Pass Your Checkride

Your checkride whether it be your private pilot checkride, instrument pilot checkride, or your ATP checkride it doesn’t matter…. It will be a stressful day. The video below is going to reveal some checkride prep secrets to help you better prepare. Once you get done with the video be sure to leave me a comment below and offer your best checkride advice or a lesson you learned on your checkride.

What did you learn on your checkride? Or what made your checkride successful? Leave me a comment below

  • Adam.b


    Not to try and win brownie points but your book was the reason I passed my private pilot checkride. Thank you for such a great resource. I look forward to reading through your instrument pilot book.


  • Nice haircut, Jason. 😛

  • Jheymd

    Check pilots are natural teachers and love to teach, so I discretely ask their advice on various situations. This seems to make them know I am interested in being as good as they some day. Of course you need to do all the menauvers correctly, but this relaxes me as well and they become a friend, not a persecuter.

  • Devin T.

    I felt so confident going into my private pilot checkride after reading/listening to your book. I downloaded your audio book onto my mp3 player, and for a few weeks leading up to my checkride I would listen to it while I went jogging everyday. I zipped through the oral portion of my checkride without skipping a beat.

    Thanks Jason,


  • OGS Staff

    I was going for the new aviator look 🙂 hahaha

  • Anonymous

    I was going for the new “aviator” look 🙂


  • Anonymous

    You took me jogging everyday??? No wonder I lost so much weight! ahhah

    Ok had to crack myself up! 🙂

    Devin that’s awesome my friend! So very glad to hear I helped prepare you and make you a success on your checkride and hopefully in your future as a pilot!

    Keep on learning my friend! You’re doing great.


  • Anonymous

    Smart comment! You have to walk into the checkride with an open mind ready to learn


  • Anonymous


    Man I’m so very glad to hear that! I’m happy to know I was a part of making you successful!


  • I did four rides so far and on each one I wore a shirt with “pockets”. Yes, “pockets” are why I passed all my checks on the first attempt. 🙂

    You see, I’m a jeans-n-t-shirt guy and during flight-training… I wore my jeans and t-shirts. This wasn’t cool with my old school, silver-haired CFII. Disappointed, he always asked me, “where are your pockets?” So, on some days I flew with him, I wore my “pockets” because… “professional pilots for hire always wear… pockets”.

    Long story short; I understood his point. In addition to “dress-code”… I’ve learned much about flying through my old friend many years ago and today I’m grateful I flew with such a fine aviator. With his instruction and my intense study-routines, I always arrived on test day with confidence.

    When the day comes for me to join the CFI posse… guess what? I’ll be a wearin’ my “pockets!”

  • Hideguy

    I took my checkride in 1984. I remember that one of the most important things I did was to take a 2 week vacation from work and schedule my checkride towards the end of my vacation. This gave me time to fly almost every day prior to my test. I practiced every possible manuver that I knew the examiner would ask me to do. I planned simulated cross country trips. Long story short, I was so sharp the day of the test that my checkride was only 55 minutes. I thought I had done something drastically wrong when the examiner told me to return to the airport. Well to my surprise after the prop stopped turning and I layed the keys on the dash, he told me Congratulations, your a private pilot.
    It’s the old saying, Practice Makes Perfect.


  • Anonymous

    So you’re trying to say we need a wind tee shirt with a front pocket that says… “This is my checkride shirt” hahah

    Great comment Man!


  • Anonymous

    So you’re trying to say we need a wind tee shirt with a front pocket that says… “This is my checkride shirt” hahah

    Great comment Man!


  • Anonymous


    Awesome comment! That’s so true. Putting that last bit of effort in at crunch time really does help!


  • Kendall

    I found that admitting to error on my flight portion of my checkrides saved me a couple of times, for example in my chandelles for the commercial ride my ball wasn’t quiet centered on the turn coordinator, after completion of the maneuver I told the examiner that it could have been better if I applied more rudder control, letting him know that I knew what was wrong and an understanding of the maneuver.

  • Sooz_is

    I took a check ride yesterday (area solo – I’m only a Student pilot at the moment) nevertheless it was a huge event for me. I passed and while I was flying i certainly didn’t feel like I was flying at my best until the instructor told me that he would not send me area solo until I was ready. He pointed out a few of my weaknesses and showed me how to improve on them, such as using both hands on the yoke when doing a steep turn, then getting me to try it. I then relaxed and performed 2 of the best ever simulated engine failures I have ever done. From then on I felt more confident and it didn’t matter to me whether I passed or failed. I was learning and making myself a safer pilot. I also didn’t let it get ontop of me and give up. We had a windsock change from 36 to 18 mid circuit! I changed rwys. (country airfield). The instructor pulled an engine failure at the end of this last circuit. I couldnt believe my reaction, I laughed and sideslipped my plane down, did a full on greaser ( by my standards) and rolled out on the runway with a grin on my face, but at the same time didn’t care that I’d have to do this all again! The instructor told me I was now free to fly alone in the training area practicing any of the maneuvers I did yesterday! The stupid grin hasn’t left my face yet! My advice is, enjoy the journey and keep learning, you may actually be doing better than you think.

  • Daniel

    Can’t wait to get this book!!

  • Patrick

    Hi Jason,

    I’m a recently new pilot, Oct, 2010! I honestly thought I’d never make it out of the conference room with the examiner as the first question out of his mouth was: “How many fuses do you need to carry with you when you fly at night?”. Well, all of a sudden, I didn’t know any answers. I basically answered: “1 set of each type”. He said really? Then he directed me to the text. He helped me to understand what I was reading and get through the “legaleze”.

    Basically, when we study our FAR/AIM information, we need to know more specifics of the regulations and how they apply to our particular airplane the one being used for the checkride. I was flying a 1964 Cessna 172. There is only ONE fuse in the cockpit and it is behind the dash panel. As a pilot, when flying, it is NOT accessible. Therefore, I need NO fuses because I wouldn’t be able to change a fuse while in flight.

    So, when you read the regulations requiring our knowledge for exam time, know how to answer according to what you are flying. It’ll really come in handy.


  • Anonymous


    You’re so right! Knowing that you made a mistake is crucial. Even better is explaining what you could have done better!


  • Anonymous

    Sounds like you’re enjoying the journey and learning a ton! Keep up the good work!


  • Anonymous

    Awesome Dan!

    If you ordered the paperback shipping is fast usually at your house in 2-3 days


  • Anonymous

    Great story Patrick!

    I can’t stress your point enough… It falls under my famous saying of “There’s a big difference in what you learn in the books and what happens up in the air.”

    Your answer was correct….. IF it applied to your aircraft 🙂


  • I got Jason’s new book about two weeks ago…Although I’m not a real plane pilot this book was so cool and full of super great reads for anyone wanting to understand flight and aviation. I was really impressed with the color photos and simple hands on easy to read explanations. Jason in my own opinion has mastered speaking to those like me on how to obtain and achieve your pilots license. A very amazing impressive book no doubt, and something every pilot or learning pilot should own. That’s my 2 1/2 cents.

  • Andy

    To Hideguy,

    Those of us who have spent significant amounts of time training people to do new things understand that practice does NOT make perfect. Practice makes PERMANENT.

    GOOD practice makes perfect 🙂

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  • Charles Moore

    I took my check ride in 1973 and I failed it the first time. I was weak on the cross country part. I had to work on some more cross country training. I didn’t give up. The check ride did help me with more self confidence with cross country. I did handle the airplane well. He said I was good with short field and soft field take offs and landings.  There is one fact there are no two pilots alike.                           

  • David Wyatt

    One thing that really stuck out was being very assertive on stalls and stall recoveries. You want to execute them well and minimize the recovery time. When he demonstrated this to me on my checkride, the stall horn was singing pretty much the whole time, but he pointed out the quick recovery on the altimeter and vsi. That’s the kind of thing you want to get out of your CFI while you are taking lessons. 

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