Video tip: understanding Class E airspace

Unless you're flying a jet high into the flight levels, there's a good chance that the majority of your flying will take place in Class E airspace. This week's tip takes a look at the operating requirements, minimum VFR weather and how to identify Class E airspace on the sectional chart.

Video Tip: Night Flying

Night is simply one of the best times to fly–the air is smooth, the airport isn't as busy and the view out the window is incredible. This week's video takes a closer look at night flying and some best practices to follow to ensure your next flight in the dark is as safe as it enjoyable.

Video Tip: Cessna 172 exterior preflight

One of the first things you'll learn as a student pilot is how to perform an aircraft preflight inspection. This week's video tip looks at the step-by-step procedures for the exterior preflight of a Cessna 172.

Video tip: takeoff and landing techniques from a short runway

You'll need to modify your takeoff and landing procedures when operating from shorter runways to obtain the maximum performance from the airplane. These techniques will allow you to shorten the ground roll and also provide additional clearance over obstacles if they are present near the runway.

Video tip: iPads in the cockpit

Paper charts are now a distant memory for many pilots today as digital charts on the iPad have become the preferred method to view aviation data. This week's tip takes a look at the regulations surrounding the use of the iPad in the cockpit and how it should be used along with the traditional methods of preflight planning and navigation during your flight training.

Video tip: Flying airplanes with retractable landing gear

Many high-performance airplanes feature retractable landing gear that allows them to fly at higher speeds thanks to the reduced drag (and they look cool too). There are new operational considerations to learn when transitioning to this type of airplane, including the best time to raise the gear after takeoff and lower the gear before landing. 

Video tip: flight training across the pond

Many take for granted the freedoms and flexibility extended to pilots flying in the United States. We have access to over 5,000 public airports and can move about the country when we want with limited government regulation and no user fees. Things are a bit different in other parts of the world though, where airspace is more regulated and landing fees are the norm. Learn first hand from Sophie Gilgean who grew up and learned to fly in Belgium about the limitations placed on private aviation in Europe.

Video tip: how to spot in-flight traffic

Collision avoidance skills are emphasized early on in the flight training process, and it's important that you make an effort to keep your eyes out the window as much as possible when practicing maneuvers. This week's video takes a look a few tips you can incorporate on your next flight to help spot nearby traffic, along with some new technology innovations that allows you to display nearby traffic right on your favorite aviation iPad app.

Video tip: What does angle of attack really mean?

You’ve probably heard that “you can stall an airplane at any airspeed and any attitude.” It’s true, but it sure doesn’t make much sense. In our latest video tip of the week, we tackle angle of attack, a critically important but often misunderstood topic. You’ll learn what it really means, how to visualize it in flight and what the new generation of AoA gauges shows.

Video tip: takeoffs and landings on grass runways

Taking off and landing on a grass strip requires a modified technique to account for the soft runway surface. You'll typically start practicing these maneuvers after solo, which will also help to improve your technique for normal takeoffs and landings.