Passing the FAA Knowledge Test

Part 107 goes into effect on August 29, establishing the first national, uniform regulations for commercial operation of unmanned aircraft systems under 55 pounds. Anyone looking to fly commercially will have to obtain a remote pilot certificate by passing the FAA aeronautical knowledge test.

Feeling unprepared? Don’t worry! We’ve got everything you need to know to pass with flying colors:

1. Find a testing center.

In order to take the FAA Knowledge Test, you’ll have to schedule an appointment with a Knowledge Testing Center. Search this list to find the KTC one nearest you, and don’t forget to bring a government-issued photo ID with you on the day of the test. (Note that you won’t be able to take the test until part 107 becomes active on August 29.)

2. Know the cost.

The FAA estimated the total out-of-pocket expense for obtaining a remote pilot certificate to be $150. While this is less than any other airman certification allowing non-recreational operations in the national airspace system, it may discourage would-be commercial operators from obtaining the certificate.

3. Study up!

While the FAA expects 90% of applicants to pass, they advise spending at least 20 hours studying for the test, which covers everything from airspace classifications to radio communication procedures. Be sure to review the Airman Certification Standards (ACS) for Unmanned Aircraft Systems, the 87-page Knowledge Test Study Guide, and the FAA’s Knowledge Test Sample Questions (answers not included).

4. You passed! Now what?

Great work! Just register for your certificate using the FAA IACRA system. And don’t forget about that background check. In order for the FAA to process your certificate, you’ll have to pass a a TSA background check.

5. Take flight.

You’re ready to take to the skies! Check AirMap to get the most up-to-date airspace information, including airspace advisories, temporary flight restrictions, traffic alerts, and more.