This country is full of flight schools that appear to be filled with paying students. However, with the Internet revolutionizing the world, classrooms and live instruction have become obsolete. Yet, profiting from uninformed students has not? Let me put it to you in plain language; passing your Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Private Pilot written exam should be free.
Now that we made it clear that you don't need to attend an official school to pass your written exam, here is our 1-2-3-FREE method for how to do it.
Step 1 – PHAK. Download the FAA Pilot’s Handbook of Aeronautical Knowledge (PHAK). Read it. Learn it. Love it.
Although the PHAK is available for free in an electronic format, I recommend spending the $20 for a paper copy. It can be difficult to stare at a computer for too long and this publication is absolutely the best of its kind.
Step 2 – Online Ground School. Watch the Fly8ma.com online ground school. All of it. Twice.
Using a free online ground school is the primary benefit of something we call the Internet. In-person education is expensive, inconsistent when it comes to the quality of instruction, and is not customized to your needs.
Step 3 – Test Banks. Use the Sporty’s test bank for test question practice. Complete every question until you get enough right to pass. You can also use the Exams4Pilots test bank as a secondary resource.
With the Internet as your resource, there are many free and paid websites you can take advantage of. Start with the free resources mentioned above and should you need more practice, use the paid websites to more comprehensively test your knowledge and track your progress. Fly8ma.com and MZeroA.com are both great paid resources. However, if you dedicate the time to using the free websites until you feel confident, you will get the results you desire.
So, what’s next? (1) After completing the above steps, you will need the endorsement of a Certified Flight Instructor (CFI) in order to take the exam. Facebook is a great resource for this, as many CFIs are looking to take you on as a student. (2) You will then need to register for the exam. The FAA tells you how to register here. Although the exam fee is not avoidable, you now know that your exam preparation costs are.
Over time, through self-study, you will develop the ability to combine conceptual understanding with detailed knowledge. Word of advice, teach yourself to be a pilot, because a good pilot is always learning. Do as I suggest, and you will pass. Promise made, promise kept.
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