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AOPA US pilot survey at end 2016

AOPA US published the following survey results of US GA pilots (a segment of those who subscribe to their regular email news update, so possibly skewed towards the more active ones).

Some interesting factoids here. I’d guess that the profile of hours flown is probbaly not dissimilar in Europe (maybe averaging a little lower).

71% plan to fit and comply with ADS-B out by 2020 deadline, and another 13% during 2020 while 16% would only fly in areas where it’s not required.

In related news, (see third class medical reform below) the FAA’s BasicMed Self-Certification medical scheme details have been published and will take effect from 1st May. They don’t affect visiting pilots from Europe using a piggyback 61.75 scheme but are thought could revitalise activity and encourage many lapsed pilots to renew.

How many hours did you fly in 2016?
47% 0 to 50
27% 51 to 100
12% 101 to 150
11% More than 200
5% 151 to 200

Compared to 2016, how much do you anticipate flying in 2017?
63% More
29% The same
10% Less

What is the most important issue for general aviation in 2017?
34% Third class medical reform
33% Cost of flying
20% FAA reauthorization and user fees
8% Finding an avgas replacement
8% Preparing for the ADS-B Out mandate

When do you plan to equip with Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast Out (ADS-B Out) to comply with the FAA’s Jan. 1, 2020, mandate to equip with the technology in order to continue flying in airspace where a transponder is required today?
35% I’ve already equipped
16% I don’t plan to equip with ADS-B Out; the mandate doesn’t affect me
15% 2017
14% 2019
13% 2020
10% 2018

Last Edited by DavidC at 18 Jan 08:01
EGBJ, United Kingdom

That is very interesting.

Firstly, those hours appear to me to be well above UK and perhaps European averages. It has been often stated, especially by people working in the PPL business, that the annual average is about 20hrs.

Also interesting are the “worries” i.e. medicals and costs. Here it is really hard to get pilots to post about medical issues (for obvious reasons, not least because it is legally impossible to speak to an EASA AME in confidence) so perhaps they are big here too. But here the cost of flying is cited as the major item by many, and that translates into a much stronger demand for cost sharing which barely happens on the US scene.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

My guess is that the ‘medical worry’ has a lot to do with the ageing ‘baby boomer’ pilot population. I’ve never quite understood this, as the Third Class medical threshold is so low anyway. But hey, it obviously is important to some. Cost of flying – well, that’s always a worry, isn’t it! We’d all like to fly more for less…..

They don’t affect visiting pilots from Europe using a piggyback 61.75 scheme but are thought could revitalise activity and encourage many lapsed pilots to renew.

BTW I don’t think this new medical is any good for any FAA licensed pilot flying outside the USA, because it is a sub-ICAO medical.

It’s the same as the LAPL, or the UK NPPL.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

LAPL medical is valid throughout Europe as far as I’m aware.
I believe that NPPL and declaration may be used in some states “with permission” but I’m not sure of the current status in that respect.

Egnm, United Kingdom
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