Giving Wings to your Dreams since 1955
Giving Wings to your Dreams since 1955

Frequently Asked Questions:


(Select links at left for more specific information)


1. How long does it take to learn to fly?

  • Most of this answer depends almost entirely on you. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires a minimum of forty (40) hours of dual and solo instruction/flight time. Historically, the average student will require 53-57 hours of flight time prior to taking their private pilot oral exam and checkride with a FAA DPE (Designated Pilot Examiner).

2. How much does it cost to learn to fly?

  • Again, this depends on individual progress. In today's dollars one can expect to spend ~$18,000 to become a Private Piot. Are there additional costs associated with flying? Yes, usually limited to personal preferences and accessories such as personal headsets, Foreflight subscription, etc.

3. Is financing available for Flight Training?

  • Yes, but CEFS does not finance student flight training. There are companies that do specialize in the finance of flight training.  But, to our experience, be very careful with selecting an obligation and interest rate.

4. What is required to be eligible to fly?

  • You can start flight lessons at any age however, one must be 16 years old to solo and 17 years old to take and pass a FAA Checkride with a Designated Pilot Examiner to receive a Private Pilot License. You must be able to read, speak and understand the english language and pass a basic physical exam conducted by an AME (Aviation Medical Examiner). A list of Local AME's in the region is availabe in an adjacent link.

5. How do I choose a Flight School?

  • Look for a professionally run school with the appropriate facility and staff to serve you. Our experience and suggestion is that quality of instruction is not always about price. It can be said however, quality and safety are directly related.
  • Does the school management and CFI's communicate well? You will be frustrated if calls and emails are not returned and questions are not promptly answered.
  • Is interaction with CFI's available during times that are  convenient for me?
  • Does the school use electronic means for scheduling and billing?
  • Are the instructors student-oriented?
  • Are the aircraft well maintained?
  • Does the school maintain appropriate insurance coverage?
  • Does the school only "speak safety" or actually "teach, demand and enforce safety".

6. How do I choose a Flight Instructor?

  • Look for somone who listens, recognizes what works best for you and teaches you accordingly in a way that is effective and economical.

7. Is flying safe?

  • Yes, flying is safe. But remember, both pilot and machine must operate at peak skill and situational awareness to maintain this level of safety.

8. How many times a week should I fly?

  • It is strongly recommended during flight training to fly at least once or twice a week. If you train once every two weeks or longer there is a tendency to slide in skill level which economically works against you instead of for you.

9. How could I apply my flight training towards an Aviation profession?

  • Careers you may consider include:
    • Corporate Charter/Cargo Pilot.
    • Commercial Airline Transport Pilot.
    • Flight Instructor.
    • Aerial Photographer.
    • Corporate Test Pilot.
    • Military Pilot.
    • Aircraft Sales.
    • Banner Towing.
    • Aircraft Dispatcher (airline and commercial).
    • Aircraft Mechanic.
    • (New and used) Aircraft Ferry Pilot
    • Skydive Ferry Pilot.
    • Flight School management and/or ownership.
    • Air Traffic Controller.
    • FAA Employee (many disiplines).
    • NTSB Employee (many disiplines).
    • Aviation Magazine Writer/Reporter.
    • Demonstation to Military Organizations of Aviation Experience (PPL completed or not).

10. Are there colleges that specialize in Aviation related careers?

  • Yes, but remember these programs are very expensive and can leave one deeply in debt when starting a career and family. Schools to consider (but not limited to) are:
    • Liberty University (LU)
    • Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU).
    • University of North Dakota (UND).
    • Oklahoma State University (OSU).
    • Purdue University (PU).

11. With the skills I learn at Curtis Eads Flight School be helpful academically or professionally in unrelated fields?

  • Yes. There are far reaching benefits to your flight training. Aviation training is one of the most disciplined and integrated of flight-science skills. As someone who screens potential hires, my ears perk up when I learn a candidate has a Private Pilot License, partial flight training or advanced ratings. It tells me a lot about their character and devotion to technical knowledge.

12. How do I get started learning to fly?

  • Call us to start an informative conversation. Curtis Eads Flight School is open seven (7) days per week for your convenience. Call and schedule a Discovery Flight. You will step into to one of the most enjoyable and thrilling adventures of your life.


13. Does CEFS do accelerated flight training?

  • No. In our experience accelerated training fails to deliver the compete range of flight experience one must have to be competent and safe. There are flight schools that do offer accelerated training, and most assuredly please understand CEFS is not one of these.


14. FAA Part 141 or 61 Flight School?

  • Almost all Flight Schools operate under Part 61 FAA regulations. This includes CEFS.  A 14 CFR Part 61 organization allows flexibility to meet your specific learning style and schedule. Many of your additional questions can be answered on the AOPA website at


Curtis Eads Flight School
1200 Gene Bolton Dr.

Hangar #6

Suffolk Executive Airport (KSFQ)

Suffolk, VA 23434

Phone: (757) 465-1692



Business Hours

24 Hours.

Our office number is a cell. We respond to text messaging as well during reasonable hours


Please leave a message if necessary.


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© 2018-2024 Curtis Eads Flight School, owned and operated by Aerofeather Aviation Inc., a Virginia Corporation - All Rights Reserved