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Aviation Exams | Passing Them Gives You a License to Roam Free

Written by darren. Posted in All

Passing Those Aviation Exams Gives You a License to Roam Free

So you’ve passed all your aviation exams and got a Private Pilot License! – Now What? Have you thought about hiring an aircraft, joining a group, buying a share or what about adding some more ratings to your license – you can make your PPL flying as exciting as you want.

Having passed those several ground school aviation exams, advertisements for new aircraft in flying magazines show a fantastic lifestyle of new adventures that only having a pilots license can bring. Aircraft manufacturers hinge their whole message on the ‘work, play and relax’ ethic and why not, they’re absolutely right to do this because having a PPL gives an incredible, and some would say privileged, right to roam free.

What is a painful journey by road can be transformed into a thing of beauty and travelled in half the time, by going in the air. Weekends can be spent away from the hustle and bustle of modern living. You can even fly yourself, family and friends to places like the Lake District, Wales, Cornwall, Jersey, Guernsey and even to France.

And if you make use of airfields near major cities, you can access all the shopping, dining and cultural activities that are available.

But its not all about aviation exams

Air law or human performance and limitations; some pilots even turn their holidays into a flying adventure or book a custom made flying tour in exotic locations such as New Zealand, Australia, Africa and America. You don’t have to go to such lengths to get thrills out of flying though. You’ll find that most pilots use their license to simply fly locally and enjoy being up in the air. Where you go and what you do is determined by the limits you set yourself. After qualifying, some PPLs stay with the school they learnt with and hire a club aircraft. The listings at the back of this guide show the types of aircraft owned by each club and school along with hire prices.

As well as hiring aircraft some pilots join a group or buy a share in an aircraft. Joining a group puts you in touch with other pilot friends and is a great way to develop your post-PPL VFR flying. Buddy up and one of you can fly there and the other fly back. And if you have a fear of getting lost hours spent aloft will help you develop the skill for reading the landscape from different heights.

Some groups organise flying visits at weekends, which will push your navigation skills even further.

On these visits, make use of the free landing fee vouchers in Pilot magazine every month. The vouchers not only give you an idea of where to fly, but you’re also likely to meet other pilots who are also taking advantage of a free landing fee too. This way you’ll network with other pilots who all have stories to tell and can advise on places to fly over or visit.

What will really change the way you fly though is buying your own aircraft or a share in one. Without having to negotiate hiring a club aircraft, you can actually start flying to places without the worry of getting the aircraft back on time for somebody else. If you can’t buy for yourself, a share in an aircraft will help you fly more often. This involves paying a ‘buy in’ figure (anything from, £2000 to £7000 depending on aircraft and share size) then a monthly contribution to maintenance and insurance. You then pay a low hourly rate to cover fuel costs.

Don’t get into the spiral of flying less frequently, because for a pilot with low flying hours this leads to anxiousness about flying and feeling ‘rusty’.

Of course, having a PPL doesn’t mean you stop learning and there are so many ways to expand your skills after qualifying. Some of these extra qualifications will let you roam free even further -things like an IMC rating which lets you cope in bad weather, or a Night Qualification which means you don’t have to worry about daylight running out before you get back to your home airfield. Then you can learn how to handle aircraft with two engines or a retractable undercarriage – these types will let you fly further and faster. Or perhaps you want to learn how to fly aerobatics or formation flying?

So now that you have pushed yourself and passed all your aviation exams, why not really consider pushing yourself to extend your qualifications, it can be scary but the rewards are well worth it.

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