Choose Between Two Options
- $99 for scenic flight tour with bottle of wine or champagne and picture in cockpit ($200 value)
- $299 for three 60-minute introductory flight lessons ($379 value)
The Cessna 172 Skyhawk: Making the Skies Even Friendlier
With a superior safety record and a design that’s made it desirable for just about every pilot, the Skyhawk is a favorite of flight schools. Check out how the aircraft first got off the ground.
Hailed by Flying magazine as “the most popular airplane ever” thanks to its “silky-smooth flying manners” and its “solid, reliable, durable and predictable” performance, the Cessna 172 Skyhawk is one of the most common planes used by flight schools to train nascent pilots. The four-seat plane can reach a maximum cruise speed of 141 miles per hour and has a service ceiling of 13,500 feet. Introduced in 1956, the plane’s modern iteration has been praised by Plane & Pilot magazine as being “one of the easiest machines to put back on the ground” due to its “slow and gentle” control response, while also boasting an “excellent safety record.”
It wasn’t always such a consistent ride. Back in 1911, Clyde Vernon Cessna ran 14 separate attempts at flight straight into the trees. “I’m going to fly this thing,” the aviator exclaimed, “then I’m going to set it afire and never have another thing to do with aeroplanes!” Though he held true to one of his vows, Cessna did not retire, but rather went on to found his eponymous aircraft company in Wichita, Kansas, in 1927. Driven by his dream to build a monoplane with wings free of supporting struts or braces, Cessna’s cantilever design revolutionized aviation and remains the industry standard today. In the years since its founding, Cessna has continued to manufacture small aircraft—from midsize business jets to single-engine aircraft—that have been used by all manner of flyers such as cadets in the US Air Force and even James Bond during a getaway scene in Live and Let Die.