Pilot’s Guide to BasicMed

BasicMed is an alternate way for pilots to fly without holding an FAA medical certificate as long as they meet certain requirements. To fly under BasicMed, pilots must print off a FAA Form 8700-2; BasicMed Comprehensive Medical Examination Checklist (CMEC) and get your physical exam with a state-licensed physician.

FAA publishes updated Airman Certification Standards – Here’s What You Should Know

The ACS is a comprehensive presentation integrating the standards for what an applicant must know, consider, and do to demonstrate proficiency. In this latest update, effective May 31, 2024, revisions were made to the ACS as an outgrowth of public comment; however, there are no major substantive changes to the testing standards already in use or the conduct of the practical test.

Can you fly with inoperative instruments?

While the regulations generally require that all instruments and equipment installed aboard the aircraft be in working condition, it may be possible to operate an aircraft with a piece of equipment not working if it falls within the scope of FAR 91.213 or the aircraft is operating with a Minimum Equipment List.
Aircraft Engine - No cowling

Can a pilot perform maintenance on an aircraft?

Pilots are allowed to perform simple or minor maintenance on their aircraft – what the FAA refers to as preventive maintenance. Appendix A to Part 43 contains a list of tasks that meet the preventive maintenance definition.

When can a pilot share expenses with a passenger?

The types of expenses that can be shared are expressly stated in § 61.113(c) which are “fuel, oil, airport expenditures, or rental fees.” It’s also a requirement that the pilot not “pay less than the pro rata share.
Traffic Pattern Legs

FAA updates Advisory Circular for non-towered airport operations

The AC notes that when entering the traffic pattern at an airport without an operating control tower, inbound pilots are expected to observe other aircraft already in the pattern and to conform to the traffic pattern in use. If there are no other aircraft present, the pilot should check traffic indicators.

Required certificates and documents and flying with inoperative equipment

While the time-honored tradition of the walk-around is vitally important so is the preflight inside the cabin making sure the required documents are on board and that the instruments and equipment are in operable condition.
collision avoidance quiz

What’s in an approach category?

Aircraft fall into one of five approach categories (A-E) based on the aircraft's target final approach speed, or reference speed (Vref). If this speed is not published for the aircraft, then a speed of 1.3 times the stall speed.

FAA publications updated: AIM and Pilot/Controller Glossary

FAA recently issued change 3 of the Aeronautical Information Manual (AIM) and Pilot/Controller Glossary effective November 3, 2022.

Ask a CFI – do I have to fly a standard traffic pattern at non-towered airports?

§ 91.126 (Operating on or in the vicinity of an airport in Class G airspace) requires that "each pilot of an airplane must make all turns of that airplane to the left unless markings indicate that turns should be made to the right.