How to Save Money while Flight Training
Aviation mission is to provide safe and affordable flying. One question on many students’ mind is how to affordably become a licensed private pilot. Read this article to find out how to keep costs down:
1. Read and read again.
You can find a ton of information online at no cost about flying and many related topics. You can start with FAA.gov and read Airplane Flying Handbook, the Aeronautical Knowledge Manual, and FAR/AIM available for free. You can read or download all of them. The Aircraft Owners and Pilot Association (AOPA) have the entire website dedicated to helping young future pilots. If you sign up online, they will send you a free flight training magazine.
Sometimes you might not feel like reading that much, so watch videos on YouTube. There are many flight students and pilots who are creating videos online and sharing their experience and their expertise of flying. You can also try Google flight training.
3. Create a maneuvers folder
You can work with your flight teacher and create a guide for yourself how to execute each maneuver step-by-step. You will be able to use it when practicing flying solo.
4. Add to your folder as you go
Create a checklist of all the things that are very important, but you tend to forget. Add taxi diagrams, frequencies, pattern altitudes, and entries to all the close-by airports that you might be using.
5. Couch fly
Every time you finish your training lesson, ask your instructor what you will be working on the next time. Practice at home and prepare for that upcoming lesson by going step-by-step on your couch.
6. Set up your own flight simulator
It’s not as difficult as it sounds. All you need to have is a computer, a good yoke, rudder pedals, and flight simulation software like Microsoft Flight Sim. It has flight practice lessons with a virtual instructor. You can practice your lessons before the training and right after to really understand and memorize everything. The simulator will help you learn all the procedures and aircraft settings, so that when you are in the real aircraft, you will be able to focus on what controls you need to engage, and not what their names are.
7. Facebook groups
You are more than likely to find a pilot group in your location and join one to learn some useful information from other pilots who don’t mind being mentors. Sometimes you can even score an invite for a ride. You can learn a lot just by observing others.
8. Spend time in the airport
You should hang out at the airport and talk to other pilots. Pilots love talking about flying. Have some conversations with mechanics too – they can give you very useful information for the future.
9. Learn from others’ mistakes
You should read the National Transportation Safety Board’s website (www.ntsb.gov ) and look for information about the aircraft you are currently training and see what mistakes others made. You can also find online videos about crashes and reasons behind them. Flying magazine has good collections too.
10. After the preflight
Once you are done with your preflight learning, arrive for training before your instructor does and practice what you know. Check ATIS on your phone and don’t waste your instructor’s time.