Canadian Pilot and Flight Instructor to FAA CFI Certification
The FAA and Canada signed a Bilateral Aviation Safety Agreement (BASA) back in 2008. This agreement was eventually expanded in 2014. BASA allows the Canadian pilots to easily obtain a US FAA issued pilot certificate, and vice-versa. The process is explained in detail in FAA’s Advisory Circular (AC 61-135A) but here is the short version.
If you hold a Transport Canada Civil Aviation Authority (TCCA) issued pilot’s license, then the process to obtain an FAA issued pilot’s certificate is fairly simple.
STEP 1 – Apply with the FAA for the verification of your TCCA issued pilot’s license. Here is the link.
STEP 2 – Obtain an FAA Medical Certificate (minimum required is Class III). This process can be completed at your TCCA authorized medical examiner – the same doctor that does your Canadian medical.
STEP 3 – Take the appropriate written exams at the approved testing sites. These are multiple-choice type exams and there are many online test prep sites available to help you with this.
STEP 4 – Make an appointment and visit your nearest FAA Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) and get your FAA pilot certificate and/or rating – Temporary Airman Certificate.
FAA CFI certificate (Flight Instructor) does not have any such provisions for conversion from Canada or from any other country. You must meet the requirements of 14 CFR 61.183 and then take a practical test to earn your CFI certificate. CFI Academy can help you with the process. The duration for Canadian Flight Instructor’s training and testing here with us is about 2 weeks.