NEW YORK (PIX11) — More and more people are wanting to carry concealed guns in New York City.

Applications for concealed carry permits have increased 54% in recent weeks, according to the NYPD, despite New York State’s new law requiring additional training and background checks.

Certain areas are also “gun free zones,” even if you have the concealed carry permit. Those zones include schools, churches, federal buildings and Times Square.

Multiple certified firearms instructors told PIX11 News they are being flooded with questions about how to apply, and who can carry.

New York State is requiring everyone applying for a concealed carry permit to take a 16-hour instructional class, with two hours of actual shooting.

Firearms instructors say New York’s Division of Criminal Justice Services, in conjunction with State Police, have only issued guidelines for that required class. There is no uniform class at this point.

Matthew Seifer, with Guardian Security and Firearms Training in Deer Park, said “there really is no oversight on it, but they’re entrusting us as qualified firearms instructors.”

Lisa Ludwid, the owner of Long Island Women’s Firearm Club, said she’s been fielding a “major uptick in phone calls, and Facebook posts, messages. It’s been pretty crazy actually.”

Kevin Flynn, a New York State certified firearms instructor who is retired from the Department of Correction, said there is a backlog of applications.

“I’m a peace officer according to penal law, I still had to get permission from 1PP and it took me six months,” he said.

It’s estimated as of now, it could be 18 months from start to finish.

Once you have your certification, you need to file the application with your local licensing agency. In New York, that’s the NYPD.