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From London to Sweden

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From London to Sweden

Old 31st May 2015, 10:40
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2015
Location: London
Posts: 51
From London to Sweden

Hi all,

Long time lurker and first time poster. Good to be here!

After saving hard and doing as much pre-theory as I dare, I'm looking to finally take the steps to start my PPL training in the new year.

I have a question for you fine folk, and I apologise if it's a daft one. I figure it's easier asked here than in a plane with my future instructor.

I have family in Sweden. In the Nyköping area (near Skavsta).

On a PPL license (I'm getting my night rating at the same time, as a side note) what are the complications of flying to Sweden in a single engine aircraft? Is it possible? A midway refuelling is of course necessary (if not more), but just wondering if anyone's done it? If so, how costly was it? I want to know all

Anyway - not looking to jump the gun, but it'd be nice to be able to say I could come and see them one day.

BatteriesNotIncluded is offline  
Old 31st May 2015, 12:12
  #2 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Glens o' Angus by way of LA
Age: 56
Posts: 1,974
Ballpark WAG Estimate London to Stavska

900nm (800 direct)keeping feet as dry as u can and airspace ducking and diving, wind etc
9 hours in your average 160hp spam can
270 litres (30ph) @ £2 per = £540
Hotel and dinner,landing fees for the midway stopover £200 (skip the nite flying)
piperboy84 is offline  
Old 31st May 2015, 12:17
  #3 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: 7nm N of LARCK
Posts: 219
Certainly Do-able


Welcome to the Forum.

Flying to Sweden in a single engined aircraft armed only with a PPL is certainly quite do-able. It might also provide useful motivation for some of the more turgid parts of the PPL syllabus, otherwise known as Air Law.

Planning your route would also provide an interesting introduction in to Navigation and Aircraft Performance and Limitations.

A lot of the answers to your questions are ‘how long is the proverbial piece of string’. To get you started, a trip from Stauning in Denmark to East Sussex in the UK was completed in one day (9 flying hours with stops at Tondor (DK), Hoogveen (NL), Midden Zeeland (NL)). This in a Rans S6, cruise speed around 80mph, fuel burn around 12 Lt./Hr.

Flying a C of A aircraft, rather than a ‘Permit’ one like the Rans, will simplify some of the international travel considerations.

If you have the inclination to look at some of the flight planning software like Skydemon (other flavours like PocketFMS are also available) you can get a feel for the task in hand. Please don’t let the rather easy way this solves the problems get in the way of learning the basics. You will still need to know how to sort it all out if your Tablet or what ever electronic device you are using in the aircraft suddenly refuses to display anything except the Blue Screen of Death….

Good luck with your PPL, keep asking the questions and let us know how you get on.

Beware the forum rule that the number of opinions expressed is equal to the square of the number of people participating in the discussion.

Safe Flying
Whiskey Kilo Wanderer is offline  
Old 31st May 2015, 12:19
  #4 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: EBZH
Posts: 2,443
Beware the forum rule that the number of opinions expressed is equal to the square of the number of people participating in the discussion.
Seconded! And let me add: all recommendations you get on the www are worth as much as you paid for them.

Questions to ponder:

-) where to land to clear customs?
-) how much flying over water are you comfortable with?
-) recommended/mandatory equipment for flying over (a lot of) water? wetsuits, raft, ELT, ...
-) how to make sure of either sufficiently good weather for the full duration of the trip OR sufficient spare time to wait for said good weather?
-) flying "VFR on top" might increase your options regarding weather but comes with its own issues

All of these have been discussed over and over, I suggest you search the www a bit and come back with more detailed questions.

PS more pointed answers could be given if you indicated the type of plane and more or less where you would start from - Kent doesn't make for the same routing as Scotland.

[[edited to add: apologies, I had overlooked the _London_to_ bit of the heading ]]
[[and Baikonour below has it right: time enough to look into the details ]]
Jan Olieslagers is offline  
Old 31st May 2015, 12:25
  #5 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Glens o' Angus by way of LA
Age: 56
Posts: 1,974
Seconded! And let me add: all recommendations you get on the www are worth as much as you paid for them.
Absolutely correct, opinions are like assholes, everyone has one.
piperboy84 is offline  
Old 31st May 2015, 12:35
  #6 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2014
Location: London
Posts: 140
Don't get bogged down in the details just yet - it's a long way off. The short answer is that it is of course possible...

For flight planning, the free version of SkyDemon does not show airspace outside the UK. Try to use for instance SkyVector for some rough ideas. Click on the 'Flight Plan' and enter, for instance "egll ebos ehkd edhk ekch esgp" and see what it gives you.

With a full EASA PPL and flying aircraft similar to what you are likely to learn in (i.e. the C of A aircraft referred to), the only thing stopping you going all over Europe (or across the pond and around the world, if you wish...) is the weather and your endurance (your aircraft and your own).

Whereas the second of those can be managed with good planning, the first is more of a random element and can never be guaranteed. So, to avoid "get-there-itis", even if the trip to Göteborg can be made in a day or two, you are probably better off setting aside at least a week for the trip there and back, and treating the trip itself as an objective, and the fact that you may get there as a bonus.

Agree with WKW re having this as a longer term incentive. I have very good friends in the Netherlands and my family is in Norway. Visiting them was on my list and gave me something to aim for post PPL. Ultimately, my girlfriend is from Melbourne, Australia... just give me a bit of time and I'll get there
Baikonour is offline  
Old 31st May 2015, 14:01
  #7 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2001
Location: Belgium
Posts: 487
My recommendation is to find a friend/mentor with experience and ask him along for the first few flights. It is certainly doable. You need to give yourself a few days leeway, the weather doesn't always fully cooperate, even in summertime. I have flown to Stockholm Bromma, Linkoping Saab and a few other fields in Sweden several times in singles and twins over the years starting from Belgium.

The last flight to ESSL was 4:24 at economy cruise in BE36.

My suggested VFR routing would be London area via DVR, KOK, along the Belgian, Dutch, German coast to Denmark then cross to Sweden. Under VFR you would be restricted in altitude along the Dutch coast due to class A airspace.

Get yourself the full Skydemon and start planning.
dirkdj is offline  
Old 31st May 2015, 14:22
  #8 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Los Angeles, USA
Age: 48
Posts: 1,633
I learned more from my long cross countries than anything else. It's important to get out there and fly outside your known environment. Just do it.

Flying in Sweden is easy. Good controllers, good English, plenty of airfields. And you can certainly do the trip with a minimum of water crossings - English Channel and then the short hop between Jutland and Sweden. Or the slightly shorter route close to Copenhagen.
AdamFrisch is offline  
Old 1st Jun 2015, 12:32
  #9 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Northampton UK
Posts: 98
I fly to Sweden once or twice each year in a PA-28, VFR. The essential thing is to have time in hand - a 'spare' day for every one you plan to fly. Keep the flying days short - 3 Hrs a day means you need 3 days to get there, and 3 days to get back. Yes you can fly more - I've done Skavsta to UK (10 hrs) in one day, but it is very tiring.

All this means that you actually need 2 weeks to do this in comfort, and a budget for hotels and cabs to match. Maybe you can trim some time out of that, but when you see the fronts advancing across the N Sea toward you, you need time to sit it out.

Would an IR help? Obviously, but most things that stop you VFR - fog, low cloud, high winds and thunderstorms - will stop you IFR as well (read 'icing' for low cloud). In my view, you can go anywhere in Europe VFR as long as you have time.

And yes, you can land at Skavsta. A little expensive, but compared with the cost of getting there, a mere bagatelle. Very nice people and good facilities right on the airport.
Victorian is offline  
Old 1st Jun 2015, 12:53
  #10 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2015
Location: London
Posts: 51
Wow, thank you so much to everyone who has welcomed me and offered up their opinions and advice.

It's great to see that there are a few of you who have done it already.

Whilst a level headed person, I am quite a go-getter. The 10hr run is something that just excites me.

I fully intend to become a active member once my training begins in earnest as I'd love to detail my journey and have you fine folk as a sound board.

My name is Craig, by the way.
BatteriesNotIncluded is offline  
Old 1st Jun 2015, 17:50
  #11 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Los Angeles, USA
Age: 48
Posts: 1,633
I've flown a lot of long trips and just like Victorian, I've done long days. But I've come to the conclusion that my limit is normally around 6hrs, after that I get really tired. If you have to do longer legs, it's a good idea to take a little break halfway through, maybe even a power nap after refueling etc.
AdamFrisch is offline  

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