The flight instructor you hire must be at least a Class 3 (or 2 or 1) to be allowed to provide freelance instruction. This means no supervision of the instructor, by Chief Flight Instructor, is required. This flight instructor must have informed Transport Canada of his/her flight instruction activities. I personally inform Transport Canada of every training I start or end with a student.
You, or a member of your family, must own the aircraft you will be trained with. I CANNOT have my own aircraft to do flight training as this would be considered as running a Flight Training Unit (FTU), with all kinds of requirements from Transport Canada to comply with. Please, check this link ( CARs 406.03 ) for further details.
This aircraft can also be co-owned and shared.
For a Private License training, the aircraft must be a single-engine, ideally certified for spins and spirals and should meet all maintenance and safety requirements imposed by Transport Canada. The aircraft must be insured and the instructor must be stated as one of the pilots who fly it as a Pilot In Command (PIC).
So, you have a pilot license plan, a rating or a check ride project with your own aircraft and you’d rather proceed with a freelance flight instructor… Congratulations on the project and thank you for considering me as your instructor. As we might spend a lot of time together in your aircraft cockpit, we probably need to know each other a bit better… How about meeting somewhere at your convenience for a coffee and an informal discussion about your project, to start with and before you make any final decision? My treat, of course!
It was really nice meeting you and having that conversation. You like me, I like you, and we should be a good team to put you on your way to success. But I still need to know if I also like your aircraft. In other words, I need to make sure it complies with Transport Canada maintenance requirements, ADs (Airworthiness Directories) and SBs (Bulletin Service). I also need to check for any outstanding defects and when the last annual inspection was done. I’ll take a close look at your aircraft journey logbook. And eventually, I need to know how your aircraft is insured and what needs to be amended to make it fully work for your project.
So far, so good… I’ve asked you tons of questions about your background, your motivations, your aircraft, but you don’t know much about me yet and how I am going to handle your training. The best way for you to make sure you will be comfortable being instructed by me is to give it a try. How about a 30-minute flight to give you a chance to assess me as an instructor? It’s on me again!
Once I have determined everything is in order to start your training and you have definitively made your choice on me as your instructor, it is time for us to go through my Training Policy and sign a contract that will protect both of us and help consolidate our business relationship. Nothing complicated or sophisticated, no fine prints at the bottom of the contract; just basic things to ensure we stay on the same page in the long run.
We will plan your training based on your schedule, how often you want or can fly and we will define a possible deadline. This plan cannot be set in stone considering weather contingencies and other possible unexpected events that will probably force us to readjust it, but that will give us a few milestones and a guideline to work with.
For more information about my policies, please have look at the training policy..
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Because you should not rely only on what you are reading on this website, here is a little hint to help you retrieve the information from a very official source: Transport Canada. The following link will take you to the Canadian Aviation Regulation rule regarding freelance instruction. Enjoy the reading!
That other link will take you to the regulations regarding the qualifications for Flight Instructors teaching towards various ratings:
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