FAQs

What is a discover flight?

It’s an introductory flight. Plan to spend about an hour and a half with us. It’s a great opportunity for you to meet our instructors, our curriculum, and our airplanes. We’ll have you fill out a couple of forms, we’ll go over our curriculum for a few minutes, and then we’ll take you on a half hour flight. During the flight you will fly the airplane under your instructor’s supervision. You’ll get a brief lesson on how to fly the airplane straight and level, and then you’ll get to play with the controls to see how you like it (most people love it). After we land, we’ll talk a little about the flight and then we’ll schedule you for your next lesson. And the discover flight counts toward your pilot certificate! It’s that easy to get started.

How long can I expect each lesson to be?

A typical lesson is two-and-a-half hours. You’ll usually only be with your instructor for two hours, but we like to leave an extra half hour of time on the schedule for you. That way if there is anything that you have extra questions about, your instructor can be sure to give you the extra attention that you deserve. Of those two hours, you will probably spend about an hour and 15 minutes of that time in the air, and then you can expect to spend about twenty five minutes with your instructor doing your pre and post flight briefings. You can also expect to spend another twenty minutes doing your aircraft pre-flight.

What hours are you available to give lessons?

We make our schedule into your schedule. We have enough instructors and aircraft that we can be available for lessons 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

How frequently can I take lessons?

The more the better. If you stick to a consistent training schedule then you will find that your training times and expenses are very close to the minimums that we advertise. If, however, you do not prepare in advance for each lesson, or take lessons less than once a week, your training will cost you more. This is because you’ll end up spending a good part of each lesson re-acquiring the skills that you lost from the lesson before.

We have some students who even schedule two lessons per day. We would recommend scheduling your lessons as frequently as you can while still allowing yourself adequate time to prepare and study before each one.

When does ground school start?

Any time you want it to. One of the amazing benefits of training at a Cessna Pilot Center like Gulf Coast Aviation is that you will be training with our exclusive computer based instruction (CBI) program. You will do most ground lessons on your own time and at your own pace. And because of the multimedia nature of the lessons, you’ll learn the material much better than you would with even the best Flight Instructor. Furthermore, you’ll save hundreds of dollars of ground school costs because you’ll arrive at each lesson already prepared.

Why is your Cessna Pilot Center Curriculum so much better than those at other flight schools?

You’ll learn faster because our program gives you a video preview of each lesson so that when you show up to your flight lesson you know exactly what is going on. You’ll spend less time being overwhelmed and more time practicing your skills than those at schools who do not use our program.

Furthermore, because the program is approved my both Cessna (the manufacturer of the aircraft you’ll be flying in) and King Schools the leading flight training company in the nation) you are guaranteed that you will receive the absolute best preparation that you can receive. You’ll finish our program a confident and safe pilot.

Forms to complete before flying with Gulf Coast Aviation

Thanks for choosing Gulf Coast Aviation of New Orleans.

We’re happy to have you fly with us.

To get started here are just a few things that you will need.

You may download the attached pdf file (please allow a few minutes for download) which includes all paperwork the must be completed before flying with Gulf Coast Aviation:

1. Gulf Coast Aviation Registration Sheet

2. Gulf Coast Aviation Lease Agreement

3. Background Check Release Form

When you come in we will need to make a copy of your government issued photo ID (driver’s license), your pilot and medical certificates if you’re already a pilot.

If you do not yet have an FAA medical certificate, you can obtain one from your nearest Aviation Medical Examiner (AME). You can find an AME near you by visiting flightphysical.com

We will also need to make a copy of your proof of citizenship (birth certificate, passport, or naturalization certificate.) PER TRANSPORTATION SECURITY ADMINISTRATION (TSA) FEDERAL REGULATIONS, NO FLIGHT TRAINING CAN BE ADMINISTERED UNTIL PROOF OF CITIZENSHIP HAS BEEN ESTABLISHED.

In our effort to protect all of us, we are ensuring that all rental pilots have the documents required by the FAA on their person before receiving the keys to an aircraft. Please be prepared to show these when picking up aircraft keys.

Once you paperwork is completed, we will set you up with a name and password to our online scheduling system. This is very convenient and will allow you to schedule yourself even if we are not in the office at the time. Of course, please realize that if you schedule in the middle of the night for a flight early the next morning, then we may not know about your reservation.

Our payment options are very flexible. We will accept check, American Express, Visa, MasterCard, or cash. Most people put down blocks on their accounts and then fly until the balance is low, others pay for each flight in person individually, or leave a card on file that we charge after each flight.

Our students are all automatically qualified to rent our aircraft once they complete their training here. We welcome anyone to rent our aircraft as they are the best in the area for taking friends on city tours or trips from New Orleans to around the region. To ensure everyone’s safety the following standards have been estbalished:

Gulf Coast Aviation Pilot Checkouts

1. The minimum requirements for a VFR checkout are stalls, emergency procedures, touch and goes including go-around and any ground or flight knowledge the instructor deems necessary to ensure that the customer is safe to fly the aircraft. Customers will also need to complete a brief checkout quiz on aircraft systems and either already own, purchase, or download a 172SP information manual.

2. Pilots must complete the maneuvers to the standard prescribed in the current FAA Practical Test Standards for a Private Pilot. Customers with an instrument rating must complete an IPC in order to fly Gulf Coast Aviation’s aircraft under IFR

3. Customers desiring to fly a Garmin 1000 equipped aircraft must complete a Flight Review in that aircraft. Customers with an instrument rating must complete an IPC in the Garmin 1000 equipped aircraft in order to fly that aircraft under IFR. Customers will need to purchase a C172S Nav III information manual for cross-country planning and systems familiarization requirements. The CPC “Flying the G1000″ video program will be required for IFR pilots and recommended for VFR pilots.

4. Customers desiring to fly at night must complete a night checkout which will count as a night checkout in both G1000 and non-G1000 equipped aircraft so long as a checkout has been successfully completed in that aircraft in the daytime.

5. Visual Scanning and Collision Avoidance will be emphasized on every checkout. Instructors will thoroughly cover the following items:

• Runway Incursion, To include AC 91-73

• Visual Scanning Techniques

• Use of radio for clearing

• Aircraft Blind Areas

• Traffic Conflicts at Uncontrolled Airports

Private Pilot Maneuvers and Procedures

Thanks for choosing Gulf Coast Aviation as your flight training location.

We are excited to have you onboard!

We are confident that you have made a wise choice in flight schools as we are committed to providing the best maintained aircraft, the best instructors, and the best curriculum available in the industry. We also know that in order for you to be pleased with your training you must be satisfied every step of the way, so please don’t hesitate to give us constructive criticism. We are eager to learn how we can constantly improve our school and provide you with a better learning experience.

While the Cessna Pilot Kit that you purchased provides a complete, state-of-the-art curriculum, this packet contains extra information that we feel should be emphasized to help you prepare even better for your Private Pilot Practical Test.

To get started you will need to provide photo identification and proof of citizenship (birth certificate, passport or naturalization certificate.) We’ll make photo copies of these and return them to you. While there are no medical requirements to begin your training you will need to obtain a third class aviation medical certificate before you can solo. We recommend that you obtain this certificate early in your training to ensure you can qualify before large amounts of time and money are invested. We’ll provide you with a list of approved Aviation Medical Examiners (AMEs) in the area. Don’t assume that any disability will impair you as people with all sorts of physical abilities are able to fly.

Please remember to watch the appropriate videos before each lesson as they will help you get the most out of your program. You can expect most flight lessons (with the exception of cross-countries) to last about two hours. Your instructor will give you a briefing of what you’ll be going over that day, answer any questions you may have, and then take you flying. After the flight expect to spend 15-30 minutes reviewing what you did well and what you need to work on.

Thanks again for flying with us and please let us know how we can better serve you.

Looking forward to flying with you,

The team at Gulf Coast Aviation

Lakefront Airport

New Orleans, Louisiana

Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport

Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Gulf Coast Aviation Pre-Solo / Aircraft Checkout Quiz

Please complete the quiz and bring with you before your first solo or aircraft checkout. We realize that this quiz is more thorough than most aircraft checkouts require. However, we feel that it is very important, for both your safety and the safety of those who you share the sky with, that you be completely familiar with your aircraft and environment. If you are current on your regs and aircaft systems then the quiz should go quickly. If not, then please use this quiz as an opportunity to refresh yourself on some very critical items. Your loved ones will thank you.

VFR Radio Communications Example

Example radio communications for a flight from New Orleans to Gulfport using VFR Flight Following. Includes interaction with Approach/Departure, Tower, and Ground Control. A great aid before your cross-country flight lesson.

Why With A G1000?

The Argument for Modern Training Aircraft

Modern aircraft are essential to learning to fly in today’s rapidly evolving aviation environment. With the onset of the implementation of precision Global Positional System (GPS – see note 1 below ) approaches and the soaring popularity of Technically Advanced Aircraft (TAA – see note 2 below) students must learn flight skills from a modern platform so that they can safely integrate into the modern flight environment. With modern aircraft in the fleet, Gulf Coast Aviation is able to expose students to VOR/DME and GPS approaches, in addition to providing the situational awareness that the G1000 offers (see note 3 below) offers.

Why GPS and autopilot? There was a common belief among flight instructors and pilot examiners in the not to distant past that these should not be taught to students and not be allowed to be used on practical tests. Fortunately this belief is beginning to give way to the wisdom that these modern instruments are not ways for a pilot to “cheat” but instead tools which can help the pilot conduct a flight safer than he ever could have without them. While all instructors will take caution not to allow the student to be dependant on these modern tools, they will present them in a positive way and encourage a complete understanding of the aircraft’s abilities. A GPS, especially integrated into a glass cockpit offers salient improvements in pilot situational awareness which mean increased pilot safety. In addition an autopilot can offer a workload reduction to a pilot to reduce his level of fatigue. While the autopilot should not be used as a replacement for keeping flying skills current, it can increase safety during Instrument Flight Rules (IFR) or night flying when pilot workloads can be high.

(Note 1)

GPS is a navigational system that calculates position from 24 satellites orbiting the earth. This system increases the pilot’s awareness of where the aircraft is in the sky and therefore increases safety. Airports that in the past were not accessible in cloudy weather because of lack of adequate facilities are now GPS accessible.

(Note 2)

According to AOPA’s Air Safety Foundation TAA are defined as aircraft that “are equipped with new generation avionics that take full advantage of computing power and modern navigational aids to improve pilot positional awareness, system redundancy, and depending upon equipment, improve in-cockpit information about traffic weather and terrain. By FAA pronouncement, a TAA is equipped with at least:

• a moving map display

• an IFR approved GPS navigator

• an autopilot”

For more information on TAA see “Technically Advance Aircraft, Safety and Training” available at www.aopa.org

(Note 3)

The G1000TM is a completely integrated avionics system designed to fit a broad range of aircraft models. It’s an all-glass flightdeck that presents flight instrumentation, location, navigation, communication, and identification data on large-format, high resolution displays. The digital data presentation on the G1000 puts all flight-critical information literally at the pilot’s fingertips. Visit Garmin’s G1000 Website

What You Can Expect From Gulf Coast Aviation

Welcome to Gulf Coast Aviation, located at both Lakefront Airport in New Orleans and Baton Rouge Metropolitan in Baton Rouge. As a Cessna Pilot Center (CPC) we understand pilots, and what it takes to be a pilot like no one else.

In fact, Cessna Pilot Centers are the largest network of professional flight training organizations in the world. Throughout history, more people have learned to fly in a Cessna than any other aircraft.

What’s more, Gulf Coast Aviation offers the entire package. Here’s a sample of what awaits you:

– A safe, friendly, comfortable, dynamic atmosphere in which to learn.

– A knowledgeable flight instructor to mentor you, motivate your learning

and accommodate your requirements.

– Training in dependable Cessna aircraft

– Our web-based multimedia training program that makes becoming a pilot

easier than ever.

Rest assured.

We’ll walk you through the program, step by step.

As for your time investment, it takes an average of four months to a year to earn a pilot’s license but, of course, you can take more or less time. We allow you to truly do it on your terms – at your own pace.

Training is worked into your schedule so you can fly early in the morning or late in the evening, at lunch or on the weekends – whatever works best for you. And because the CPC program is so comprehensive and efficient, new pilots earn their licenses an average of 30 percent faster than the national average.

To become a pilot:

– You must be at least 16 years of age for a student certificate and 17 for a private pilot certificate. There is no maximum age limit.

– You must be able to read, speak, and understand English

– You must take a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)-required routine medical exam every two years to ensure that you don’t have medical conditions that would interfere with your abilitiy to fly.

Contrary to popular belief, pilots can wear glasses or contact lenses to correct vision. Other physical limitations don’t automatically keep you from learning to fly, either. There are many physically challenged pilots who regularly enjoy the fredom of the sky.

With our web-based program, you’ll learn at your own pace. You learn through the latest technologies, including fully interactive graphics, full-motion, full-screen video and animated graphics. The program even tracks your performance and reports to your instructor. This helps you and your instructor concentrate on areas that present you with the greatest challenge.

The web-based program works hand-in-hand with your actual flight experience – allowing you to preview your next training flight before you even take off.

In the air you’ll earn your wings through personal instruction in the cockpit. The FAA requires you to have a minimum of 40 hours of flying time (35 hours under part 141)before applying for a license. Those hours include time behind the controls with and without your flight instructor, and a couple of cross-country and night flights.

During the program, you will take an FAA written exam and, at the end, a flying test – called a practical test (or check ride). In the course of ground school and flight training, you will become well prepared for these milestones with a series of trial runs.

Questions? Sweaty palms? Pre-flight jitters? That’s only natural. Just talk to us about it. Cessna Pilot Centers have been through this thousands of times before. Throughout our program, we inspire confidence.

Trust us, this’ll be the most fun you’ve ever had.