A trial flying lesson makes an ideal gift for friends or family on that special occasion, or you can treat yourself to the experience of a lifetime.

If you have often dreamed of learning to fly then a trial lesson is the ideal way to find out what it’s all about – we want you to participate! Alternatively, you may simply want to have a scenic flight over the beautiful Cotswold landscape or Severn Vale.

Trial lessons are available in either our new 2-seater aircraft or our more traditional 4-seater for the same price. Just let us know your preference when booking your flight.

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What to expect

Your flying lesson will take place at Gloucestershire Airport, near Cheltenham, where you will be welcomed by one of our experienced flying instructors. The airport is convenient for the Cotswolds, the Severn Estuary and Wales and is busy with commercial and private aircraft of all shapes and sizes.

After the initial paperwork is completed, your instructor will provide you with a briefing of what will happen during the lesson so that you can gain as much as possible from your flight. This will cover safety, weather, where you will be going and an introduction to the aircraft controls and what you will be doing in the air. This will be tailored to what YOU want to do – but our aim will be for you to fly the aircraft as much as possible! How much actual “hands on control” experience you will have is between you and the instructor.

Before getting in the aircraft you will be taken for an external walk around to understand what all the different parts do. The aircraft is equipped with dual controls and once you are safely and securely in the left hand seat, your instructor will take you through the aircraft controls and instruments. Then it will be time for the lesson to really start – after taking you through the pre-flight checks and a short taxi you will soon be lined up on the runway and taking off.

Once airborne, you will be able to appreciate the airfield from the air and the spectacular scenery of the Cotswolds. As soon as safely practical, the instructor will hand over control of the aircraft and start teaching you the fundamentals of flying an aircraft.

The flights will vary according to what you want and where you want to go. If you have a particular desire to fly somewhere in the Cotswold or Severn Vale area please let us know and we will try to fit it in, time permitting.

All too soon, it will be time to return to the airfield and your instructor will set up an approach to the runway, land and taxi back to complete your Trial Lesson.

Finally, there will be a debrief session and an opportunity to ask further questions. For many, the trial lesson is just the beginning, and having been “bitten by the bug” they will want to carry on with further lessons.

You will need to allow at least an hour LONGER than the specified duration on the voucher. The whole experience will quite literally fly by, so we recommend taking your time to get the most out of the experience, perhaps to meet other pilots or enjoy a visit to the airport’s Aviator restaurant.

Restrictions

Due to limitations for a light aircraft the maximum height would be 6ft 4in (1.93m) and weight 15 – 18 stone (95 – 115 kg) depending on the aircraft.

The minimum age for taking flying lessons is 14 years (parental/guardian consent is required for all participants under 18). The minimum height is 4ft 6in (1.37m).

There are a couple of steps to get into the plane and we may be able to accommodate persons with lower limb disabilities.

What to Bring

Yourself! You’ll need to be dressed comfortably and sensibly for the time of the year – in particular please wear practical footwear. We will provide headsets (for communications within the aircraft and with air traffic services).

Friends and family! Gloucestershire airport is ideally set up for visitors, with the airport’s Aviator restaurant providing drinks, snacks and meals, as well as providing great views of the runway.

It may be possible for a passenger to occupy the rear seat during the flight (in our 4 seater aircraft only). This is not something we can guarantee as it depends on a number of factors such as the particular aircraft, individual weights and even the weather.

A camera! Many people take amazing photos from the air during their trial lessons and there will also be plenty of time for taking photos on the ground.

Please feel free to talk to us and we will do our best to help!

Cost

The cost of 1 hour Trial Lesson is £165 (of which 50 minutes from take-off to landing). In addition to aircraft and instructor hire for the duration of the lesson, you will get a comprehensive briefing before the flight (both in the briefing room and at the aircraft) and debrief after the flight from your instructor. The cost includes membership of the Club for the day.

The price is the same regardless of which of our aircraft (PA28 or PS28) you choose to fly in.

The Voucher is valid for 12 months – we will remind you before it expires.

The Club is a Not-For-Profit organisation and aims to keep costs low – the preferred method of payment is by bank transfer or cheque.

Buy A Voucher

To purchase a Trial Lesson voucher contact the club (01285 610026). We’ll take your details, answer any queries you may have and confirm payment method (internet bank transfer or cheque). On receipt of payment, we will send you a personalised voucher by email or post as required.

Once you have bought a voucher, you can book your flight

Booking your flight

When it comes to booking the lesson please contact the Club Secretary on 01285 610026 to arrange a suitable date/time. You will be allocated an instructor who will keep an eye on the weather as the day approaches. We want you to enjoy the flying experience and we will not expect you to fly in poor weather conditions. If we have to postpone the flight we will contact you as soon as possible and arrange another date.

Getting to the Club:

Type our postcode GL51 6SP into your SatNav. This will take you to the main airport entrance, where you turn left and park it the main car park. Our club hut is just past the car park on the right hand side.

Next Step

Should you wish to continue your flying experience then the trial lesson will count towards your private pilot’s licence (PPL). To log flying hours you will need to purchase a pilot’s logbook – available from the club. The trial lesson actually follows the syllabus for a pilot’s licence.

If you do decide to continue with lessons you must be at least 16 years old before your “first solo” and 17 years old to hold a full licence.

The Club is a “not for profit” flying club owned by its members. As such our flying costs are very competitive.

Many people from all walks of life and of all ages become pilots and our instructors will be only too pleased to give you any further information you require. Once you have gained your pilots licence you are free to take your family and friends flying or tie up with other pilots to help share the cost of longer journeys. The sky is the limit!

The Club can provide other short flying courses and ratings.