Student Pilot Post Solo Costs Explained

The Post Solo Training Costs associated with the Private Pilot License are normally close to the pre solo phase but  will burn your money up the fastest. Once you break this down you want to look at the big picture of the entire license. You don't want to get stuck and run out of money because in this phase of your training, you are doing longer flights and will have more ground instruction.


Once again there are some requirements put out by the FAA that have to be done before you can do your solo cross countries. Some training syllabuses will do some of the things I list below before solo but I like to build each lesson on top of the other so you learn one thing and then integrate it into the next lesson.


A perfect example is the simulated instrument training. I have this broken into 2 post solo flights. That will get about 2.2 hours of simulated instrument time. Then I have a lost procedures lesson where we will get about another .3 hours then the rest I will pick up at the flight test preparation stage. Bottom line is you need the three hours but if you are getting a little here and then a little there, chances are someone misses it and the examiner picks it up on flight test day and then walks out because you aren't qualified.


The other thing that can happen is your instructor picks it up and then up you go for an extra flight. The same thing can happen with the night time. I can't tell you how many times it has even happened to me no matter how careful I was. Now I do all the night time in one flight so it is over and done with. You don't want to get a call from your instructor the night before your flight test telling you to meet them at the airport to get some more flight time.


For our purpose here I will just list the requirements and then give you an estimate on the cost. The Private Pilot Post Solo requirements can be found at the link below. I will just outline the cost for you:


Private Pilot License, Post Solo Requirements


Basically there are 5 things needed before you can go on solo cross countries.

Soft Field Takeoffs and Landings
Short Field Takeoffs and Landings
Simulated Instrument Time
Vor Navigation
Cross Country Flight Training


Now the Hour Requirements are just for the Private Pilot License Aeronautical Experience but you have to have logged the above subject areas. I also Include the Dual Cross Countries Day and then all the night time Required.

2.5 Hours Dual Instruction for Soft-Field / Short-Field Takeoffs and Landings
2.5 Hours Dual Instruction / Simulated Instrument Instruction
4.5 Hours Dual Instruction for Cross-Countries
5.0 Hours Ground Instruction
3.0 Hours Dual instruction for Night Flying
5 Hours Solo Cross Country

In my syllabus, I have two dual cross-country flights, and each averages 2.2 hours. The FAA only has an hour requirement for the private pilot certificate, but I personally think that students need two different cross-country flights and about 2-3 hours of ground instruction. I am also going to add the solo cross country hours here since the goal here is to get the solo cross country requirements and move on to the flight test preparation portion of your Private Pilot Flight Training.


If we add this all up we get the following cost for this part of your private pilot training:
Post Solo Flight Training Costs. I am using the same plane and instructor rates I used in the Pre Solo Cost Section


Dual Instruction @ $165 Per hour

Ground Instruction @ $65 Per Hour

Solo Airplane @ $100 Per Hour


12.5 Hours Dual                              $2062.50
5.0 Hours Ground                             $325.00
5 Hours of Solo                                $500.00

Total                                             $2887.00



Once again with a good instructor and flying consistently, you should be close to this amount for this phase of your Pilot License Training. Depending on the instructor or the syllabus you may do one day cross country and then one night cross country. I personally have two different day cross countries to different types of airports.


1: Private Pilot Cost - Books and Materials

2: Private Pilot Cost - Pre Solo Training

3: Private Pilot Cost- Flight Test Preparation

4: Total Private Pilot Cost


Hope to see you in the sky




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