Professional Pilot Training


About Becoming a Pilot


About Becoming a Pilot
Becoming a pilot, whether or not you ultimately envisage seeking a professional flying career, opens the door to an interesting, exhilarating and most enjoyable pursuit. It is truly one of the very few exhilarating and thoroughly rewarding pastimes in our society today. As with anything worth doing, the rewards and success you'll enjoy are in proportion to the effort you make - both in the air and with your ground studies. Learning to fly also costs a reasonable sum of money but the following points should be assessed carefully.

As a recreation, flying compares very favourably, cost-wise, with many other activities, such as yachting, power-boating and snow-skiing. You must remember that following the initial cost of obtaining a licence, very little money needs to be spent to keep it current.

As a career investment the money spent is good value when considered against possible future earnings.


To the Parent of a Would-be Pilot
Whether or not your son or daughter is intending to pursue a career in flying or simply obtain a private pilot's licence, involvment in flight training is valuable form of character development. Leaning to fly teaches students responsibility, self-reliance and leadership. To allow your son or daughter to learn to fly is to provide him or her with an opportunity for years of enjoyment and interest.

Should a young person successfully seek a flying career, he or she will find that such an occupation embodies many areas of highly paid and secure employment along with the satisfaction that accompanies a position of responsibility.


Modern light aircraft, maintained to exacting standards and operating within a framework of legislation and accepted principles of airmanship, are very safe indeed. Australia's record of air safety is second to none and speaks for the standard at which flying training is conducted under the requirements and supervision of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA). The most dangerous part of a pilot's day will be the drive to and from the airport.


A Way to Escape
Our society, with all its pressures, gets all of us down at times. We need some form of escape. Flying can be a way to find solitude, a means of self-expression and is a vehicle for enjoying many privileged experiences of nature's beauty as seen from the air. While you are flying you are in complete control of your destiny, experiencing the thrill of unrestricted movement in three dimensions. There can be no better morale booster than a good day's flying.


What About Education Standards?
There is no established educational standard required from anyone learning to fly. However, as English is the international language used in aviation you should be able to speak and write the English language well. If you are intending to train for a career with one of the major airlines you would be well advised to ensure that you meet their minimum education levels.
If you display average skills, both physical and mental, you will find that these are generally adequate. Self discipline and motivation are the two most essential attributes for you to proceed steadily through a planned program of ground study and flying training.


How Do I Start Learning to Fly?
A Trial Instructional Flight (T.I.F.) is always a very beneficial starting point. $105.00 will allow you the opportunity to find out what it is like to learn to fly. Your flight instructor will show you around the aeroplane, pointing out such features as the control surfaces, the fuel tanks, the engine, etc.

In the cockpit you will be seated in the pilot's seat and shown the instruments used to assist the pilot in controlling and monitoring the aeroplane's performance such as the air speed indicator, the altimeter, fuel gages, as well as the aircraft and engine controls.

Your instructor will show you how the pre take-off checks are performed and after take-off will demonstrate some basic manoeuvres to show you how the controls are used in flight. The instructor will then have you take the controls. You will be guided through some simple manoeuvres, such as flying straight and level as well as turning. On returning to the airport, your instructor will then take over and show you how to land the aeroplane.


When Can I Start My Flying Lessons?
You can start learning to fly as soon as you are ready. It is like taking driving lessons - you book your lessons to suit both yourself and the school's training program. You do not have to wait until a special course starts.

Flying lessons for general flying training are of approximately one hours duration; but when you move on to the navigation training you can expect exercises to be between two and three hours at a time. The flying school is open for flight training between 8:30am and 5:00pm each day, except for public holidays and between Christmas and New Year's.

Normal lesson periods are as follows:
09:00 - 10:00
10:30 - 11:30
13:00 - 14:00
14:30 - 15:30
16:00 - 17:00

These periods are the time allocated for each flight lesson. If you feel that you will be unable to undertake training during these scheduled periods you should discuss the problem with the school prior to starting your training so that a program mutually acceptable to both you and the school can be arranged. Students taking more than one lesson each day can expect to take a break of approximately one hour between each period.


Cost and Payment Information
A breakdown of the prices applicable to each licence stage is detailed available from the staff at Gawne Aviation. Feel free to send them an email. Most students pay for their lessons on a 'pay-as-you-go' basis, usually at the completion of each lesson. If you wish, you may pay in total or a sum in advance and then fly it out. Payment is acceptable as cash, cheque, Mastercard or Bankcard.


Do I Need a Medical Examination?
To qualify for a student pilot licence you must:
* be at least sixteen years of age;
* be able to speak, write and understand the english language;
* have passed a medical examination with an approved medical examiner (Doctor).

As stated above prior to the issue of a student pilot licence you must undergo a medical examination with an approved medical examiner (Doctor). When you have completed the examination the doctor will forward the results to CASA who will issue your medical certificate.You will need to complete an application form for the issue of your Student Pilot Licence. Your Chief Flying Instructor will be able to assist you with this. It is important that this is undertaken early in your training as you must have a student licence prior to your first solo flight. It is normal for student pilots to reach solo standard with somewhere between eight and fifteen hours' experience.

Gawne Aviation maintain a list of nearby suitably qualified doctors, approved to carry out medical examinations on behalf of the CASA. An appointment with the doctor is usually necessary and you should mention that you require a 'student pilot medical'.

If you are contemplating a professional career, you would be well advised to have this initial medical examination conducted to the commercial licence standard or higher, rather than face disappointment at a later stage. Higher medical standards apply to these professional licence levels and the doctor can advise if you will meet these higher standards.

The doctor will assess whether you are physically and mentally capable of performing the duties of a pilot during the period of validity of your licence. Disabilities such as poor eyesight, hearing difficulties, colour vision problems or even physical limitations may not necessarily disqualify you from obtaining a pilot licence.


Your Student Licence
Your student licence allows you to undergo training towards the higher category of licences. During this training you may fly with your instructor or, when approved, you may fly solo on approved exercises either in the training area or in the circuit. You may not carry any other passengers during this training and you must not carry out any flight not approved by your instructor.

Dual flight time is that time during which you are undergoing flight instruction with a rated flight instructor. Solo flight time is that during which you are practicing flight sequences and are the sole occupant of the aircraft.

Flight training is based on the demonstration, observation and practice method. That is, the instructor will demonstrate a flying sequence in the aircraft while you observe. Then you will practice the sequence while the instructor observes and assists with any difficulties.

The solo flying involves you practicing sequences that you have previously covered with an instructor. Not only is the solo practice excellent training it also disciplines the student to be positive in his or her attitude towards flying. A student is not sent solo until considered competent by the flying instructor

Most of the lessons for the general flying training stages are kept to approximately one hour. This has been found to be the most ideal period of time for maximum retention of the material that has been covered in the lesson. Some lessons may vary in time depending on weather situations, availability of aircraft and required flight times.




    Page updated 31 August 2012