Flying is a lot like having a staring contest: even with utter concentration, you’ll never be better at it than birds. Go toe-to-beak with our winged companions with today's Groupon to Advanced Flyers, located at Palo Alto Airport. Choose between the following options:
- For $199, you get a two-hour flight learning experience with a 30-minute flight for two people, and a six-month intermediate membership for one person (a $477 value).
- For $299, you get a two-hour flight learning experience with a 30-minute flight for three people, and a six-month advanced membership for one person (a $659 value).
Advanced Flyers' expert pilots ferry imaginations skyward with advanced flight-training technology and a glut of experience. During the two-hour instruction experience, fledgling aviators will spend an hour on the ground filling their minds with details about aerodynamics, flight instruments, aircraft controls, and preflight checks. Then students earn their digital pilot's wings aboard the FAA–approved, 2010 Redbird FMX 1000 flight simulator ($35), gaining familiarity with controls and instruments, pausing faux flights to ask questions, and breaking to eat stacks of airplane-shaped flapjacks. Afterward, take to the skies in a Cessna 172SP for a 30-minute airborne journey with an experienced, certificated instructor at your side ($75/flight, $75/instructor). If newly anointed flyers or old pros are working toward private-flying certification, time spent in-flight as well as in the simulator will be logged in the pilot's logbook.
Memberships to Advanced Flyers have an array of perks, including after-hours office access, a jazzy nickname, and access to an online scheduling system to book your next aeronautical adventure. Members with pilot licenses are welcome to rent aircraft in the extensive fleet, with fuel included in rates, while unlicensed members can choose an instructor to fly with them. All memberships include accommodations for two guests on each flight, so pilots can bring along a pair of pals or a couple of mustached mannequins to act as a surly crew.
Advanced Flyers' experienced flight instructors defy gravity while teaching students to pilot aircraft and giving passive passengers birds'-eye views of the Bay Area. Its FAA-approved Redbird FMX-1000 simulator lets pupils log time toward ATP certificates while practicing foundational skills and more advanced maneuvers necessary during bad weather, engine failure, or rabid-hummingbird attacks. Students who pursue private pilot licenses can eventually navigate aboveground in rental griffins from Advanced Flyers' well maintained fleet.