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How often and why do we fly ?

Compared to you all, I am still in nursery school (and a slow one at that) when it comes to flying hours … Passed my PPL in March 2014 and have about TT120-125 hours. Spent last year flying around sourthern England ranging from Perranporth to Old Buckenham in a rented PA28 and the de rigeure trip to Le Touquet.

Compared to this time last year, I have flown much less so far, but this was due to a protracted (weather/work) tailwheel differences training (signed off in the logbook on Saturday!) in a D62 Condor group I bought into. As my kids are young (and cost centres) and my wife is currently anti-flying with me (apparently when I have a couple of hundred hours, this will magically change and we are going to Scotland), work taking a lot of my time, my current plan is to focus on learning to fly the Condor well and developing a practical understanding of aircraft maintenance at the basic level. Advantage of the Condor group is that there are some very experienced pilots (airline and FI’s), so good people to learn from generally about flying. Some are flying Tiger Moths or Stampe’s as well, which I am quite curious to fly. Perhaps try some aeros for fun. When my wife’s magic conversion to being ok with flying happens, perhaps migrate toward a touring aircraft, but one step at a time.

Either way, target is 30-50 hours pa.

@Alex_ – I am an IH lawyer (GC) – life on the “outside” sounds interesting!

Last Edited by CKN at 21 Jul 08:22
EGLM (White Waltham)

I did my UK/JAA PPL 2000-2001. IMCR in 2002, finished off in the TB20 which I got in May 2002. FAA PPL 2004, FAA IR 2006, FAA CPL 2008 (?), JAA IR 2012.

The reason for learning to fly was to go places and see Europe from the air. Nowadays, the main drive is meeting up with nice people in nice places

In retrospect, it was a good bit of luck to have got a plane with good performance because that sidestepped many possible flight planning issues. A lot of military airspace could be simply overflown (I got oxygen in 2003, for a trip to Spain) and it made overflying the Alps straightforward.

I am at about 2000hrs now, all but 120 of which has been done in the TB20 (I hired some PA28s post-PPL). That works out at about 150hrs/year. 2014 was exceptional at 189hrs, due to a combination of good passengers and good places to go to, but it won’t be repeated because I was away from home too much and I don’t like that.

One really enjoyable thing was mentoring some pilots, a few years ago, but I haven’t really pushed it. I’d like to “do” private pilots, not would-be airline pilots who won’t ever use it after they get a job. All of it was in my TB20, with me in the LHS, them as legal-passengers, plus ground school.

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

I learnt in 2010 and have around 430 hours now, so roughly about 75 per year. Added IR(R) in 2012 and IR in 2014. I like to try new things each year – finding new destinations, and have tried out seaplane, some US VFR flying as well as collecting different airfield landings. Bought into a TB20 share a couple of years ago which I balance with club flying in a PA28 – both have their merits. Generally prefer to fly with others where possible, either pax or buddy flying.

Quite like touring and have enjoyed a couple of family holidays as well as with other pilots, especially where you have some downtime to look around the places you visit.

Still don’t feel I’ve touched the surface of what’s possible as a PPL – plenty to see, places to visit, different aircraft to fly – just hope not to get stuck in a rut doing the same kind of thing for any length of time. I think if you can keep up the momentum, and thus currency, it’s easy to keep going – I think I’ve only ever once had to take a club currency check. Once a longer gap appears, some may find it difficult to “get back in the saddle” again. I’ve been fortunate that finances and time have allowed me to keep up.

FlyerDavidUK, PPL & IR Instructor
EGBJ, United Kingdom

I did the FAA PPL in 2009—2010 while living in San Diego. Used it mostly to do trips around California with friends. Since I lived in statocumulus paradise (and also because I liked everything about instrument flying), I did the IR right away after getting the PPL. I was in a club that had some nice planes for reasonably long flights (C172RG, C210) that I could take on trips (1 h/day minimum flying requirement). Good times! I flew about 100 h/year back then, mostly with friends and with my wife.

Now I live in Leipzig. This would be a pretty nice base to do the same kind of flying, since Europe has a lot of worthwhile destinations within a pretty small distance. Unfortunately, the closest N-reg plane I know about is in Frankfurt (4.5 h train ride away) — this one . If we had something closer (and ideally faster and more weather capable) then we’d probably go back to something like 100 h/year, though probably scaled by the price ratio between Europe and the US… as it is, I do about 15 h/year now, mostly when we’re in the US on vacation.


I got the PPL-A in 2002. The intention to learn flying was to increase our radius for holidays taking our dog with us. With the licencene we immediately startet trips around Europe and have been all over Skandinavia as well as going to the south to Greece and Italy. Meanwhile the North and Brittany (and other parts of France) are our favorits. We love also UK and Ireland, but with the dog it is not possible to go there.
We startet with a fractional ownership of a C182, then when going to IR, changed to a fractional ownership of an PA28R and after 8 years we owned all parts of the plane. Then we sold it to buy an BE33. The reason was, to get more “save” oppurtunities to fly in winter – it is TKS equiped – because I use the plane nowadays most of the time for business purposes. I’m also MEP IR rated and made the CRI two years ago.
Normally I do the holiday trips together with my wife. She started to learn flying together with me but stoped after the PPL-A and therefore in vacation I’m always the passenger when the weather is fine.
I made round about 1800 hours up to now, my wife did plus minus 400 hours.

EDDS , Germany

I fly because I always wanted to fly. Dreamt of becoming a commercial pilot from a very early age on. Like often reality thought otherwise and I had to take another path in my life. I’ve been flying since 2013 and got my PPL-A February 2014. I have about 200 hours in my log book and I have to say flying added a hole new quality to my life. I’ve been able to go to places I never thought I’d visit. Literally the day I got my EASA PPL I sent off a form to get a US restricted license and in June 2014 I was flying across the midwest and south. I’ve been also able to do some touring in Europe (usually 1-3 hour trips). Last year I flew 79 hours on multiple types of aircraft, ranging from ultralights to 4-seaters. Most of the time I use flying to get from point A to B for leisure, but am able to mix in 2-3 business flights a year. Unfortunately I don’t know any young pilots so I’ve had to learn everything the hard way on my own.

How many hours do you fly every year ?
350 to 500 hours, 75 to 80 percent for business

What do you do ?
task force projects

And what is your motivation ?
be fast on-site of remote customers

Last Edited by Markuus at 29 Apr 21:50

Licence about 12 years ago. Aircraft owner since then, currently flying a twin comanche. Just short of 1100 hours, mostly touring, but also use the aircraft for business travel and pure fun. I only wish (like skiing) I’d done it all 20 years earlier!

EGCJ, United Kingdom

I did my PPL over one and a half years, from 2015 to 2017, during which both of my children were born.

I did not really have a clear goal before beginning PPL training. I was fascinated by flying ever since playing Microsoft Flight Simulator 3.0 as a seven year old, and indeed its successor FS:X ultimately kicked of my quest to seek out a flight school and begin training.

EuroGA, which I discovered halfway through the PPL, has inspired me a lot and I want to use my license for travelling.

So far, it hasn’t worked out. I got just 10 hours of post PPL flying of far, and will probably barely get the 12 hrs together to revalidate my SEP in July. All of my flying has been local and lots of it with an FI, because I moved after getting the license and the type I trained on is not available for rent where I now live.

I feel like having either done the PPL at the wrong time in my life or maybe it was a mistake altogether.

Novice pilot
EDVM Hildesheim, Germany

Time to revisit this nice thread

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom
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