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3 Top Tips To Earn Your Pilots License

So you’ve decided that you want to earn your pilot’s license? That’s great. There’s just one problem: how do you do it? In this post, we’re going to look at the three key tips you need to get your pilot’s license.

1. Write Down Your Questions – And Ask Them

Flight training is a complicated subject. Not only do pilots have to learn the principles of flight, but they also have to know how aircraft work. That means that there is a lot of information that new pilots have to take on board.

It’s almost a given, therefore, that you’ll have lots of questions on the subject. But too many budding pilots shy away from asking questions. And this means that they aren’t getting the most out of their training course.

The best advice is to write down your questions when problems arise and then ask an instructor for the answers. Coming prepared with a series of questions helps focus the discussion and address the issues that you haven’t yet mastered. Ultimately, having the answers you need will make you a more confident and competent pilot.

2. Choose Your Instructor Wisely

Different instructors have different styles, so it’s important that you choose the instructor who is right for you. Some people will need an empathetic instructor who can be patient and understand their concerns and fears. Others will need an instructor who is direct and straight to the point. Still others will want a person who can motivate them to succeed and guide them through the technicalities.

It’s best to do a bit of research on any prospective instructors before you start flying. Ask colleagues or alumni what their experience of different trainers was like. Then, based on this information, think about which type of instructor would be the right choice for you.

Most people are happy with the schools that they join. But always remember, you don’t have to stick with a trainer you don’t like. There’s nothing to stop you from moving on if you feel your needs are not being met.

3. Do Private Study & Prep

As we’ve already discussed, learning to be a pilot is a challenging endeavour. Pilots need to learn about the control surfaces on their aircraft. They need to understand how the engine and the propeller work. They have to know how to use and understand the avionics instruments. And they need to understand the principles of aerodynamics. And in additional to all of that, they have to know what all of the buttons in the cockpit do while an aircraft is in flight.

All of this means that trainee pilots spend a lot of time with their heads in books and you should too. Doing your own private prep will better prepare you for the training sessions. And if you’re better prepared for the training sessions, you’ll ultimately get more out of them.

Training to be a pilot isn’t something that is inherently straightforward. But it is something that almost anybody can achieve, with the right attitude and advice. If you work hard, ask questions and find the right school, you’re on the road to success.

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A Productive Rant About Commercial Flight Training

At some point, almost everybody has dreamed of flying. And thanks to the Wright brothers’ unlocking of the secrets of flight, this is something that all of us can now do. But, of course, some significant safeguards prevent just anyone from piloting an aircraft.

The biggest safeguard is, of course, flight training. Training for a private pilot license is essentially analogous to the training for a driver’s license. It’s what demonstrates that a person is capable of being in command of an aircraft safely. Thus, it’s critical to get it right.

At the moment, however, we see the rise of so-called two-week or 10-day courses. These are targeted at people who are in a rush to get their license. They’re sold as a way to get people flying their own aircraft as fast as possible. And the courses usually consist of eight or more hours of training each day over the specified period. Many of these courses appear to offer budding pilots everything that they could possibly want. They cover all the relevant training material, how planes work and flight controls. And they sell the courses as demanding, accelerated training, almost like it’s a rite of passage.

What’s more, the law isn’t against these sorts of practices. The International Civil Aviation Authority says that pilots need at least 40 hours of training outside of Europe and 45 hours inside. And so many fast-track license trainers manage to scrape this quota by packing more hours into the day.

However, these types of fast-track courses are a bad idea for many reasons. For a start, it takes a long time for any pilot to become confident with the complexities of aviation. Flying an aircraft isn’t like driving a car. It’s an order of magnitude harder to do. And so cramming all the training into just two weeks is too intense. There are too many different controls, flight checks and protocols to learn. People don’t learn well when all their training is pushed into just a few days. They need time for what they’ve learnt to sink in.

But accelerated training also means that it’s more likely that pilots will make mistakes. People learn things best by repetition, repetition, repetition. Under normal circumstances, a pilot would get their license after repeating moves hundreds of times over a course of months. But under an accelerated course, they will only get to try different manoeuvres perhaps on one or two days. Sure, that might be good enough to shoehorn them through the license exam. But there are serious doubts as to whether such an approach is actually safe.

At Aeros, we take safety and training very seriously. That’s why we do training for 45 hours at a minimum. The safety of the pilot, their passengers and the public should be the top priority of any flight training school.

There might be other forms of training out there. But they are never going to be as safe as training from a bonafide flight school, built on principles stretching back decades.

Josh Ward