The private pilot license allows individual citizens to operate non-commercial aircraft for personal or recreational purposes. Private pilots may use the airplane for the purpose of commuting to and from work privately; however, they may not carry passengers or freight for hire. In some cases, a group of persons may take a trip in a cost-sharing basis but they may not pay the pilot for his/her services.

The types of aircraft one may fly depends on what they are certified or rated by the Civil Aviation Authority if the Philippines.


An applicant must have a minimum of 40 hours of flight instruction in order to obtain a private pilot's license. The forty hours is divided between time spent in dual instruction time - with an actual flight instructor and solo flight.

Prior to being allowed to conduct solo flight, the student pilot must pass all the requirements in dual instruction flights and pass the pre-solo exam. During private pilot training, the student must be able to meet the requirements of at least a third class medical.

Also, students must not be less than 17 years of age before they are allowed to take the private pilot license.

For all classes of license, and each category, there are requisite ground instruction for each category aircraft. The ground instruction prepares the student for their first flight and includes the following;

(i) Air law: rules and regulations relevant to the holder of a PPL(A); rules of the air; appropriate air traffic services practices and procedures

(ii) Aircraft general knowledge: (A) Principles of operation of airplane powerplants, systems and instruments; (B) Operating limitations of airplanes and powerplants: relevant operational information from the flight manual or other appropriate document;

(iii) Flight performance and planning: (A) effects of loading and weight distribution on flight characteristics; weight and balance calculations; (B) use and practical application of take-off, landing and other performance data; (C) pre-flight and en-route flight planning appropriate to private operations under VFR; preparation and filing of air traffic services flight plans; appropriate air traffic services procedures; position reporting procedures; altimeter setting procedures; operations in areas of high-density traffic;

(iv) Human performance: human performance relevant to the PPL(A)

(v) Meteorology: application of elementary aeronautical meteorology; use of, and procedures for obtaining, meteorological information;

(vi) Navigation: practical aspects of air navigation and dead-reckoning techniques; use of aeronautical charts: (vii) Operational procedures: (A) use of aeronautical documentation such as AIP, NOTAM, aeronautical codes and abbreviations; (B) appropriate precautionary and emergency procedures, including action to be taken to avoid hazardous weather, wake turbulence and the operating hazards;

(viii) Principles of flight: principles of flight relating to airplanes;

(ix) Radiotelephony: (A) radiotelephony procedures and phraseology as applied to VFR operations; action to be taken in case of communication failure; (B) as listed in IS Appendix A