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36days until
End of Spring 2011 Semester Flying!

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   Jonathan Berkman

   Brian Fromm

   Rachael Diament

   Kayley Wolf

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How do I sign up to fly?

A: The first step is to make sure you want to have an unbelievable experience. You must sign the Agreement Form and fill out the information accurately to the best of your knowledge. On the form, we ask for your availabilities to fly as well as your contact information. We will determine a mutually convenient time for your reservation and those of other students to go in the carpool group with you, and we will then contact the flight school to reserve the airplanes and instructors for you.

Q: Is there anything I have to join?
A: Yes, you must be on the Aviation Club listserv. We periodically send out important emails that you must receive, so you must be subscribed to it. Although not required, it is suggested that you join our Facebook group as well, since we often update it with important information. Also, it is a convenient place for you to post your photos, so your friends and family can view them as well!

Q: What can I expect to happen during my flight?

A: Expect to have an awesome time. Period. You'll be in the cockpit with your instructor and will have your own controls, but don't be nervous: your instructor has the same controls that you do (much like the old-fashioned driving school cars that had a wheel and brake for each front-seat passenger). They will let you fly a good portion of the time and will be right there to correct any mistakes you may make. They make sure the plane is in complete control at all times, so you don't need to worry about your safety. The instructor will guide you through the whole experience, and you won't want the flight to be over!

Q: What kind of airplane will I fly?

A: There are primarily three "training" airplanes used today (see photos below with links to their websites). You will most likely be flying in a Skyhawk or Warrior, depending on the availabilities of the instructors and planes. All of the planes are equally equipped and provide for an awesome experience!

Cessna Skyhawk 172                         Piper Tomahawk                        Piper Warrior III

Q: What should I wear?

A: Regardless of what season you go in, you should wear something loose and light with solid-toed shoes. Unfortunately the planes aren't air-conditioned, so they can get a bit hot before you get in the air in the spring and fall. Once you are airborne, though, it becomes rather comfortable thanks to the windows and air vents on-board. If you are flying in cold weather, definitely bundle up because the cabin heat could take a little while to kick in if you are the first flight in the plane for that day.

Q: What should I bring?

A: Make sure you have a valid ID (driver's license, passport, or Brandeis ID will suffice) in case the flight school asks for ID when you arrive. Also, you should bring any corrective lenses or glasses, in addition to a camera!

Q: How do I get to the airport for my reservation?

A: While the Aviation Club cannot provide transportation to or from your reservation, we work very hard at coordinating the times so that a student with a car will drive you there. The Flying Schedule tab contains the reservations schedule, so please check to see who the other group members are in your carpool group. If you are a driver, you must contact your passengers to arrange a convenient pickup time and location no less than 72 hours before you plan on leaving campus. If you are a passenger, you must contact your driver to arrange a convenient pickup time and location no less than 72 hours before you plan on leaving campus. Directions are located on the Map/Directions tab.

Q: What if the weather doesn't look good for my reservation time?

A: Weather is an important factor that every pilot must take into consideration. Neither the flight school nor your instructor will deliberately put you in any unsafe or ill-advised situation. Weather can often change, but your instructor will check the forecast from specific and regularly updated aviation weather services to verify that your lesson can go on as scheduled. If you believe poor weather might cancel your flight, please call the flight school at (781) 274-6322 as soon as possible the day of your planned flight to verify the weather conditions and the status of your planned lesson. They may tell you to call back after some point of time to make sure the weather doesn't change. The flight school may ask you to come to the airport even if the weather doesn't look so great if the forecast shows that the weather will improve shortly and in time for your scheduled flight.  It is your responsibility to check with the flight school about the weather. For this reason, DO NOT just skip your lesson because you assume the weather conditions are unfavorable; absolutely call the flight school first and then they will tell you what to do. Expect that you will have your flight as scheduled unless you hear otherwise from an Aviation Club Board member or the flight school (East Coast Aero Club).

Local Weather

Q: My friend or family member really wants to come and be a passenger ... is that okay?

A: Not necessarily. If you have a family member or friend whom you would like to take up with you, they may be able to sit in the back seat and take photos and enjoy the view while you fly the plane if there is space available. We do have to give preference to Brandeis students, but if there is an open seat for a passenger we will try our best to accommodate that person so they can enjoy from the backseat during your lesson. Your request MUST be sent to us at least 5 days before your reservation, and we need to know the person's name, cell phone number, and whether they are a Brandeis student. Also, for legal issues, the flight school will do a weight/balance check, so they need to know both your weight and that of your passenger.

Q: How much do I have to pay?

A: Because of limited funding from F-Board, students are now required to pay $20 towards their flight.  Since the flight costs $125 total, Aviation Club contributes 85% of that cost ($105) per person.  This is a great deal, and while we regret having to charge students, we know it will allow a much larger number of students to have the opportunity of a lifetime.

Lessons canceled because of the weather incur NO charges whatsoever. But, the flight school must be the ones to make the decision on the weather, and not you. That is why you must call them to ask the status of your appointment and if the weather is okay enough for you to fly. If you skip your lesson for any reason and you have not notified an Aviation Board Member within 72 hours of your reservation, you may be charged a fee (as determined by the flight school).

Q: What should I do after my flight?

A: We'd really appreciate it if would upload your photos to our Facebook group so your friends and family can view them. We also ask that you please leave at least a few words (hopefully more) on our Facebook group wall describing your experience flying. It'd really be great to hear your thoughts and show others how fantastic the experience of flying really is to encourage them to join our club and get in the air!  Plus, it'd help us in requesting funding for the future, so more people can get this great experience!

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