Hour Building

Do you want to build towards your CPL whilst having an adventure of a lifetime built around you?

Join us in the Florida sun for the fastest, most enjoyable and most effective way of building your hours.  Just you, the plane, and the perfect conditions to get the hours you need and the holiday you want. 

Get quality flying hours in the ideal conditions. Our EASA and FAA trained instructors are here to support you so you are prepared for your CPL.  We’ll support you with regular briefs about where to fly, how to get there, top tips for navigating USA airspace and a flight review for your logbook, so that you can focus on what really matters: the flying.

The great thing about Pilots Paradise and Florida is the continuity of the weather and personal access to your own aircraft. You can enjoy building your hours and getting the training you need. We’ve made the EASA to FAA conversion easy: sign up now to get all the information on how to complete the process hassle-free.

With a concentrated focus on flying, you can top upwards of 25 PIC hours a week. There is a mix of challenging, varied and fun routes to test you and get you ready for your CPL exam. Knowing each hour gained in the sky is also one towards a stunning destination, whatever your route.

With our dual trained EASA and FAA qualified instructors, you are in safe hands. Their mission is to complete your FAA Bi-annual Flight Review (BFR) to the standard required and help you make the transition from PPL to CPL. You won’t just get the hours and the training, but also the confidence to fly in the USA as a PIC, all while enjoying the beauty of Florida and the attractions it has to offer.

$120/hr wet, insured and including taxes. 

$250/week for accommodation. 

raf“It had been a dream of mine to be able to one day tour Florida in my own aircraft, a dream that was made possible by Pilots Paradise.” Raf.

Our Hours Builder’s have gone on to fly for British Airways, Jet2, Flybe, Bristow and others.

So if you would like to build your hours in the Florida sun with great flying continuity and EASA instructor support, contact us now at flying@pilots-paradise.com to take the first step to discovering Pilots Paradise or submit an enquiry form below with your requirements. 

50 hour package with accommodation for 2 weeks and check flight = $6700

100 hour package with accommodation for 4 weeks and check flight = $13,200

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Pilot Requirements

  • Hold an EASA PPL and complete the FAA licence conversion paperwork
  • Or Hold an FAA licence already
  • Be current on a PA-28
  • A normal ESTA holiday visa

Not Required:

  • A student visa
  • An FAA medical
  • Extra written exams

What do our customers say?
Chris and Annie – keep coming back for more hours!

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This is our second holiday with pilots paradise and I can’t recommend them enough. If you’re building hours in order to meet those commercial license requirements or you are fully qualified and simply want to experience flying in Florida then either way you’ll have the time of your life. I am the former and I’ve easily managed to fly 50 hours in 2 weeks on two separate occasions but unlike flying in the UK I’ve combined building these hours with 2 amazing holidays allowing me to visit some incredible places and broaden my skills a the same time. Everglades, Key West, Bahamas, Venice Beach, Naples, 500ft past Miami with jets flying overhead, St Augustine, low flight over the NASA shuttle landing strip and on my last visit, the absolute highlight; an overnight trip up to the Blue Ridge Mountains which are not only spectacular but really do allow you to polish those flying skills. Once the commercial studies are finished I will be back to see what other adventures await. Thank you Oli and Steve. 

Andrew and his Lads – 80 hours in 3 weeks flying ‘Mikey’

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Just a quick line or two to say thank you, we had a great
time flying with Pilots Paradise and with an aircraft that was
serviceable and fun to fly.

It was unfortunate that your aircraft were fully booked for our second week. We didn’t achieve the hours we needed
in that week due to poor service and unreliable aircraft offered to us at a different rental company in Daytona, nevertheless
we had a great time in “Mikey”.

I would also like to extend my
gratitude to Stephen and Tony for all there help and advice in making
this trip a success for Aaron & Terrance and for sure when we return to
Florida we’ll call in to say hello.

John Walker – 100 hrs, 4 weeks!

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I booked a month at ‘Pilots Paradise’ (PP) with 100 hours on their upgraded PA28 Warrior, N82332. Well, it’s now 2 weeks in and the verdict so far? Brilliant. I’ve done a bit of flying in the US in the past and had my share of disappointments with aircraft/accommodation etc. Not so with PP. The aircraft is a great example of the Warrior and is in superb condition and flies beautifully (nothing like the club aircraft we fly back in the UK!) The 1 bed accommodation is also clean, presentable and will meet most people’s expectations.

For those still thinking about booking here’s some background info I hope will be useful. Stephen met me on arrival and gave me the guided tour of accommodation and the aircraft and the day after, I had the check-ride with Tony Pool, who was very helpful and knowledgeable. That took about 2 hours including flights to both uncontrolled/controlled airfields, including landing back at Indian River (and picking up my charts and AFD from Ft Pierce). Stephen and Tony have been really supportive and it’s great to know there is someone at the end of a phone if the need arises.

I spent the first 2 weeks or so just getting re-acquainted with US airspace and procedures and visiting the local airfields. I have based the aircraft out of Vero Beach as it fits in better with my needs (I go to the local gym which is pretty near the airport – also recommended if you’re so inclined). If you haven’t flown in the US before then it’s nothing to be intimidated by. Everyone is really friendly and helpful and once you’ve had a day or so at it you’ll be very comfortable with things (Tony also gives an excellent overview of what you need to know during the check-ride). I also bought an excellent paperback from Transair or Pooleys on VFR Radio Procedures in the USA.

On a practical note, all amenities (supermarket, laundry etc) are pretty close by, although I would recommend hiring a car for the stay. There is a great restaurant at Vero Beach airport called CJ Cannons and also the Okechobee airport restaurant where all of the locals fly into to eat (Open 6am – 3pm every day)

On the flying front, I’ve planned either a trip along the Keys to Key West or a flight up to the Florida Aviation Museum at Lakeland Linder and the Flying Tigers Museum at Kissimmee; depending on where Thor decides to strike his hammer tomorrow. Not a bad choice for a days flying.
Next was a trip to the Keys…I decided to take the ‘VFR Flyway’ route to the West of Miami etc. This is the route you’ll find on the back of the Miami Terminal chart and it gives waypoints for the suggested route that will keep you clear of controlled airspace below 3000′. The waypoints are mostly visual reporting points plus a point where Lat/Long are given. For those of you planning to use N82332 I’ve put a waypoint in the Garmin 430 as VGIO for these co-ordinates and also for Key Largo at the beginning of the Keys themselves. Easy as using the Direct-To function on the 430 and follow the magenta line (with a manual back-up PLOG of course …just in case!).

I got a standard briefing from FSS by phone using 1-800 WX-BRIEF (as well as using ADDS (http://www.aviationweather.gov/adds/) before hand. I found the ADDS system really good, particularly for keeping a track of developing weather during the day. If you go to Standard Briefing near the bottom of the left hand column on the ADDS opening page this will give you everything you need, including NOTAMS. Also don’t forget to check for TFR’s (Temp Flight Restrictions). Usually Disneyland is the only one for Florida but always best to check. As an aside another excellent site for planning/weather etc is Sky Vector (in case you haven’t heard of it… here’s the link. (http://skyvector.com/)

Having got the FSS briefing I then filed my VFR Flight Plan and was ready for the off, but not before hiring a life-vest from Sunjet FBO ($10 for the day). You can also hire life-rafts from them if you’re planning a longer over-water trip). If you haven’t filed a flight plan before there are loads of resources on the web to guide you through including a really clear one on the FAA site.

After take-off it was onto FSS to open the flight plan using a nearby VOR frequency. Remember to transmit on the R frequency and tune in your Nav frequency and turn up the volume so you can hear the FSS transmit back to you. Once opened, I then changed over to Miami Centre and requested Flight Following, which I have to say was a really excellent service. I was passed on to the various controllers on my route South and got plenty of useful traffic advisories (particularly around Homestead General which had around 15 aircraft in the vicinity). I was safely vectored around most of this by Centre with little drama. If you haven’t tried Flight Following before I would definitely recommend it. Very straightforward to use with very helpful helpful controllers. The flight down the Keys was absolutely stunning and I’d say is a must if you have the time.

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The final two weeks were every bit as good as the first two and I managed to comfortably complete my 100 (well 103 hours actually) in the time, even with the daily thunderstorm activity in Aug/Sept.

One last point, that may be useful to anyone planning a trip for the first-time, is the self-service fuel pumps that you’ll find at most airports, and at some, the only option. The photo below is a fairly typical layout. After positioning the aircraft you should ground it by connecting the earth cable to a suitable point; the engine exhaust is good. When you start the ordering process at the pump console you’ll be prompted to confirm that you have done this. After swiping your credit card you’ll then be asked to select 100LL and then whether you want to order in gallons or dollars. You then select the maximum amount you may pump, but don’t worry, you don’t need to be exact. If you select 20 Gallons and only pump 18 you will only be charged for 18. You then confirm your order; input a tail number and then be shown how much this will cost. After confirming you’ll finally be asked to input a zip code for your credit card billing address. Now if you’re from outside the US (like me) you won’t have a US style Zip code. However, I discovered that simply inputing ‘12345’ works just fine and the payment goes through without a problem. The payment is then authorised, power is connected to the pump, and you turn it on and pump away. If you have selected a printed receipt (a good idea I think) this will be printed out at the console once you have finished pumping and turned off the pump. Also should mention that the self-service option is cheaper than having it pumped by the FBO staff…sometimes by quite a bit. Hope that info is helpful.

Summary

A great aircraft and a Garmin 430 to boot. The booking in/out process at the start/completion of the trip was very straightforward and I can’t thank Stephen and Antonia enough for their help and assistance during my stay. Thanks again also to Tony Pool for his help and guidance. If you haven’t been to the USA to fly before then it is nothing to be intimidated by, in fact quite the opposite. It is hard to put into words just how different an environment it is for flying, particularly for PPL’s flying mostly VFR. Just a brilliant experience not to be missed, and good to have someone at the end of a phone in case you need some help.

Well that’s my first trip over. 4 weeks. 103 hours. And further to my earlier post of my first two weeks…absolutely brilliant. More of that later. For anyone thinking of booking (do it!) and planning a trip to the Keys I thought I’d share a few points from my own flight there.

I would have no hesitation recommending it to anyone considering the trip, and have said to Oli that I’m happy for anyone to Private Message me if you’d like an independent view.

Am I booking again. You bet. Fly safe!

John Avery and son

John Avery

I can’t believe that it is nearly four weeks since we left Indian River to finish our holiday in Orlando. I want to say how much we enjoyed our stay and the time we spent in N82332. We had a fantastic time and managed to do everything we wanted to. I would not hesitate to recommend Pilots Paradise to fellow pilots in the UK and very much hope that we will be able to return one day.