Steps To Earn A Skydiving License

The dream of flight is real. From the sketches of Leonardo DiVincci flying contraptions, the Wright Brothers first flight, to the first moon walk. If your heart beats faster and your eyes grow wide with anticipation watching YouTube videos or following our Facebook page of skydiving, then you have the gene, the desire, the willingness to step outside the comfort zone and do something that few dare to dream – earn your skydiving license!

We make the process of earning your skydiving license in Chicago easy in just a few simple steps:

STEP 1: Complete 2 Tandem Jumps

If you cringe at this thought, bare with us as we unveil why this is part of our skydiving school’s process. When someone learns to skydive, you enter a world of unknowns into a new environment – turbine aircraft, new equipment, a new protocol of safety and procedure, and more. And what may seem common sense to newbies getting into the sport, isn’t necessarily so in skydiving. 

Completing two tandem skydives is part of the process of earning your skydive license. How? Because to earn your skydiving license, you need a minimum of 25 skydives under your belt as well as completing freefall and canopy training requirements. So when you enter the sport doing tandem jumps, it also helps you become aware of the environment, you become familiar with the airplane door opening and the sounds, and you become familiar with jumping out, freefall, and the canopy descent so it’s not so overwhelming when you embark jumping solo. 

At Skydive Chicago, we also do what’s called ‘training tandems.’ From your first tandem, we have you wear an altimeter and how to use it, we give you a few exercises to perform, and the opportunity to pull the parachute and steer it for landing. Tandem skydiving is more than a ride, it’s a gateway to take the next steps to earn your skydiving license. 

STEP 2: Sign Up & Pay For the Advanced Freefall Program [AFP]

The Advanced Freefall Program (AFP) at Skydive Chicago™ is an exclusive instructional program originally developed in 1984 by Roger Nelson. AFP has evolved over the years into the most progressive and complete curriculum used in the skydiving world today. The AFP curriculum has inspired USPA’s requirements for self-supervision, thus producing more competent and confident skydivers. The AFP Program takes you from your first solo, all the way to your first skydiving license. Unlike with other programs, AFP graduates have excelled in all aspects of the sport becoming National and World Champions.

The ground training is called the AFP Transition class as you are transitioning from tandem to solo skydiving. In the AFP Program, we guide you through 23-25 levels where you not only learn the basic skills of freefall and canopy piloting, but we go above and beyond to teach you more intermediate skills – all under the guidance of the highest-rated skydiving instructors. 

Steps to Get a Skydiving License | Skydive Chicago


Skydiving isn’t cheap – nor should your equipment or training be. At Skydive Chicago, pride ourselves in having the most updated training equipment available to you, an updated training program that evolves with the times, and well-maintained aircraft to lift us to altitude. We know that skydiving is expensive, so we offer three different skydiving certification packages: 

Individual $3031

This package allows you to pay for each jump at a time and includes:

18 Jumps

USPA Membership

A License Prep

Packing Class

A License Package $2869

This is our most popular package as it is all-encompassing. You receive this discount, you are required to pre-pay the entire payment upfront. This package includes:

25 Jumps

USPA Membership

A License Prep

Packing Class

USPA Filing 

A License in a Week – $2769

Every month we offer this awesome opportunity to earn your license in a week.* This is a comprehensive package that includes: 

23 Jumps

USPA Membership

A License Prep

Packing Class

USPA Filing

STEP 3: Get Your License Number

At Skydive Chicago, we will ensure that you have all your pre-requisites met – and then some – as you go along through the program. We will then submit the A-license application to USPA and from there, you will receive a membership card with your new A-license number, and you will also receive a monthly magazine called, Parachutist with your membership. 

Your A-License serves as your testament that you can self-supervise yourself.  When you jump at other skydiving centers, you will need to show your logbook and your license as proof of skills.

STEP 4: Use Your License!

With that brand new license, there is still more to learn, more goals to aspire to, but with earning your first skydiving license, you can now jump with other license holders, jump solo, plan your own dives, and jump at other places. 

Skydiving is an incredible sport with even more amazing people that make up this worldwide tribe. Earning your license is your first big step and accomplishment in the sport! 

Are you ready to join the dreamers and earn your skydiving license? Then take the next step and click the link below!


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