The Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP), operated by the TSA, was created to ensure that individuals seeking flight training at FAA-approved flight schools do not pose a security risk. To undergo flight training at an FAA-approved flight school, you will have to register at “flightschoolcandidates.gov”, which is the official website for the AFSP. Once you have registered and applied, the TSA will review your application and grant (or deny) you permission to initiate your training.
You must apply to the AFSP before initiating flight training if:
You are an alien (non-US citizen) and:
You plan on undergoing flight training inside or outside the United States for a U.S. airman certificate under 14 CFR. This applies to flight training toward a recreational, sport, or private pilot certificate, multi-engine or instrument rating, or any initial U.S. airman certificate issued by FAA.
If you intend to undergo training in an aircraft exceeding 12,500 pounds, then the flight school must take additional steps:
The flight school must notify the TSA that you have requested the training.
You will need to submit additional information, such as birth and citizenship history and identification in the form of passport and visa information.
You are exempt from the AFSP if:
You plan on only undergoing recurrent training, such as a flight review, instrument proficiency check, or any training listed under 14 CFR 61.31 (Type rating requirements, additional training, and authorization requirements).
Your training only concerns airships, balloons, and gliders, which are exempt from the TSA security check.
You plan on only receiving ground training (sometimes referred to as “ground school”).
You plan on only undertaking a “discovery flight”, often referred to as an “introduction flight.”
The Department of Defense (DoD) or United States Coast Guard (or a contractor on their behalf) is providing your training.
You have been endorsed by the United States Department of Defense (DoD).
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