Orange County Flight Center is an FAA Part 141 flight training school at John Wayne | Orange County Airport (KSNA).

John Wayne Airport is the ideal training grounds for pilots of all skill levels. From zero-hour pilots to Air Transport Pilots, the busy aviation environment trains pilots right from the start to see and avoid other aircraft, and how to manage an environment where small trainers are often in close proximity on taxiways with airliners. While this can be intimidating at first, you’ll soon feel at ease flying into John Wayne, and you’ll have the confidence to visit any other airport.

Orange County’s weather is another great reason to choose OCFC as your flight training center. With an annual average of 278 days clear skies, your basic training rarely gets “weathered.” And with morning coastal overcast, you’ll also have plenty of opportunities for actual IFR into John Wayne and surrounding airports.

FAR Part 141 vs Part 61

What’s the difference?

PART 141

FAR Part 141 describes regulations for flight training institutions and flight schools. Under Part 141, a flight school must seek and maintain FAA approval for its training curriculum, syllabus and lesson plans, creating a more structured flight training environment.


In this highly structured environment, good students can progress towards their ratings faster, often saving thousands of dollars. 

  • Private Pilot Certificate: 35 hours minimum 
  • Commercial Pilot Certificate: 190 hours minimum


Part 141 schools are strictly defined environment for accelerated learning. These flight schools are created for career pilots. While both Part 61 and Part 141 are policed by same FAA standards, a Part 141 Flight School can operate more efficiently while training pilots toward a specific career path.

The FAA reviews these schools and their curriculum regularly for consistency, continuity and acceptable practices.


Part 141 schools operate with measured certainty. Student must complete stages before they move to the next. Instructors follow an FAA-approved syllabus with identical training standards, which simplifies learning from various instructors.

Part 141 schools must maintain satisfactory performance to meet the FAA’s standards. 

Part 141 training can be fast-paced. Standardized learning is accelerated, and students are required to study consistently, resulting in students who earn pilot certificates faster and save money in the process. A much larger percentage of pilots who start flying with a Part 141 finish their ratings.




A Part 61 training environment is less strict, and leaves an instructor with more flexibility to change the training program as he sees fit. Part 61 training must also teach to the same FAA practical test standards.


The story unfolds with simple math; a minimum of 65 hours more are required to obtain a Commercial Pilot Certificate. Multiply 65 by the going rate of aircraft rental and the amount you can save is staggering. 

  • Private Pilot Certificate: 40 hours minimum
  • Commercial Pilot Certificate: 250 hours minimum


While Part 61 Flight Schools must adhere to FAA practical standards for pilots, these schools are not monitored as a Part 141 School. In fact, any pilot with a Certified Flight Instructor rating can call himself a “flight school.” Without the FAA standardization and checks, Part 61 instructors might not be penalized for being sub-par. A high failure rate, for example, may go unnoticed.


Part 61 schools are not required to perform stage checks with a check pilot; you could be learning bad habits. 

Part 61 schools are not monitored on their performance, and the only indication a student pilot would have of this is a failed check ride with the FAA, costing you time, money and frustration. 

Part 61 schools teach pilots at whatever rate the student wants, often extending the training to double or triple the required minimum hours, and months of additional time. We hear of student pilots who “just never finished getting their license,” which can be more of a factor of a poor learning structure than lack of motivation.