We met with Michael. Passionate about aviation, he’s been a private pilot for nearly 20 years. Adventurous and with a head full of ideas and projects, we wanted to know more about his life and his journey as a pilot. Always ready to help, Michael developed a real passion for helping people getting rid of their fear of flying. Here’s a peek into the life of a Wingly pilot.
Hello Michael, tell us a bit about yourself ?
Hello – My name is Michael and I am a design consultant for a major UK fitted furniture company. Before that, I was a cabin crew for 4 and a half years. I loved the fact that I could travel a lot and also the proximity I had with the pilots and the flight deck – those were definitely the highlights of this job! I studied design engineering in school so going as a flight attendant was a big change of career… My dream is becoming a commercial pilot, it’s actually something that I’m looking into right now.
What are your main hobbies?
My main hobbies are, of course, flying and keeping fit. Wingly is great because it helped me fly a lot more! Flying is such an expensive hobby… Wingly has really helped democratise aviation and make it more accessible to pilots and passengers too. It brings a whole new dimension to flying! You get to fly with passengers and you also get to fly a lot more. In the end, you have more flying hours and you get to discover new places.
Why did you want to become a pilot?
I have always dreamt of being a commercial pilot so being a private pilot was the first step towards the aviation world!
How long have you been flying?
I had my first lesson in 1999 – it took me a long time to get my private pilot license, I stopped and started again for different reasons, but never because of the lack of passion! Because of Wingly, I get to meet new people and, often, introduce them to aviation. I love getting reviews after a Wingly flight, it makes me feel really good and happy that the passenger(s) enjoyed the flight, discovered aviation and maybe found a new passion! I always spend a lot of time showing the plane around, the safety checks, the commands, the instruments. I let the passengers sit in the plane for a while and just get a feeling of what its like being in a small plane. I make sure everybody is comfortable before taking off.
What are your favourite destinations?
My favourite destinations are Le Touquet, Oostende, the Isle of Wight and the Channel Islands.
What kind of plane do you usually flight with?
I fly with a PA-28.
How many hours have you flown so far?
I have flown 170 hours.
How can you describe the feeling or flying to someone who’s never experienced it before?
It’s the closest thing to being a bird! Isn’t that everybody’s dream? It’s amazing how fast you can reach your destination and that, without being stuck in traffic. I love taking people up, showing them a different aspect of flying.
Did Wingly change the way you think about flying and aviation in general?
Yes, of course. For me, Wingly has made flying much more accessible. As I am now sharing the costs of flying, I can fly more often and further away too, which means I am clocking up many more hours than I was prior to being a Wingly Pilot. I am also getting to share my passion with other people which makes it even more fun for me. So far I have had constant 5 star reviews from my passengers and many of them want to fly again – it’s a great feeling knowing that you shared your passion with people that learned to love aviation too.
What’s the most exciting moment you’ve experienced with Wingly passengers?
It was seeing a 5 star review from one of my passengers who was a retired professional pilot and a former instructor/examiner. He was very impressed with my flying and professionalism.
What’s your dream destination?
My dream is to fly all over the world and to spend time in amazing places!
Did you accomplish everything you wanted to when you first started flying?
Not yet. My goal is to continue my training to become a professional pilot and Wingly is helping me do this by keeping the cost of my hours building down.
Anything you’d like to tell to the people who are thinking about flying with Wingly but haven’t yet?
It’s a great experience! You get to fly with people who are really passionate about flying and not doing it for business. Personally, I like to help people understand and love flying. I’m dedicated to helping people get rid of their fear of flying, it’s a passion. A few years ago, I took a friend to an airfield – we looked at an airplane for a while, it was parked with a lot of planes all around, it definitely wasn’t ready for take off. While approaching the plane, I noticed that my friend wasn’t next to me anymore, she had stopped a few steps back, completely petrified. I took the time to explain everything, how a plane flies, how this particular aircraft works and we even ended up sitting in the plane for a while. We didn’t fly that day, but we did a while after that. Now, she’s going to Africa on safaris, she’s travelling all over the world, in big and small airplanes! She lost her fear of flying and she can now enjoy travelling the world. That’s the greatest satisfaction.
Michael, who is Passionate about aviation, and dreaming of becoming a commercial pilot and we really wish him the best of luck in achieving his dream. Flying has been part of his personal and professional life for so long now, we hope he will stay passionate about aviation his entire life because he’s the greatest advocate for this incredible hobby!
Are you ready to book your own adventure? Pilot for nearly 20 years, you can be sure that by flying with Michael, he will take all the time needed until you feel comfortable to fly. Share a flight with Michael now.