/ Student Pilot:
A student pilot must be at least 16 years old and pass a class 3 medical exam conducted by an FAA designated physician. A student pilot certificate is required to solo an airplane and is held during training for pilot certification. A student pilot may not fly with passengers.

/ Private Pilot:
An individual must be at least 17 years old and have a minimum of 40 hours flying. The individual must pass the FAA written knowledge exam (60 question multiple choice test with a passing grade of at least 70%), hold at first, second, or third class medical certificate, and pass an oral and flight test (called the "check ride") with an FAA designated examiner. A private pilot can fly solo or with passengers. Although a private pilot may carry passengers, they cannot be paid for their services. All expenses (e.g., plane rental, fuel, landing and airport fee) may be shared equally. Private pilots may fly only by "visual flight rules" (VFR) that limit the pilot to specific weather requirements regarding clouds and visibility conditions.

/ Instrument Rating:
An instrument rating allows a pilot to fly in instrument meteorological conditions (IMC) - i.e., lower visibility, poor weather conditions, and through clouds. An individual must hold at least a private pilot license, have flown at least 50 hours cross country (more than 50 nautical miles one way to another airport) as pilot in command, at least 40 hours instrument experience, hold at least a third class medical certificate, and pass an oral and flight test with an FAA examiner.

/ Commercial Pilot Certification:
A commercial pilot may fly passengers for hire. Moreover, commercial pilots must be a private pilot (with a minimum of 250 hours of flying, 10 hours of which must be in a complex aircraft), have an instrument rating, be at least 18 years old, and hold a class 2 medical certificate. They must also pass a written examination and an FAA checkride.

/ Certified Flight Instructor:
An individual must be at least 18 years old, and hold a commercial or airline transport certificate with an instrument rating. One must also pass an FAA written knowledge exam and FAA checkride. An authorized flight instructor may instruct private or commercial students. Additional instructor ratings may be obtained to teach instrument and multi engine flying.

/ Certified Flight Instructor Instrument:
This rating permits the instructor to teach students to get their instrument rating.

/ Airline Transport Pilot:
Must hold at least a commercial pilot certificate and an instrument rating. Be at least 23 years of age. Pass a written test on aeronautical knowledge with a score of 70% or better. Have a minimum of 1500 total hours of flight time that includes: 500 hours cross-country flight time, 75 hours of instrument flight time in actual or simulated instrument conditions, 100 hours night flight time. Must pass an FAA Practical Test (Oral and Flight Test).