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hi everyone,

I am in the middle of a potential career transition & am very interested in becoming a uav pilot.  from my research the last few days I have gathered these are the steps I need to take to make this a reality.  Any direction or guidance on if this is the correct order as to how to proceed would be very helpful?   Any input would be helpful as well.  Once I complete these steps if this is correct; what jobs would be available/where would I search? 

1. complete a uav training program and obtain my certificate.

1.5. medical II certificate?

2. complete a sport/pilot training program and obtain my pilot license.

3. apply for faa 333 exemption.

4. apply for jobs in the fields I am interested in?


just a quick question as well - I see training for sport/pilot training; and then I see a separate piece about instrument training; what is the difference between these?  do you need to complete both? or is it covered together? 






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Hi David,

More information about what's required on this page:


At a high-level, you need a 333 exemption to operate commercially in the U.S. To do this, you file a petition with the FAA / DOT and wait 120-150 days for them to get back to you. You don't need to be a licensed pilot or have a company to start this process.

You also need to register each of your aircraft commercially.

You also need to understand the guidelines of flying under a 333 exemption. See an attached approved exemption letter to get a sense of each specific requirement (pilot license, blanket COA under 200 ft., daytime and VLOS flight only etc.)

Let us know what other questions you have.

approved exemption.pdf

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I was doing a search on the PC for people who do Agricultural Drone Ariel Photography in my area, and came up with four companies who do many facets of the SUAS industry. One of them is looking for SUAS Pilot in Command ( PIC ),  SUAS Sensor Operator, AUAS Safety Observer/ Visual Observer. the last one said they will train you, a two month training period. This sounds like it would be a good opportunity for those who are looking to get into SUAS jobs.

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