Best online pilot courses review.

online pilot courses

Many online private pilot ground school courses exist, and selecting the right one is strenuous for student pilots on a budget.

In this list post, I will clear all the confusion, and ultimately student pilots can pick the right ground school for them.

I listed online ground school for PPL here in two different categories:

  • The paid online private pilot school;
  • Free online pilot courses for PPL;

As a bonus, I also discussed how student pilots could utilize free resources and free ground school to pass the PPL exam.

Although online PPL ground school is less expensive than conventional ground school courses, online courses don’t fail to provide student pilots fair value.

Most importantly, you can study from your room at your convenience.

Best online private pilot ground school.

Multiple online PPL courses are decent to pass the PPL exams, but some are better.

If you don’t have the time to read through the whole article, you can see the following list of courses:

In the next section, I only discussed each course’s value and how student pilots can use the resources to pass their FAA PPL exams in their first take.

Rod Machado’s PPL eLearning.

Student pilots struggle to interpret aeronautical topics because everything seems unknown to students initially.

As time passes by, pilots acquire all the necessary knowledge.

You don’t have enough time to absorb all the information naturally from experience.

Thus an online private pilot ground school from Rod Machado can help pilots learn everything quickly.

By quickly, I don’t mean the course is fast-paced.

Commonly physical ground schools are fast-paced, and student pilots fail to keep up with accelerated ground school and naturally become unprepared for the PPL exam.

Rod Machado’s eLearning is not fast-paced because it is a comprehensive course similar to college semesters.

  • The detailed animated videos allow students to understand the exact details about each topic.
  • The animated videos are in natural language for student pilots’ better comprehension.
  • With short voiceovers and animated videos, student pilots will absorb all the knowledge by watching once.

Hence the course is forty hours long.

A course is essential to pass the FAA PPL knowledge test, but a well-structured course will help you become a safe and competent pilot.

Watching detailed animation will not forget the lessons for years to come.

What is the best part?

The available resources for student pilots to practice what they have learned.

Resources such as:

  • Flight computer simulator;
  • HSI simulator;
  • Glide Distance slider, etc.

Forty hours of learning can quickly become monotonous, but with occasional jokes from Rod Machado, this course is winning the list of online private pilot courses.

Rod Machado’s pleasant presentation made the course more enjoyable.

You can check the video to glance at Rod Machado’s private pilot online course here.

Instructor: Rod Machado

Course Duration: 40+ Hours

Price: $279

Subscription Access: Lifetime


  • best online ground school ppl

FAA Private Pilot Ground School Part 61.

This course is not just for student pilots. Any pilot at any stage of their flight training can refer to this course as a refresher.

Many students prefer traditional style explanation on a whiteboard, and this course is just right for them.

The veteran instructor claims this course is not just to pass the exam but will develop proficient pilots.

I took the course and like the way this instructor teaches.

Traditional ground school learning might not be your thing, but for many, whiteboard explanation is best, unlike animated footage, to comprehend a subject.

The course comes in 5 parts, and I linked to Part 1 of this course. You will find links to the following sections at the end of the Part 1 course.

Part 6 is optional, and student pilots can access Part 6 by private messaging. Part 6 is a written endorsement from the instructor saying you are ready for the FAA private pilot written exam.

Many things will seem difficult to understand in your online private pilot ground school for a beginner.

Rewind and watch the sections you did not understand is one benefit of PPL online ground schools.

Physical private pilot ground school is not affordable for many. Ground instructors get paid hourly, and student pilots must pay extra if they intend to review a subject.

The quality of the videos and audio in this course is perfect, unlike videos from King’s school. Although the king schools course is excellent for acquiring knowledge, their video quality is a turn-off for many students.

Unlike the King School’s class, the Udemy course has HD quality videos.

Why do I like the course?

This course is an opportunity for students not trained in the USA to look at Federal Part 61 ground school.

Take pilot lessons from an FAA-certified flight instructor, and prepare yourself for the private pilot knowledge test from anywhere in the world.

Is this online pilot course not ideal for you?

Do not buy this course at the commercial pilot licensing stage or your ATPL.

This course teaches only the fundamentals and is excellent for student pilots. Similarly, rusty private pilots can use this course as a refresher.

Instructor: Greg Reverdiau

Course Duration: Total 5 Parts = 34 Hours

Price: Complete 5 Parts = $219.95

Subscription Access: Lifetime


King School’s Online Course.

King schools online private pilot ground school has different opinions from different student pilots.

It’s normal to see various opinions when a product has thousands of users.

John King and Martha King have forty years of experience in the aviation industry teaching and training pilots.

Without a doubt, the King School online private pilot ground school is one of the best courses out there. Anyone who picks this course for their PPL test preparation will pass the exam on their first take.

Regardless, an excellent instructor will not help you pass a knowledge test if you don’t study.

The critical aspect is a student pilot’s will and effort to learn.

What makes this course different from other online ground schools?

  • Jon King and Martha King has over 40 years of experience teaching and training pilots;
  • An enjoyable and engaging presentation of topics helps student pilots in vivid learning.
  • King school claims that they prepare pilots for the unexpected, whether in actual flight or the FAA Private Pilot knowledge test.

In my opinion, the video quality is the only downside of this online pilot course. The footage content is excellent, but the actual video quality is outdated.

Many student pilots complain about the quality of video that seems from the 80s.

Nevertheless, you can find detailed lessons and excellent techniques to remember specific tasks in this course. An abundance of technical information is available for students to consume.

Ultimately, it comes down to the student pilots whether they will select this course or not.

You can request a full refund within 30 days of your purchase if you don’t like the course materials.

Purchase this course, and you can access the King School aviation library.

Most PPL online courses today provide ample study materials. However, books alone are inadequate to attract student pilots to a course.

On the contrary, student pilots need tools to simulate tasks to clarify specific topics. Hence Rod Machado’s PPL eLearning stands out from other courses.

Let’s consider the pricing of King Schools ground school.

This course is the priciest online ground school among all other ppl ground school courses. Thus the best purchase is often in a bundle.

The bundle comes with:

  1. Private pilot test prep training;
  2. Lessons to prepare student pilots for their check-ride.

To buy the package, you have to count 600 USD.


After completing the course and passings the three practice tests with at least 70% pass marks, King school will issue an endorsement to take the FAA private pilot knowledge test.

Visit here to find more about the course: King School.

Instructors: John King & Martha King

Course Duration: 15 Hours + 6.5 Hours

Price: $600

Subscription Access: Lifetime


Sporty’s Private Pilot Learn to fly.

If you did some research online, I guess by now you have already read about the sporty’s course.

Sporty’s learn to fly seems the most popular online private pilot ground school.

The condition that people refer to a single program means there is a reason behind that.

What is the reason?

Two excellent ground school courses online are:

  • Sporty’s learn to fly; and
  • King Schools test prep.

Student pilots pick any of these two and compare the courses.

Next, student pilots compare king School’s outdated-looking videos with Sporty’s excellent video quality.

Both Sporty’s and King school frequently update their content to provide up-to-date information.

But people are judgemental.

Once they watch the 80s video quality from King School’s, they can promptly think the king school program is outdated.

They think Sporty’s has up-to-date information in their course.

Comparing Sporty’s with Rod Machado’s eLearning will say that Sporty’s is not the best in the online PPL ground school industry.

Nevertheless, none of the courses I mention in this article is terrible. All of them are of excellent quality.

How about the pricing?

The cost makes a lot of difference too—Kings school Vs. Sporty’s course, the price is indeed a big difference.

Regardless, Sporty’s provides excellent quality training online.

Like any other ppl ground school, online sporty’s come with several resources to prepare for the ppl knowledge test.

Resources include:

  • Frequent updates of test questions database to prepare student pilots with all they need to pass the exam;
  • Document library containing books and PDF files that sporty’s claims worth more than 300 USD.

Another critical factor for the sporty’s online pilot course is including review notes for each video segment. Review notes are a significant advantage for student pilots.

Students will know which key things are essential in each chapter.

Type of materials.

Sporty’s created video materials combining video recordings in flight and animation for precise comprehension of student pilots.

Sporty includes lessons from inside an aircraft for student pilots to clarify subjects in a practical setting.

Once you purchase the course, you can have the system in several formats. Student pilots can study using smartphones, tablets, smart TV, and personal PCs.

You will have access to all the platforms by just paying once.

How Sporty’s course stands out from others?

The unique thing about this course is the test prep database. Sporty’s has 1000 questions for students to practice and a detailed explanation in clear English after answering a question.

CFI from sporty’s includes why an answer is right and wrong.

Instructors: Various Instructors from Sporty

Course Duration: 15 Hours

Price: $249

Subscription Access: Lifetime access & Updates


Gleim Aviation Online Ground School.

As a pioneer in pilot goods, Gleim aviation did not make a comprehensive pilot training course online for private pilots.

This course is for newbie student pilots to prepare themselves for the FAA knowledge test.

Gleim aviation confidently promises you a refund of your money if you do not pass the FAA knowledge test on your first attempt.

Sounds fair enough.

If you can pass your FAA knowledge test with just one attempt, you no longer need the course.

If you do not pass the test in one attempt, you can ask them for your refund and buy a different pilot course online.

The course is 35 hours long, adequate for your private pilot theories.

However, the course will be available to you once paid for 12 months. If you do not complete the course within 12 months, the system will expire.

Once expired, you can extend your online pilot course time by paying 50% of the original price.

The course contents pilot lesson on the topics:

  1. Airplanes and Aerodynamics;
  2. Airplane Instruments, Engines, and Sytems;
  3. Airports, Air Traffic Control, and Airspace;
  4. Federal Aviation Regulations;
  5. Airplane Performance and Weight and Balance;
  6. Aeromedical Factors and Aeronautical Decision Making (ADM);
  7. Aviation Weather;
  8. Aviation Weather Sevices;
  9. Navigation: Charts and Publications;
  10. Navigation Systems;
  11. Cross-Country Flight Planning.

The best online pilot course is the one you find most suitable for you.

A pilot course may be outstanding for me but may not be helpful for you.

I may discover online pilot training very interesting. However, the same pilot lessons can be very dull for you.

Though individual student pilots’ preferences matter, I always tell my friends to pick a course from the Top 3 mentioned here.

I believe you have decided to get your pilot license and want a heads up on the ground school syllabus contents.

You want to know which subjects will be taught to you in the private pilot ground training or prepare by yourself. The section of this article will help you stay ahead of your pilot training batch mates.

Similarly, from here, you can evaluate whether you are good enough to start your private pilot training or not.

I have designed this private pilot ground school syllabus as a resource for anyone to guide themselves for private pilot training.

Before going for your first flight, you will learn all the subjects during your ground school training.

Use a syllabus as a guideline, study advance, and prepare before enrolling in a flight training institute.

A step-by-step guide includes the chapters of the Jeppesen Private Pilot textbook and the topics in those particular chapters most important for your private pilot training course.

To become a good pilot, you must always keep learning.

The sooner you master the basics, the better you will do in real-world flight training.


6 Replies to “Best online pilot courses review.

  1. Thank you for putting this list together. However, you need to make sure that somebody proof reads or edits your content – there many grammatical errors which make your post appear unprofessional, and therefore (in my mind) makes me skeptical of the content itself. (There is no “Civil Aviation Authority” in the U.S….)


    Eric Hummel

    1. Thank you for reminding me that, Eric. Indeed, the article was never proof-read. I almost forgot to update this page, but your comment was a kind reminder. Thank you again.

    1. Exactly. His explanations about aviation way better than Rod and King schools. He should be on the top of the list.

  2. Only stupid ppl care about grammatical error. The point and the effort is way more important. This summary is flawless.

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