If humans had never learned to fly, their vestigial wings would go to waste and the fastest form of transit would be rocket cars, rocket trains, and rockets strapped to sound waves. Embrace airborne adventures with today's Groupon: for $115, you get a one-hour introductory flight (a $230 value) from A.T.C. Flight Training Center, located at the Potomac Airfield in Fort Washington.
A.T.C. Flight Training Center channels years of experience and piloting passion into lessons for curious and passionate pilots-to-be. No experience or study is necessary, as seasoned pilots give their students all the preflight instruction required on basic aircraft components. Between the bookends of a pilot-helmed takeoff and descent, airborne pupils take their first steps on the clouds as they take the wheel to turn, climb, and descend as gracefully as an aluminum hawk in a tutu. Up to two people can accompany the student during the flight (weight restrictions apply). A.T.C. recommends that the group brings both sunglasses and a camera to protect themselves against sun flares and/or memory loss.
A.T.C. Flight Training Center
A.T.C. Flight Training Center has guided fledgling pilots through the skies with FAA-certified instruction since 1991, emphasizing good judgment, quick decision making, and practical skill. With approval from the Secret Service and FBI, and permission slips signed by their mothers, the seasoned instructors teach their flight courses in an airborne classroom high above the Potomac River. They lay out a clear path for students to earn FAA private-pilot certification through classroom lectures, hands-on flight instruction, and the Jeppesen ground and flight syllabus. Flight lessons aboard the center's two Cessna 172 planes cover basic flight techniques, such as fending off territorial weather balloons, before moving on to jaunts to other airports, night flying, and more advanced skills.
Already experienced pilots can instead embark on leisurely trips in a Cessna 182, outfitted with GPS navigation and autopilot. At the center's shop, staffers further outfit pilots with headsets, charts, and approach plates, as well as ASA training materials, aviation books, and films about flight.