Known as ATP or ATPL, the Airline Transport Pilot certificate is the highest grade certificate issued by the FAA. The Airline Transport Pilot (ATP) Rating is intended for those who intend to demonstrate the highest level of skill, professionalism, and accomplishment in their careers. It is for pilots what a PhD is for Scientists.
To be eligible for Airplane ATP, a person must:
- Be able to read, speak, write, and understand the English language, or have such operating limitations placed on his/her pilot certificate as are necessary for safety.
- Be at least 23 years of age
- Hold a first-class medical certificate
- Hold one of the following pilot certificates:
- If US certified: at least a commercial pilot with an instrument rating;
- A foreign ATP or commercial pilot with an instrument rating, without limitations, subject to background check issued by a contracting State of the Convention on International Civil Aviation
- Obtain a minimum of 1,500 hours of total time as a pilot that includes at least:
- 500 hours of cross-country flight time
- 100 hours of night flight time or 75 hours + 45 full stop landings at night
- Obtain 75 hours of instrument flight time, or 50 flight + 25 simulator
- Pass the FAA ATP Written, Oral, and Practical Exams