Ardmore Flying School

Ardmore Flying School

At the heart of the airfield is Ardmore Flying School; one of the best pilot training facilities in New Zealand, even if they do say so themselves.

If you’ve ever thought about learning to fly, this is the place to do it. If you’re really keen, they’ll even let you go for a no-obligation introductory flight, where you can take the controls and fly yourself—for a while at least.

With just six weeks’ full-time study, you could have your unrestricted private pilot licence (PPL), which entails two weeks of classroom theory, before heading out for 50 hours flying experience.

Ardmore Flying School also offers professional pilot training and is the only facility in New Zealand approved to offer a Diploma of Aviation.

To qualify for your commercial pilot licence (CPL) you’ll need to buckle down for 11 weeks of full-time theory before racking up 200 hours flying time.

Though learning to fly may sound like a bit of fun, it’s not something to be entered into lightly. With fees for a PPL sitting at approximately $16,000 and around $65,000 for a CPL, learning to fly is a pie-in-the-sky dream for most.

If you are serious about flying, however, student loans are available if you enrol in the Diploma of Aviation. Even with no flying hours, under this scheme you could have your instructor’s rating in less than two years of full-time study.

Students at Ardmore Flying School learn their craft in a single-engine Cessna 172 Skyhawk and instructor, Dan Bolton, says that despite the increasingly high costs, they do it “for the passion of flying”.

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Content updated: 17/10/2019 12:19

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