A Guide on the Pilot Course Requirements in the Philippines.

pilot course requirements philippines

The requirements to enroll in a flight school are not as complicated as you may think. It is quite the opposite of what most people think.

In this post, I will discuss the difficulties and why most people are confused about the requirements.

Because the maximum number of students interested in becoming pilots in the Philippines consults with people who are not pilots in real life.

If you are not a pilot, you will have the least idea of this industry.

Perhaps I do not know how to become a pilot and the requirements.

Let me give you a heads-up. Money and other basic requirements are today’s most important when becoming a pilot.

Why do I say money?

To acquire your commercial pilot license, you must fly actual hours by renting an aircraft.

Not only for the aircraft, but you also have to pay for a certified flight instructor.


If you have the money to spend, you must not waste time and enroll in a flight school.

Because the age required to get your commercial pilot license is only 18.

So why wait?

Being 18 years old and willing to pay for flight training is enough to get your first pilot license.

To start your flight training in the Philippines, you must have a high degree.

You do not need a bachelor’s degree to start your flight training.


The real question must be, why do you want to become a pilot?

I believe you want to work in an airline in the future. Well, some airlines may ask for you to have a bachelor’s degree before hiring you.

But most of them will want to check your aviation knowledge.

Because at the end of the day, you will be flying an airplane, and your expertise and knowledge will help you conduct safe flights with hundreds of passengers on board.

So, one main requirement for becoming a pilot is to work hard and study adequately.

Below, I have shared the requirements according to the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines.

General Requirements:

  • At least 17 years of age;
  • At least a high school graduate;
  • Not color blind;
  • Physically and Mentally fit;
  • NBI Clearance for both foreign and local students.

Once you meet the general requirements, a trainee pilot can apply for a student pilot license.

Getting a student pilot license is a very fast step.

What is a student pilot license?

A student pilot license is what the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines will issue for you, and you must carry that with you every time you are conducting a flight.

You must keep the student pilot license with you until you reach your first forty hours of flight time and apply for your private pilot license.

Once you pass all the private pilot knowledge tests and the check ride, you will be issued a private pilot license.

However, until then, you must always carry your student pilot license aboard the training flight.

Private Pilot License Requirements:

  • Student pilot license;
  • 2nd class medical certificate issued by the Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines;
  • NTC License (Radio Telephony);
  • English language proficiency certificate with a minimum score of 4;
  • At least 40 hours of flight logbook time, a Minimum of 20 hours of dual, and 20 hours as the PIC;
  • Passed the ATO knowledge test;
  • Passed the ATO practical flight test conducted by a check pilot.

Commercial Pilot License Requirements:

  • Private pilot license;
  • A valid 1st class medical certificate;
  • NTC license (Radio Telephony);
  • English language proficiency certificate with a minimum score of 4;
  • Minimum of 150 hours total flight time logged
  • Passed the ATO knowledge test;
  • Passed the ATO practical flight test conducted by a Check Pilot.

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    1. Well if you have completed your 12th grade then it is the prime time for you to apply for flight training. For more details send us an email using this contact form here.

      You are not far from your dreams!

      1. I an bikalpa from nepal.I have recently completed my highschool 12 class in biology science. Can i apply for commercial pilot traning in philipines with my biology faculty? And what is the average cost for the course if i am eligible.

        1. Hi Bikalpa. You are eligible for pilot training in the Philippines as you have finished High School. The eligibility requirement for pilot training is high school graduates, regardless of their subjects. You will learn necessary aeronautical subjects during your pilot training ground school. Also, check this article for relevant information >>> Which subjects to study to become a pilot?

  1. Hello. I’m a University student from Sacramento, California. I’m planning on joining a flight school after university. I already have an FAA 3rd Class Medical Certificate. My application for a 1st Class Medical Certificate was deferred because of my right eye. If I can pass a Medical Flight Test I can get a waiver or SODA. Is a waiver or SODA issued by the FAA valid in the Philippines? I plan to move to the Philippines when I get my American CPL to fly for Cebu Pacific.

    1. I will suggest this:
      Instead of getting your CPL from the USA, go to the Philippines and get your CPL there.
      The procedures will be a lot less complicated. You will not have to worry about FAA issued Soda or any waiver.
      Go to the Philippines and get your medical certificate from there and continue CPL.
      Step 1: Get your PPL from the USA.
      Step 2: Get your Instrument rating from the USA.
      Step 3: Go to the Philippines and convert your license there.
      Step 4: Get your CPL in the Philippines.
      Step 5: Build enough flying hours in the Philippines to get an airline job.
      The steps I mentioned above are viable if you are willing to work in Cebu Pacific, as you have said.
      Let us know your decision here. We might aid you with some more information to accomplish your goal.

  2. Thank you for your answer. I actually had a few more questions. The reason my 1st Class Medical application was deferred is that I have a condition known as “Amblyopia” AKA “Lazy Eye”. My uncorrected vision is 20/30. I wear glasses and my left eye is correctable to 20/20 but my right eye is stuck at 20/40 due to lazy eye. Is it still possible for me to get a 1st Class Medical Certificate from the Philippines? My second question is about getting my CPL. Will I be able to get into an airline with a CPL? Correct me if I’m wrong but don’t the major airlines like Cebu Pacific and Philippine Airlines require ATP licenses with a minimum of 1500 hours? The reason why I want to fly with Cebu Pacific is that I heard that you can join Cebu Pacific with a CPL instead of an ATPL and with only 500 hours instead of 1500 hours. Again thank you for your help. I’ve been trying to get all the information I can from the CAAP but their website doesn’t really have any helpful information regarding specific topics like medical conditions.

    1. I am unsure of the possibility of obtaining a first-class medical certificate with reduced vision. However, I will inquire regarding that in the CAAP, and let you know here in the comments.

      Regarding what you have heard that ATPL is essential for getting a job in any airline in the Philippines is somewhat incorrect. ATPL is necessary for someone applying for the captain’s position in Cebu Pacific. A pilot holding a commercial pilot license with instrument rating and 500 hours flying time can apply for Cebu pacific.

      On the contrary, it is common for Philippine airlines to recruit pilots with merely a CPL and 200 hours flying time. But only Flipino citizens can have this privilege.

      Although airlines in the Philippines had plans to recruit many pilots in 2020, they have postponed all their plans due to COVID 19 pandemic.

      If you have more questions, do not hesitate to ask. I will try to answer all your queries.

      1. Thank you for all this important information! Regarding citizenship, I don’t think that will be an issue for me I am a dual U.S./Philippine citizen due to Jus sanguinis. my only real concern is my right eye being stuck at 20/40 vision. Is it possible to take a medical flight test in the Philippines for a waiver/SODA? Other than that I meet all the other health requirements for a 1st class medical certificate.

    1. I am unaware of such requirements to become a pilot. The height requirement is irrelevant for taking flying lessons. Although height is not an issue for operating airplanes regardless of gender, I believe to be a military pilot, a minimum height is required.
      So unless you want to apply for the air force, I suggest not to concern yourself with height.
      So the question is, what kind of a pilot do you intend to be? Military Pilot or a commercial pilot?

    1. Having a degree is not crucial to work as a pilot. Countless airlines will hire you if you have a CPL.
      YES, some major airlines require pilots to have a degree, but not all. Airlines prioritize pilots with more flying experience than someone with a degree.
      That being said, getting your first job as an airline pilot is not easy. It takes a while to reach the airliner cockpit except for a few lucky ones that get a job immediately after they finish flight training.

  3. Hello again capt.elite,

    Joshua Cadelina here. Were you able to get an answer from the CAAP about getting a Philippine 1st Class Medical Cettificate with reduced vision? My plan is to get an American 1st Class Certificate and convert it to a Philippine Medical Certificate.


  4. Hello, Is bachelor’s degree a must to become a full-time Pilot? I am about to migrate in canada and stuck between choosing a diploma or a bachelor’s degree.

  5. What are the Philippines rules & regulations for a foreigner/dual citizen with a FAA PPL in order to fly (for leisure) in the Philippines?
    Looking forward to your response.
    Thank you

  6. Hello sir, i am from nepal and i have recently passed 12 from science faculty. I can apply for this course. How much cost does this course take. Can you please send details about this filed. I am interested for this course.

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