FAA licences in Europe?


I am european but I will come to live in the USA in a few years. For the moment i’m here, so to not waste time I wonder if it is possible to start my FAA training in Europe?

I know that for theory exams I will have to study in Europe and come to the USA for the exams. Well, I’ll go through the theory when I will go to visit my GF in California.

Now my question is for practice, I will pass a European PPL and convert to FAA in the USA it’s fast.
But for the rest how is it going? I know there are a some FAA instructors in Europe, but I can not find any examiners.

Can I fly with an FAA instructor in Europe and take my exam in the USA with an examiner when I visit my girlfriend?
To have counted hours in the USA, I have to fly on N planes in Europe?

I ask this question because I could not stay more than 2 months for the moment in the USA with my work.

Thanks guys! !


I don’t believe you’ll find any FAA examiners in Europe (I’m not even sure if they can legally administer the exams off US soil?). There’s currently a shortage of examiners in the US and I see that as being the most difficult (if not nearly impossible) aspects of your plan. I know a few examiners and they have a backlog of students waiting for checkrides. If they were to get a call from a European student, with no affiliation to any local school saying “hey, I’ll be there in a month, pencil me in” I seriously doubt if they would even return the call. Further to do ANY flight training in the US (or take a checkride) you first need to do a very thorough TSA background check and I can imagine that someone who doesn’t reside in the country but simply wants to come here for checkrides would raise flags as well.

Bottomline I think you’d be much better served by either getting your EASA certs and then converting after you establish some residency here or possibly find a flight school in Europe who specializes in FAA training (I believe there are a few).



Yeah it doesn’t work like that. I admire your creativity, but there are certain things that need to happen before you take an FAA checkride, as Adam astutely explained.

What is your ultimate goal? Do you have plans to continue training after receiving your PPL? Or is your goal just to have a US issued PPL to fly in the US for pleasure?


Thanks guys! :smile:

I contacted some school who answered me that they can help me because there is an examiner in England for FAA.
My goal is to become my goal is to become regional pilot after instructor.

The only thing i can ask is do you know the minimul required for hours for CPL and IR FAA?

For theory I will work with books and apps from US and take exams when I will go to visit my girlfriend three time each year.

I don’t want to leave my job for the moment, I will be in the US in 3 years so i want to be ready directly when I will arrive.

14 CFR § 61.65 - Instrument rating requirements.
(d) Aeronautical experience for the instrument-airplane rating. A person who applies for an instrument-airplane rating must have logged:
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (g) of this section, 50 hours of cross-country flight time as pilot in command, of which 10 hours must have been in an airplane; and
(2) Forty hours of actual or simulated instrument time in the areas of operation listed in paragraph © of this section, of which 15 hours must have been received from an authorized instructor who holds an instrument-airplane rating, and the instrument time includes:
(i) Three hours of instrument flight training from an authorized instructor in an airplane that is appropriate to the instrument-airplane rating within 2 calendar months before the date of the practical test; and
(ii)Instrument flight training on cross country flight procedures, including one cross country flight in an airplane with an authorized instructor, that is performed under instrument flight rules, when a flight plan has been filed with an air traffic control facility, and that involves -
(A) A flight of 250 nautical miles along airways or by directed routing from an air traffic control facility;
(B) An instrument approach at each airport; and
© Three different kinds of approaches with the use of navigation systems.

61.129 Aeronautical experience.
(a)For an airplane single-engine rating. Except as provided in paragraph (i) of this section, a person who applies for a commercial pilot certificate with an airplane category and single-engine class rating must log at least 250 hours of flight time as a pilot that consists of at least:
(1) 100 hours in powered aircraft, of which 50 hours must be in airplanes.
(2) 100 hours of pilot-in-command flight time, which includes at least -
(i) 50 hours in airplanes; and
(ii) 50 hours in cross-country flight of which at least 10 hours must be in airplanes.
(3) 20 hours of training on the areas of operation listed in § 61.127(b)(1) of this part that includes at least -
(i) Ten hours of instrument training using a view-limiting device including attitude instrument flying, partial panel skills, recovery from unusual flight attitudes, and intercepting and tracking navigational systems. Five hours of the 10 hours required on instrument training must be in a single engine airplane;
(ii) 10 hours of training in a complex airplane, a turbine-powered airplane, or a technically advanced airplane (TAA) that meets the requirements of paragraph (j) of this section, or any combination thereof. The airplane must be appropriate to land or sea for the rating sought;
(iii) One 2-hour cross country flight in a single engine airplane in daytime conditions that consists of a total straight-line distance of more than 100 nautical miles from the original point of departure;
(iv) One 2-hour cross country flight in a single engine airplane in nighttime conditions that consists of a total straight-line distance of more than 100 nautical miles from the original point of departure; and
(v) Three hours in a single-engine airplane with an authorized instructor in preparation for the practical test within the preceding 2 calendar months from the month of the test.
(4) Ten hours of solo flight time in a single engine airplane or 10 hours of flight time performing the duties of pilot in command in a single engine airplane with an authorized instructor on board (either of which may be credited towards the flight time requirement under paragraph (a)(2) of this section), on the areas of operation listed under § 61.127(b)(1) that include -
(i) One cross-country flight of not less than 300 nautical miles total distance, with landings at a minimum of three points, one of which is a straight-line distance of at least 250 nautical miles from the original departure point. However, if this requirement is being met in Hawaii, the longest segment need only have a straight-line distance of at least 150 nautical miles; and
(ii) 5 hours in night VFR conditions with 10 takeoffs and 10 landings (with each landing involving a flight in the traffic pattern) at an airport with an operating control tower.

Do they not have Google in Europe?



What is your plan to meet the US Permanent Resident status in order to fly for hire in the US?


Sorry Adam lol! Thanks for that.


I’m married with an US Citizen. I just need some time to do papers

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I think that your plan sounds incredibly complex and likely to to work they way you envision it. If you can work with that FAA examiner in England, that is probably a better route. I wish you the best in this, I would be curious to hear an update as you go through the process.