Why learn to fly? There are as many reasons as there are pilots. Some have always dreamed of owning their own airplane, some are pursuing a flying career, some recognize a light aircraft to be a useful business tool.
Whatever the specific reason, all pilots have one thing in common – sheer excitement and love for life aloft.
1. Take an Introductory Flight
Getting started is easy, simply book an Introductory Flight and begin your adventure into the world of aviation. With your 1/2 hour Introductory Flight, you receive a pre-flight briefing to prepare you for the flight, and then you get the chance to take the controls and feel what it feels like to fly.
2. Start your lessons
Leading Edge Aviation has many flight instructors who can work around your schedule. Study material at home to cut down on the time required in ground lessons.
3. Get an aviation Medical Certificate
The FAA requires that all pilots have a medical certification from an approved Aviation Medical Examiner. To find a local AME log on to http://www.faa.gov/pilots/amelocator/
4. Make your first solo flight
Your first solo flight will be one of the most exciting things that you will ever do! Once you have completed the first part of your flight instruction and demonstrated your skills as a pilot to your instructor, this is the time for you to really taste freedom.
5. Fine-tune your skills, build time and gain experience
Now that you are free to fly solo, you must practice, practice, practice. But what could be more fun than “having” to fly? After approximately 40 hours of total flight time, most students are ready to begin their testing for their private pilot certificate.
6. Take the written exam
The FAA administers a “written test” through our FAA approved Laser Grade Testing Facility. This test confirms your level of knowledge and preparedness for a check ride.
7. Take your check ride
All of your training and practice leads to this flight. Your aeronautical knowledge and skills are reviewed by an FAA examiner to give you the green light to flight. This is where you get to shine and make us all proud. What an accomplishment!
8. After earning your certificate
It’s now your turn to experience the thrill of introducing the freedom of flight to others. You’re licensed and trained, and your skills are such that you are able to take family and friends up into the wild blue yonder.
In a light airplane, you travel so much faster than by car – and you have more fun getting wherever you’re going. You can leave the hassle of big airport terminals and airlines behind. You might start looking forward to business trips for a change. Or, you’ll add some spice to your weekends with day trips you never imagined were possible. (For example, our four seat Cessna 172 Skyhawk, being rented out at the airport right now, can fly from Logan or South Valley to the coast of California on just one tank of fuel and can make it in one afternoon. Can your car do that?).
Once you earn your certificate, you aren’t obligated to take another flight lesson – except for a flight review every two years. However, there are plenty of exciting things to learn and ways to continue your training – all of which will challenge you and make you a better pilot.
An instrument rating is a natural step. You’ll learn to fly solely by reference to the cockpit instruments – your airplane now becomes a handy travel tool as you are able to navigate through or above the clouds.
If you decide to fly for a living, you’ll earn a Commercial Certificate and an Air Transport Pilot Certificate. Both show your professional-level mastery of aviation.
You can teach others to fly. Fly complex, 200-knot multi-engine airplanes, or classic tail wheel-equipped airplanes. Fly helicopters or gliders. Or you can even fly as a volunteer pilot for worthwhile causes.