Real Answers from Real Pilots

Written tests

Hello all,
So I’m approved on half the loan and I’m checking into moving money from overseas to pay the rest of my tuition. I’m working on scheduling my medical exam which I hope to do after the holiday season. I’m a jeweler in profession so I can’t call off for this right now. I would like to knock out all the written tests before I start school. I am planing on not working while I do that, and my wife is fully supportive of this endeavor. How much time do I realistically need for the written exams, and what test should I be taking? What start date should I be looking for?



First I wouldn’t do anything until you take get your First Class medical. There’s no point in spending anytime and money until you know for certain you can obtain your medical since without it you have no career.

As for studying I have no idea what type of student you are or your study habits. Some people take days, some weeks, some months. I actually studied only 1 day for one of the exams and got a 98. I’m not a genius, I’m just really good at regurgitating information. If you’re taking the time off I’d say 1 week is fine and 2 is plenty. There are 6 required PAR (PPL), IRA (Instr Rating), CAX (CPL), FIA (Flt Instruc Airplane), FOI (Fundamentals of Instruc), and FII (Flt Instruc Instrument). Make sure and take the IRA and the FII at the same time because they share the same bank of questions. You can also take the IGI (Instrument Ground Instruc) and AGI (Advanced Ground Instruc). Neither is required (nor will you be reimbursed) but you can exchange the Written for an actual rating which looks good on a resume.




If you study every day, give yourself 2 months to prepare for the written
exams. That’s about 2.5 weeks per test.

Details can be found here:


Thanks Tory and Adam.