When you first go to a flight school and spend some time with one of the instructors to find out if learning to fly is for you, he or she will commonly take you up on a demo flight where you get to sit in the pilots seat for take off, during the flight and landing. And while the expert is doing all the work, you get the feel for being in the pilot’s seat of an airplane, maybe for the first time. For many of us, that first flight is a transformation that will take you from someone curious about flying to a true believer with that deep inner drive to learn to fly whatever it takes.
If the flight instructor who took you on that first flight knows what he is doing, you will walk away from that first experience with an armload of information including the curriculum for ground school, the costs of training for your pilot’s license and a layout of the time commitment involved. It might be a little overwhelming when you get home and start looking over all of that material. But if that inner drive to become a certified pilot has birthed the love of flying in you, you will then and there determine that you are going to put in the time and conquer the knowledge so you too can become part of that special society of people who can fly an airplane.
You should make that moment when you are filled with determination to learn to fly and make it one of those big memories you often go back to. That is because if you really want to be a great pilot and to get there as quickly as you responsibly can, you should be prepared to make getting through flight training and learning this amazing new skill the absolute top priority in your life for the weeks ahead as you go through the learning process.
For one thing, the training to learn to fly is not cheap. You are taking training from specialized experts whose time is not cheap and flight schools provide the airplanes, gas, supplies and insurance so you can take their airplanes up for learning flights. You cannot get a pilot’s license without flying several times a week throughout your training period. So be prepared to pay several thousand dollars for top notch flight training. But if you can make that investment, and you put in the time to get the work done, you are virtually guaranteed that at the end of the curriculum, you will earn your pilot’s license.
And just as you take into account the financial investment, you should be prepared to make the time investment to learn to fly a top priority for you. Whether you are taking classroom lessons or your lesson that day is to take the aircraft up, you should be prepared to be at the flight school a couple hours for each session. And to make progress, you should plan 2-3 lessons a week. In addition there is the travel time to the school and time to study and prepare for the next time you are with the instructor.
There are a lot of resources you can use to conquer all of the new terminology and areas of knowledge you will have to become expert in to truly “become” a pilot. But look on that intimidating body of knowledge ahead as the mountain you have to climb to achieve this lofty goal. Then charge into that mountain and climb diligently every day. You can conquer that information if you study and give this passion of yours plenty of time. And the more you learn at home and during times when not at the school, the faster you will progress.
Before you know it you will be taking the flight test for your pilot’s license. You will have put in sufficient hours in the air and your knowledge will be rock solid. And when you walk out of that testing and you conquered it all, you will look down at that pilot’s license and you have every reason to feel proud. You will have not only finished a course of study, you will have changed into a completely different person. You are now and will forevermore will be – a pilot.