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Flight Training in ArizonaFive Reasons to Train in the Grand Canyon State
By Matthew Everett
When you consider the costs and difficulty of flight training, it's important that you do everything you can to make it a fulfilling experience. Sometimes, relocating is the best way to ensure that you get the most out of the experience. Arizona, the Grand Canyon State, features climate, geography, airports, and international flying potential that make it a popular destination for flight training.
Arizona is blessed with more than 350 clear and sunny days each year, perfect weather for flying. Unlike other areas with such stellar weather, Arizona is home to distinct climate regions that range from hot and dry deserts to mild and cool plateaus. Arizona is home to metropolitan areas with the most days over 100 degrees F and the most days below freezing in the contiguous U.S. Where else can you take off in a desert with temperatures in excess of 100 and fly to a year-round ski resort without leaving the state?
The gem of Arizona, and key to its success with flight training providers, is its geography. As the climate patterns indicate, Arizona has one of the most diverse geographies in the entire nation. With low desert regions dominating the southern half of the state and high plateaus and mountains dominating the northern portion, Arizona is an ideal location for flight training. Within the state lies the potential to practice high-altitude operations in the high elevations of northern Arizona and high density-altitude operations in the low desert of the southern part of the state.
You can't really talk about Arizona without mentioning the Grand Canyon. With almost 5 million visitors annually, the Grand Canyon is a huge tourist destination. In addition to scenic views for personal flying tours, the canyon also offers pilots fantastic commercial flying opportunities in the form of helicopter and airplane tourism flights. With a high volume of tourists, these sight-seeing flights offer new commercial pilots great, stable first jobs.
Airports and Airspace
Arizona is also home to 79 airports, including Phoenix Deer Valley Airport, which was the busiest U.S. general aviation airport in 2009. The abundance of rural airports located near active commercial airports offers student pilots the ideal low-stress learning environment of a small, out-of-the-way air field and high-volume airspace at large commercial airports. The proximity of the two creates an ideal training environment that allows students to reach unique training situations offered by large commercial airports within minutes.
Arizona's proximity to Mexico offers two major benefits to pilots. Primarily, in as little as an hour of flight time, you can be in Mexican airspace. The transition as well as any subsequent landings allow for interaction with foreign ATC and also provide unmatched opportunities to learn the ins and outs of U.S. Customs as it relates to international flying. A secondary benefit is that should you choose to venture south of the border, you could make your destination one of Mexico's beautiful resort towns for a bit of rest and relaxation.
In short, Arizona has a lot to offer pilots of any level. For more information on flight training in Arizona, check out Arizona Flight Training Center. Located in Glendale, they specialize in high-quality, professional flight training at reasonable rates. For more information on flight training in general, check out our Flight Training Resource Center.