I'm currently providing flight instruction in a Piper Warrior. It rents for $130 per hour for the aircraft, and the charge for me is $40 per local lesson. Each lesson will have some pre, and post lesson discussion. When we get to the navigation/flight planning part of the training, there will be significant more ground training. So a typical lesson may be about 50 minutes of flying time, and a total lesson time of an hour and a half. That equates to $104 for the airplane, and I'll charge $40 for my time.
Some lessons will be longer, especially when we get to the navigation portion of the training, and I'll charge accordingly for my time.
Getting a Private Pilot License is a team effort between the student and instructor.
TO ANSWER THE ORIGINAL QUESTIONS .....
It takes a young person much less time to learn than an older one, but there are no age limitations.
(a student does need to be at least 17 years of age). Most of my students over the past 20+ years were over 40. It will take an average 40 year old approximately 70 hours of flight training to get ready for the Private Pilot Test. That equates to approximately $8,000 to $9,000. It could be more, or less depending on how fast, or not, a student learns these new skills.
A student needs to have commitment to successfully complete this endeavor. Flying 2 to 3 lessons per week is the general recommendation. And to be properly prepared, a student should figure on at least that much, if not more, studying at home. This is essentially the same as a college course, equating to about two semesters, and on average takes most students 6 months to a year to complete.
IS IT HARD?
Yes. You will not find many flight instructors to be honest about that question. Most people are not interested in doing anything that's hard to learn. The truth is about 80% of all student pilots never finish the training. Reasons are mostly money, but many quit simply because it's harder than they expected.
It takes a lot of determination. A lot of students are caught off guard by the fact that to successfully pass the practical exam, a student must show adequate knowledge of many topics. It's not just simply learning to maneuver the airplane and successfully, consistent, safe landings ... a Private Pilot must also have a solid foundation and basic Aerodynamics, Weather theory, how to read and interpret Aviation Weather Reports, Aircraft Systems, calculate Weight and Balance, determine Aircraft Performance under specified conditions, Navigation, Airport Operations, Aviation Regulations, the National Airspace System, basic Aeromedical issues, and the most important safety factor of flying ... Aeronautical Decision Making.
Aeronautical Decision Making is a concept that may change your behavior with other aspects of you life. For example now when you need to run to town to go shopping, you most likely don't give much thought to issues such as if it's safe enough to drive this time of day, with the existing traffic, and the current weather conditions ... just to get a loaf of bread. Or if your tires are properly inflated which could have a significant impact on how well you're able to maneuver your car to avoid hitting someone running a stop light ... or simply if you're in the right frame of mind to drive at all!
All these are examples of the kind of thinking a pilot must give thought to before each and every flight. It's a different mind set that most have never given thought to, but is a must for a pilot to safely take their family up in an aircraft.
How much $$ ... How long?