Panamanian Pilot Program

Epic's Panamanian Students in our pilot training program
Epic Flight Academy welcomes many flight students from Panama. We train them to become commercial airline pilots back in Panama in approximately 8 months.

Are you dreaming of becoming an airline pilot? Epic Flight Academy’s Panamanian Pilot Program is designed to provide students seeking employment under the Autoridad Aeronáutica Civil of Panama with structured flight training taking them from zero experience to a successful career as an airline pilot. The course is designed to support students who speak English as a second language and wish to pursue a career as a professional pilot. In the aviation industry, the ability to read, write, and speak English proficiently is required for most employees and all pilots. Our flight school students have unlimited access to English tutoring to develop Aviation English skills during Ground School training.

Raul Castillo Solis trained at Epic
Raul Castillo Solis, an Epic-trained commercial pilot from Panama

Epic is proud to have helped thousands of international students from 80+ countries prepare for jobs in aviation. Epic provides a complete pilot program for Panamanian students to reach their dream airline job. With the demand for airline pilots at an all-time high and pilot salaries soaring, aspiring aviators are seeking the most cost and time-effective ways to fulfill their flight training and airline pilot career dreams.

Transferable, Top Quality FAA Pilot Programs
Our flight school’s flight training courses are the leading United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approved Professional Pilot courses. World-renowned for structure and rigorous training standards, licenses and certificates issued by the FAA are recognized globally by all Civil Aviation Authorities (CAA), including the Autoridad Aeronáutica Civil of Panama. FAA approved flight courses are the key to worldwide pilot career opportunities, as they require English Proficiency and successful completion results in an ICAO Level 4 English language endorsement, which is a required skill set for students intending to fly routes between countries with different native languages, opening up a world of possibility.

Virtual Online Flight Academy
Epic Flight Academy provides important resources for its international flight students. Our Online Virtual Flight Academy lets you connect with your FAA Flight Instructor and classmates before you arrive here in New Smyrna Beach, Florida. The online, interactive pilot training course helps you develop aviation skills and build a knowledge base of aviation terms. This gives you an advantage when you begin attending Epic’s Ground School. With training videos on Cessna 172s, aircraft systems, aircraft performance, FAA regulations, and the New Smyrna Beach Airport, students can start their training from home. Try our Demo Online Course.

Aviation Skill Development (ASD) and Private Pilot Ground School
The ASD is a unique course only offered at Epic Flight Academy. During this phase of flight training, ground school students will build on the information they gained from the Virtual Flight Academy and also start flight simulator training. The purpose of ASD is to familiarize students with the Cessna 172 and the New Smyrna Beach Airport. ASD increases students’ safety and awareness.

Check Flight School Eligibility!

Panamanian Pilot Program Course Requirements

  • 18 years of age
  • High school education or equivalent
  • Read, write, speak the English language
  • Valid international passport
  • Full-time student 5 days per week

Airline Pilot Program – International Students

Zero Experience to Airline Pilot
Total Course Tuition $46,159.30 USD (Price increases to $51,925.00 USD effective June 1, 2021.)

Starting with Instrument Course
Total Course Tuition $30,085.35 USD

Starting with Commercial Course
Total Course Tuition $17,709.35 USD

Can I transfer to your flight school?

If you have already logged flight training hours, we can accept you as a transfer student regardless of how much training you have had.

What are the pilot hiring requirements for airlines in Panama?

Depending on the airline, additional time building flight hours may be required. Generally, Panamanian airlines require a total of 250 hours, so our students typically need an additional *110 hours to time building if they finish their commercial training within the estimated 140 hours. Below are links for hiring requirements for top choice airlines in Panama. Note: These requirements are subject to change at the discretion of the airline. Refer to the airline directly for the latest information. 

*Pilot-In-Command Time Building: 110 Hours

View Pilot Hiring Requirements for these Panamanian Airlines:

What is the AAC Panamanian Pilot Conversion process?

Once Panamanian students complete their FAA pilot training at Epic, they will need to follow the steps below to officially convert their licenses to Autoridad Aeronáutica Civil of Panama.

  • Students must notify the AAC (Autoridad Aeronáutica Civil) of Panama in person that they want to convert your licenses. The AAC will give the student documents outlining the process
  • Obtain Panamanian medical by following the directions provided by the AAC
  • Students must then write a letter to Cpt Antonio Valderrama requesting acess to complete the Private, Instrument, and Commercial written exams, as well as the flight exams.
  • Once you are approved, students will schedule the exams. The first test is RACP, which is open book and involves Panamanian aviation rules, validates the Private Pilot license. Then students will complete the exams for their Instrument and Commercial, which can be studied for using PREPWARE, or SHEPPARD AIR.
  • If students wish to work for COPA, they are required to complete an English exam, which can be taken at this time in the process. The exam does not require studying, as it simply involves conversation and listening to communications.
  • Once students pass the RACP exam, they have their Panamanian Private Pilot license and may print their license in preparation for the flight exam.
  • Students will need a plane to rent and instructor for the flight exam, which can be taken care of at flight school. Each month without flying equals an hour of flight that students will need to do for the conversion in Panama.
  • Once the student is ready, they will take the checkride with an examiner from the AAC. Once the student passes, they will return to the AAC to fill our paperwork and receive a printed copy of their Panamanian Instrument and Commercial pilot license.

How much do pilots earn in Panama?

Annual salaries for commercial airline pilots vary among countries. They are also affected by a pilot’s credentials and hours of flying experience. In Panama, pilots can expect to earn between $100,000 and $130,000 on average at COPA. However, pilot wages vary from airline to airline, so we encourage you to research the airlines you would like to work with. There are many factors that determine how much pilots make, which is why you should look into all variable regarding pay. You can also read our article about airline pilot salaries to help you better understand salaries, benefits, and signing bonuses.

Relocation & Transportation Assistance

We understand that selecting and applying to a flight school, and arranging travel and housing, if necessary, can be very stressful, but our pilot training facility assists students in arranging each detail so that the transition is simple and easy. Visit our Student Life section for more information on our student amenities, transportation, events, and activities.