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Getting Flight Time

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Hello everyone,


I'm new to these boards, but from reading some of the posts around here they seem to be filled with tons of knowledgeable people who are good about sharing information. I've recently started the WOFT process, and have been thinking every day about how to make myself a better candidate. One thing I think would help would be to get some flight time, to show that I am really serious and that I'm capable, at least, of flying a helicopter. I'm already paying for college and living expenses, and I simply can't afford to pursue a PPL, much less a CPL, right now. To further complicate things, I don't think there are even any helicopter flight schools in my area (Richmond, Va).


I know people here know a lot more than me about this process, so I'm wondering if this is even something I should be bothering with or if my time would be better invested elsewhere, and also if anyone might have any suggestions about how to go about getting behind the sticks in an informal manner.


Greatly appreciate the help,


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The best thing that prior flight time will get you is basic air sense (traffic patterns, airspace, radios, etc...). You can get this from fixed-wing too. The control touch is different but the Army will teach you to fly their way anyway. I would recommend at least a couple of hours in the air just to see if this is really something you want to commit to. I don't think it's critical for you packet though. There are plenty of other things you can do to improve your packet if you can't afford flight time. Good luck.



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First, control the things you can control: get the best grades you can and get in good shape. Study the FAA Rotorcraft Manual and buy a study guide before you take the AFAST. There are lots of posts floating around recently with all these tips.


The flight time would help, but it is not a requirement. A degree isn't even a requirement. As I wrote somewhere recently, it is a whole person concept.


If you can afford some flight time, you could possibly take a day trip to a school out of state and fly your first few hours over a weekend. This would you a couple log book entries and show that you've at least been in a helicopter. Fixed wing time doesn't hurt anyone, either, and it is cheaper by far.


In the end, if you don't have any hours and you are at the point where you are ready to try the whole process, then dive in and submit your packet. The majority of people on my board did not have flight time, and I didn't even have enough hours to solo.

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