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Having Aviation As A Hobby But Not Flying?  
User currently offlineKLM672 From United States of America, joined Oct 1999, 2502 posts, RR: 3
Posted (5 years 1 month 1 week 19 hours ago) and read 7180 times:

I had a plenty of time to wonder about this yesterday afternoon while watching my gf at her horse show. I am just going to start typing and see where this post brings me. Maybe, if I'm lucky, someone else has been in my shoes.

Much like me and my airplanes, my gf is really into horses. To her advantage, her whole family is into horses. I am just a person with a unfulfilled dream of one day being able to fly a plane. Maybe not for work, but being able to go out there and hop into a plane and fly it. I do have a few hours under my belt but not many-- 5 or 6 within a 5 year period. I never had the money to fly. The military route it out, I'm just not interested in it. My parents have never been supportive of my love of aviation. Whenever my mom asked what I wanted to be when I grow up I would say "a pilot". She would look at me and tell me to "be serious" and think of something else that I'd want to do. I've grown accustomed to driving to the airport by myself and watching airplanes or keeping my excitement to myself when we take off on a family trip. I still remember 5 years ago when I was snapping pictures of planes and my father snapped at me stop commenting "Don'tcha have enough pictures of planes???" I put my camera down and we left shortly after due to the others being bored.

I also remember that I could never comment on Herpa coming out with new airplanes. I use to be into collecting 1:500 Herpa Wings but whenever I'd comment on the newest model, they'd quickly diminish my excitement and told me to "save your money."

All these thoughts were racing around in my head as I watched my girlfriend on her horse and her aunt, uncle and friends of the family do "horse games" at a local stable. She is able to enjoy her hobby to the fullest because she has a horse. Granted, a PPL (+ other ratings) alone cost much more than a horse.

I am not sure if I'll ever get my PPL. Cost is an issue and I know working at a flight school isn't helping. A) They don't offer a discount and B) Working here I get to see all the people that get to fly and obviously the ones that are in my shoes (can't afford it) don't come in here. C) I wokr the desk and it feels a bit embarassing when customers ask if I am a pilot and I have to say "no". I get a funny "ok why are you working here then" look.

How can I "deal" with just having aviation as a hobby?
Just spotting and going on flight sim, getting the most out of that but not becoming a pilot?

Anyone else in my shoes in regards to the parents? Yes, yes I am 23 and do my own thing but as a child it sucked.

Now, I've just learned to keep my excitement to myself and will be doing that when we fly the A380 next month. General comments.

[Edited 2009-11-22 06:13:24]

6 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineBurkhard From Germany, joined Nov 2006, 4409 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (5 years 1 month 6 days 20 hours ago) and read 7086 times:

Welcome in a large club! That is what many flight sim clubs etc are around. I missed the chances too when I was your age, and now more than twice than that and it still is my passion. I've decided to combine my passion for aviation and my interest and skills in computing that make my living to become a devlopper for flight simulation products. Make your own product, buy your girl friend a horse from the first sales, and she will be happy with you doing it for the rest of your common life. Just don't change the girl friends more often than you have to change the computers you ride, but you don't have time for that anyways ....

Good luck Burkhard

User currently offlineJamesJimlb From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 1023 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (5 years 1 month 4 days 4 hours ago) and read 7005 times:

I am in a way in your shoes, i have wanted to be a pilot for so long, and i took my colorblind test, "Mr. Lightbody, I'm sorry to tell you, you are colorblind, you can't fly"

This sucks, because some people told me i can, and others told me I cant, so I have NO idea!
So aviation is solely a hobby for now, but maybe some day i will fly commericially, but that's doubtful.

The above might sound a bit like little ms. sunshine, but it's true  Sad

The sky is no longer the limit, but the mere minimum
User currently offline2H4 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 8956 posts, RR: 60
Reply 3, posted (5 years 1 month 3 days 13 hours ago) and read 6986 times:

Quoting KLM672 (Thread starter):
I never had the money to fly.

Well, that's the root of the problem, of course. Light sport aircraft are becoming increasingly popular. They can be less expensive to fly than standard GA aircraft. You might also look into flying ultralights.

Regardless of what you fly, though, make sure you're flying regularly enough to maintain proficiency. Given a choice between going up for an hour every 3 or 4 weeks or not flying at all, I'd recommend not flying at all, for safety's sake.


Intentionally Left Blank
User currently offlineYXD172 From Canada, joined Feb 2008, 452 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (5 years 1 month 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 6915 times:

Quoting JamesJimlb (Reply 2):
I am in a way in your shoes, i have wanted to be a pilot for so long, and i took my colorblind test, "Mr. Lightbody, I'm sorry to tell you, you are colorblind, you can't fly"

This sucks, because some people told me i can, and others told me I cant, so I have NO idea!
So aviation is solely a hobby for now, but maybe some day i will fly commericially, but that's doubtful.

The above might sound a bit like little ms. sunshine, but it's true  

Well, I have some good news (and bad news) for you: YES, you can get a pilot's license even if you're colourblind! Chances are that your medical will not allow you to fly at night or with colour signal control (so the airlines and military are ruled out) -- depending on the severity of your colourblindness. I'd suggest going to see an AME to find out what restrictions would apply. Worst that could happen is that you'll be restricted to flying privately (making a very expensive hobby).

Good Luck


Radial engines don't leak oil, they are just marking their territory!
User currently offlineGEG From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 301 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (5 years 1 month 10 hours ago) and read 6871 times:

I am in close to the same boat as you. I have a Father that served 24 years in the Air Force. I have been around planes since I was born, I however do not qualify for military service. Due to that and the cost in pursuing it privately I am relegated to flight sims and photography at the local airports. I am lucky to have a supportive wife who understands my interest in aviation and one who tolerates it well. As far as the family not understanding you, well that is their loss i guess. However you should not have to feel like you are a closet aviation lover.

Good luck and as for the A380 flight, pictures man and lots of them. Big grin


Cant sleep...clowns will eat me...cant sleep...
User currently offlineTimePilot From Switzerland, joined Sep 2005, 296 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (5 years 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 6716 times:

No one around me is as interested in aircraft as I am. If I start talking about them people get bored rather quickly. My parents aren't interested in aviation, but they never discouraged my hobby.

There are two airports in my city that I can go to. The old one has lots of spotters, but they go crazy for military aircraft (which bore me, sorry.) It's great because landing aircraft pass directly overhead. The new airport doesn't have as good a spotting area, and none of the photographers seem very friendly.

I don't fit into the aviation hobby category very well ...

I shoot film, I dislike digital (and I don't have any big zoom lenses.)
I don't carry a radio thingy to listen to radio communications.
I'm not interested in military aircraft.
I don't care about tail numbers.
I'm not interested in different liveries.
I like listening to the sounds airplanes make. The louder the better!

*sigh* I wish I could have spotted 40 years ago ...  Sad

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