Flight Review Resource

Most of the resources I used in developing this abbreviated guide are at the bottom of the page. This is basically an outline that you can use as a starting point for developing your own guideline to conduct the ground portion of the flight review. Since this is wiki-editable, anything experienced instructors and pilots can add would benefit us all. For the new CFI, having a plan going into a flight review is a good idea (if you want to make it productive for everybody at the table). The excerpt from the Helicopter Flight Instructor’s Guide is a good resource for the flight portion.

Pilot Regulations and Responsibilities

CFR 91.3 through 91.9

Passenger briefings (remember SSAFEEE)

  • Seat belts
  • Sterile cockpit
  • Air vents and environmental controls (including headset operation)
  • Fire extinguisher
  • Exits
  • Egress from helicopter
  • Extra eyes

Pre-flight (remember WEALTH)

  • Weather
  • Expected performance
  • Alternatives
  • Landing zone/airport procedures
  • Traffic delays (TFRs and NOTAMs)
  • How much fuel?

Fitness to Fly

  • Certificate and medical current
  • Currency and proficiency


Airworthiness requirements

  • Required inspections (AROW) and AV1ATE (Annual and ADs, VOR check, 100-hour, Altimeter/pitot static, Transponder, ELT)
  • VFR day and night requirements

Inoperative equipment without a MEL

  • Is it required by the type certificate?
  • Is it on the aircraft’s required equipment list?
  • Is it required by another regulation?
  • Is it required by an AD?

Fuel requirements


Airport operations and signs

VFR minimums and rules

  • Discuss minimum altitudes
  • Discuss minimum CIG and VIS
  • Discuss developing personal minimums

Review regulatory airspace requirements


Weather sources (eg, new TAF format)

Helicopter Special Focus Areas

Greatest risks to helicopter pilots

  • Wires
  • Weather/IIMC
  • Low rotor RPM


AOPA Pilot’s Guide to the Flight Review: Not for the CFI, but still helpful for helping determine what to cover.

Helicopter Flight Instructor Guide Excerpt on Flight Reviews: Specific for helicopters, but it’s a bit lacking.

AC 61-98–Currency and BFRs–Currency and Flight Reviews: Barebones Advisory Circular.

FAA Opinion on CFI Checkride as a Flight Review: Can your CFI checkride count as your flight review? FAA’s official opinion.

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