In Europe, you are allowed to fly an aircraft on your own at the age of 16 years old. You can fly an airplane even before driving a car!

However, did you also know that it is possible to start your journey in aviation at an earlier age?

Here are a few ways to introduce you to the world of aviation:


You can do a first flight at a flight school, or an aeroclub. This is the best way to get started. To do so, access the MAP and find your nearest flight school or aeroclub.

flight lessons

While enjoying your first flight is a great start, you can also fly with an instructor and take control of the aircraft yourself. You are no longer just the passenger, you are the pilot of the plane!


In several European countries there are  youth courses (small training) for the youngest. These are generally introductory courses in flight mechanics, characteristics of light aviation, principles of communication etc. These training courses will help you discover the basics of flight and what is neede for a private pilot licence.

In France, you can follow the BIA program or the Brevet de Base (BB) which will allow you to learn more about General Aviation.


You can also become a member of a General Aviation association or club near your home! Fellow aviation enthusiasts  can provide a  valuable ressource for your beginnings in the field of aviation.

Access the MAP to locate the associations and/or the aeroclubs nearby!

To fly solo  you must be 16 years old, but nothing prevents you from taking lessons with an instructor before then.

You can either start with:


(light aircraft pilot license)

Requires only 30 hours of flight training


(private pilot license)

Requires a minim of 45 hours of flight training

16 years old

To fly solo (i.e., to navigate alone on board during your pilot training), you must be at least 16 years old.

17 years old

To take the practical exam (LAPL, PPL), you must be at least 17 years old.