International Students

Information for international students


- Student Visas


Flying Academy Miami is approved by the US Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS – formerly known as the Immigration and Naturalization Service) to accept international students for full-time training. Admission into the United States to participate in the "M-1 Vocational Student Visa Status Program" requires the issuance of a BCIS I-20 form by the Academy. Once an I-20 form is issued, students can apply for an M-1 Visa at the US Consulate in their home country.


In order to meet the requirements for the I-20, an applicant must:

  • Be at least 18 years old.
  • Document at least 12 years of academic education by providing an official copy of a high school diploma or equivalent, translated into English.
  • Document financial ability to fund tuition expenses and personal support for the duration of the program. - - This documentation MUST be in the form of a official letter from your bank showing the amount of funds available, in US Dollars, sufficient to finance all training, housing, personal expenses, etc., while in the United States.
  • Demonstrate the ability to read, write and understand English language.


In addition, the US BCIS requires:


  • Full time participation of at least 22 training hours per week. Flying Academy Miami requires that a minimum of 10 hours of this be Flight instruction
  • Demonstration of financial ability on a continuous basis.

Each applicant is required to provide full and complete information on the application for admission and to submit all documentation with a non-refundable application fee prior to receiving the I-20 Form. Once the school receives the required documentation, an I-20 form will be sent by express delivery. Under an M-1 Visa, international students will not be permitted to work in any capacity, paid or unpaid, while in the U.S.

In some cases a student may be able to transfer an existing M-1, F-1, or tourist visa to Flying Academy Miami. Requests to transfer visas or transfer schools require adherence to the policies and procedures of the US BCIS. For more information on visa and school transfers, please see the website: BCIS

The decision to issue an M-1 Visa is a collaborative effort by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. BCIS, and the US Department of State. Training is conducted under Parts 61 and 141 of the FAA Regulations


- How to Apply


There are 5 steps in the process of enrolling in the flight training program at Flying Academy Miami:

  1. Complete the online application. We will send you a confirmation of your acceptance once we have processed your application.
  2. Once you receive confirmation that you are accepted for admission, create your user account and pay the enrollment fee ($650.00) online. Once the fee is paid, we will process and send by express service your I-20 and fee payment receipt.
  3. Make an appointment with the US Consulate in your country to complete the visa application process. When you call, provide the number from the payment receipt. You don't have to pay it again. The consulate will provide a list of the documents necessary to process your application. Have these documents ready when you arrive for your appointment. You may find a local travel agent helpful in preparing your documents. A full description of the VISA process is available on the US State Department web site.
  4. Complete the online TSA application, choosing Silver Express as your flight training provider. This requires payment of $130.00 online by credit card for processing your security clearance.
  5. Once you have the appointment with the US Consulate, notify us and we will schedule your flight course.


- Transportation


Flying Academy Miami student transport van is used for pick-up from the airport upon arrival. We can also arrange transportation to the school from your accommodation. Please contact us if these services are needed. Price range varies.


For a longer term solution, our scooters can be rented for as little as $150 a month (for periods longer than 6 months).


- Accommodation


Our staff will help you find the most suitable place during your study. Flying Academy Miami can provide accommodation to fit everyone's taste and budget. Short-term and long-term accommodation is available on the request.


We offer our students a family house accommodation type, fully furnished with a complete kitchenette, bathrooms and internet. Accommodation facilities are a short drive away from our base.

Students can decide between a single or shared room.

Single rooms cost 950 USD / month, shared rooms with another student of Flying Academy are available for a 650 USD / person/ month. Internet and all other services are included in this price.


- Foreign Pilot License Conversion


Effective July 23, 2002, persons applying for a certificate issued on the basis of a foreign license, using a pilot certificate issued under Section 61.75 to apply for a commercial pilot certificate, applying for an airline transport pilot certificate, or applying for a certificate issued on the basis of a foreign license, must have the validity and currency of the foreign license and medical certificate or endorsement verified by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) that issued those certificates, before applying for an FAA certificate or authorization.


Please submit the required information and send the completed form with the preferred documents to the Airmen Certification Branch, AFS-760, PO BOX 25082, Oklahoma City, OK 73125-0082 or fax the form and documents to (405) 954-9922. The pre-application documents cannot be sent electronically.

A person who is applying for a U.S. certificate/rating on the basis of a foreign license must apply for that certificate at least 60 days before arriving in Miami. This initial application step is the responsibility of the applicant. Silver Express can assist in submitting this form.


The information submitted to the Airmen Certification Branch by the applicant must include the following information:

  1. -The name and date of birth of the applicant.
  2. -The address where the person wishes to have the verification of authenticity letter, issued by the FAA’s Airmen Certification Branch, AFS-760, mailed.
  3. -The certificate number and ratings on the foreign license.
  4. -The country of issuance of the person’s foreign license.
  5. -The location of the FAA Flight Standards District Office where the person intends to make application for his or her U.S. certificate (usually FSDO19 in Miami).
  6. -A statement that his or her foreign license is not under an order of suspension or revocation.

-NOTE: The Airmen Certification Branch would prefer to have a copy of the foreign license and medical certificate or endorsement included with all requests for verification of authenticity of the foreign license.


When verification is received from the CAA, you will receive written notification that a copy has been forwarded to the Flight Standards District Office (FSDO) you designated in your request. The verification is valid for 6 calendar months. You may make application for a U.S. certificate during that period.

Mailing Address: FAA
  Airmen Certification Branch, AFS-760
  PO Box 25082
  Oklahoma City, OK 73125-0082
FAX number: (405) 954-9922

*** IMPORTANT *** Additional requirements for United Kingdom Applicants:

In addition to the procedures stated under Verification of Authenticity of Foreign license, Rating and Medical Certification above, airmen from the United Kingdom should note the following additional steps that are required by the United Kingdom CAA to complete this verification process. Please visit the UK CAA web site. The additional forms are required prior to the UK CAA providing any requested information to the Airmen Certification Branch, AFS-760.

Please note: The Verification of Authenticity of Foreign license, Rating and Medical Certification form must be submitted directly to the FAA, Airmen Certification Branch, AFS-760 not to the UK CAA. The information required by the UK CAA must be submitted directly to the UK CAA and not to the FAA, Airmen Certification Branch, AFS-760.
Flight Time Certification

All flight time completed at Flying Academy Miami will be certified after completion of your flight course. Apostille certification is also available. This certification is required by some countries before US flight hours are recognized.

A minimum initial payment of $5,000 is required prior to beginning training. Flying Academy Miami accepts international payment by wire transfer. Locally, payment may also be made by debit transaction, check, cash or credit card. A minimum credit balance is required of all students. Once training begins, students must monitor their accounts to ensure they maintain sufficient funds to continue training. Once the account credit is depleted, additional minimum payments of $5,000 must be made to maintain active enrollment. Transaction fees apply to some forms of payment other than Wire transfer or cash. Any questions may be addressed with Silver Express administration on arrival.


Frequently Asked Questions


Do I qualify for a Student Visa?


The Immigration and National Act has specific requirements which must be met by applicants for the student visa. Consulates will determine whether you qualify for the visa. Applicants must demonstrate that they properly meet student visa requirements including:
· Live in a residence abroad, with no immediate intention of abandoning that residence
· Intend to depart from the United States upon completion of the course of study
· Possess sufficient funds to pursue the proposed course of study


When should I apply?


Embassies/Consulates can issue your M1 student visa as early as 120 days before the start date on your I-20 form. Students are encouraged to apply for their I-20 early to provide enough time for visa processing. It is recommended that you wait until you receive your Form I-20 before you make an interview appointment at the U.S. embassy or U.S. consulate. Students can enter the U.S. no earlier than 30 days before the study start date shown on your I-20 form


What is the I-20 form?


The I-20 form shows that you are eligible for M-1 Student status. The I-20 form is issued by the school (Silver Express). The M1 visa is issued by the US Consulate/Embassy.


What about my spouse and/or dependents?


It is possible for qualifying spouses & dependents to join M1 students in the US as M2 visa holders. Please contact our school official for information.


Do I need health insurance?

Yes. Students are responsible for obtaining health insurance. Here is one option. 


Is it possible to take vacation as an M1 Student?


Yes, the amount of vacation depends on your length of study.

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