Read Below to Learn How to

Become a Certificated Pilot

We'll help you achieve your aviation goals.
Every step of the way.

If you're just starting your journey in the world of aviation, you've probably come across a variety of resources on the internet and you don't know where to start. What's the difference between part 141 and part 61 training? How much is pilot training going to cost? Are small airplanes safe? We'll answer those questions and more below.

A student pilot at Ideal Aviation Passes His Helicopter Checkride

Determine if Pilot Training is Right For You

The first step is to make a decision on whether or not you really want to become a pilot. Take a mental inventory of yourself and determine what your long term goals are and how aviation fits in. Do you want to fly around liesurely with your family and friends? See the city of St. Louis from above in a private aircraft and then fly to a nearby city for lunch? Or, are you looking to make a career out of aviation? Do you want to become an airline pilot? Or have a career in aviation in a different type of pilot job role?

Do you want to fly helicopters or airplanes? How much time can you dedicate each week to flight training? Will your loved ones support you in your decision to become a pilot? These are some of the questions you should ask yourself before you start pilot training. No matter what your circumstances and long term ambitions are, the Ideal Aviation team is here to help you reach your goals.

We've prepared a short and fun quiz to help you determine if pilot training is right for you. Start by taking our quick quiz to see if you have what it takes! Our quiz will assess your knowledge and skills related to aviation, as well as your personality traits and interests, to help determine if flying is right for you.


Schedule a Discovery Flight

The first decision you can make is whether you want to fly helicopters (rotary wing) or airplanes (fixed wing). Schedule a time to meet with our team, tour our hangar, and take flight in one of our aircraft. During a discovery flight, you'll be paired up with one of our highly qualified FAA certificated flight instructors.

You'll get the chance to sit in the pilot seat and commandeer the aircraft. Your instructor will help you taxi the aircraft out of the ramp and receive clearance from the control tower. Once airborne, you'll take control of the aircraft and practice basic maneuvers like flying straight and level, turns, climbs, and descents.

Are you up for the opportunity that lies ahead? Schedule a discovery flight now and see if flying is right for you.

Discovery flight over the St. Louis Arch

Pilot Training Courses

At Ideal Aviation, we are committed to providing the highest quality training programs for our students. Our experienced instructors, state-of-the-art facilities, and modern training aircraft ensure that you receive the best possible training. Contact us today to learn more about our advanced training programs and take the first step towards achieving your aviation career goals!

Private Pilot Certificate

A private pilot certificate is the place to start for those who have always dreamt of flying their own aircraft. This certificate allows you to operate an aircraft for non-commercial purposes. Our expert instructors will guide you through the fundamentals of flight, teaching you how to take off, land, and navigate the skies with confidence.


Instrument Rating

Take your flying to the next level. An Instrument Rating equips you with the knowledge and skills to fly in low visibility and adverse weather conditions using only your aircraft's instruments. This rating opens up a whole new world of possibilities, making you a safer and more proficient pilot.


Commercial Pilot Certificate

A commercial certificate allows you to fly for compensation or hire. Our experienced instructors will help you master the skills needed to operate advanced aircraft, including advanced maneuvers and emergency procedures, ensuring that you are fully equipped for the challenges that lie ahead.



Our multi-engine training program is designed to prepare you to operate complex aircraft with multiple engines. Our expert instructors will guide you through advanced systems and procedures, including engine management, emergency procedures, and more. With our advanced training program, you'll have the skills and confidence to fly multi-engine aircraft with ease.


Certified Flight Instructor (CFI)

Pass on your knowledge and skills to future pilots and build time and experience. Our comprehensive training program will equip you with the knowledge and skills needed to become a competent and confident flight instructor. Our experienced instructors will provide you with the tools you need to prepare future pilots for their Private Pilot, Commercial, and Instrument Rating certificates.


What's the difference between
Part 141 and Part 61?

Part 141 and Part 61 refer to different sections in the FAA regulations. Part 141 is a more structured and rigorous training program that is designed for schools that are approved by the FAA to provide training under specific curricula. Part 61, on the other hand, is a more flexible training program that allows for individualized training plans; however being less structured, students may require more hours to complete Part 61 training.

Part 141

  • Structured Curriculum
  • Fewer Required Hours
  • FAA Approved Syllabus
  • Flight School Must be FAA Certified
  • More Experienced Instructors
  • Geared Towards Career Pilot

Ideal Aviation is one of the very few flight schools in the St. Louis area that is part 141. We've partnered with SWIC to provide flight training for college credit.

Is Flight Training Safe?

It's natural to wonder about the risks involved when considering learning to fly. Rest assured that flight training is a safe activity, with a strong emphasis on safety in all aspects of training. The aviation industry places a high priority on safety, and this commitment extends to flight training at Ideal Aviation.

The NTSB reported that the fatal accident rate for general aviation has been declining for over a decade, and in 2020, it reached its lowest level ever recorded. In 2019, the FAA reported that the accident rate for Part 141 flight schools was lower than the rate for Part 61 flight schools.

Our flight instructors are highly trained professionals who take safety seriously. In addition, our aircraft are meticulously maintained and inspected regularly.

Pilot performing a preflight check on a cessna 172

How Much is Flight Training Going to Cost?

The cost of flight training varies greatly depending on a number of factors such as type of training, the student's aptitude and experience level, and the type of aircraft used.

When first starting out, many people only look at the hourly rate for aircraft rental. However, take into consideration the program as a whole. Ideal Aviation has great aircraft availability so you can fly more often and retain your knowledge and skills better so you can pass the checkride in a shorter time.

Although the actual cost of flight training can vary widely, plan to budget around $15,000 for private pilot fixed wing and $30,000 for private pilot rotary wing. To get more details on hourly rates, program pricing, and potential financing options; give us a call today and speak to an Ideal Aviation team member.

Discovery flight over the St. Louis Arch

Become a Pilot at Ideal Aviation

The Place for Pilots

In St. Louis

At Ideal Aviation, we are proud to have trained a diverse group of pilots who have gone on to achieve great things in their aviation careers. Our flight school has been the starting point for many pilots who have gone on to work for commercial airlines, private corporations, and even the military.

We believe that the key to your success lies in our commitment to providing the highest quality flight training available, with a focus on safety, professionalism, and individual attention.

Still looking for more information on pilot training?

Get Your FREE Pilot Training Guide Book!

We've preapred this free booklet which explains everything you need to know for your pilot certificate.

Picture of our free how to be a pilot training guide

Fly with experienced safe aviators that know the flight training industry.

We are a team of aviators that are experts in the flight training industry. We have decades of combined experience to get you safely in the air. Start your flight training today and see what we're talking about by scheduling a discovery flight.