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Get cash rewards for your flight training

May 2019 Preflight

Now you can get cash back for your flight training through the new AOPA World Mastercard with Commerce Bank. AOPA upped the cardholder benefits to include 2 percent cash back on every dollar spent at flight schools.

Cardholders can also receive 4 percent cash back for select AOPA purchases; 3 percent cash back for all purchases at select AOPA partners including Aircraft Spruce & Specialty Co., Aero-Space Reports, Jeppesen, Sirius XM Aviation, PilotWorkshops, and Sporty’s Pilot Shop; 2 percent cash back for fixed-based operator (FBO) purchases, aviation and auto fuel costs, ride sharing and taxi costs; and 1 percent cash back for all other purchases. Cash back is applied as a statement credit.

“We believe AOPA and Commerce Bank have the best available credit card rewards program for pilots, and we will continue to look at ways we can improve, bring down the cost of flying, and make aviation more accessible to everyone,” said Jiri Marousek, AOPA senior vice president of marketing.

Cardholder purchases support AOPA’s industry-leading initiatives including the AOPA Air Safety Institute, advocacy, and You Can Fly’s various programs designed to reduce costs and barriers to flying.

Certain points and purchase restrictions apply; see the Rewards Terms and Conditions for full details online.

BasicMed Tips

Checking for clearance

Guide to basicMed renewals

BasicMed is two years old in May 2019. More than 45,000 pilots are flying under BasicMed, an alternative to third class medical certification—and many are approaching the mandatory two-year online course renewal. Now what?

Under BasicMed, you can fly aircraft with up to six seats and with a maximum certificated takeoff weight of no more than 6,000 pounds, and fly up to 250 knots indicated airspeed and up to 18,000 feet msl. The aircraft restrictions are straightforward, but the online education course renewal has created some confusion. Under FAR Part 68, the regulations that govern BasicMed, you as the pilot in command must receive a comprehensive medical examination by a state-licensed physician every 48 months (calculated to the day); plus you must complete an online course every 24 calendar months (calculated to the last day of the month).

Since the examination and online course are valid for different lengths of time, ensure that both your medical exam and online course are current before flying under BasicMed. For example, let’s say you received the required medical exam on May 1, 2017, and completed the online course on May 15, 2017. You would be eligible to operate under BasicMed through May 31, 2019. After May 31, 2019, you’ll need to complete the online course again.

Just like when you completed the course last time, you’ll be required to enter information about yourself. Because the medical exam you had on May 1, 2017, is valid for 48 months, it is this exam you’ll refer to when the course requires you to provide details about your BasicMed exam. No need to submit any paperwork to the FAA—AOPA will submit the information you provided at the end of the course to the FAA on your behalf.

Once you have completed the online course and have a newly issued course completion certificate in hand, you are now eligible to continue flying under BasicMed until May 1, 2021, which is the end of the 48-month period since your physical exam on May 1, 2017.

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