Real Answers from Real Pilots

Logging Cross Country Time

Hi Everyone,

I am currently working as a CFI and in regard of logging XC time for the ATP certificate states.

FAR 61.1

Cross-country time means…

(A) Conducted by a [person]

(B) Conducted in an [aircraft]

(C) That includes a landing at a point other than the point of [departure]

(D) That involves the use of dead reckoning, [pilotage]

(vi) For the purpose of meeting the [aeronautical experience]

(A) Conducted in an appropriate [aircraft]

(B) That is at least a straight-line distance of more than 50 nautical miles from the original point of [departure]

(C) That involves the use of dead reckoning, [pilotage]

So, my question here is when interviewing for the regionals I have heard some instructors use the regulation for military pilots, listed below.

Under FAR 61.1(b)(vii), a military pilot qualifying for a commercial pilot certificate may count any flight that is at least a straight-line distance of more than 50 nautical miles from the original point of departure toward their cross country time requirements.

This regulation provides an exception for military pilots to log cross country time towards a commercial certificate as an ATP candidate would, without a landing requirement separate of the point of departure. (Straight from bold method)

Sorry to reiterate but again my question here is do the regionals care to see XC time logged that does not include a point of landing of over 50 NM, but in the remarks section of the logbook stated, the town and distance of over 50NM from original point of departure.

An example of this could be KPIA-KPIA, then in the remarks include a town or Navaid that is over 50NM (straight line) that I have flown over.

Thanks: Jake


This is a simple one. You are a civilian, not a military pilot. If you want to log the cross country time, you need to follow the FARs and land at a point in excess of fifty miles away from the departure airport.


Jake that’s true and completely legal, provided you’re a military pilot. :wink:


I believe atleast some Regionals don’t require you to land 50miles away for XC time, and follow #4s example. In my opinion, you should try and make the 200hr 50nm via airport to airport because it is a requirement that is often debated, even among cfis, recruiters and logbook auditors.

I’m filling out applications for Majors right now and can attest they specify XC time must be 50nm from airport to airport.

Chris F

Thank you, yes me and my fellow CFI’s have been debating this reg a lot, and yes I am going to try and get that 200 hours without this rule.

Thanks: Jake

I really do not se any debating it, the regulation is very clearly written.

Section (vi) regarding ATP cert XC requirements does not include landing at a different airport 50nm away.

I just confirmed with a senior sim instructor that SKW follows section (vi) 50nm XC, with no landing requirement. It was created for pipeline patrol time builders and such.

The one thing that he noted was they will look at those logs to make sure you were XC flying the whole time ( flew 4hrs and you spent 2hrs flying around the NAV aid 50nms away then those 2 extra hours won’t count as XC time).

Regional airlines standard is usually meeting ATP mínimums.

Chris F

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Interesting, I did not realize that the definition of cross country was different when logging it for the purposes of an ATP license. Good to know, thanks.


Thanks Chris, so from this if I were to fly 70nm to my destination, do an hours worth of TOL practice, then fly back. I should log them as 3 separate entries? One XC to, one none XC, then one mor XC back?