Are you one of those people that always ask for a window seat? Perhaps always watching the airplanes that fly overhead? As I was traveling from San Diego to Nashville on a Southwest flight I wondered how many people on my flight ever thought about being a pilot.
Maybe it’s time to get a new view – from the pilot’s seat of a small airplane! Flying a small plane is not as hard or costly as you might think, and it’s a sure fire way to spice up your life and expand your mental thinking abilities.
Learning to fly will cost you from $5,000 to $9,000 depending on where and what type of plane you decide to fly. Many people grab one of those interest free credit card offers for 6 months to a year and charge the lessons. Others choose the “pay as you fly” concept. Either way 25-30 lessons later you will be sitting up front, taking your friends and family flying and seeing the world from a new perspective.
Flying lessons can be taken a few times a week or a few times per month, much like any private one on one training you set the schedule. There are two types of study in learning how to fly, ground study and in the airplane study. As a rule of thumb most of the time you will need one hour of home study for every flight lesson.. Flight lessons are from 1.5 to 3 hours depending on the goal of the lesson. Some lessons are shorter while others are longer.
After you complete your training in say 2-5 months, you may rent an airplane for a cost of $70-$150 per hour depending on how fast and how fancy the airplane is. Over 75% of pilots do not own an airplane, most because it is far less costly over a year. Airplane owners will tell you that a plane must fly 200+ hours a year to make ownership a wise move. Sometime airplane owners will purchase a plane and then lease it to a flight school to help defray ownership cost and even make money.
When you rent an airplane most rental companies charge a daily minimum flying time charge, this makes cross country trips possible since you only pay for the flying time, not the time the plane sits at your destination, while you have fun.
People become pilots for all kinds of reasons, some travel for business, some do fly themselves so that they can set their own schedules and avoid airport delays. Others learn to fly because it changes there outlook on life, builds self-esteem and allows them to create memories that last a life time. For me, the experience caused me to wake up and see life from a whole new viewpoint, it actually helped me in my non flying life. I think this was because of the sense of accomplishment and adventure I was experiencing has a result of learning to fly.
Some people I know just take enough lessons to fly solo” and say they did it. The cost of doing that can be less than $2000 at some flight schools.
People all over the world have been fascinated by flight for hundreds of years and with today’s new technology such as that found in the new Liberty XL2 aircraft, flying safe fun airplanes has never been easier or more efficient. Whatever the reason people learn to fly, everyone that does it agrees that it is a life changing experience that lasts a life time. Maybe its because of the beauty one sees while flying, maybe its because flight training is where we get to experience and learn more about us and the weather we live in.