The Best Flight Schools in Canada of 2024

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Last updated May 28, 2024

If you’re looking for a career that will offer unmatched office views, an absolute energy rush at the start of every workday and unbeatable travel benefits, consider training as a pilot.

Since 2019, Canada has seen the number of commercial pilot licences issued drop by more than a whopping 80 percent, making this an under-supplied and in-demand field. Industry studies have found that Canada will need nearly 7,000 more professional pilots by 2025, meaning that your interest in becoming a pilot is right on time.

There are a few different types of pilot permits issued in Canada, each with its own specific requirements. You can learn more about how to become a pilot in Canada in our career guide.

A Student Pilot Permit (obtainable as young as 14 years old) is the starting path in your pilot journey, followed by a Private Pilot License (either for an airplane or a helicopter) and then a Commercial Pilot License (also either for an airplane or helicopter).

A Private Pilot License (PPL) holder is only able to fly for personal and non-commercial purposes. This class of licence requires 40 hours of ground school and 45 hours of flight training.

Armed with a Commercial Pilot License (CPL), one can fly for commercial purposes, earning an income as a pilot. Both the PPL and CPL processes are similar, with the CPL requiring more in-depth knowledge and a higher level of difficulty. Aspiring commercial pilots must complete a minimum of 80 hours of ground school along with 200 hours of flight time.

Once you’ve earned your CPL, you can apply for an Airline Transport Pilot License (ATPL), which allows you to be the captain of a multi-crew airplane. Airlines typically only hire ATPL holders, and most airlines also require a diploma or degree in addition to the 1,500 hours of ATPL flight training.

Since meeting minimum flight time requirements is needed to complete your licence, it’s worth considering how easy it is to get access to aircrafts for rental hours from the training facility you select.

When exploring training options in the aviation industry, two types of schools are popular in Canada: college and university programs and independent flight centres. Each, of course, comes with its advantages and disadvantages.

College programs are often geared toward younger students interested in concurrently pursuing a diploma or degree. Tuition for these programs will be more expensive (you can compare prices here), but you will also get greater access to loans and grants to offset tuition fees.

Flight-centre schools are often found at airports across the country, boasting a proven track record of graduating pilots into good jobs along with an extensive range of well-maintained fleets. As their programs focus exclusively on flight training, and exclude college credentials and more extensive training, this is reflected in lower costs.

Many training facilities offer an introductory flight (for a fee), and this will give you a sense of what to expect before enrolling as a student.

CourseCompare reviewed aviation programs across Canada based on their fleet sizes and quality, curriculum, airspace settings, student results and reviews. If the title “Captain” appeals to you, here are 20 of the best pilot schools across Canada that will help your aviation career take flight.

CourseCompare’s annual school rankings are determined using a process that considers several core metrics and principles. Read more about our methodology here.

1.

Seneca College 3.45/5

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2.

Mount Royal University 3.45/5

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3.

Centennial College 4.35/5

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4.

University of Waterloo 5/5

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5.

Mount Allison University 5/5

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6.

Western University 3.35/5

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7.

Fanshawe College 4.3/5

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8.

British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) 4.85/5

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9.

Douglas College 5/5

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10.

University of the Fraser Valley 5/5

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11.

MFC Training 5/5

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12.

Winnipeg Aviation 5/5

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13.

Brampton Flight Centre 5/5

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14.

Select Aviation College 5/5

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15.

International Pilot Academy 5/5

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16.

Centennial Flight Centre Inc. 5/5

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17.

Genesis Flight College 5/5

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18.

Canada Aviation Academy 5/5

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19.

Coastal Pacific Aviation 5/5

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20.

Harv’s Air 5/5

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21.

Island Air Flight School and Charters Inc. 5/5

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1

Seneca College

seneca-college-aviation
3.45/5
$ $ $ $

Seneca School of Aviation has been serving the airline industry for over 50 years and has an international reputation for quality graduates, leading industry partnerships and renowned faculty. With campuses in Newnham and Peterborough, the institution prepares its graduates for different careers in the global aviation industry.

What Sets Seneca Apart

Experiential learning is central to the Seneca experience; the program includes a mandatory work term, requiring a minimum of 420 hours of on-the-job experience. While not guaranteed, these work terms can lead to future job offers. Seneca students get access to a first-of-its-kind cadet program in partnership with Air Canada Jazz and flight instructor pathway program. Graduates are prepared to enter the aviation industry, whether that’s as a pilot or in other areas of airline operations such as flight instruction, air traffic control or civil aviation inspection.

What You’ll Learn

Successful completion of the Seneca program will require eight semesters of study, meaning there is an exhaustive list of courses to cover. From mechanics to math, from chemistry to communication, aspiring pilots will learn lessons well beyond the cockpit.

Diploma or Degree 

Truly distinguishing itself as a leader in aviation, Seneca College offers the only four-year technology-based aviation degree program in the country through its highly competitive Honours Bachelor of Aviation Technology with a September-only start date.

Outside of the cockpit, the school also offers a three-year advanced diploma in aviation safety, and a two-year diploma in aviation operations.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot License
  • Commercial Pilot License

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating

Other Aviation Career Training

  • Air Traffic Controller
  • Aviation Operations
  • Aviation Safety
  • Civil Aviation Inspector

Aircraft Fleet

  • Beechcraft B58
  • Cessna 172
  • G1000 Beechcraft B58
  • G1000 Cessna 172

Flight Simulators

  • B200 Turboprop
  • CRJ 200 Regional Jet Simulator
  • Redbird Crosswind Simulator

Locations

Seneca’s school of aviation has two campus locations—Newnham and Peterborough—both in Ontario.

2

Mount Royal University

mount-royal-aviation
$ $ $ $

Mount Royal University (MRU) has an elite reputation for producing proficient pilots. For nearly 40 years, the Calgary institution has delivered the essential mix of aviation and business training to help students graduate career ready.

What Sets Mount Royal University Apart

On top of its decades-long track record of exceptional pilot training, MRU is one of only two Aviation Accreditation Board International (AABI)-accredited programs in Canada, ensuring students receive the highest calibre of flight education. And hardworking graduates get a career opportunity right off the bat: through the Jazz Pathway Program, any student with a 3.0 GPA is granted an interview for a First Officer position with Jazz Airways.

What You’ll Learn

MRU’s program blends aviation and business theory, giving you the tools to handle a pilot’s role both on the ground and in the air. After studying foundational concepts like navigation and meteorology, you’ll cover a wide range of courses to equip you for any role, including aviation law, management principles, statistics and even wilderness survival. Optional courses such as economics, marketing and business law help prepare you for leadership roles in the industry.

Diploma or Degree 

Two years of study will earn you an advanced diploma and a Commercial Pilot Licence.

Take note: you need to earn your own Private Pilot Licence prior to starting the program, or MRU does offer PPL training for an additional cost.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument RatingCen
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 172
  • Twin-engine Seneca V

Flight Simulators

  • Alsim ALX 20
  • Frasca Mentor
  • Redbird Crosswind Trainer

Locations

Academic and aviation classes are delivered at the MRU campus, close to downtown Calgary. Flight training takes place at the Springbank Airport, a short drive from the main campus.

3

Centennial College

centennial-college-aviation
4.35/5
$ $ $ $

Centennial has operated in the aviation space for over 45 years and has a reputation for preparing students for career success. As an institution, it’s transformed itself from a local community college to a global institution with a worldwide presence. Rated as the number one college for graduate satisfaction in the Greater Toronto Area, the school boasts over 200,000 alumni.

What Sets Centennial Apart

Centennial’s Canadian Integrated Airline Transport Pilot Licence program is for those ready to develop the required skill set for working in airline operations. Offering structured program start times in fall, winter and summer, plan to invest three semesters (two years) in completing your licence.

Forging meaningful relationships with industry partners such as Air Canada and Bombardier ensures that their programs stay forward-thinking and continue to meet employers’ demands.

What You’ll Learn

Students will learn theory, and simulator and aircraft training in scenario-based situations to build knowledge and practical skills. Centennial’s training is intensive, with ground school generally taking place online during the evenings and simulator training happens on-site in Oshawa during the day along with aircraft training which is subject to weather conditions.

Ongoing training is also on offer, allowing for the early introduction of Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), Crew Resource Management (CRM), Multi-crew Cooperation (MCC) and Scenario-Based Training (SBT). You’ll graduate equipped with a high level of proficiency, prepared to operate as a single pilot in commercial air services, or as co-pilot on multi-crew, multi-engine aircraft in commercial air transportation services.

Diploma or Degree 

This two-year certificate program offers start dates in fall and winter, and it’s worth noting that this specific program is not eligible for OSAP funding, as it is not a diploma or degree.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence
  • Airline Transport Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating

Other Aviation Career Training

  • Aircraft Maintenance and Management – Aviation Technology
  • Avionics Maintenance – Aviation Technician

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 152
  • Cessna 172S
  • Piper Seminole

Flight Simulators

  • Cessna 172S
  • King Air C90

Locations

Training takes place at the school’s Oshawa Airport facility in Ontario.

4

University of Waterloo

waterloo-aviation
$ $ $ $

One of the few university programs to make our list, Waterloo boasts the biggest university-level aviation program in Canada, admitting around 100 future pilots each year. Since 2007, Waterloo has shown students that having your head in the clouds can be the best career decision you’ll ever make.

What Sets University of Waterloo Apart

Waterloo offers two unique programs: the Science and Aviation offering gives students the grounding in science and technology to pursue highly specialized aviation careers, and the Geography and Aviation program let you explore the field from a geographer and commercial pilot’s perspective, learning how to interpret weather patterns and read multi-layer maps. In addition, Waterloo has created a Pilot in Residence position, a unique role aiming to give students on-campus access to real-world insight and knowledge from an industry expert.

What You’ll Learn

Regardless of which path you take, about half your courses will be in aviation, and the other half in either science or geography. Students in both paths study aviation basics, map design and professional pilot courses while racking up over 200 hours in flight time and graduate with a Commercial Pilot License.

Science and Aviation students complement their pilot training with courses in biology, chemistry, environmental sciences, geochemistry, geology and more. Those in Geography and Aviation will also study computing, statistics, geomorphology, academic writing, and environmental systems, among others.

Diploma or Degree

Both aviation programs span four years, and you’ll graduate with either a BSc (Bachelor of Science) or a BES (Bachelor of Environmental Studies).

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Beechcraft B58
  • Cessna 152
  • Cessna 172N
  • Cessna 172S G1000
  • DA 40
  • G1000 Beechcraft B58
  • Piper Pa28R 201 Arrow
  • Piper PA44 Seminole

Flight Simulators

  • ALSIM 250
  • ALSIM ALX

Locations

Whether science or geography, you’ll pursue your academics on Waterloo’s main campus in Waterloo Ontario. Pilot training takes place at the nearby Waterloo Wellington Flight Centre, a short trip from the university campus.

5

Mount Allison University

mount-allison-aviation
$ $ $ $

New Brunswick’s Mount Allison University is regularly recognized as one of Canada’s best, topping Maclean’s 2024 university rankings in the “primarily undergraduate” category. Its multidisciplinary degree opportunities and elite pilot training delivered by MFC Training offer a unique educational experience in the Maritimes.

What Sets Mount Allison Apart

Mount Allison offers a rare aviation education, with a multidisciplinary degree program that allows you to combine professional flight training with undergraduate studies in Science, Commerce or Arts. No matter your choice, you’ll graduate with your Commercial Pilot License and an undergraduate degree from one of Canada’s best universities.

What You’ll Learn

At MFC Training, you’ll learn how to succeed as a commercial pilot and operate effectively on a multi-crew, multi-engine aircraft. Training includes fundamental concepts such as navigation, meteorology and law, 80 hours of ground school and more than 200 hours in the air.

Diploma or Degree 

Depending on your chosen specialty – Science, Commerce or Arts – you’ll take home either a BSc, BCom or BA on top of your Commercial Pilot Licence.

What Students Are Saying

I went through the program, and after graduation, I spent some time accumulating hours as a flight instructor and am now a commercial pilot for one of Canada’s major airlines. Many of my peers, and students, were international students.

Rob Smith, Aviation

Pilot Licenses 

  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-engine Rating

Aircraft Fleet 

  • Cessna 172 M
  • DA20-C1 Eclipse
  • King Air C90B
  • Piper Seminole PA44-180

Locations

Your cockpit time takes place at MFC Training Camp in Dieppe, and you’ll crack your textbooks at the main campus a short drive away in Sackville.

6

Western University

western-university-aviation
3.35/5
$ $ $ $

Western University regularly ranks as one of Canada’s top postsecondary institutions, and with more than 43,000 full-time students, is one of the largest as well. The London-based university also boasts a 92.5 percent postgraduate employment rate, and its innovative aviation program is geared to maximize your chances of industry success.

What Sets Western University Apart

As aviation careers increasingly require a university degree, Western has developed a one-of-a-kind program in its Commercial Aviation Management (CAM) degree. CAM is essentially a specialized management program, teaching the skills, knowledge and leadership required to land an aviation career either in the cockpit or an industry leadership role.

What You’ll Learn

A pilot with management training studies a wide range of subjects: in addition to aviation studies, you’ll cover accounting and finance, economics, consumer behaviour, calculus, algebra, tourism, leadership and much more. Students can also add honors or specialization modules which include further and more complex studies, along with more than 260 hours in the air.

Diploma or Degree 

CAM students graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in Management and Organizational Studies (BMOS) and a Transport Canada-approved Integrated Commercial Pilot’s Licence (ICPL) with Multi-Engine and Instrument Ratings.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Integrated Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-engine Rating

Aircraft Fleet 

  • DA-21 C1
  • DA-40
  • DA-42

Flight Simulators

  • Diamond DA42 FTD (Level 5)
  • Precision Flight Controls CR-12 (Level 2)
  • Precision Flight Controls GT1000 (Level 2)
  • VMT Flight Simulator

Locations

Your management training takes place on Western’s main campus in London Ontario, and flight training is provided through Diamond Flight Centre, a short trip east from the Western campus.

7

Fanshawe College

fanshawe-college-aviation
4.3/5
$ $ $ $

For students seeking hands-on experience and real-world exposure to airlines at work, Fanshawe’s Commercial Flight and Aviation Leadership program has it all. Studying on the grounds of an active international airport, Fanshawe students gain real-world industry insight combined with a comprehensive aviation education.

 What Sets Fanshawe Apart

Fanshawe’s program operates out of YXU, London International Airport, the 12th busiest passenger airport in Canada. Students have a front-row seat to an airport and aircraft in action, and unbeatable networking opportunities to boot.

What You’ll Learn

On top of a comprehensive pilot training, Fanshawe students are trained to take leadership roles in the industry. Courses include core concepts like math, flight principles, navigation, meteorology, and avionics, but also cover bases to prepare you for management positions, such as project management, professional communication and comportment, critical thinking, and brand management. Your flight training, provided through Diamond Flight Centre London, includes approximately 205 hours aloft.

Diploma or Degree 

The Commercial Flight and Aviation Leadership program is a three-year advanced diploma program for anyone considering a career as a pilot or a manager in the airline industry. Fanshawe’s program spans 90 weeks over its three-year duration.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot License
  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating

Other Aviation Career Training

  • Aerospace operations management
  • Aircraft structural repair technician
  • Applied aerospace manufacturing
  • Aviation technician
  • Composite advanced materials aerospace manufacturing
  • Flight services
  • Remotely piloted aerial systems commercial operations

Aircraft Fleet

  • DA20-C1
  • DA40-180
  • DA42-TDI
  • Dassault Falcon 10
  • DHC-7
  • Hawker HS125

Flight Simulators

  • Diamond DA42 FTD (Level 5)
  • Precision Flight Controls CR-12 (Level 2)
  • Precision Flight Controls GT1000 (Level 2)
  • VMT Flight Simulator

Locations

The Norton Wolf School is housed in an 80,000 square-foot hangar on the grounds of London international Airport, just minutes away from Fanshawe’s main campus.

8

British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)

bcit-commercial-pilot
4.85/5
$ $ $ $

As one of Canada’s largest aviation training schools, British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) offers a fully integrated diploma program that combines flight training with academics. And at 64 weeks, its commercial pilot diploma program is also one of the fastest in the country. The program is offered in partnership with Pacific Flying Club and is designed with professional growth within the aviation industry in mind.

What Sets BCIT Apart

Unlike most other schools, BCIT requires an application for admission, plus interviews with faculty. Their website offers tips on how to strengthen your application, so be sure to review their readily available cheat sheet.

Based on a three-year average (2020-2022), graduates of the Airline and Flight Operations program enjoyed a 90 percent employment rate, with 35 percent of students receiving offers in less than a month. Eighty-three percent of students are employed in the industry full-time, and 86 percent of graduates report being satisfied with their education.

What You’ll Learn

Combining flight training with industry-focused academic training, BCIT offers a fully integrated, unique diploma, the Airline and Flight Commercial Pilot (fixed-wing) program. Over 18 months, you’ll earn your PPL, CPL, Multi-engine Rating and Instrument Rating and complete courses on navigation, meteorology, survival skills, leadership, public relations and more – the full suite to help you succeed either in the cockpit or elsewhere in the industry.

Diploma or Degree

BCIT graduates leave the school with a diploma in hand, and just over 200 hours in flight training under their belt. A mandatory minimum grade of 70 percent is required to pass each course, except for the Student Pilot Permit, which mandates a pass grade of at least 90.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating

Other Aviation Career Training

  • Aircraft Gas Turbine (jet) Engine Technician
  • Aircraft Maintenance Engineer Category ‘E’ (Electronics)
  • Aircraft Maintenance Engineer Category ‘M’ (Maintenance)
  • Airport Operations
  • Aviation Management and Operations

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 152
  • Cessna 172
  • Piper PA-34 Seneca

Flight Simulators

  • AlSIM ALX
  • AlSIM 250
  • Redbird Full Motion Simulator

Locations

Instruction is delivered at the BCIT Aerospace and Technology Campus and at the Boundary Bay Airport in British Columbia.

9

Douglas College

douglas-college-aviation
$ $ $ $

Douglas College boasts a sterling international reputation, attracting prospective pilots from around the world. If you like meeting other global citizens, this could be the right fit for you as almost half its community consists of international students.

What Sets Douglas College Apart

With Douglas’ Associate of Arts for Future Professional Pilots program offered in conjunction with the Professional Flight Centre, students can take university-transferable courses to enhance their pilot training.

Thanks to Douglas’ partnership with Vancouver’s Professional Flight Centre, students have access to a fleet of 23 planes all expertly maintained by their in-house facility.

The school also offers nearly $100,000 in scholarship money annually, so be sure to see if you qualify for the financial boost.

What You’ll Learn

In addition to various licences and ratings, you can also study for your Associate of Arts for Future Professional Pilots degree. This open enrollment, full-time program includes 60 credits and expands your knowledge beyond the cockpit with classes in geography, psychology, climate, and weather – even a select few business electives are available to give you a well-rounded understanding of the industry.

Diploma or Degree

Upon successful completion of the four-semester program, graduates earn their associate degree from the humanities and social sciences faculty.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 152
  • Cessna 172
  • Cirrus SR-20 (G1000)
  • Diamond DA-42 Twin Star
  • Piper PA-44 Seminole Twin
  • Piper Warrior II

Flight Simulators

  • ALSIM 250 Simulator
  • Redbird FMX

Locations

While Douglas provides the academic instruction to satisfy the degree requirements, ground school and flight instruction takes place at the Professional Flight Centre, at Boundary Bay Airport in Delta, British Columbia.

10

University of the Fraser Valley

fraser-valley-aviation
$ $ $ $

With the school motto “house of transformation,” University of the Fraser Valley aims to kickstart your career and arm you with the technical skills to take your aviation career almost anywhere. Located in Abbotsford, British Columbia, UFV offers elite education and a beautiful backdrop to earn your pilot’s wings.

What Sets University of the Fraser Valley Apart

UFV offers three different aviation programs, including a unique and highly customizable Bachelor of Integrated Studies (BIS) that allows you to create an educational plan to complement your pilot training. For example, you might study broadcasting and become a radio or TV pilot, or take criminal justice classes and work as a law enforcement pilot.

What You’ll Learn

In addition to the highly flexible BIS, UFV offers a business diploma and a Bachelor of Business Administration option which add core business skills to your advanced aviation training. Your classes will include marketing, economics, business law and other essentials.

Your flight training is on your own schedule. Students can complete training before, during or after their academics and apply that training as credit towards your diploma or degree.

Diploma or Degree 

Depending on your program choice, you’ll graduate from UFV with a two-year diploma, or a four-year BBA or BIS.

What Students Are Saying

UFV provides an amazing educational experience. Class sizes are small and there are plenty of opportunities to really get to know your professors. There are some really helpful support systems available for students to help them succeed in school. I give UFV a lot of credit for my personal and professional success.

Lane Anderson, Business Administration - Aviation Diploma

Pilot Licenses and Ratings

In UFV’s program, you complete pilot training at the school of your choice, so the licence and rating options and training fleets will depend on your choice.

Locations

The business diploma and BBA academics are taught at UFV’s main campus in Abbotsford, British Columbia. Locations for the Bachelor of Integrated Studies vary depending on what courses you choose.

11

MFC Training

mfc-training
$ $ $ $

New Brunswick’s MFC Training (Moncton Flight College) is one of the biggest flight schools in Canada, graduating over 350 commercial pilots each year. With a fleet of more than 59 aircraft, a wide range of training options and deeply experienced team, MFC can deliver a top-flight program.

What Sets MFC Training Apart

On top of its wide breadth of training options, MFC has a remarkable track record in pilot training. It launched its first flight in 1929, well before Air Canada existed or YYZ was built, and its staff have more than 300 years of collective experience. Regardless of your training program, you’re learning from some of the most experienced fliers in the country.

What You’ll Learn

MFC delivers numerous training programs – see the list below – but one of its more unique offerings is the diploma in aviation technology (IATP), a 20-month program that aims to fast-track you into the captain’s seat or a management position. Graduates come away with a Commercial Pilot Licence, multiple ratings, certificates in Aviation Safety Management and Crew Resource Management and a recognized diploma.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence with multi-IFR

Pilot Ratings

  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-engine Rating
  • Night Rating
  • VFR Over-the-Top Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 172
  • DA20-C1 Eclipse
  • Piper Seminole
  • King Air C90

Locations

MFC delivers training at new locations in New Brunswick: Lincoln, which sits just outside the provincial capital Fredericton, and Dieppe, near to the province’s most populous city Moncton.

12

Winnipeg Aviation

winnipeg-aviation
$ $ $ $

For more than 45 years, Winnipeg Aviation has been a leader in the flight training industry. Above all else, they stand for aviation safety and professionalism, backed by career instructors with decades of experience under their belt. Given its long track record and experienced team, Winnipeg Aviation has all the training options a prospective pilot could ask for.

What Sets Winnipeg Aviation Apart

While a few flight schools support out-of-town and international students with finding local housing, Winnipeg Aviation has its own student house that has a choice of individual or shared rooms.

In several reviews, multiple students note specifically transferring into Winnipeg Aviation’s program after being dissatisfied with their experiences at other aviation schools.

What You’ll Learn

The sky’s the limit for training options at Winnipeg Aviation. The school offers a bevy of training programs, including a seaplane rating and aerobatics training. For students seeking a real deep dive, the comprehensive Professional Pilot Course combines a PPL, CPL, Night and Over-the-Top Ratings, Multi-engine Rating and Multi-Engine Instrument Rating in a single program with 200 hours of total flight time.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Aerobatics Training
  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Multi-Engine Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating
  • Seaplane Rating
  • Single-Engine Instrument Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 152
  • Cessna 182
  • Piper Cherokee
  • Piper Seneca
  • Super Decathlon

Flight Simulator

  • Redbird FMX

Locations

Flying out of St. Andrews Airport in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Winnipeg Aviation has three runways available tailored to flight schools.

13

Brampton Flight Centre

brampton-flight-centre
$ $ $ $

Brampton Flight Centre has trained thousands of pilots since its beginnings in 1946. The school has a reputation for producing strong pilots; their alumni include multiple winners of Webster Trophy for Canada’s top general aviation pilot. Whether your interest lies in flying for fun or flying for work, there are various programs available at a self-paced or full-time basis.

What Sets Brampton Flight Centre Apart

Not many schools can boast their own airport, but Brampton Flight Centre has its own, expanding over 240 acres and houses more than 200 private and business planes. The fleet has 27 aircraft available for student training. As a not-for-profit organisation, all the profits are reinvested into the airport, flight school and community.

The school has an excellent industry placement record, boasting graduates who fly with Canada’s biggest airlines, including Air Canada, CargoJet, Porter and Jazz – and with other carriers internationally.

What You’ll Learn

Whether you want to go at your own pace or dive in full-time, you can enrol in their programs based on your personal needs. If you’re pursuing the professional route, advantages of their iATPL program include industry pathways such as direct entry with Jazz Aviation and mentorship with Porter. Their college track highlights exposure to glass avionics and gives students practical job assistance training, supporting them with resume development and going through mock interviews.

Diploma

Brampton Flight College, the training arm of Brampton Flight Centre, offers a Professional Pilot Diploma Program, an advanced aviation curriculum developed in consultation with Transport Canada, air carriers, line pilots and the Air Transport Association of Canada (ATAC).

The program is designed to be completed within 14 months.

What Students Are Saying

This airport is very good. The simulators that they have are very good and the seem realistic. The planes that they have are in great condition and they know what they are doing. The place is clean and the staff is really friendly. The flight shop is small, but it does have a lot to offer. Overall, if you are a pilot or want to be one or even if you like flying, this is the place to go.

S. Sahota, Private Pilot Licence (PPL)

Pilot Licenses and Ratings

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence
  • Integrated Airline Transport Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating
  • VFR Over-the-Top Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 172
  • G1000
  • Piper Seminoles
  • Tail Dragger

Flight Simulators

  • Fasca TruFlite
  • Redbird FMX

Locations

Students train and fly out of the Brampton-Caledon Airport, near Toronto, Ontario.

14

Select Aviation College

Select Aviation College | CourseCompare
$ $ $ $

Select Aviation College is located at the Gatineau/Ottawa Executive Airport in Canada’s National Capital Region. With a population of over 1.5 million, this region attracts thousands of students from Canada and around the world each year. Select Aviation boasts a fleet of 40 training aircraft, and graduates approximately 100 students per year. As of this writing, the school boasts a 4.7 Google rating and a 4.9 rating on Facebook (out of 5) with over 140 reviews.

What Students Are Saying

I was looking at Seneca and Western but my jaw dropped at the tuition. I already had a BSc and had taken odd jobs for several years before deciding to become a Pilot. My key revelation was that the top flight schools place as many students as the colleges with big airlines. Select Aviation was a faster path to where I wanted to go in the end. I finished 220+ hours and 75 simulator hours and got my commercial license in about 20 months. Select Aviation was a great place to learn with dedicated instructors. I would definitely recommend it.

John S., Commercial Air Transport Pilot Airplane

What Sets Select Aviation College Apart

Select Aviation students come from over 35 different countries, and courses are offered in both English and French (although, the school does strongly recommend studying in English, the international aviation official language).

Canadian or permanent resident students are eligible for government-sponsored financial aid and bank loans for college diploma programs. Available government aid includes financial assistance from the Quebec government (AFE) and Ontario government (OSAP), and a federal living allowance grant.

What You’ll Learn

Select Aviation offers both modular training (licenses and ratings) as well as college diploma programs. Modular training is flexible according to the student’s availability, while college training consists of 25 hours of face-to-face classes each week.

The Gatineau/Ottawa Executive Airport (CYND), where Select Aviation College is based, is equipped with a Flight Service Station (FSS) and all types of instrument approaches. The college operates a fleet of more than 40 single and multi-engine aircraft and three state-of-the-art simulators approved by Transport Canada.

Diplomas

Select Aviation offers four Attestation of College Studies (ACS) programs, which are the Quebec equivalent of college diploma programs. The ACS programs take approximately 18-24 months to complete. These programs are:

  • EWA.1F Commercial Air Transport Pilot – Integrated ATPL
  • EWA.16 Commercial Air Transport Pilot – Airplane
  • EWA.18 Commercial Air Transport Pilot – Bush Pilot
  • EWA.1G Commercial Air Transport Pilot – Helicopter CPL

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence – Airplane
  • Private Pilot Licence – Helicopter
  • Commercial Pilot Licence – Airplane
  • Commercial Pilot License – Bush Pilot
  • Commercial Pilot License – Helicopter
  • Integrated Airline Transport Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-engine Rating
  • Night Rating
  • Seaplane Rating
  • VFR Over-the-Top Rating

Airplane Fleet

  • Cessna 150
  • Cessna 172
  • Cessna 180
  • Cessna 185
  • Piper Seminole Glass Cockpit

Helicopter Fleet

  • Bell 505
  • Robinson R44

Flight Simulators

  • ALSIM AL-250
  • ALSIM ALX

Locations

Select Aviation College is based at the Gatineau/Ottawa Executive Airport (CYND) in Quebec.

15

International Pilot Academy

interenational-pilot-academy
$ $ $ $

Quebec-based International Pilot Academy (IPA) aims to make pilot training easy and fun, while also delivering elite-level education for almost any skill level. Since 2011, IPA’s deeply experienced team has helped promising pilots earn their wings through a wide range of exciting programs.

What Sets International Pilot Academy Apart

IPA offers a vast range of training programs, from private and commercial licences to aerobatics and instructor ratings. Among its world-class offerings is a Multi-Crew Cooperation course with jet orientation, which trains you to work multi-pilot aircraft while learning the complexities of jet handling.

What You’ll Learn

Its Integrated Airline Transport Pilot License is comprehensive, with over 900 hours of ground school and 227 hours of flight training over two years. Students can also complete a college-recognized private pilot course through IPA’s partnership with Cégep Heritage College.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Recreational Permit
  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence
  • Integrated Airline Transport Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Aerobatics Training
  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna C172N
  • Cessna C172P
  • Navajo PA-31 350 Chieftain
  • Piper PA38-112
  • Symphony 160

Flight Simulators

  • Redbird Jay (not yet approved, so it does not count towards flying hours)

Locations

IPA is located on the grounds of the Gatineau-Ottawa Executive Airport in Gatineau, Quebec, a short distance away from the nation’s capital.

16

Centennial Flight Centre Inc.

centennial-flight-centre
$ $ $ $

Not to be confused with Centennial College, Alberta-based Centennial Flight Centre (CFC) is a school that’s clear on how it wants to serve and contribute to the aviation industry. Their commitment is to “redefine the aviation industry from a training perspective” and to position themselves as the preferred source for employers who are seeking to hire new pilots.

Since 1967, they have been training the next best pilots by providing real-world training for a safe and successful career. Thanks to CFC’s industry reputation, their graduates get access to career opportunities through their partnerships with multiple companies within the industry. Beyond flying instruction, CFC also takes its students through resume preparation, mock interviews, and references throughout the job search.

What Sets Centennial Flight Centre Apart

Centennial Flight Centre is self-sufficient with several in-house resources including their own certified aviation maintenance department and their own PPL and CPL Flight Examiner.

Their intimate team of eight instructors has thousands of flying hours between them on multiple aircraft and the facility puts you in an operational environment with an active air traffic control tower (a one-of-a-kind feature for the Alberta Capital Region) alongside other fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters.

You will train in a variety of unique environments beyond the runway, such as oilfield and forestry logging sites to confined, dense forest areas. Full certification to mountain flying is also on offer.

What You’ll Learn

Students will complete their ground school in a Google Classroom and then train with simple, complex, and multi-engine fixed-wing aircraft.

Beyond establishing their flying acumen, you will learn survival physiology, shelter building, signalling and more – tailored specifically to pilots.

What Students Are Saying

I chose Centennial for my flight training after checking out most of the other flight schools in the area. Unlike their competition, when I walked in, I was greeted, welcomed, and engaged in conversation. Within minutes, I was sitting in a plane, discussing my dreams with an instructor. Fast forward a bit, and the skills I learned here landed me a job with one of Canada's regional airlines.

Matthew Buie, Commercial  Pilot Licence

Pilot Licenses

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating

Aircraft Fleet 

  • Cessna 172C
  • Cessna 172M
  • Piper Arrow
  • Piper Seneca I

Flight Simulator

  • Redbird FMX

Locations

Thanks to their location at Villeneuve Airport in Sturgeon County, Alberta, students will enjoy scenic mountain flying that will test their knowledge and skills while stimulating their senses. 

17

Genesis Flight College

genesis-flight-college
$ $ $ $

Genesis Flight College offers modular, integrated, and cadet programs. The modular program offers maximum flexibility and can be taken full-time or part-time, the integrated program has a structured schedule, and the cadet program – where students receive a conditional offer of employment – is the most rigorous with the highest requirements.

What Sets Genesis Flight College Apart

The Genesis fleet of Diamond aircraft features advanced glass cockpits, one of the most advanced electronic flight information systems, replacing previous round flight instruments. Their students are at an advantage being comfortable behind the rectangular displays, as many new airline crews aren’t at ease flying glass – a current issue facing the flight training industry.

Graduates will have a significant edge when competing for jobs in the market, thanks to their learned experience with glass cockpit environments, saving employers’ training time and cost.

What You’ll Learn

Three structured programs prepare students for entry into a pilot career – the modular program, the integrated Airline Transport Pilot Licence (iATPL) program and the cadet program.

The iATPL program caters to fliers who want to speed up their progression to becoming a commercial pilot and takes just 18 months full-time, plus you get extra training to achieve a type rating for a jet.

Those accepted into the cadet program are granted a conditional offer of employment with an airline and move directly into working with the company upon graduation.

Diploma or Degree

Since it’s registered as a private career college, students can obtain their one-year Commercial Pilot Diploma, equipping them with the core credentials required to start their aviation career.

Genesis is a perfect match for aspiring pilots who want to complete their program in less than 14 months with the flexibility to modify their training plan according to their availability and budget. It’s also well-suited for those looking to concurrently earn their Commercial Pilot Diploma.

What Students Are Saying

I recently completed my multi-engine rating at Genesis in the amazing Diamond DA42. Genesis is extremely well-run, has a very well-maintained fleet of state-of-the-art Diamond aircraft, and everyone - from the owner Dave to the dispatchers and my instructor Ted Lee are focused, professional and caring. My highest recommendation for anyone looking for a quality flight training experience!

Peter Gallant, Private Pilot Licence (PPL)

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating
  • VFR Over-the-Top Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • DA40
  • DA20
  • DA42 Twin Star

Flight Simulator

  • G1000 FTD

Locations

Located in Collingwood, Ontario, Genesis has developed a network of rental units for students. 

18

Canada Aviation Academy

canada-aviation-academy
$ $ $ $

The mission of Canada Aviation Academy (CAA) is to “leave every customer completely satisfied” with its commitment to provide the highest-quality flight training. CAA’s expert instructors will fuel your aviation ambitions in a supportive and friendly environment.

What Sets Canadian Aviation Academy Apart

Whether your interests are personal or professional, CAA guarantees high-quality flight training in a supportive environment. For those looking to build a well-rounded knowledge of all aviation has to offer, keep an eye on their curriculum as future academic programs include General Aviation Management, Aircraft Maintenance Engineering, Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems Operations, Enhanced English for Aviation Industry, and Airline Transport Pilot Licence, with select courses being approved by Transport Canada.

What You’ll Learn

On offer from the CAA are the Private Pilot Licence and Commercial Pilot Licence, and three ratings: Flight Instructor Rating, Night Rating and VFR OTT. If it’s been a few years since your last flight, they also offer recurrency training for pilots who haven’t flown in 4 – 40 years.

Pilot Licenses

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Night Rating
  • VFR Over-the-Top Rating
  • Re-Currency Training

Other Aviation Career Training:

  • Aircraft maintenance engineering
  • Advanced CRM, Human Factors LOFT
  • Advanced Helicopter CRM
  • Advanced Helicopter Surviving I/IMC
  • Cabin safety
  • Dispatcher and scheduler
  • General aviation management
  • Maintenance
  • Remotely piloted aircraft system operations

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 150
  • Cessna 172
  • Piper PA-28 Cherokee (coming soon!)

Flight Simulator

None

Locations

Billed as a one-stop aviation education institute, the academy is based at Abbotsford International Airport in British Columbia and has trained both recreational and professional pilots since 2013.

19

Coastal Pacific Aviation

costal-pacific-aviation
$ $ $ $

Coastal Pacific Aviation (CPA) has a long and proud legacy imparting the art and science of flight and shaping extraordinary aviators since 1973. The B.C. school boasts a fleet of 20 aircraft and 20 instructors with extensive experience in the skies.

What Sets Coastal Pacific Aviation Apart

On top of its other course offerings, CPA delivers an Accelerated Professional Pilot Program, which bundles your PPL, CPL, Multi-engine Class Rating and Multi-Engine Instrument Rating into an intensive 12-month curriculum. However, the school notes that you’re not required to finish within a year; in fact, just 20 percent of students complete the program in that time.

Whether your pursuit of becoming a pilot is personal or professional, CPA will prepare you with a holistic educational experience. The school boasts structured training, a strong alumni network, a commitment to safety and stability, and state-of-the-art facilities and resources.

What You’ll Learn

CPA’s experienced instructors teach you everything you need to know, and then some. The school proudly notes its instructors have robust educational backgrounds on top of their pilot training, helping student receive a comprehensive educational experience.

In partnership with the University of the Fraser Valley, you have the option to pursue either a two-year diploma or a four-year degree in Aviation Business.

Pilot Licenses 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Flight Instructor Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 172
  • Cessna 185 floatplane
  • Diamond DA-42
  • Piper PA-30

Flight Simulators

  • PFC
  • PFC-V
  • Redbird

Locations

Training students since 1973, CPA is located in Abbotsford, British Columbia, flying out of Abbotsford International Airport. This facility welcomes novice pilots with an extensive runway that is billed as the ideal launchpad for aspiring pilots’ aviation journeys.

20

Harv’s Air

harvs-air
$ $ $ $

For almost 50 years, Harv’s Air has been offering high-quality, safe flight training that combines enjoyment with the experience. The flat airspace boasts no hills and low-density traffic with more than 300 VFR days a year.

What Sets Harv’s Air Apart

Family owned and operated, the business is run by Mr. Harv Penner himself, a passionate Class I instructor with more than 37 years of flying experience and more than 25,000 hours of flight time under his belt.

Harv’s Air is one of a handful of schools that offers aerobatics training in both a Citabria and a Pitts S-2B.

For those travelling to the school, it’s worth noting that public transportation is inconvenient and having a private car or carpooling with other students will be your best bet. The school does offer several cars that can be rented for a few hours at a time.

What You’ll Learn

Whether you’re looking to obtain a licence or a rating, Harv’s Air has 15 courses to choose from. One particularly unique to this list is Aerobatics and an Aerobatic Instructors Rating, among the most popular licences and ratings that you’ll find at most training facilities.

Offering both modular and integrated aviation courses on a pay-as-you-go system, modular classes begin at any time and integrated classes start three times a year on the first Monday of January, April, and September.

Pilot Licenses and Ratings 

  • Private Pilot Licence
  • Commercial Pilot Licence
  • Airline Transport Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Aerobatics
  • Aerobatic Instructors Rating
  • Instrument Rating
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating
  • VFR Over-the-Top Rating

Other Aviation Career Training

  • FAA Pilot Conversion
  • Foreign Pilot Licence Conversion
  • Integrated Pilot Course
  • Professional Pilot Course

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 152
  • Cessna 172
  • Citabria
  • Diamond Star
  • Piper
  • Pitts S-2B
  • Traildragger
  • Twin Engine

Flight Simulators

  • Dual Elite Flight Training Device
  • Frasca Cessna 172 G1000
  • Frasca Piper Seminole PA-44 Flight Training Device
  • Red Bird FMX
  • Single Elite Flight Training Device

Locations

The school has two locations in Winnipeg, Manitoba—Steinbach and St. Andrews—with accommodations on-site for up to 20 students at both locations. 

21

Island Air Flight School and Charters Inc.

island-air-flight-school
$ $ $ $

Centrally located on the Toronto Islands, just steps away from the heart of the city, Island Air Flight School (IAFSC) delivers comprehensive training with spectacular views of the Toronto skyline. With a fleet of 14 aircraft, including a Cessna equipped with a G1000 glass cockpit, IAFSC has the expertise and technology to earn your wings in no time.

What Sets Island Air Flight School Apart

IAFSC wants to help you get off the ground as soon as possible; they offer an accelerated ground school delivered over four intensive weekends, as opposed to the standard nine-week version. And with a maximum of 18 students per ground school class, you’re assured an intimate training experience with plenty of personal attention. The school’s pay-as-you-go option also allows greater financial flexibility during your training.

Student reviews almost all mention the incredible view and scenery departing from and landing at Billy Bishop Airport, with scenic views of Lake Ontario and the downtown Toronto skyline.

What You’ll Learn

Whatever licence or rating you pursue, IAFS provides thorough instruction, with hours of instrument training, ground school, and dual and solo flying. You’re ensured an intimate and student-focused environment as ground-school classes are limited to just 18 participants at a time.

What Students Are Saying

Island air is a great place to learn how to fly. Since the school is located at Billy Bishop, you learn how to deal with busy airspace! If you learn how to fly here, you can fly anywhere. Regarding instructors, I got to fly with most of them and out of all the current instructors, the best one is Ali. Hes very detailed and safe with his instructions and I had lots of fun flying with him.

Chris Smith, Private Pilot License

Pilot Licenses

  • Recreational Pilot Permit
  • Private Pilot Licence

Pilot Ratings

  • Instrument Rating, Single Engine
  • Instrument Rating, Multi Engine
  • Multi-Engine Rating
  • Night Rating
  • VFR Over-the-Top Rating

Aircraft Fleet

  • Cessna 150M
  • Cessna 152
  • Cessna 172M
  • Cessna 172N
  • Cessna 172S
  • Cessna 182T
  • Piper Aztec

Locations

As one of the largest flight schools in Ontario, IAFSC is based out of easily accessible Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport – named for the famous Canadian flying ace - offering the most stunning views of the downtown Toronto skyline.

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