Learn more about becoming a pilot, our academy, our training environment, our training aircraft, and cost of training. Useful info - don't skip!
See what it is all about being in flight school and piloting helicopters. Indulge yourself with an introductory flight lesson.
Heli pilots are in great demand; $70,000 STARTING salary; train at your pace & schedule; financial aid pays for all; employment guaranteed in writing.
Pilot helicopters for personal business and pleasure - it's more affordable than you think and the benefits are priceless!
Are you ready to pursue training? Follow our step-by-step instructions, enroll in the appropriate training course, apply for financial aid if needed, review our pilot training pricelist.
Are you looking for something different, something exciting, something that will change your life? Becoming a helicopter pilot is just that. No day will be like the previous, you will continuously be challenged, and your life will never be the same. Flying helicopters is a lot of fun, exciting, rewarding, and - contrary to common belief - very safe!
At Tallahassee Helicopter we care! We are dedicated to your success. Whether you just want to take a few lessons to experience the thrill and excitement of piloting a helicopter or if you are ready to become a certified helicopter pilot, we offer the highest-quality helicopter flight training at the most affordable rates. Let us assist you to achieve your dream of flying helicopters.
All our Pilot Training Programs consist of the highest-quality flight training and ground school in a professional and inspiring environment. We understand that each student learns differently and is going to excel in different areas. That's why we will work with you one-on-one to optimize your learning progress not only to systematically prepare you for successfully passing both the written and the practical tests with ease but to provide you with the knowledge, skills, and tools that will enable you to operate helicopters safely and competently. Safety is our number one priority and that is the reason why our students are held to the highest of standards in the flight training industry.
By the way, you DO NOT need any prior aviation knowledge or fixed-wing flight experience prior to starting your training. In fact many experts agree that it is easier to learn to fly helicopters if you are not already a fixed-wing pilot.
To emphasize our commitment to safety we conduct all our flight training in new Robinson R44 helicopters. This helicopter is much easier to fly, more forgiving, and more fun to pilot, making it a much safer training helicopter than older or other training helicopters such as the Robinson R22, the Schweizer 300, or the Bell 47.
By providing you with valuable R44 experience, your employment opportunities are significantly enhanced in two ways:
And even if you don't seek employment as a pilot but plan to purchase or lease your own R44 for pleasure and business, you will save thousands on your insurance premium during your first year alone by training on the R44.
We tailor and optimize your training to your schedule, your pace, and to your abilities, which minimizes your cost of training. You only pay for the actual time you fly our helicopter and for the one-on-one training you receive from your instructor. Additionally, you have the flexibility to either pay-as-you-go or pay in lump sums in return for generous discounts.
Even though a new, well equipped R44 such as ours typically rents for $500 to $650 per hour, we are proud to be able to offer our new IFR R44s for as low as $385 per hour - among the lowest R44 rental rates world-wide!!! Our instructor fee is also most competitive at only $55 per hour. However, the knowledge, skills, and experience of our flight instructors as well as their dedication to your success are among the best in the helicopter flight training industry.
With the help of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) you can now finance part or all of your training. Visit their website at http://finance.aopa.org/Flex-Aviation-Loan.
Give us a call, ask your questions, schedule a visit, or book an introductory flight lesson to find out why more and more people choose to obtain their flight training from Tallahassee Helicopters.
The best way to experience what helicopter flight training is all about and how it feels to pilot a helicopter is to indulge yourself with an introductory flight lesson. You will spend about one hour with one of our experienced flight instructors who will explain to you the basics of helicopter flight and what you can expect from your training. Afterwards you will not only experience the thrill, enjoyment, and satisfaction of flying in one of those most remarkable aircraft but you will actually take the controls and experience how it feels to pilot a helicopter yourself - of course under the close supervision and assistance of your instructor. After your flight you will debrief and will have plenty of opportunity to ask any questions you may have.
This is also a great opportunity to assess our pilot academy, the quality of helicopters we provide, and the high quality of training you receive from our instructors.
- An Awesome Career -
If you are ready for an exciting and very rewarding career you may want to consider becoming a Professional Helicopter Pilot.
Helicopter pilots are in great demand for a number of reasons. This has greatly contributed to the starting salary to climb to $70,000 - and that's just starting salary. The average helicopter pilot earns between $80,000 to $120,000 and quite a few earn more than $200,000 per year. Additionally, ask anyone who flies helicopters as a career and you will be able to confirm that flying helicopters is fun, exciting, varied, rewarding, and - contrary to common belief - very safe!
Our training curriculum takes you from no aviation knowledge and no flight experience through being an employed commercial pilot and flight instructor in about 9 to 48 months depending on whether you train full-time or at various levels of part-time. During our training program you will receive your Private, Commercial, Instrument, Certified Flight Instructor (CFI), and Instrument Instructor (CFII) certificates and ratings. You will have also obtained 200 hours of flight time experience in the R44 and the skills, knowledge, and proficiency, which will enable us to hire you as a flight instructor and commercial pilot.
From then on you will be paid for your flying and gain additional flight experience which will allow you to move on to more challenging helicopter pilot jobs such as sightseeing tours and aerial news gathering. Once you reach above 1,000 hours of flight experience (which takes about 6 to 18 months) you are ready for employment in the helicopter industry with a starting salary of about $70,000 annually plus excellent fringe benefits. Later in your career and depending on specialization your salary may increase to over $240,000.
The cost of our three Career Pilot Programs (depending on your specific career goals) are competitively priced as low as $66,275 (instrument rated commercial pilot), $74,525 (adds CFI & CFII flight instructor credentials), and $89,925 (adds time building to be employable) respectively and cover all your R44 helicopter rentals as well as all one-on-one flight instruction and ground instruction. You also need to budget for some ancillary expenses such as books and materials ($250), an FAA written test ($150) and the FAA practical test ($500) for each certificate or rating.
With our financial aid options, all training expenses may be covered with little to no out of pocket cost. Any loan payments are deferred until you start earning about $70,000 per year. Even though you are allowed to take 15 years to pay back your student loans, at your starting salary you can pay-off your student loans within three years while still enjoying a good standard of living.
Imagine taking off from your own backyard, landing at your business, favorite gulf course, a restaurant, friends' homes, beach house, etc. That's the lifestyle of a private pilot and wow you too can learn to fly helicopters right here in Tallahassee and benefit from this most amazing form of transportation. It's more affordable than you think!
Our Private Pilot training program is your first step towards enjoying all the excitement and privileges of helicopter flying. By itself, this program is intended for people who want to learn to fly helicopters for pleasure or for personal business or for people who are planning to purchase their own helicopter. However, the Private Pilot license is also the first major milestone for seeking more advanced certifications or for starting a career as a Professional Helicopter Pilot.
With your Private Pilot License you are allowed to take family, friends, and other folks you know on board a helicopter you own or rent while acting as Pilot in Command. Even though you may share the operating expenses with your passengers, you cannot be compensated for your piloting skills. To fly for compensation or hire you must have a Commercial Pilot Certificate.
Tallahassee Helicopters offers numerous pilot training courses for FAA certified helicopter and fixed wing pilots that range from bi-annual flight reviews to certification as an Airline Transport Pilot. The main training programs are described below...
The Instrument Rating training program teaches you the techniques to fly when there is no or very poor visual references outside the helicopter such as when flying in fog, clouds, or at night over unpopulated areas and no moon light. You will develop the skills to evaluate adverse weather conditions and the ability to maneuver and to navigate the helicopter precisely with reference to the inside gauges only, instead of purely looking outside of the aircraft. In addition to increasing your capabilities as a helicopter pilot, it also enhances your confidence, safety, and your ability to control the aircraft. It also provides you with a better understanding of the flight environment in which most flights are conducted. One of the major causes for general aviation accidents has been as a result of continued flight in deteriorating weather conditions. Pilots with this rating are more adequately prepared when weather conditions deteriorate. They have a better understanding of how to avoid unsafe weather and are able to safely and legally fly through clouds or dense fog when it cannot be avoided. Flying in "Instrument Meteorological Conditions" (IMC) is also often quoted as being the most challenging and most rewarding flying pilots ever do.
The Commercial Pilot training program essentially revisits all the skills, maneuvers, and knowledge you learned during the Private Pilot training program with the goal to to perform all the basic private pilot maneuvers with higher precision and with more confidence. As a certified commercial pilot you can be employed by a helicopter operator to fly their helicopters for compensation.
The Flight Instructor Program teaches you to fly the helicopter from the left seat (because your students will sit on the right, PIC seat) and to teach all piloting skills and pertinent aviation knowledge concisely, correctly, and safely to your students who are seeking to become certified Private, Commercial, or ATP helicopter pilots. After some experience as a CFI you can also train any commercial pilot to become a CFI.
The Instrument Flight Instructor Program simply combines your knowledge, skills and expertise as an instrument-rated pilot and as a flight instructor. As a CFII you are qualified to train Private and Commercial helicopter pilots to obtain their instrument ratings and to train CFIs to become CFIIs. It typically takes 5 to 10 hours of dual training as well as 5 to 10 hours of ground instruction to get ready for the CFII knowledge and practical tests.
The ATP is commonly referred to as the Ph.D. of all pilot certifications. To be eligible to obtain your ATP, you must be an instrument rated, commercial pilot with substantial flight experience and have detailed knowledge pertaining to air taxi / charter and airline rules and regulations in addition to all the knowledge you obtained early on in your training. Typically, pilots work for several years before they obtain their ATPs. By that time they have so much aviation knowledge, refined piloting skills and experience that passing that ATP practical test will usually be the easiest checkride they ever took. Many employers seeking pilots for challenging pilot positions require the successful candidate to have an ATP. And even if the employer does not require an ATP, having one tells a lot about your professionalism and experience. That's why most professional pilots at some point in time will obtain their ATPs.
Our ATP training program is designed to help ATP candidates to obtain their ATP. We neither follow any syllabus nor require any specific minimum training hours. Instead, you will self-guide your review and practice of all pertinent maneuvers required by the PTS for the ATP and we will provide assistance to you as requested.
In order to act as pilot in command, every pilot must have demonstrate proficiency as a pilot within the past 2 years. This flight review is typically conducted by a CFI and consists of a minimum of 1 hour of flight training and 1 hour of ground training. The scope of the BFR is clearly defined by the Federal Aviation Regulations (14 CFR §61.56)
Are you a rated helicopter pilot but have never operated a Robinson R44 Raven helicopter? Considering that the R44 is the world's best-selling helicopter it won't take long before you need to be checked out in an R44.
We offer a two-day Robinson R44 transition training course for pilots with at least five hours of R22 time and a three-day course for helicopter pilots with no Robinson experience. At the completion of the course, you will receive an SFAR 73 pilot-in-command signoff for the Robinson R44.
The two-day course includes at least 5 hours of R44 dual flight time and at least 2 hour of ground instruction. The flight and ground times for non-Robinson pilots is about twice that for Pilots who have R22 experience.
Why not kill two birds with one stone? Build cross-country, instrument/hood time, night experience, or other needed flight time you may need towards your next license, rating, or next job while gaining valuable R44 experience.
If you already hold an FAA pilot certificate for fixed-wing aircraft you may add a helicopter rating to your fixed-wing pilot certificate. Generally, it will take a fixed-wing pilot slightly less time than a non-pilot to learn to fly helicopters. Fixed-wing pilots already have a lot of general aviation knowledge and experience in air traffic communication, navigation, flight instruments, piloting, etc. but they also have to unlearn a few fixed wing habits while learning to pilot helicopters. Since you are already a certified FAA pilot you are not required to pass any written test and only need a minimum of 30 hours of flight training in a helicopter for a Private Helicopter add-on rating and only 50 hours of flight training in a helicopter for a Commercial Helicopter add-on rating.
Tallahassee Helicopters offers other training courses as well. Please contact us with your specific needs so we can discuss how we can be of assistance.
FIRST, determine if the pursuit of becoming a helicopter pilot is right for you. Follow these steps:
If after completing the above steps you are ready to continue your journey towards a certified helicopter pilot, then it is time to enroll ...
PART 1 - only applicable if you want to enroll in UVU's Aviation Administration degree program to obtain funding to pay for your flight training.
One of the great benefits of pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Aviation Administration at UVU is the ability to pay for your entire education and flight training through federal financial aid and low-interest student loans.
Once you are enrolled in UVU's online Aviation Administration degree program, you can apply for financial aid with the guidance and assistance from the UVU Financial Aid Office (877-336-8872). Make sure that you request support in the full amount of the Cost of Attendance, which is $13,030 (or slightly less if you live with your parents) for each of the three semesters during the 2016/2017 academic year. Since your UVU tuition will only be about $2,000 per semester in average, this will result in a refund check to you every semester in an amount of about $11,000 that you will then use to pay for your helicopter pilot training at Tallahassee Helicopters. Essentially, you will be able to obtain a Bachelor of Science degree in Aviation Administration and become a professional helicopter pilot in parallel without any out-of-pocket expenses. You will start repaying your student loans at the time you earn about $70,000 per year.
Please read this Letter from UVU's Financial Aid Director to ensure that you gain the correct understanding of what Financial Aid amounts you may be eligible for.
The first step in assembling your financial aid portfolio in the full amount of the Cost of Attendance consists of completing the "Free Application for Federal Student Aid" (FAFSA) online at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/. Based on the information you submit you will become eligible for the following funding sources:
If you are a veteran eligible for Post 9/11 GI Bill benefits, you may be able to use about $25,000 of those benefits to pay for all your UVU tuition and course fees. Please contact the UVU Veterans office at 801-863-8212 to find out how your GI bill benefits can be utilized to keep your needs for any student loans to an absolute minimum.
If you need additional funds to reach the full amount of Cost of Attendance, you can apply for Private Education loans from any private education lending agency (see lender list below). Keep in mind that all funding combined consisting of Pell Grant, Stafford Loan, Parent PLUS Loan, VA benefits, and private education loans, may not exceed the Cost of Attendance.
Below is a list of private student lenders that UVU students have utilized successfully in the past. This list is sorted by the number of UVU students selecting the loan provider from largest to the least.
DISCLAIMER: Utah Valley University (UVU) is working diligently to ensure accurate, timely processing of student loans to eligible students. Neither Tallahassee Helicopters nor UVU has a "preferred lender list" nor do they have a "preferred lender arrangement." Students at UVU have the right to choose their lender from among those that participate in private student loans. Lenders partner with a guaranty agency of their choice as required to make private student loans.
as of March 15, 2016
ROBINSON R44 RENTAL RATES (measured in 1/10th hour increments)
Discounted Loyalty Rates:
Discounted Block Rates:
Incentives for Frequent Training:
--> combine discounted rates and incentives for frequent training and fly our new IFR R44 helicopters for as low as $385 per hour - among the lowest rates world-wide!!!
INSTRUCTOR FEE RATES (measured in 1/10th hour increments)
POPULAR TRAINING PACKAGES*
FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE OPTIONS