Student pilots can be overwhelmed by the amount of new things to learn, so these ten private flying lessons tips will help ease some of the learning process. Work at using these tips as well as developing some that fit your personality, and the flight process will become much more natural in a shorter period of time.
- Do your reading. Make sure you read all of the text pertaining to the lesson you will have. The textbooks explain in great detail what you will later do in practice.
- Give yourself enough time. Make sure you allow time in your schedule for the lessons so you aren't rushing around at the last minute to get there. This causes stress you don't need.
- Keep your gear in a flight bag. The textbooks, fuel check equipment, and calculators all need to be in one place so you can pick the bag up and go to the lesson or plane.
- Get a hand-held aviation radio. Go to the airport on lunch breaks or when you can and listen to the conversations to get used to how it sounds and what goes on. This is also a great backup device for use in the plane.
Get a comfortable headset. You will spend hours with the headsets on and if they are uncomfortable, you will find it harder to concentrate. Look for after-market gel ear muffs that can fit as replacements for harder foam muffs.
- Practice with aviation computers. Using the manual slide rule calculator is easy and quick and doesn't require batteries; if you use an electronic one, spend time practicing so you can use it quickly.
- Get a fuel stick to measure tank levels. Don't just guess or only use the fuel gauges in the cockpit. Be sure of the fuel levels before you go up.
- Make a sheet of frequently used information. Radio frequencies, landing speeds in the pattern, best glide speeds and any other information you use are good to have within easy access. Once you have the information printed out or written neatly, take it to a copy machine and reduce it, then laminate the paper and punch a hole in it and put a wrist strap on it so it's always ready in the cockpit.
- Schedule lessons for early in the day. Air is smoother in the mornings, and during the summer, the cockpit is much cooler.
Take lessons more frequently. The longer the time between lessons, the more you have to re-learn at the next lesson, which draws out your time and expenses.