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for Flight Training and Recreation

TSA Alien Flight Student Program

See also AOPA's Guide to TSA's Alien Fight Training/Citizenship Validation Rule

Non-U.S. Citizens who do not already have a pilot certificate, or who wish to add an Instrument Rating or a Multi Engine rating will need to go through the TSA Alien Flight Student Program background check. The process is fairly simple. It takes 2-4 weeks if there are no problems. You can start it from home over the internet. You will have to provide fingerprints at some stage, and there are some places outside the US where you can do this, or you can do it when you arrive. The TSA Web site tells you where the fingerprinting centers are.

Here is what you need to do:

To take flight training for an initial pilot certificate, or for the instrument rating, or for the initial multi engine rating, non-US students must register with the Transportation Security Agency to be able to train with any US Flight School. This guide will help you complete the process:

  1. Start an account on the TSA Alien Flight Student Program Web Site. You will need to create an account and the TSA will email you the user name and password.

  2. Log in on the Flight School Candidates Web site fill in and submit an application. Follow the notes below:

    Category: 3
    Provider: Amelia Reid Aviation.
    School Student Identification number: your first initial and last name - e.g. avasquez
    Course Identification Number: 101 (Private Pilot) or 102 (Sport Pilot) or 103 (instrument) or 104 (Multi engine)
    Course Name: Private Pilot or Sport Pilot or Instrument Rating or Multi Engine Rating
    Course Description: Private Pilot Training or Sport Pilot Training or Instrument Rating or Multi Engine Rating
    Rating Goal: Private Pilot ASEL or Sport Pilot ASEL or Instrument Rating or Multi Engine Rating
    Aircraft Type: Champion (for Private and Sport), Cessna (for instrument), Beech (for multi)
    Start Date: Enter a date about 30 days from application
    End Date: 1 year after your selected start date.

  3. Review Application and Submit

  4. We will receive a notification that you have applied and confirm your application. The TSA will then send you a note to pay the Fee.

  5. After you have paid, wait for email confirmation from TSA which includes your AFSP Training Request number and instructions for fingerprinting. Print the email.

  6. (a). If you are NOT in San Jose see the TSA Clearing House for fingerprints Web Site to locate the nearest fingerprint office. Then follow the process below for your chosen site.

    (b). If you are already in San Jose - Pre-enrol with TSA Clearing House for fingerprinting at San Jose Jet Center/ACM Aviation and pay fingerprinting fee. Print out confirmation.

  7. Call the Print Office at San Jose Jet Center/ACM Aviation
    Hours: Monday thru Friday, 7:30 am - 3:30 pm
    Phone: (408) 938-4387 to:
    - Schedule an appointment to submit fingerprints;
    - Ask if the candidate must supply his/her fingerprint cards (2 cards are required) and pre-paid shipping envelope (traceable means only, such as FedEx, UPS Next Day, etc.); and
    - Determine fingerprint collection fees and accepted payment methods.

  8. Go to San Jose Jet Center / ACM Aviation at appointed time.
    Address: 1250 Aviation Ave. San Jose,  California  95110
    Have with you:
    - A printed copy of TSA confirmation email;
    - Your passport (if a non-resident alien), resident alien card, or U.S. driver's license (if resident alien);
    - If required by the fingerprint collection location, the candidate must also bring fingerprints cards (2 are required) and a pre-paid shipping envelope (traceable means only, such as FedEx, UPS Next Day, etc.)
    - Payment.

  9. San Jose Jet Center / ACM Aviation will submit your fingerprints to TSA. A candidate may NEVER BE IN POSSESSION OF HIS/HER FINGERPRINT CARDS AFTER BEING FINGERPRINTED.

  10. When TSA receives your fingerprints, the AFSP will provide and email notification to you and to us, the Flight Training Provider. Call us after 7 days to check we have received notification of TSA's fingerprint receipt. If we have not, please call TSA (703) 797-2550 to follow up.