29th Jul 2003, 20:32
Does anyone out there have any experience of general aviation in Seattle USA? Iím heading out there at the end of the year, and thought I might try and do a bit of flying if I get the opportunity. Can anyone recommend a company that offers aircraft rental?
29th Jul 2003, 23:42
I've flown with Wings Aloft (http://www.wingsaloft.com/) at Boeing Field (KBFI). By US standards they are very expensive, but have the advantage of a well maintained fleet of capable aircraft.
I've flown their P210, and more recently took a VFR jaunt in one of their Seneca IIs (+ instructor) up to Paine Field then around Mount Baker and Whidbey Island back down Puget Sound to Seattle. It was the most extraordinary flying I've ever done. Whoever you choose to fly with, do it. It's fantastic.
30th Jul 2003, 14:47
Did some flying out off Victoria International which is on Vancover Island, Canada. It was 79CD for a C152 Aerobat. About £35 at the time (about 1 1/2 ago) ! Get to mix with some big jets which was fun.
It is only a few hours drive away from Seattle. Fantansic senary.
Were ever you decide to fly from, enjoy :D
30th Jul 2003, 20:18
I researched this a couple of years ago and found US operators a lot more picky about PPL rental (a 172 to go to Nevada) than Canadian ones, and more expensive. More than one Seattle FBO expressed a reluctance to rent for flights in mountainous terrain! I settled on Canada instead.
The downside was needing to obtain a Canadian licence, as there is no reciprocal that will allow you to fly PIC internationally to the US. However, the club (PFC at Boundary Bay) was excellent and aircraft more available than on the US side of the border.
The checkout involved 3Hrs mountain training which was worth the trip in it's own right.
Just don't forget that there is no visa waiver system for private flights - nobody at PFC (all Canadians) knew that and I didn't find out until US customs told me on the morning of departure, which then required a frantic drive to the nearest border post!
However, if you do decide to fly on the US side Olympia is a lovely field with several FBOs and well away from the busy SeaTac area.
30th Jul 2003, 21:42
Todays Pilot mag is running a article on this. Have'nt read it personally but it about seaplane flying on Vancover island. There should be some info on getting a Candian Licence. If I remember rightly it only cost me 65CD for a temp PPL licence.
Only downside is you are not allowed in US airspace.
31st Jul 2003, 01:04
To fly as PIC in the States you'll need to get an FAA certificate. You will want to start this proces as soon as possible as it takes about 8 weeks to get the verification letter from the FAA.
You begin the process by faxing the submission form (available on the FAA website), along with copies of your license, medical and some ID to the FAA office in Oklahome City. On this form you specify which local FAA office you want to visit for issue of the cerificate. Once your apllication is processed, they will send you a verification letter stating you can now go to the FAA office you have chosen.
**Important** After you get the letter call your chosen FAA office and verify they have received their authorization from Oklahoma City. Once you have confirmed this you need to make an appointment to visit that office. When you show up, bring ID, your license and medical. You will also be going through airport style security to get into the building.
After that it is just filling out some documents and they will issue your certificate.
26th Aug 2003, 16:32
I flew out of Kenmore (North end of Lake Washington) with Kenmore Air in their C172 float plane. I wasn't PIC but did get 4 hours towards my Float Plane Rating and had a ball. :O
Also have a look at the Whidbey Island Naval Air Station (Ault Field) flying club.