Best Florida Flight Schools | Orlando | Miami | Ft. Lauderdale
We’re working to bring readers some of the “best” Florida flight schools. What does “best” mean? Well, the “best” flight school is subjective.
For some, it may mean the “best” flight school to bring a student pilot with zero flight time through private pilot, instrument, and commercial training. For others, the “best” flight school might actually be a flying club, with cheap rentals for time building and opportunities to network and socialize. And for the remaining few, it might be the place that offers tailwheel endorsements in vintage biplanes.
The list below has something for aviators regardless of background and experience - whether you’re seeking high quality flight training, cheap rentals, or something in between. So, whether you’re looking for affordable time building or constructing your aviation career foundation in the Sunshine State, consider getting checked out and hitting the bright blue Florida skies from one of these top-notch flight schools.
Orlando Flight Schools
Orlando, located in the center of Florida, boasts a population of nearly 2.4 million people and is known as the “Theme Park Capital of the World.” While more commonly known for world class theme parks, Orlando also boasts a number of flight schools offering year round training.
A subtropical climate, Orlando experiences a hot and rainy season lasting from May Until late September. Orlando’s flight training climate truly shines in winter months when students at northerly flight schools face difficulties building time due to inclement weather. Those training at Orlando’s flight schools in the winter can expect sunny skies and highs in the 60s-70s.
The Orlando Aviators Flying Club
Regardless of your goals - if you’re a general aviation or student pilot near Orlando, check out the Orlando Aviators Flying Club. Based out of the Orlando Executive Airport (KORL), this club offers certified and student pilots extremely reasonable rental rates for aircraft. The club currently has over 90 members of all ages and with unique backgrounds. Their ranks include airline and corporate pilots along with private, instrument, and multi engine general aviation enthusiasts. With six Certified Flight Instructors, you’ll be sure to find one available for any of your training questions and goals.
Flight clubs often offer rental and training for less than commercial flight schools. As such, we encourage student pilots to seek local flight clubs for initial training when it makes sense for the student’s aviation ambitions. Check out the rental rates below. Although the club rents their planes dry, you’ll have a hard time beating these rates at other flight schools. But, price isn’t everything. There are other things to keep in mind when researching the best flight school for your aviation dreams.
Flying Clubs offer another bonus - socialization. Student pilots shouldn’t undervalue the power of connecting and networking with other pilots. Benefiting to student and general pilots alike, The Orlando Aviators Flying Club organizes club events and participates in local FAA sponsored seminars.
Orlando Aviators Flying Club Rental Rates
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Sun State Aviation
Located 20 miles south of downtown Orlando, the Sun State Aviation flight school provides students with accelerated flight training options in addition to standard aircraft rentals. They provide training for students from private pilot through commercial ratings. For pilots with airline pilot ambitions, Sun State Aviation offers a “Zero to Hero” flight training pathway. This program suggests they take students from zero flight time to “working professional” in 18 weeks.
As a Part 141 flight school, Sun State Aviation claims students can attain their Private Pilot in 21 days. And, student pilots with previous flight experience may be able to knock out their private in as little as 14 days. Sun State aviation also offers accelerated instrument rating training, claiming students can attain theirs in as little as two weeks.
This accelerated training comes at a cost. Noted in the table below, you’ll see their rental rates trend a bit above market rate when compared to other local Orlando flight schools. However, their rental rates are roughly on par with other accelerated flight training programs in the Florida market.
Sun State Aviation Rental Rates
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While not technically an Orlando flight school, it is difficult to leave this one off the list. Orlando residents looking for a flight school with unique training options should look no further than Preston Aviation. Located 46 miles from downtown Orlando in Winter Haven, Preston Aviation, the “Tailwheel Flight School,” focuses on - you guessed it - tailwheel flight training.
Preston Aviation may not suit the needs of student pilots looking for quick time building opportunities. It may, however, be a good option for experienced pilots seeking new challenges. What pilot wouldn’t enjoy learning to fly an open air 1941 Stearman PT-17 biplane?
N28024, 220 HP, 7 cylinder, Stock Continental engine. WWII primary trainer. Tandem seats, dual control sticks. Electrics. Learn to fly the plane that “separated the men from the boys”. Helmet, headset and goggles provided. Tailwheel and HP endorsements, spin training, BFR’s, proficiency training, flights, or just some fun flying to log.
Preston Aviation Rental Rates
Miami Flight Schools
World renowned for beaches, dining, and night life, it is easy to overlook south Florida’s cultural capital of Miami when looking for a Florida flight school. Miami’s International Airport (KMIA) makes the city an obvious choise for out-of-state and international flight students relocating to Florida for flight training. With international time building opportunities in the Bahamas and generally favorable weather, Miami presents a great opportunities for aviators regardless of background.
NS Aviation, a Cessna Pilot Center, offers state of the art flight training using curriculums developed by the Cessna Aircraft Company in conjunction with King Schools. Although NS Aviation has a large fleet available for rent, new students will begin in the Cessna 172, the best selling and one of the safest single engine general aviation aircraft in history. Exclusive to Cessna Pilot Centers, NS Aviation utilizes a unique flight training system, the “Course Tracking Application,”
Cessna’s exclusive CTA system uses the latest in technology to make your learn-to-fly experience interactive, engaging and fun. This system is the most comprehensive, integrated private pilot flight school curriculum available and was developed to meet all FAA requirements. Available exclusively at NS Aviation and other Cessna Pilot Centers, the interactive CTA flight instruction program uses online full motion video to make learning to fly fun.
In addition to recurrent training, this south Florida flight school offers a comprehensive curriculum, targeting students regardless of their previous aviation background. Most or all of their fleet appears to be IFR equipped with Garmin 430s or better. They also feature complex and multi engine aircraft enabling students to transition all the way from “zero flight time” to “commercial pilot.”
NS Aviation Rental Rates
With over 35 years of accident and incident free operation, the Miami Fly flight school has a training opportunity to fit every pilot’s goals. They target students with ambitions to turn dreams into reality; whether that’s embarking on the first flight, preparing to buy a personal aircraft, or beginning an aviation journey to become an airline pilot is up to you.
They cater to pilots with a wide range of backgrounds. In addition to private pilot, Miami Flyoffers aerobatic, unusual attitude, spin, multi engine, and tail dragger training.
Students training for their private pilot can expect to spend around $7,500 with 40 hours of flight time, the FAA minimum for Part 61 flight schools. Multi engine students can anticipate spending around $4,000 to complete the rating’s requirements.
Miami Fly Rental Rates
|Piper||Seneca PA-34-200||300||Duel flight training only|
Fort Lauderdale Flight Schools
With over twenty miles of Atlantic Ocean beach front, Fort Lauderdale boasts attractions for aviators and vacationers alike. Flying out of a Fort Lauderdale airport offers bright skies and sweepings shoreline views. If you’re seeking a south Florida flight school in an environment that feels like a destination, these For Lauderdale options may be a good fit.
Sky Eagle Aviation Academy
The Sky Eagle Aviation Academy flight school offers is an approved part 141 organization specializing in professional flight training programs. A Cirrus training partner, the flight school targets beginning aviators, helping them take their first steps into an aviation career. They boast the largest fleet of Cirrus SR20 aircraft available for training and rental in Florida.
Their well equipped and maintained fleet of newer single engine and multi engine aircraft is also available to private pilots seeking advanced ratings and time building. In addition to a professional pilot pathway program, Sky Eagle Aviation Academy offers CFI, CFII, and MEI flight instruction.
Sky Eagle Aviation Academy Rental Rates
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We highlight Richards Aviation for their focus on providing high quality yet affordable flight training. Their aircraft rentals are the cheapest in Fort Lauderdale. And when combined with reasonable ground and flight instruction rates, Richards Aviation appears among the most affordable flight schools in Florida.
Richards Aviation flight school offers flight training from student pilot through professional ATP ratings using IFR equipped Cessna 172 aircraft. Their cost of ground and flight instruction is $45 an hour; they quote the full price of a private pilot certification at $7-9k. This flight school sounds like a great place to build cross country time - they’ll reimburse fuel charges if you refuel away from the home airport.
Richards Aviation Rental Rates
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|Cessna||172SP||135||N3558D||Fuel-Injected IO-360 cruises @ 125 knots, autopilot, and leather seats|