Student Pilot Flying Over Des Moines Iowa On A Training Flight.

Flight School Des Moines, Iowa

Fast Track Airline Pilot Receiving Flight Training



Student Pilot After Completing Training Flight at the Des Moines International Airport


For those looking to fly strictly for fun we now offer Sport Pilot Training. This allows many people who wouldn’t otherwise be able to fly obtain a pilot certificate and take to the skies!

Sport Pilot training has fewer hour requirements, and under certain conditions doesn’t require a FAA medical certificate!

Light sport aircraft are very fun to fly and offer enhanced visibility and enjoyment to passengers that other aircraft just can’t compare to!


Experienced Flight Instructor Teaching a Student Pilot


Learn from the best while picking up on things not in the textbooks!

We have multiple instructors who have immense real world experience doing everything from flying choppers overseas to bush flying in Alaska.

Our consistently growing team of flight instructors know how to teach you the skills and knowledge you need to be a safe and competent pilot.

Our flight instructors in Des Moines have expertise in a a variety of disciplines such as meteorology, aerodynamics, and flight operations.

We also have several newer instructors who are hungry and wanting to fly every hour possible meaning they will fly when you want to, even if it means evenings or weekends.

Flight School Office and Entrance within Signature Flight Support at the Des Moines International Airport


Learn the latest aviation technology while training in some of the safest aircraft!

Our flight school at the Des Moines International Airport is located within a brand new state of the art facility and offers a diverse fleet of aircraft including several brand new Pipistrel Alpha Trainers!

Don’t worry, if you prefer a Cessna 172 with a 6 pack we have them available as well!

From a business standpoint it would make sense to only have one model of aircraft available, but our first core value is “For the Students” and we believe in training students who can fly a variety of different aircraft.

Flight Training Aircraft Next To a Honda Jet in a Hangar at the Des Moines Signature


Become a pro on the radio in no time! It’s crazy to think, but many experienced pilots avoid flying into bigger airports because they don’t want to talk to ATC. We will get you over that fast!

Our flight school in Des Moines is located in a Class C Airspace which means you interact with ATC (Air Traffic Control) on every flight from day one just as you will as a professional pilot!

Don’t worry, your flight instructor will help you through it! Also to put your mind at ease, you get this extremely valuable experience with minimal wasted time on the ground as Des Moines isn’t nearly as busy as the larger airports.

Flight Instructor Teaching Student Pilot a Ground Lesson


We have tried it all and found students progress fastest when we focus the training one on one with their instructors.

This means you get to stop your instructor when you don’t quite understand something without worrying about holding up other students!

In addition you will be able to go deeper into the areas you need extra attention on while breezing through the areas you already have down.

Aircraft Mechanic Working on a Flight School Airplane


When you train with us you get the best aircraft uptime and availability as you will rarely be waiting for an aircraft to come out of maintenance.

Other schools use third party shops meaning aircraft could be down for more than a week due to required inspections and other maintenance events.

We have three FAA certified Airframe and Powerplant mechanics on our team. Two of which also hold inspection authorizations.

Our maintenance team has a combined 50+ years experience in the field so you can rest easy knowing the aircraft are properly cared for!

Flight Simulator at The Flight School


Train for the real life scenarios, not just minimum standards.

Our flight simulator allows us to train for a large variety of scenarios including flying to unfamiliar airports, flying in bad weather, and of course managing emergencies.

Our AATD (Advanced Aviation Training Device) allows you to credit 20 hours towards your Instrument Rating and 50 hours towards your Commercial Certificate so you can save a significant amount of cash while receiving more thorough training.

The avionics on our simulator are near exact replicas to what is found in our aircraft. This means if you can program a flight plan or procedure on the simulator, you can then go out to the plane and do it without wasting time!


Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“Absolutely amazing crew of people. Great instructors who are all willing to help, even if they are not your primary instructor. Very relaxed environment and very personable people to train with. If you are looking for quality instruction look no further.”

Junior Myers

Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“The facilities and airplanes are top notch. The staff and Certified Flight Instructors will work with you in anyway possible to either accomplish your dream of becoming a pilot or if you just want to get your privates license. I would highly recommend US Flight Co if you are wanting to get just your privates license or go up to the commercial level.”

Fynn Beard

Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“US Flight Co is on top of their game. The instructors are always prepared for each flight and do a great job motivating students. In addition, students get invaluable experience talking to ATC. I highly recommend this program for anyone looking to rack licenses/ratings in a short amount of time.”

Jas Kakar

Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“Us Flight Co is a top flight school in Des Moines. I have been pursuing my private pilots license while finishing my senior year of high school. Because of navigating high school classes I was matched one on one with an instructor. This has been a great match and I appreciate the one on one learning I am receiving. Us Flight CO’s fleet of aircraft is diverse and expanding. As a student you have plenty of hours for flying and ground instruction. There is also flexibility to work with your school classes or employment hours.”

Daniel Webster

Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“I’ve been apart of the career program with US Flight Co since November 2022 and it has been a fantastic experience thus far! My instructors have all been very helpful and the ground course taught by Jeremy prepared me for everything I needed to know on the knowledge test for my PPL. If anyone is looking for a good career program, or an option for just a single license I highly recommend US flight Co!”

Paul Maharry

Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“It’s been amazing taking my passion for aviation to the next level. It’s been awesome partnering with US Flight Co and I love that they’re able to work around my insanely busy work schedule. They truly care about the student experience, and I’ve had such a great experience. I’ve learned SO MUCH. It’s so awesome to see my dream of getting a pilot’s license becoming a reality. I also love that this is a locally owned business that’s invested in this community.”

Mariah Lewis

Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“Very pleased with US Flight Co at their Des Moines location. I was able to knock out my instrument rating in no time. Great instructors. Great atmosphere.”

Gad Huseman

Flight Training Student Next to Airplane

“I started the career program at US Flight Co in September 2022 and have loved every moment so far! All of the instructors are very friendly and knowledgeable and will help you pass your check rides and knowledge tests with ease! If you are thinking about becoming a pilot this is the place you need to be!”

Noah Robinson

“Great flight school with instructors that care. Helping me reach my dreams in a fast track way was very important to me and they have done a great job in doing so. Definitely recommend U.S. Flight Co!”

Jack Cihota



How long does it take to get your pilot’s license?

While we have trained pilots in as little as 14 days that is certainly not typical. The time it takes to obtain your pilot certificate will vary due to the speed you pick up on learning new skills and how much time you are able to commit. If you are able to commit at least 10 hours per week between flight lessons, ground lessons, and self study expect to pickup your private pilot certificate in about 3 months.

How many hours does it take to get your pilot’s license?

The FAA minimum for a Private Pilot Certificate is 40 Hours while the minimum for a Sport Pilot Certificate is only 20 Hours. However most people will require more than the FAA minimum number of hours. The national average is 56 hours for a Private Pilot Certificate.

How much does it cost to get a Private Pilot License?

Many flight schools mislead people into thinking pilot training is much cheaper than it really is. They do this by listing the cost of the bare minimum number of flight hours (40), and not including any ground instruction or any of the extra expenses such as check-ride and testing fees. You should aim to cover at least 60 hours of aircraft rental, 40 hours ground instruction, 40 hours flight instruction, examiner fees and the cost of a descent headset. A budget of $15,000 is a realistic expectation. We also tell students to have a little more available as we don’t want to see someone get 90% of the way done and run out of funds.

How much does it cost for a flight lesson?

Currently we charge $160 per hour for the aircraft wet (fuel included) and $55 per hour for instruction. Most lessons are about 1.5 hours long so expect to pay about $350 per lesson after tax. *Rates subject change

How many aircraft do you have?

We current have a diverse fleet of 8 aircraft including 2 Piper Cherokees, 2 Cessna 172s, and 4 New Pipistrel Alpha Trainers!

How many instructors do you have?

We currently have a team of 9 dedicated flight instructors with a wide variety of experience.

What is better high wing or low wing aircraft?

Here is an age old-debate that will always stir up emotional responses among pilots. The best answer is whichever is available! Honestly they both fly very similarly but have minor differences. Luckily we offer both so you will have a chance to sample each and see what you like best!

Is the Des Moines airspace busy?

The Des Moines airport is a perfect training environment! It is class C so you get the very valuable ATC experience, but it isn’t all that busy so you don’t waste a lot of time on the ground like you might at bigger airports.

Do you have student housing available?

Yes! We have upscale fully furnished housing units available in a great location for students looking to relocate!

Do you have financing available?

Yes! We have sourced financing options for students looking to enroll in one of our Fast Track programs. If you are looking to financing a single certificate reach out to find out about current resources available.


Flight Instructor in at Des Moines Iowa Location

Rick Giarusso

Rick Giarusso is a senior flight instructor with US Flight Co. He is a professional aviator who has a passion for developing competent and safe pilots. Rick’s life-long love affair with aviation took off when he started flying gliders at the age of 14. He is a distinguished graduate from the U.S. Army’s Initial Entry Rotary Wing course (flight school), professional Part 135 charter pilot, corporate pilot, and a former FAA Aviation Safety Inspector and Principal Operations Inspector. Rick regularly flies his classic 1950 Piper Pacer has owned one or more airplanes over the last 25 years.

Rick is a retired U. S. Army Colonel and has master’s degrees from the U. S. Army War College (Strategic Studies) and from Silver Lake College (Management & Organizational Behavior). He lives in Carlisle, Iowa with his wife Deb.

Flight Instructor in at Des Moines Iowa Location

Daniel Watkins

Daniel is from Allensville, PA. He decided to become a pilot in college while pursuing his childhood dream of studying meteorology. After graduating from Penn State in 2019 with degrees in Meteorology and Energy Business & Finance, he continued his pilot training at Hagerstown Flight School in Hagerstown, MD. Daniel earned his instrument rating and commercial license from Frederick Flight Center in Frederick, MD. After that he came to Des Moines, IA, and completed the CFI course here at US Flight Co. “I am grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of this company and fly for a living. My hobbies include playing tennis, stargazing, and cheering for the St. Louis Cardinals.” Daniel’s aviation goal is to fly for one of the major airlines.

Flight Instructor in at Des Moines Iowa Location

Jayden Oshirak

Jayden graduated from the University of Dubuque in winter of 2021 with a Major in Flight Operations and a Minor in Aviation Management. Becoming a CFI was actually his dream job so he can share his passion for flying with others. Jayden is also a Buffalo Bills enthusiast!