Top 5 Tips On How To Become a Pilot

Whether you've decided that you want to become a pilot, or are still deciding to become a pilot. We all face the same question. How?

The process on how to become a pilot can be confusing, overbearing and overwhelming. Unsure which pieces of information are integral to our piloting journey, and which are, well, unnecessary. Therefore, we've compiled a selection of the most basic, but fundamental, pieces of advice to the prospective pilots of the future.

So, let's begin our 'flow check' and pull out the checklist, of our top 5 tips on how to become a pilot.

1. Get a PPL(A)

What is a PPL(A)?

A PPL(A) is the starting point for all pilots, from Captains with EasyJet or Emirates to Flight Instructors and Display Pilots. PPL(A) stands for the Private Pilot's Licence. Perhaps the fantastic aspect of the PPL(A), in our opinion, is it's versatility. This licence can be used privately for personal enjoyment within the General Aviation sector, allowing you to fly independently across much of the UK and Europe. Equally, the PPL(A) can be further utilised for additional ratings such as the Instrument Rating (Restricted), Night Ratings, Airline Transport Pilot's Licence, Multi-Engine Piston Rating and an Instrument Rating, all of which lay the foundation for a Commercial Pilot's Licence.

How much does a PPL(A) cost?

A PPL(A) can cost between £9,000-£14,000 on average. However, the cost depends largely on two factors. Your personal actions and your Flight School's charging rates. A PPL(A) will be cheaper if completed in the minimum of 45 hours (preparation before a lesson is a key factor) and, importantly, completed with a school that tailors the PPL(A) syllabus to suit your schedule and training preferences.

We understand that making a decision to compete a PPL(A) is a large commitment. Click here for more information on our website about the PPL(A).

I would like to book a trial lesson

At Horizon Flight Training we do not require any prospective students to pay a deposit or an upfront joining fee. Simply because we believe this to be unreasonable. Instead, we offer trial lessons. A 1 hour flight with one of our experienced Flight Instructors, starting with Lesson 1 of the practical PPL(A) syllabus. This hour will be counted towards the 45 hour minimum. However, if you have decided after the flight, that the training is not you, it is still an experience within itself. Once the trial lesson has been completed and you would like to continue, there are no surprise joining fees or deposits, the payment plan is set up to pay what you fly, on that particular day only.

2. Choose a Flight School

Perhaps one of the most important decisions, second only to deciding to pursue an interest in becoming a pilot, is choosing the right Flight School for you. Different Flight Schools have different options, focuses, price levels and styles of training.

At Horizon Flight Training, we offer a modular approach to pilot training. This allows you to pursue your interest in flying without that large long-term commitment. You achieve each level of flight training indecently, and at your pace. This allows you to achieve only certain licences, such as the PPL(A) for personal enjoyment in the General Aviation sector, or to achieve a childhood dream to fly. Yet, also if chosen to do so, pursuing a commercial career with the PPL(A) via hour building and achieving additional ratings such as the Night Rating (necessary for a commercial licence) or an Instrument Rating (Restricted).

Our instructors are always more than happy to discuss a training format to suit you, and your personal route in the aviation sector.

Click here for contact information

3. Get a Class 1 or Class 2 Medical

Perhaps this may sound like a strange piece of advice. Allow us to explain. In order to fly solo, the Civil Aviation Authority requires that all student pilots (and qualified pilots) have either a Class 1 or Class 2 medical, to prove they are healthy, and bodily capable to be in charge of an aircraft acting as Pilot in Command. It is recommended to get a Class 1 or Class 2 medical after speaking with an instructor to help you decide which class of medical you should get, either before your training, or within the first few hours.

More information of the difference (including cost) of the Class 1 and Class 2 medicals can be found on the Civil Aviation Authority website.

Click here for more information

4. Pre-read Practical Lessons Before Flight Instruction

Learning to fly is all about 'spare capacity'. Your progress and advancement onto the next lesson depends upon your space capacity to absorb another flight principle. Reading through a lesson in advance should reduce the amount of time learning that principle in the air and allows you to absorb that information more efficiently. Hence, saving you time and therefore money, and making you a better pilot overall. Potentially, it can also be useful to purchase a practical lesson book even before you start flying lessons. They can provide you with an insight into the process and what you will cover with an instructor.

Where can I get ground school book?

You can purchase the Pooley's Air Pilot's Manual from Flight Store for £23.00. For the purposes as stated above, we recommend that you purchase Book 1, also known as 'Flying Training'. This will provide you with an in depth guide to the PPL(A) syllabus and explain the basic principles of flight.

Click here to view PPL(A) 'Flying Training' book

5. Speak to an Expert

Deciding on your piloting route can be difficult when there is limited information on the subject. The process itself is generally over-complicated, and can be difficult to understand 'off the bat'. Therefore we suggest that you speak to an expert.

Who can I speak to?

Head to our website to see 'What We're Up To' which includes videos of lessons, flight experiences and our training fleet. Along with, more detailed explanations of the PPL(A) syllabus and trial lessons.

Venture Beyond the Horizon

Learning to fly is an experience like no other. Don't let a matter of 'how' prevent you from realising your vision.

Let your ambitions to take flight.

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