Part 61 or Part 141?

by Josh on July 10, 2012

Possibly my biggest question before starting flight training was weather to learn part 61 or part 141. First I had to figure out the differences between the two. I wanted to find the one that saved me money, and fit my other criteria better than the other. Here, I’m going to explain some of the main differences of part 61 and part 141 flight schools to better help you make the right choice of flight school before starting your flight training.

Training Difficulty- Part 61 training difficulty is mainly dependent on the CFI and how fast he or she will push you. However the CFI’s will not allow you to test until your maneuvers are satisfactory.  On the other hand during part 141 training, students complete stage checks with the chief flight instructor to verify that the student is up to speed with his maneuvers.  Stage checks are kind of like mini checkrides.

Curriculum- Part 61 curriculum varies based on the student and is very adaptable to the student. Part 141 curriculum is based on a syllabus that is used for every student. The student usually has a copy for study purposes. However, you are unable to change the lesson sheet.

Ground Work- Part 61 relies heavily on student self-study. Most CFI’s offer some sort of ground training and checkride prep. Part 141 is mainly classroom based with administered written tests that you must pass to get credit.

Paperwork- Part 61 generally has basic copies and checkride prep work. On the other hand, Part 141 generally has heavy paper workloads. Logbook copies, ID copies, Medical copies, lesson plans etc…

Tests- Part 61 includes FAA written tests, pre solo exams and the private pilot checkride. Part 141 includes the FAA written test, classroom tests, stage checks, pre solo exams, and in house checkrides.

Costs- Part 61 is generally easier on your wallet compared to part 141 due to the adaptable curriculum. Part 141 is usually greater due to ground school and higher aircraft expenses. However many part 141 schools can count as college credit.

Well, as you can see there are some major differences in part 61 and part 141 flight schools that you will want to take into consideration before starting flight training. You might even want to take a few flight lessons with a few different flight schools in order to find the right flight school for you. Remember that you will be spending 40+ hours of your life and giving your money to these people so make sure that it is the right one for you before deciding for good.

“Always remember that a good pilot is always learning.”

Private Pilot Blueprint

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