Few people fancy the idea of owning an aircraft. Some are afraid of the cost of ownership, while others think DIY flying is just too hard. Still, there is a rare breed of aviators who will stop at nothing to enjoy the convenience of owning a plane. Think adventures and the ability to go around red tape by avoiding mainstream airports.
Here’s everything you need to know about General Aviation (GA) aeroplanes.
Flying is Not Rocket Science
Flying a GA aircraft is not hard, but it’s more challenging than driving a vehicle. The main difference between these two is vertical movement. Then there is the issue of the controls. You have more stuff to consider on a plane than you have in a car. But that does not mean flying is complicated. Some instructors have reported letting students take control of the aircraft, and they did just fine.
Getting the Private Pilot License, however, is not easy. You have to do written and practical exams. And have a minimum of 40 flight hours.
Owning the Aircraft
Owning a small aircraft is easy but not cheap. The total cost of ownership depends on the aeroplane’s size – the bigger it is, the more you pay. You’ll also need one more license for the actual plane. It certifies that your bird is airworthy until it expires after 12 months. Flying without this license is illegal.
Then there is insurance, hanger costs, and fuel. Single-engine planes use anywhere between 30 to 70 litres of fuel per hour. And, the cost of aviation fuel is considerably higher than your average gas pump prices.
Now factor in the mandatory engine rebuilds, and you’ll notice owning an aircraft is not cheap. But that’s a small price to pay for the convenience of having a private plane at your disposal every day. And, you can make it an investment for extra income.