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8 Easy Ways To Ensure Your Freedom To Fly Won't Change

We are incredibly lucky to have the most accessible and free general aviation system in the world. Here are some things you can do to keep it alive and well.

1) Avoid flying over noise sensitive areas.

Following those noise-abatement procedures keep people happy on the ground and result in less noise complaints. That's good for them and it's even better for you. If the public doesn't see your plane or airport as a nuisance, there's not a reason to lobby against it. So next time you're flying low or near an airport, take those on the ground into consideration.

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2) Grow the next generation of pilots.

Have you ever gotten bored with the flying you've been doing? Getting involved in something like EAA's Young Eagles program is an awesome way to add some new and exciting flying to your schedule, all while getting the next generation interested.

3) Get involved in supporting GA.

One huge reason airport like Santa Monica (KSMO) are still around is because of heavy lobbying and support from general aviation advocates and nationwide organizations like AOPA. Keep your local airport running strong by showing the community how much of a positive impact it has.

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4) Pay for fuel at FBOs.

The lifeblood of any FBO is filling fuel orders. And while some FBOs don't have ramp fees, if you're stopping in to use an FBO facility you should always try to fill up your tanks. It'll keep them in business and ensure that they'll be around and open for years to come.

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5) If you see somethings suspicious, report it.

Keep your airports, planes, and ramps secure.

D Manera

6) Use the full benefits of Air Traffic Control.

ATC facilities often get government funding based on their usage. For instance, when I visited them Memphis International Airport Control Tower, the controllers upstairs suggested some times when they're normally slow and would like for general aviation pilots to come do touch and goes. They wanted to keep their takeoff and landing numbers high during slow times so they can get the best funding, in order to give the best services possible.

Flickr/NATS Press Office

7) Don't forget about non-pilot adults.

Sure, everyone likes to see the smile on a kid's face when they get to sit up front and fly for the first time in a small plane. But it'll probably be years before they can even consider training. Try taking up some adult friends who are interested in aviation and need a little kick-start of motivation. If you can get them hooked, it won't be long before they're running through numbers to see how they can make training affordable.

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8) Don't break the FARs.

This goes without saying, but the more people break Federal Air Regulations, the tighter regulations will become. If you think the FAR book is already thick enough, follow it to avoid adding new pages.

Swayne Martin

The more you fly and use the awesome privileges we have as pilots in the USA, the stronger general aviation will become. What else can pilots do to keep GA flying alive and well? Tell us in the comments below.

Swayne Martin

Swayne is an editor at Boldmethod, certified flight instructor, and an Embraer 145 First Officer for a regional airline. He graduated as an aviation major from the University of North Dakota in 2018, holds a PIC Type Rating for Cessna Citation Jets (CE-525), and is a former pilot for Mokulele Airlines. He's the author of articles, quizzes and lists on Boldmethod every week. You can reach Swayne at swayne@boldmethod.com, and follow his flying adventures on his YouTube Channel.

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