N139j From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 380 posts, RR: 1 Posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 1163 times:
I want to be a pilot, but dont really know where to turn. I have thought hard about military, and will most likely go that route. Before I can do that, however, I would like to be a civilian pilot (recreation license at least). Does anyone have any suggestions on what I can do, things I should read, or places I should go to make this happen? Thank you in advance.
NickV1r From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 2, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 1120 times:
I would skip the recreational license if I were you, just go ahead and get a private. It doesnt cost that much more and gives much greater freedom and flexibility. As for getting started, if you live in the US you are probably within 20-30 miles of a small municipal airport. If so you should go hang out there on weekends or after school. I started doing that at about 14 and made lots of friends who were invaluable in furthering my aviation career. You would be amazed how many folks will help you out if you arent opposed to lending a hand cleaning up and that sort of thing. In this respect, the smaller the airport, the better. Unfortunately these days nobody at a big general aviation terminal catering to corporate jets wants an enthnusiastic kid hanging around anymore. Almopst all airports also have a flight school where you could check into an introductory lesson, these usually run about $30 for a half hour flight. Its a good way to get started flying, plus your instructor will be able to give you a breakdown on the full cost of a license. (Hint-a lot of decent sized schools give employee discounts if youre looking for a part time job)
Other ways of getting involved early are:
1. Joining the Civil Air Patrol, sorry, but I dont have much info on that, but I'm sure you can do a search on the internet for more info.
2. Look into taking a Private Pilot Ground School at a local airport or Community College. The college ones in particular are not that expensive.
3. Start reading aviation magazines. Flight Training is a great one for a beginner (or veteran for that matter). You can sign up for a subscription at the AOPA website, or pick it up at most decent bookstores.
4. Pick up a student pilot manual. Bill Kershner writes an excellent one published by Ohio State Press, again available at most decent sized bookstores or at an online store.
5. Dont give up!
Good luck, aviation is a great business to work in, and flying airplanes sure beats having to work for a living.
N139j From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 380 posts, RR: 1 Reply 3, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 2 days 7 hours ago) and read 1097 times:
Thank you both very much. Nick, I will take your advise, and will start hanging out at the general aviation airport down the street. I will also be going out to a bookstore soon. Thank you for your advise.
Gocaps16 From Japan, joined Jan 2000, 4314 posts, RR: 22 Reply 5, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 20 hours ago) and read 1079 times:
I think Nick gave you a really good advice to become an airline pilot. I would skip the recreational and get a private pilots license which I'm sooooo close to getting it right now. It took me 3 years in training. I started my flight training when I was 14 years old and now I am 17. I was thinking on the same thing as you N139j. I wanted to first train with the military but I couldn't anyways despite my "not perfect eyesight" but it's correctable 20/20 with my contacts. I decided to tell my parents that I wanted to take some flying lessons and my parents were soooooooo kind they actually paid for most of the cost of the training.
AOPA is a great source to learn (http://www.aopa.org) But I'm a member and I get AOPA's Flight Training magazine every month. you get obtain a free 6-month subscription of AOPA just by asking your CFI. They'll know what to do.
Hey Nick, I see that you have AOL, mind if I email you sometimes if I need questions? My email address is Staggerwing777@aol.com. Thanks
N139j From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 380 posts, RR: 1 Reply 6, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago) and read 1068 times:
Thank you for your input. I will contact the mun. airport after the holidays. So you wanted to fly military too?!? Is your vision the only reason you changed your mind? Both the USN and USAF now allow anyone to fly if your vision is no worse than 20/100 corrected to 20/20 without laser vision correction. I only know this from A LOT of research on the military and pilot requirements. Again, I would like to think everyone who has given their 2 cents worth. It is really great to have a reliable resource to turn to where people are more than willing to help you out. Thank you again.
N766AS From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 9, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 1054 times:
Keep in mind that the military requires a certain amount of service (I believe about eight years) in exchange for the training. Also keep in mind that the private sector pays a whole lot better than the public sector...
But if you really have your mind set on the military, that shouldn't discourage you.
For only 40 bucks per year you get soo much!
-Very fine magazine with membership: 'AOPA PILOT'.
-Six months free of 'Flight Training' magazine if you are a student pilot.
-Invaluable and extensive technical, legal, and medical resources for free at your request.
-Helps reduce your cost of flying.
-Many, many safety seminars.
-More chances to make great friends who share you passion.
-Nice AOPA wings window sticker!
-Access to many free online services through AOPA's website.
-Better insurance rates.
-Car rental discounts.
-And perhaps most importantly, AOPA helps protect your right to fly by advocacy throughout the country (yes, some people want to make personal aviation too expensive or even illegal!!). Be prepared to help fight these people!
N139j From United States of America, joined Nov 1999, 380 posts, RR: 1 Reply 11, posted (12 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 day 8 hours ago) and read 1039 times:
Yes I know about the pay difference, but not only is the training FREE but in the military, you can see the world. And yes you do owe time...6 years after becomming a pilot, which ends up being 8 with training. The good part is that I get a free college education, free flight training, and get to have fun while I am doing it. Because everyone has suggested AOPA, I think I will subscribe soon. Thank you DG_Pilot! Again thank you everyone!