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New to the Heli world

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Hey guys, I have been reading around on yalls forums and its been very interesting. The owner of a flight school in my area along with some of her instructors recommended me to check out this website. I am planning on starting flight school in mid august hopefully if everything falls into place. I do have a few questions about the flight training that i haven't been able to find on the forums.


1. When i am getting my private pilot license, it says i have to do a cross country flight. This may sound dumb but is it truly a "cross country" flight or just a flight that has to be x amount of miles long?


2. I am looking at going to flight school about 3 times a week. If financial issues arise what would y'all say would be the minimum amount of times each week to go and still have forward progress?


3. What are some qualities or things to look for when choosing a flight school?


Any info would be greatly appreciated!




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1. Cross country is to an airport more than 25nm away. There's a dual night cross country of 50nm total distance and a solo cross country of 100nm total distance where you have to land at three different points, but only one has to be 25nm away in a straight line.


2 Twice a week (maybe?), however I would suggest perhaps saving your money until you have enough to do each rating at a time, i.e. once you have say $15,000 start you PPL, etc...


3 A school that has more than one trainer is good (in case one breaks down, or to avoid availability problems due to too many students and not enough helicopters). Getting along with the instructor is key! If you don't seem to be clicking it will just cost more money! Good weather is also a factor. Too many cancelled flights can really drag things out! If the airport is too busy you could spend too much time "sitting on downwind" again just burning money! If you're doing this because you want to fly around for fun, and/or take up freinds, make sure they will rent to you when your training is done (some don't)!

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Welcome to VR.


I would highly recommend spending a day or two reading through some of the forum threads here. There is a ton of great info, lots of good advice, and even some lively debates.


The big topics that might help you the most are general and the flight schools/training ones. This is where the majority of the topics that affect your situation are located. Those sections you will find tons of info on choosing flight schools, what to expect in training, what to expect for career progression, and tips on how to succeed in your goals.


Usually about every other topic gets derailed at some point, but even so, most discussions still contain good information.


Welcome again, and enjoy the ride.

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As eagle5 said, a cross country for the purpose of meeting the requirements for a certificate is 25nm at least. I do agree that you need to attend at least twice a week or you will spend more time covering what you did last time rather than working on new material/maneuvers.


To pick a school is a little more tricky. You should be open to the idea of moving away from home for your training. I know that when I started my training in California it was just way too expensive compared to other places. You also want to look at the school's reputation in the industry, try a google search and see what news articles pop up. Some try and hide their dirt. Another thing to look at is the environment you will be training in. If you are looking to become a professional pilot then you may want a diverse training area that will challenge the skills you are going to be developing. This will make you a more conscience and careful pilot. I would recommend Silverhawk Aviation in Idaho. They have a good reputation in the industry and produce good pilots. The school has 5 R22s and 3 R44s at the moment. You get real world training in a small school setting.

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