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Here is a list of questions often asked regarding Alien Flight Training

Q: What is the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP)?

The mission of the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP) is to ensure that foreign students seeking training at flight schools regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) do not pose a threat to aviation or national security. Section 612 of the Vision 100 – Century of Aviation Reauthorization Act (Public Law 108-176, December 12, 2003) prohibits flight schools regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) from providing flight training to a foreign student unless the Secretary of Homeland Security first determines that the student does not pose a threat to aviation or national security. Vision 100 transferred responsibility for conducting security threat assessments for foreign students seeking flight training from the Department of Justice to the Department of Homeland Security. On September 20, 2004, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) issued an interim final rule establishing the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP).

Q: Who must participate in the Alien Flight Student Program?

Persons seeking flight training must submit a request if they are not citizens or nationals of the U.S. and:

  • They wish to receive flight training in the U.S. or its territories, regardless of whether training will lead to an FAA certificate or type rating; and/or
  • They wish to receive flight training from an FAA-certificated facility, provider, or instructor that could lead to an FAA rating whether in the U.S. or abroad.

Q: What is the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP) Process?

Candidates log onto the AFSP Candidate web site to submit their background information and flight training request(s). Candidates must create an AFSP account and submit a training request and the required documentation. The Candidate will then receive an email with detailed instructions on how to complete the application process. Each step must be completed before a Candidate advances to the next step. Once these items are completed, the AFSP performs a security threat assessment to determine whether the Candidate poses a threat to aviation or national security.

Flight Training Providers log onto the AFSP web site to enter flight training requests for Candidates who qualify for Category 4 processing. In addition, Providers may log onto the AFSP web site to validate category 1-3 flight training requests, upload a photograph of a Candidate taken on the first day of flight training, and indicate whether a Candidate’s training has been completed or not completed. Students in categories 1-3 must create their own AFSP accounts, through which they submit a training request. Each Candidate may only create one account and may not share the account with other Candidates. Providers and employers may not submit a training request for Candidates in categories 1-3. Failure to follow these account procedures will result in delay of the training request.

Q: How does the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP) communicate with Candidates and Flight Training Providers?

The AFSP primarily communicates with Candidates and Flight Training Providers via e-mail. Please ensure that your e-mail address is valid and accurate. Candidates may change their e-mail address by logging onto the AFSP web site, and selecting “Assistance” > “Change your Email Address” from the folders presented on the left task bar. Candidates may view all e-mails sent to their e-mail address by logging onto the AFSP web site, and selecting “Assistance” > “View Your AFSP Emails” from the folders presented on the left task bar. Candidates should include their training request ID number when corresponding with the AFSP.

Q: How do Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations relate to the Alien Flight Student Program (AFSP)?

For questions related to FAA regulations and how they fit into the AFSP, please contact your Flight Training Provider or the FAA through your local Flight Standards District Office (FSDO).

Q: What is the best way to find assistance with the AFSP process?

Business Hours: The AFSP Help Desk is available to assist you between the hours of 8AM and 5PM (0800-1700) EST Monday-Friday (except U.S. federal holidays or weather closures).