Flying a small airplane gives you the freedom to travel when and where you want. And, without having to fly commercially or drive, you can spend more time on vacation and less time getting to your destination – not to mention avoiding the many hassles of the airports and roadways. The following are some things you should implement in your airplane cockpit to get more comfortable and to stay safe.
While a private plane is a great way to travel, there are always improvements that can be made, particularly in the cockpit, that will make your entire trip even more enjoyable. Let’s take a look at some things you should implement into your airplane’s cockpit to boost your comfort, organization and safety.
Sheepskin Seat Covers
Your cockpit likely features either leather or cloth seats, which are fine in some climates, but don’t provide all-season comfort. A sheepskin seat cover, on the other hand, will regulate temperature, ensuring you’re cool in summer and warm in winter, while providing fire resistance that beats out other fabrics. Additionally, it’s a hypoallergenic material and water resistant, making it a great alternative for those whose skin is easily irritated.
Portable Air Conditioners & Heaters
Installing an air conditioning or heating system in your airplane is almost guaranteed to cost you a pretty penny, while adding significant weight to your machine which affects performance and safety. Portable AC and heating units, however, control the air temperature so you can stay comfortable in the cockpit. Something like Arctic Air’s AC units are filled up with ice then plugged into the cigarette lighter for all-day cooling action. Heaters come in several forms, from gas-burning auxiliary options to space heaters that are plugged into your electrical system.
Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Speaking of combustible heaters, a carbon monoxide detector is always a smart addition to your small airplane’s cockpit. These little devices can help you identify an influx of carbon monoxide in your cabin, often as features within a receiver or headset. They can also be their own stand alone item, such as the Tocsin 3, which includes a 90dB audio alarm, flashing lights and vibration so you have a better chance of hearing it during a noisy flight.
A dedicated flight bag is essential for keeping all your travel documents and logs organized and accessible. In addition, keep any electronic components safe and secure with an organizer bag dedicated to things like GPS, phone, headset and receiver cables. From flashlight batteries to type-c or micro USB chargers to headset replacement cords – there are a number of items that you may not want to be digging for before, during or after a flight.
The Right Headset
While some people may get by on rented or secondhand headsets, a high-quality headset will be a surprising upgrade to your comfort levels in a small airplane. With recent advancements, you’re sure to experience reduced noise levels and improvements in connectivity and frequency response. Look for things like active noise cancellation, which electronically reduces incoming noises by feeding an opposing signal into your headset; bluetooth capability that allows you to connect to your GPS system, smartphone and tablet so you can track flight information or listen to music; and a wide frequency response that will provide the most hearing protection.
Since you’ll be wearing a seatbelt 99 percent of the time you’re in your plane, make some simple updates so that you can maximize your comfort and safety while strapped in. Add things like crotch straps or extensions to better fit against your body type, add a multipoint buckle or harness for more security, or try a seat belt pad to protect sensitive skin.
Sunglasses are practically an official part of any pilot’s uniform, so make sure you’re outfitted with the best. Non-polarized eyeware will help reduce glare and prevent strain, while keeping depth perception accurate and glass cockpit panels readable. Make sure to test your pilot sunglasses while wearing your headset to ensure that they don’t interfere with each other and cause more discomfort than it’s worth.
Improve Your Cockpit – And Your Travel Experience
With some of the above items implemented into your cockpit, you can improve the overall travel experience on your small airplane. The simple addition of items like better headsets, sunglasses, temperature control and more is bound to increase your comfort, organization and safety. All of which is sure to lead to a more enjoyable trip.
If you’re ready to gain the freedom to travel how you wish, avoiding the hassle of commercial airlines and long roadtrips, then obtaining a private pilot license and taking to the skies in a small airplane may be the best option for you.
Do you want to gain the freedom to fly when and where you want? Try an Inflight training program and become a licensed pilot today.
Whether you travel all the time or just a few times a year, there’s nothing more fun and fast than commanding the cockpit of your own small airplane and flying to uncharted destinations. When you can control your trip itinerary from start to finish, you’ll spend less time traveling and more time on vacationing.
Ready to get started on obtaining your private pilot license so you can fly anywhere? Contact Inflight today and find out what other huge advantages flying yourself has when it comes to traveling. Let’s take off on a new adventure together!