed so you can fly through any type of airspace in Australia. Your licence is an ICAO licence, and will be recognised by other member states. To fly in other ICAO countries a simple validation and check flight is normally all that is required.

Can I take passengers on my lessons?

  • Passengers are allowed to be on some flights however it is not recommended as it can be distracting.  Lessons where passengers cannot be carried are generally those where simulated emergencies are practiced.

There are many flying schools, why should I choose Air Queensland?

  • At Air Queensland we offer a superior training program and believe our service and dedication to you is second to none. We encourage you to visit other flying schools before coming to us so you can see the difference for yourself.

Am I too old to learn how to fly?

  • As long as you are fit enough to pass an aviation medical, you're never too old to learn to fly!

Who will conduct my training?

  • All your training will be conducted by a fully qualified commercial pilot who holds a flight instructor rating (GA). You can elect to keep the same instructor for all your lessons, or choose more than one instructor for more flexibility in making bookings - the option is yours.

I am colour blind, can I be a pilot?

  • Typically you can obtain a Private or Commercial Pilot Licence when colour blind. You should seek specific guidance directly from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) or a Designated Aviation Medical Examiner (DAME) listed on their website. Some airlines and the military may impose more strict medical requirements than those of the class 1 medical required for a CPL.

If the engine was to fail in a single-engine aircraft, what happens?

  • The aircraft will glide and is under the control of the pilot. Such an event is a very rare occurrence and most pilots in their flying life will never experience it. Your training is conducted at Redcliffe, Bundaberg or our other locations and in the associated training area - as such there are many large fields available for landing.

How do I get started?

  • Drop in to have a look around or contact us to book a trial introductory flight and get your career started!

Will I get air sick?

This is completely dependant on the individual. Some people will have a tendency to feel air sick initially, but as time passes and you feel more confident in the aircraft the chance of feeling sick is significantly reduced.

Is there much home study involved?

For the private pilot licence a limited amount of study is required in your own time. A commercial pilot licence requires a serious commitment to complete the required exams.

How long does each lesson last?

You will normally spend around two hours at the airport - one hour in the air, the remaining hour split between classroom briefing, aircraft preparation, and a debriefing.

What are the medical requirements to obtain a licence?

You need to be of good health to obtain a pilot medical. The PPL requires a class 2 medical, and the CPL a class 1. The requirements for each medical are different, with the class 1 (CPL) being more strict. If you have any known medical conditions, or any reason to suspect you may have issues obtaining a medical, you should consult a Designated Aviation Medical Examiner (DAME) prior to commencing your training. Having trained so many people over the years we have a general idea of what conditions are acceptable, and which create problems - contact us and we can try to give you general advice before making an appointment with a DAME.

Everyone who flies needs to have a medical done, and it's easy to organise. A list of all the approved Doctors is here. Read more...

What kind of aeroplane will I fly?

Most of our students choose to learn to fly in either Piper or Cessna aircraft. A full list of aircraft in our fleet can be found in our Aircraft section

At what age should I start my flying lessons?

Your first solo flight cannot be achieved until you are 16 years of age. With this, the earliest we recommend you should start flying lessons would typically be 14 or 15 years of age.

Do I need to be studying maths or physics at school?

You do not need to study physics or maths at school to obtain a pilot licence. Having this knowledge certainly does help, but is in no way a requirement. If you wish to become an airline pilot you may need both physics and maths - both are typically an entry requirement. Individual airline recruiting websites will list requirements.

Is flying safe?

Generally speaking flying is as safe as you make it, there are however inherent dangers with the activity. During your training you will be equipped with all the necessary flying and decision making skills to ensure any non-normal situation is handled effectively.

What are the minimum requirements for airline employment?

For direct entry to most airlines you will require a Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL), and typically theory credits for the airline Transport Pilot Licence (ATPL). Airlines will publish their minimum criteria for pilot applications on their website.

Once qualified, how long is my licence valid for?

Your licence is perpetual - it never expires! You will however be required to pass a medical every 1-2 years, and pass a flight review every 2 years.

Unanswered Questions?

If you have any questions that this FAQ has been unable to answer simply call us directly.