Author Archives: Del Sol Aviation

learning to fly can make business successful

How Learning To Fly Can Make Your Business More Successful

Category : Education

There are as many unique reasons to learn to fly as there are people that fly. Everyone’s story is different – and that’s awesome. Many business owners and entrepreneurs learn to fly to challenge themselves and improve their business.

Here are several benefits that learning to fly can have on your business.

Skip The TSA Hassle

Flying in the last 20 years has really changed. Lines are longer and security is tighter. Not to mention that you have to take out every electronic you bring with you to be scanned individually. And your shoes…

Now, the TSA pre-check has made that significantly easier for many travelers. And business owners are taking advantage of the paid luxury of keeping your shoes on. However, you still have to wait in line to get checked. And if something pops up on their screen then they go to work searching your bags.

Don’t get me wrong, they have a job to do. But wouldn’t your life and even your business get better results if you didn’t have to deal with that hassle? How much more business could you accomplish if you didn’t have to wait in line or be at the airport 2 hours before your flight?

Learning to fly your own plane allows you the flexibility of skipping the TSA for your flights.

Save Time

We know you can save time by skipping the TSA, but what about other areas where you can save time? How about planning your flight around your day, not your day around your flight!

If you live in New Mexico and need to have a business meeting in Chicago at noon tomorrow what are your options? First you check for direct flights. Then you start looking for the minimum number of hops if you can’t get direct. But you can’t get into Chicago in time for a flight that morning, so you have to leave the night before. Now your either tired during your meeting or you had to sleep in a hotel room.

Learning to fly your own plane can save you time by flying direct. When YOU want to fly, not when the airlines make the schedule.

Can you imagine how efficient your day could be if you wanted to have breakfast in Las Cruces with a client – Then lunch with another client in Roswell – Diner with an investor in Farmington and still be home in Albuquerque for the evening?

Try doing that with your car or the airlines…

Save Money

The old adage that time is money is relevant here. We’ve already seen how you can save time. But let’s get down to how you can save money.

The simple answer here is reduced travel expenses. You can save on hotels for most of your trips. As well as saving on employee travel costs if you have to bring multiple people. Now, most small aircraft can take 4 – but adding any luggage or business materials and you’d be safer keeping it to 2 or 3. Still, flying commercially requires that you pay for each person.

Flying your own plane the cost actually becomes less. The cost to fly is fairly fixed for your own flight. For example: Flying one of our Cessnas for a 3 hour (flight time) round trip costs about $390. That’s regardless of how many people you have in the plane. Adding more people reduces the cost per person rather than increases it.

Now, let’s go a little more abstract. Let’s say you have a client that is upset and you stand to lose their business. A quick flight out to their location the moment you hear about it can get you there, that day, and save that relationship. Or, you could wait until the airlines have their flights scheduled – be at their location the next day in the afternoon and find out that they’ve already given their business to someone else.

Eliminate Layovers

We’ve touched on this one in some of the others points, however, eliminating layovers can significantly reduce the stress of getting to your location. Now, sure, there are some times when you fly yourself that you have to have a pit stop and gas up. But you don’t have to switch gates and hope that the delay of your last plane caused your connecting flight to leave without you.

Also, overnight layovers are few and far between because you schedule your flight for when you want it. (Notice a recurring theme here) If you’re a business owner like many of the other business owners we know, you like to be in control and have things go your way. Learning to fly helps you control the aspect of travel that seems so out of your hands.

Impress Clients and Customers

Ok, we had to throw this one in. Let’s be honest, when you tell your customers you are flying in to meet them they automatically assume that you mean commercially. But you open up a whole new conversation of ‘awe’ when you tell them that you flew the plane there yourself. And what better way to impress your current customers or potential customers than when they are in a state of ‘awe’ because you are a pilot.

Teaches Preparation and Process

Learning to fly is very similar to running a business. Every part of the aircraft has a job to do and your job as the pilot is to ensure that each part does its job together. You are the master of what happens. If one part starts to get out of whack you need to bring it back into ‘normal’ or you can have bigger problems on your hands.

Aircraft and pilots over time have developed checklists to ensure that each part of the plane is operating as it should. Creating checklists for your business processes can help you to catch problems before they start.

The more routine something becomes the more likely you are to ‘forget’ something if you don’t have a way to verify that you did all the steps. This process-oriented way of looking at things helps to streamline many businesses. It also ensures that new people joining the company get up to speed faster.

Comfort In Rapid Change

Business is constantly changing. So is the air and conditions around your aircraft. From weather to instruments, to ATC instructions changes from your initial plan happen every time you take your aircraft up. Learning to fly helps you to recognize problems before they get out of hand.

Pilots are trained to ‘work the problem’ and adapt and overcome the changes. While in a training environment the simulated emergencies and other changes can cause beginning students to experience stress in controlled environments. This style of training allows the development of calmness with the rapidly changing environment. So that when/if there is a real emergency during flight the pilot’s training kicks in and they can calmly make decisions that can be life or death.

What a great skill for any leader – not to mention anyone who deals with changes and potential emergencies in their daily life.


When you are in the middle of flying the only thing that is on your mind is flying safely. This teaches pilots to segment what’s important in the moment and place all their attention on it. During takeoff, there are certain things to pay attention to. That changes during cruise and again during landing. Each portion of flight requires focus and attention to what is going on at that exact moment.

Some business can be significantly improved with a little focus on what matters. Little nagging issues can take away from the main mission but the ability to focus on the goal and what’s important can be the difference between a business that succeeds and one that struggles.

There you go. 8 ways that learning to fly can make your business more successful. Do you fly for your business? Is there a benefit you experienced that we haven’t talked about? Let us know in the comments.

redbird advanced aviation training device

Upgrading our Frasca Sim to A Redbird AATD

Category : Education , resources

Del Sol Aviation is pleased to announce that early to mid January we will be receiving a brand new Redbird Advanced Aviation Training Device! It’s FAA approved and will be ready to log flight time once installed.

Unlike our Frasca, this training device will be fully enclosed with a wrap around, total immersion visual set up. It will have the capabilities of a Cessna-172S with a Garmin 430.

This upgrade will allow us to provide the most complete and comprehensive training available in the New Mexico area. As well as a way to effectively reduce training costs and enhance training scenarios.

Follow the progress of our newest addition on the Redbird’s page on our website here.

For more information or to contact us on how to book the Redbird give us a call at 505-242-2701.

dangers of using a gopro in flight

The Dangers Of Using A GoPro In Flight

Category : Education

Go Pros and other action cameras are fun to use. Recording your flight has many advantages – from catching things you missed, to improving a technique based on re-watching your videos. But is there a darker side to their use?

We decided to dive into some of the dangers of using action cameras during your flight.

Where is your attention?

The first question, which is arguably the biggest issue, is where is your attention in your flight. Now, PRE-flight is even MORE of an issue. Are you more concerned with getting your camera ready than the aircraft? Did you miss checking your oil levels because you were too busy setting up your GoPro?

Yes, that sounds like an extreme but you can be sure that it happens more than one might think.

To add more to this…where is your attention in flight? Are you more concerned with what the camera is seeing or what you are doing to control the aircraft? Sure, it could be really awesome to post that “near miss” experience on your YouTube channel, but if you were paying attention outside the plane like you were supposed to the incident NEVER should have happened.

Relying on your video

Some of our students and pilots use a GoPro to capture their flight for further evaluation. This can be a great way to “arm chair quarterback” your flight. Pulling up the video (and audio if you have that capability) can provide insight into your flying to help you improve. However, much like the first point, if you rely on your past videos for what to do instead of what the aircraft is telling you, you may find yourself in a more dangerous situation than you intended to get into.


As any camera person will tell you, placing the camera in the right location is fairly important. However, if your camera is in a place that restricts your ability to “see and avoid” you have created a hazardous situation for yourself and other aircraft in the air.

Placing the camera in an out of the way spot so you have the greatest visibility is the best way to handle this. On the wing or behind you in the cock pit are some great places. These positions provide great shots while ensuring that your visibility as the pilot in command is not compromised.

Showing off for the camera

NTSB files are full of accidents that happened because the pilot was trying to show off their skills and impress their passengers. This becomes even more dangerous when you are trying to show off for the camera so people around the world can see you.

Becoming a YouTube star is only a great idea if your flying is safe. Don’t invite unwanted attention to your flying because you “just wanted to see what it looked like on camera.”

What happens if it falls?

Now that you’ve set up the camera in the right location and ensured that it didn’t interfere with your checklists and safety of flight – it falls. What do you do?

If your answer is to dig around your feet (assuming it was inside) or worry about where it dropped on the ground you may want to check your priorities. Always, always fly the aircraft first. Your video is not worth putting you in more danger. Fly the aircraft. First. Always.

What are some of the dangers that you’ve seen from using a Go Pro in flight? What’s something we missed. We are always happy to get your opinion on the matter. Let us know in the comments.

Del Sol CFI – David – Furthering His Career

Category : Success-Stories

Sending a special shout out to one of our CFI’s David Gallimore.

David started training with us a few years ago. He worked his way up from student to CFI. He has been an amazing addition to the Del Sol family and has trained several of our students.

Most recently, he was working through the Ameriflight program to further his career as a pilot.

We are proud to announce that David has been hired on with Ameriflight as a Captain!

Congratulations David!

If you want to see different ways that you can have a career in aviation check out our partnership programs with Ameriflight and Sierra West Airlines.

blogs for pilots

Top 5 Useful Blogs For Pilots Of All Levels

Category : resources

Knowledge is the key to passing your written exams and ultimately your check rides. While we strive to provide the most complete information for all our students and rental pilots we know that sometimes it’s best to hear information from a different point of view.

Here is our pick of the top 5 blogs for pilots of all ages.

Bold Method

This is one of our favorite blogs to share on our Facebook page. The quick quizzes and other well written articles are a great asset to students of all levels and pilots of all ages. Check it out at


Adventures of Cap’n Aux

King Schools Blog

John and Martha King have been teaching aviation for many years. Their style of teaching works for many pilots. This blog is run by an aviation education product company first, but the content they provide on the blog is worth reading. You can check out their blog here.

AirFacts Journal

Mainly staying in the general aviation / personal travel posts, this blog is a great source of information on all topics of aviation as the writers see fit. The blog is heavily sponsored by Sporty’s Pilot shop, but the content does a good job of staying away from the sales pitch. Check it out at

Learn To Fly Blog

Del Sol Aviation Partners With Ameriflight To Provide Student To Career Pilot Pathway

Career progression is now easier than ever with a new agreement that benefits students training with Del Sol.

Paperwork has finalized and the ink is barely dry but we couldn’t hold our excitement in. We had to share this exciting new partnership between Del Sol Aviation and Ameriflight, the premier air logistics solution. The agreement guarantees qualifying pilots from Del Sol Aviation an interview with the Ameriflight team.

The agreement is designed to ensure that pilots continue to receive the quality flight training provided at Del Sol Aviation and continue to produce high quality, safe pilots for Ameriflight.

To qualify, students must meet the following:

  • Complete the FAA Commercial Pilot Certificate with Airplane multiengine Land and Instrument ratings
  • Obtain CFI certificate and have instructed at Del Sol Aviation for a minimum of 12 months
  • Hold a Second Class medical certificate
  • Maintain an excellent worth ethic and obtain letters of recommendation from the Senior Flight Department of Del Sol Aviation
  • Sign a release form authorizing Ameriflight to review the pilot’s academic, aeronautical, work and other Del Sol Aviation records and FAA records
  • Be competitive and meet the same standards of interview and employment required of other candidates applying for the pilot positions with Ameriflight
  • Pass any required background checks and written hiring policies.

Del Sol Aviation is committed to providing the highest quality training for their students and pilots. By arranging the opportunities for our pilots to progress along their careers is just one more way that Del Sol aims to be the best option for flight training in New Mexico.

Ameriflight and its subsidiaries operate 215 aircraft over 100,000 hours per year. They service major international integrators, manufacturers and freight forwarders throughout North America and the Caribbean. Since 1968 Ameriflight has been the leader in the small feeder cargo world.

For questions concerning this agreement or to schedule your flights today, call us at 505-337-3398.

22 Money-Saving Ways To Keep Flight Training Costs Down

Category : Education

Learning to fly is an investment in yourself. It may be for a future career, it may be to expand your current business or it may be for the pure excitement of freedom and fun. Whatever your reasons, it’s an investment.

Here is a list of 22 different ways to keep your training costs down.

Prepare for each lesson

The more you know about what’s going to happen at your next lesson the more you can affect your training. Get a good night’s sleep. Eat a good meal. Have all the material you need for your flight. It’s amazing how difficult it is to learn when you don’t have the basic needs covered. If you have to repeat a lesson because you were too tired or hungry to focus you can add an exponential amount to your overall training costs.

Study your checklists

Know what procedure is done when. Know what task comes it what order. The more you fumble with your checklists because you don’t know them, the less confidence your instructor may have in your ability to solo. This means more repeat lessons.


Now, while you should study them, and memorize them if you can, we don’t mean don’t use them. Your memory is not a steel trap. You can forget things, and sometimes it can be a life or death step you missed. So, know your checklists, but use them to be sure you don’t miss a critical step.

Do your homework – study

There is a LOT of information you need to know to learn to fly safely. Most of it is learned on the ground. The more you study your books, the concepts, the maneuvers and the regulations the less time you spend with a flight instructor ‘teaching’ you.

Armchair flying – watch videos, fly in your mind, study your cockpit

“I never hit a shot, not even in practice, without having a very sharp in-focus picture of it in my head” – Jack Nicklaus (Golfer)

Armchair flying, or practice of visualization is a tool that many professional athletes, successful business people and actors use to become better at what they do. It saves them time and money because they can do it over and over and over again in their mind, perfecting as they go.

This isn’t limited to only doing it in your mind, though. Watch videos and learn from other people. Take a picture of your cockpit, put it on a poster board, sit at your desk and simulate flying. The more ways you can learn a concept, the more it solidifies in your very fiber.

Take caution though, as practicing something – even in your mind – is only effective if you practice it the right way. So, learn the fundamentals and learn them properly. Practice makes permanent – perfect practice makes perfect.

Record your flight lesson

Grab your GoPro or your Garmin Virb and an audio cable and record your flights. This will help you relive your flight when you aren’t so overwhelmed with flying the plane. You can see your mistakes and think about how to correct it next time. You can pause your flight and really solidify your sight-picture for a maneuver. You can practice your radio communications while you don’t have to focus on controlling the plane.

Another note of caution on this one as well. DON’T let the recording of your lesson compromise your safety of flight. It is better to not have this feature, than to be so worried about your recording that you forget to fly.

Talk with other pilots

Pilots love to share their stories. And most of them will have a lesson or two to learn. Some of our stories are when we had the smoothest touchdown ever, that one time we dealt with turbulence or even that time we forgot to remove the tail tie down. Regardless of it being a good story or a lesson learned, talking with other pilots can be an amazing way to increase your own confidence.

Also, the more you talk with pilots, the more chances you may have to go up in a plane with another pilot. The more you are around planes and pilots the more you learn. And it only costs you some time and an exercise in listening.

Share flight time

Similar to talking with other pilots and taking the offer to go up in their plane is the ability for you to share flight time with other pilots. If they are instructors they may let you fly the plane. If you find another pilot who isn’t an instructor then you can be their safety pilot. Or you can have the company of another pilot on your flight as you build your confidence.

As always, whether you’re flying the plane or just in the front passenger seat, you are learning.

Spend less time on the ground – fly often, stay current, train consistently

The more you fly, the more you retain. It’s like riding a bike. When you first started out learning to ride you didn’t get on the bike once ride for a bit and then put the bike away for a month and try again. You got on it a little bit every day. And practiced riding. And soon you picked it up.

It’s the same with learning everything, and flying is no exception. The more consistent you are with your lessons and the closer they are to each other, the more you will learn in less time.

Show up – even if the weather is bad

Following our last point, show up to your lessons. Regardless of the weather. You can still have a ground lesson with your instructor. You can talk about the weather and what makes it ‘bad for your flight’. You may even get a chance to fly anyways as the weather may clear up for you.

Use a simulator

If your flight school has one, use the simulator. It costs less than taking a plane up and you can build on your skill. You can even fly it in bad weather! It’s also a great way to get experience flying into an unfamiliar airport. And most importantly, you can work on a specific skill repeatedly without too much wasted time getting set up for your maneuver.

Communicate issues early

A simple way to ensure that you are not wasting money on your flight training is to talk with your instructor. Tell them what’s going well, tell them what you’re worried about. Tell them what you think you need to work on and any problems you may be facing.

If you keep your instructor informed to your struggles they may have new and creative ways to help you overcome them. Need to rearrange your flying schedule…let them know. Need creative ways to reduce your training costs…let them know. Need to build your confidence before a checkride…let them know.

Consider a recreational or sport pilot license

Many pilots only execute a fraction of their private pilot privileges. Most ‘weekend’ pilots could get by with a recreational or sport pilots license. Both licenses allow you to fly and both licenses can be upgraded to a full private pilot license in the future. Check out the regulations and what you can and can’t do with both licenses and see if it’s right for you.

Get a job at the airport

The more time you spend at the airport, the more chances you have of meeting interesting people, seeing interesting planes or picking up on opportunities to learn. If you can totally immerse yourself into aviation you may find other ways to reduce your training costs. And the paycheck doesn’t hurt either.

Reduce the amount of “stuff” you buy

We’ve talked about it before, but there are a lot of gadgets and gizmos out there to help you fly. But they all separate you from your money as well. The latest and greatest pilot jacket may help you look cool but it doesn’t help you fly better or save you any money. Some ‘stuff’ is needed to fly and your flight instructor will be able to tell you what you need and what you don’t.

Apply for scholarships

There are several scholarships out there, and some go un-awarded because no one applies for them. Scholarships are designed by their very nature to help you save money, reducing the cost of learning to fly. Take some of your time to research what scholarships are out there and apply. You never know, you may have a large portion of your flight training paid for.

Choose a flight school or flight instructor with a good reputation

In the world of online reviews, social media and the internet there is no reason to get yourself into a school that has a bad reputation. Do your due diligence and research your school and their instructors. Check out the good reviews and the bad. How the company responds to negative reviews is a great way to know how they may handle any situation you find yourself in.

Take advantage of discounts and freebies

Some schools offer block pricing, where you pay for a chunk of flight time up front but save a little in the long run. Some schools offer special gifts when you sign up for different classes. Or they may offer a free seminar. Take advantage of these. They are designed to help you learn at a reduced rate.

Join the civil air patrol

Again, this falls into the category of immersion into aviation. While you can fly a CAP plane, if you meet the requirements, for a reduced cost there are other aspects of being a member of CAP. Check out their website and talk to some members of the Civil Air Patrol and see how they may be able to help you.

Have a good credit score

Many students have a loan to help them pay for training. Having a good credit score doesn’t directly reduce your training costs but it can reduce the interest rate on your loan. And that can save you big time!

Become an instructor

This is last on our list for a reason. It requires you to have some pretty significant flight training already accomplished. But if you want to get paid to fly and build your flight time while teaching and inspiring future pilots, this isn’t a bad way to go.

There you have it. A nice list of 22 ways to keep your flight training costs down. How many of these have you done? Are there other ideas you’ve tried that we didn’t list? Feel free to let us know about it.


Category : adventure

Congrats, you’ve gotten your pilots license….now what? There are many different reasons why someone wants to get their pilots license. Some want to fly professionally, some to get places faster, to reduce the stress of traveling or just for the fun of it.

things to do with pilot license

Whatever your reasons for learning to fly you can always have a list of things to try. A list of fun and exciting ways to use your license when you’re not traveling from point A to point B.

Call this the pilot’s bucket list.

$100 Hamburger Flight

Almost all pilots have done this. Jump in the plane and fly somewhere just for lunch. Or breakfast. It’s the total sense of freedom. There is no agenda around your flight, other than to grab a bite to eat. Flying for flying’s sake. This is the simple and basic essence of flying.

Why $100? Well, if you add up the cost of getting your hamburger from about 100 miles away… you get the point. But the experience and enjoyment is well worth the cost.

Night Flight Over A City

You’ve seen your town or city during the day from the air and that is impressive and awe inspiring. And I’m sure you’ve seen your city lights from the ground at night. But imagine what it looks like from the air!

Peaceful, beautiful, amazing and down-right magical are the best way to describe the view. The twinkling lights and lack of thermals make night flying a must do on every pilots list.

Learn A Different Type Of Flying

In the United States alone there are several different climates and altitudes that you can fly in. If you’ve only ever flown at sea-level during the summer or fall then you are shortchanging yourself.

Take a lesson or two and learn how to fly in different environments. Some of these include mountain flying, bush flying, backcountry flying, high altitude flying and cold weather flying. Expanding your knowledge and experience will make you a better and safer pilot. And will add even more stories to your book as you talk with other pilots.

Fly In Actual Instrument Conditions

If you are instrument rated and you have not flown an actual instrument flight you are selling yourself short. Flying through grey clouds and completely unable to see what’s around you while trusting your instruments and your knowledge to get you right where you need to be is a thing of pure skill and delight. If you’re not instrument rated go flying with someone who is and experience the awesomeness of what is possible in flying.

Fly Something Different

Don’t get stuck in a rut and have only one type of plan in your log book. Part of the fun of flying is trying new things and stepping out of your comfort zone. Tail dragger? Yup. Learn the real use of the rudders. High wing vs low wing? See the difference in views and handling. Seaplanes will give you the experience of landing where most planes try to stay away from. Whatever you currently fly, take a lesson or two in a different type of plane and open your world. At the very least you’ll get a new perspective. You may even discover a new passion.

Take A Kid On A First Flight

Introducing a young child to flying is a rewarding experience. The future of Aviation relies on pilots like you to keep the up and coming generation interested in planes and flying. Taking a child up in the air for the first time and seeing the smiles and joy is worth a few hours in your log book.

There are many organizations that put on a “first flight” event and you can volunteer for them, or you can find family and friends who want to experience flight. The memories you make will last both you and the kids you fly a lifetime.

Go On A Family Flying Vacation

You’ve taken the family in the car. And spent hours on the road in traffic getting to where you want to be. Pack them up in the plane and get there quicker. Or better yet, try going to a place that roads don’t go!

Fly Low To See The Fall Colors

In today’s world of speed and getting to the next place it’s nice to stop and smell the roses. Or in aviation sometimes it’s fun to go slow and see the changing of the leaves. Fall brings beautiful colors with it and a well-timed flight over the foliage during the peak of colors is a breath-taking experience.

Fly In A Different Country

Do your research, plan your flight and fly out of the country. Experiencing aviation in different countries can be a fun and rewarding adventure. It’s not as hard as you think and most places will cater to you as the pilot.

Fly In To A ‘Fly-in’

A large gathering of like-minded people all in one destination location to celebrate the joy of aviation. What better way to exercise your privilege of flight? Joining other pilots at a fly-in is one of the best ways to see different airplanes, talk with other pilots, learn something new and test out your skills at a new airport.

If you’re brave enough to give the “world’s largest fly-in” a shot then Oshkosh, or EAA AirVenture should be a bucket list item for all pilots. Just remember to read the notams before you attempt this one.

Learn Aerobatics

There is almost no better way to learn the limits of what a plane can do than aerobatics. Taking your skills and your plane to the limit is thrilling, heart-pounding and a rush of adrenaline that you can only get with flying. Become a safer pilot as you learn the techniques required to handle your airplane like a pro.

And if you get good enough at it, you may find yourself entering a show or three. But please, not in our planes. And make sure it’s done in a safe environment.

Join A Flying Club

Or at the very least check one out. Flying clubs are great ways to meet like-minded individuals and talk aviation. They usually have two or three different planes that you can get checked out on. They can be a way to reduce the cost of flying while potentially making lasting friendships.

Volunteer For A Charity Organization

Donating your time and costs to help someone in need is always a rewarding experience. There are several organizations out there that are looking for pilots. Some help patients get to their appointments and some help relocate animals to places where they are wanted. The list of these organizations is quite broad so there is guaranteed to be one that suits your fancy.

Explore Non-Paved Strips

There is a long list of non-paved strips around the country. Some can be found in fields and other in destinations so remote you can only get to them by plane.  Make sure you understand your plane’s performance data before you show up at these strips as they can be shorter than you are used to.

Fly In A Different State

Each state has its own beauty and things to experience. You could compound your flying by setting a theme to your visits. Maybe you are trying to hike the tallest peak in each state; Or land on a grass strip in each state. Or even grab a $100 hamburger in each state. The possibilities are endless and you build hours, experience and memories with each one.

Bonus: Become a CFI

This is the only one on our list that requires you have an advanced certificate which is why we’ve listed it as a bonus thing to do. We believe that teaching something to someone else is a little way to pass on your legacy. And teaching another person to fly is like sharing freedom and excitement with them.

There you have it. 15 interesting things you can, and should, do with your pilot’s license. Was there something we missed? How many of these types of flying have you done? Let us know in the comments.

10 Simple Things Flight Instructors Wished Their Students Knew

Category : Education

Learning to fly is one of the most fun, most exhilarating activities you can do in your lifetime. It is the ultimate freedom as you break free from the grasp of the earth. While your instructor is doing their best to train you in all the aspects of flying there are a few unspoken simple things that most instructors wish you knew before you started flying.

wished flight students knew

Flying with an instructor is real flying.

You are building hours and learning how to be a safe and competent pilot. Just because you have an instructor in the right seat of the airplane doesn’t mean that the flying isn’t “real”. You are at the controls and you gradually increase your responsibilities of flight as your training progresses. Take advantage of the knowledge you have next to you. Don’t think of your training as a means-to-an-end but rather a flight with another skilled aviator.

Somethings just need to be memorized.

Yes, there are some old technologies that are no longer in use. And Yes, there are some things that are easy to look up on the latest technological device. In fact, there are some things that may not make sense to you at all and you think you can get away with “letting those questions go”. Much like anything you’ve ever done in life, some tests are just to test that you know certain things.

There is a difference between knowing something for a test and knowing something because it may save your life. Understanding this difference can be extremely beneficial to your flying career.

Mistakes are the best teachers.

When life is easy you don’t learn as well. Mistakes keep pushing you to improve until you get something right. Analyzing your mistakes after the fact will often show you something you missed. This is what teaches you to be better next time.

If you pulled off the perfect landing, but had no clue how you did it, how can you repeat it? Landing left of centerline is frustrating. But, evaluating your use of rudder and ailerons and trying again making little corrections will get you right where you want to be. The experience will help you grow as a student. It also helps you to recognize those scenarios in the future and correct them before they happen.

Don’t cancel flight lessons.

Your time is valuable. So is the instructor’s. The more consistent you are with your training the easier you will pick up the lesson. The faster you learn, the faster and less expensive your training will be. Make the commitment to learn to fly and stick to your commitments. Extenuating circumstances will happen, but they don’t happen for every lesson. And they don’t happen on a regular basis. The more professional you are in your training, the safer you will be as a pilot.

Show up prepared.

Flying is money. Time is money. The more prepared you are for your flight the less it costs you. If you pay for an instructor’s time while you check the weather, you are increasing your costs. When the instructor must teach you all the nuances of a chapter you should have read before your flight your wallet pays for that. Have your flight plan ready. The longer you take to get in the plane and start flying the longer it will take to complete your license.

Create a checklist for all the things you need to have done before your next flight/lesson. Taking care of those items on your time makes your lessons that much more efficient and your flying that much more fun.

Use the checklist.

Speaking of checklists…use them! They are there to make your life easier; and your flying safer. While learning the sequence of events for a certain period of flight will help to increase your speed and efficiency, don’t forget to check your memory against the checklist. It is sad to see how many accidents happen because a certain step was missed. Rudder gust locks anyone?

Take care of the equipment.

Planes are investments. The better you treat them, the better they fly for you. So, please, be gentle when moving your seat forward or backward. Be smooth on the inputs to the controls. Buckle your seatbelt back up when you are done so it doesn’t get caught in the tracks when the seat is moving.

Your equipment is an investment too! Don’t lose your fuel tester. Ensure your headset chords are carefully wrapped up when you put them away. The equipment you use will treat you right if you take care of it. And it will save you money in the long run because it will last longer.

Supplies – what you need and what you don’t.

There are a few things that all beginning pilots need. There are many things that they don’t. The best, latest and greatest gadget is not required. Neither is the super expensive pilot watch. Or the leather pilot jacket. Keep your initial costs down by getting what your instructors list as required items and save the do-dads for after you get your license.

Be a partner in learning

Your instructors have put a lot of time and effort into creating a path for you to get your license. Based on their knowledge and experience they are working to give you the best chance at success. However, for you to have the ultimate success you should be involved in your learning process. If you don’t understand something, ask a question. If you want to repeat a lesson to get a better understanding of it, talk to your instructor. Their lessons are based on data and best practices. The best way for them to customize your training to suit you is to be interactive with them and talk to them about your training.

Enjoy the view and keep your eyes open

Learning to fly provides the opportunity for you to see the world from a whole new perspective. The view of a pilot is amazing. And if it isn’t, fly somewhere else to change your view. Remember this during your flight training. Don’t forget to look out the window. Your first certificate is for visual flight rules anyways, so don’t get bogged down in staring at the instruments.

Looking outside the plane is more than checking out the scenery. Most collisions are because the pilot was looking inside the plane when they should have been looking outside the plane. Watch for other planes and obstacles while you are flying and stop trying to fix the GPS while you’re moving.

Flying is an amazing experience. These few important things your flight instructors wish you knew will set you off on the right foot. What are your thoughts? Did you learn something the hard way after you started your flight training? Instructors, did we miss any important items you want your students to know? Leave a comment and let’s discuss.

Find Your Freedom Beyond The Road

Category : adventure

Freedom, excitement, adventure. These things and more are waiting for you when you learn to fly.

A discovery flight with Del Sol Aviation is the most thrilling hour you can give yourself for under $200. Come and check out what we’re doing and what all the excitement is about. Call us at 505-242-2701 to book your flight today!