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FAQ | Frequently Asked Questions

Here you can find frequently asked questions about our programs here at Iceland Aviation Academy, courses, prices, facilities etc. Click on the question you want to see an answer to. 

When is the best time to learn to fly?

The simple answer is "when you have the will, the knowledge and the ability" - it is always the right time to make your dream come true. The aviation industry is characterized by waves - growth that then slows down, stagnates and possibly declines temporarily before growth resumes. Peoples prefrences are different, so some prefer to strike while the iron is hot and the industry is in a wave of growth while others prefer to use the downtime - educate themselves and be available when the skies open again.

Is it expensive to become a pilot?

It is estimated that pilot programs cost about 11 million ISK for commercial pilot licenses. This includes theoretical and practical instruction in private and commercial pilot's licenses, flight hours and materials. It must be taken into account that the study itself only takes 2 years. After these two years of study, it is possible to start earning an income immediately. The average salary of commercial pilots per month is around 2 million ISK, which is quite higher than the average salary in Iceland. In addition, it is believed that there will be a shortage of pilots in the coming years and therefore job opportunities are good.

In comparison, traditional university studies for a BS and MS degree are 5 years in total, or 3 additional years in studies and from the labor market. A student in full university studies on a 100% support loan has a total loan of 7-9 million ISK after 5 years of university studies.

Of course, everyone must assess which path is suitable towards their dream job, but one must look at the field of interest, funding, time in studies as well as the labor market and income possibilities. Studying is expensive, but in the long run it will pay off.


Is there a shortage of pilots?

A recent analysis by the American management consulting firm Oliver Wyman, featured in CNN Business projects that it is just a matter of time until the airline industry will face a pilot shortage. Their findings indicate that we can expect a worldwide shortfall of at least 34 thousand pilots by the year 2025. The effects of the shortage will be felt by airlines as early as 2021. This will be the result of increasing demand for domestic and international travel accompanied by the retirement of currently working pilots. Global shocks have in the past discouraged potential candidates from becoming pilots and the analysis projects that the COVID-19 pandemic will have a similar effect. Taking a further toll on the number of pilots available to meet the growing demand.

What is Intergrated CPL ME/IR?

The pilot's traditional course of study is so-called "modular training". The study is divided into smaller courses and students can adapt their studies to their needs. Therefore, the study period is usually from 2-3 years and depends on students arranging the courses so that they best suit their needs and circumstances at each time. The courses are mainly private pilot training, theoretical commercial pilot training (ATPL, Airline Transport Pilot License theory) and practical commercial pilot training with appropriate endorsements (CPL, Commercial Pilot License). 

Iceland Aviation Academy offers a so-called Integrated Commercial Pilot License (Integrated CPL ME/IR) and the study includes considerable advantages over the modular study program. Students in this program can begin their studies without any basis in flight and graduate with a commercial pilot's license (CPL / ME / IR). The study period is about 24 months.

While licensing and skills are comparable after graduation, there are many benefits of the integrated path to be considered. The program is organized from beginning to end and there are certain additional elements to the study that ensure that knowledge and skills are constantly maintained and improved. As an example of this additional training is designed to strengthen discipline, decision-making, knowledge and other important aspects.

The school takes good care of the student throughout the study period and all courses and flights (theoretical and practical training) are planned in advance. The phased study program offers more flexibility that suits certain students better, but then the student is more responsible for their academic progress.

Learn more about Integrated CPL ME/IR

What are the health requirements for student pilots?

All pilot license holders are required to hold a special Part-MED health certificate. Following a satisfactory medical examination by an Aero-Medical Examiner, which is carried out in accordance with the requirements of Part-MED, the Aero-Medical Examiner issues a Class 1 or 2nd medical certificate. The validity of 1st and 2nd class health certificates varies. Medical examinations are either 2nd class which is sufficient for all private pilots or 1st class where the requirements are a bit higher and commercial pilots have to pass. First class Part-MED health certificate:

  • Applies to commercial pilot licenses and pilot pilot licenses
  • Valid for 12 months for commercial pilots in single-pilot aircraft until they reach the age of 40
  • Valid for 12 months for commercial pilots in multi-pilot aircraft until they reach the age of 60, after which a certificate is valid for 6 months
  • Valid for 12 months for pilot

Second-class Part-MED health certificate:

This applies to student pilots, private pilots, glider pilots and fish pilots
Valid for 60 months to forty, for 24 months to fifty and for 12 months thereafter

List of approved aero-medical examiners

Do I need any education to be able to start learning to fly?

Students need to be able to demonstrate skills and competences in mathematics, English and physics. Educational requirements vary depending on the course applied for, but Iceland Aviation Academy assesses the ability of each applicant that applies.

Ask about study opportunities

What is the age limit for the Private Pilot Program

Students must have reached the age of 17 to complete private flight training. It is therefore desirable that the student has reached at least 16 years of age at the beginning of his / her studies. At the beginning of commercial aviation studies, whether in the case of combined or phased studies, the applicant must be at least 18 years old at the beginning of studies.

Learn more about the PPL program

How long does it take to become a private pilot?

The study usually lasts about 6 months, but the length of the study varies according to the student's circumstances. The student has to complete theoretical studies which takes about 3 months and the course is taught three times a year.

Learn more about the PPL program

How long does it take to become a professional pilot?

From start to finish, combined commercial pilot training takes about 24 months. Private flight training and modular commercial training usually take 24-30 months with hour building phases in between.

What test do you need to take for a pilot's license?

Students who graduate from a private pilot course are entitled to take an exam at the Icelandic Civil Aviation Authority.

Learn more about the PPL program

What test do you need to take for commercial pilot license?

Students who graduate from commercial pilot training at the Icelandic Aviation Academy are entitled to take an examination at the Icelandic Civil Aviation Administration.

Where are you located?

The office of the Icelandic Aviation Academy is located in Keilir's main building at Grænásbraut 910 at Ásbrú (by Keflavík Airport). Theoretical studies take place in our main building at Ásbrú. Practical training takes place at both Reykjavík Airport and Keflavík International Airport.

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