Frequently Asked Questions

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  • What are the requirements for a Private Pilots Certificate?
    • You must be at least 16 years old.
    • You are able to read, speak and understand English.
    • You hold at least a current third-class Medical certificate.

    The training to get to this point is where you’ll go through a ground school in preparation for the written test, and the flying portion of your adventure. This won’t come easy or fast, but like anything in life that is worthy of dreams, the reward once you’re finished is unimaginable.

  • What is a Private Pilots Certificate?

    The Private Pilots Certificate is like a driver’s license. It allows you to fly anywhere in the United States. You can carry any number of passengers. Once you earn your license, you are free to wander around in the skies to your heart’s content. You might take the family on a trip to see relatives in a distant state or use an airplane to shorten the time it takes to make business trips to another city.


  • Do I need to buy renters insurance?

    Race City Flight Operations does not require you to buy renters insurance, but it is strongly recommended, especially once you have soloed and will be flying by yourself. Renters insurance, like other insurance, is the insurance that’s very nice to have in case something happens but you hope you never have to use it. The flight school insurance covers the airplane but has certain limits if you as a student were to be named in a lawsuit for negligent damage. We recommend, at the very least, the Bronze coverage package, which is only $147 a year. Our insurance broker would be happy to answer any questions you may have, if you want her name and number just give us a call. To sign up for renters insurance, it’s as easy as completing this online form and submitting payment!

    Renters Insurance

  • Do I need to take ground school first and then start flying afterwards?

    This is a great question. It depends on your learning style and time availability. If you are all in for learning how to fly, and want to get your license quickly, we recommend flying and taking ground school at the same time. The ground school classes are the classroom side of learning-math calculations for weight and balance, cross country flight planning, weather theory etc. The flight training is the hands on part of learning to fly. Here we will demonstrate climbing and descending, maneuvers and of course learning how to land.

  • How Much Does it Cost to Learn to Fly?

    Our Cessna 172 rents for $140 per flight hour and our instructors are $55 per hour. Our RedBird Simulator is $50 per hour.

    For Private Pilots, some flight time is flown solo or without your instructor and some flight time is with the instructor. Your instructor will work with you and on a day when you have a lesson, you may have a pre-flight briefing, a flight and then a post-flight debriefing. The total time you spent with your flight instructor was 2 hours. The total flight time was 1 hour and 18 minutes (1.3 hours). Your total cost for this lesson would be $292: $182 for the airplane and $110 for the flight instructor. Later in your training, when you fly alone, the only charge would be for the flight time.

    For Instrument students and beyond, use of the simulator is $50 per hour in addition to the flight instructor that will “fly” alongside you and will run the simulator.

    For questions about how to pay for all of this flight training, Race City Flight Operations is proud to be partnering with AOPA Finance to fund your flight training. Check with AOPA to find out how to start today!

  • What if I want a Career in Aviation?

    Having a pilots license give you an opportunity to have a career such as pilot, aircraft maintenance technicians, aircraft manufacturing, airline and airport operations, and more.

  • What kind of airplanes will I be flying?

    Race City Flight Operations has a 1999 Cessna 172S equipped with a Garmin 430W and round “steam” gages; and a 2000 Cessna 172S equipped with a Garmin 430W and 2 Aspen PFD/MFD gages in our currently growing fleet. We elected to offer two identical airplanes with different gages for our students to allow commonality between airplanes but enough differentiation that allows for future airline pilots to start getting used to glass panels.

  • How do I get started in the process ?

    Give Race City Flight Operations a call at (704) 662-6227 and we will schedule your first lesson. Or if you prefer we can schedule a Discovery Flight*, where you experience the thrill of flying the aircraft.

    If you’d like to see the airport first hand before jumping into the world of aviation, come by the hangar and talk to any of our friendly flight instructors or service professionals and get introduced. We’re located at 149 Yeager Rd in Mooresville, NC 28117. Race City Flight Operations is in a blue hangar, which is the furthest hangar on the left as you drive through the gate.

    *Must be 15 years or older.

  • How long does the flight training take?

    The FAA Require 40 hours of flight to receive a Private Pilots Certificate. These hours are broken up between flying with an instructor and solo. Some Customers earn their Private Pilots Certificate as little as 9 Months.

    (Depends on the airplane availability, weather conditions, and customer’s availability.)


  • Can I purchase a flight school Gift Certificate for a friend or relative?

    Yes, you can purchase gift certificates at the front desk of the FBO.