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Old 10-16-2013, 05:54 AM   #41
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I haven't flown commercially since I retired and no longer traveled for training/teaching. DW does want to make the trip to Oregon to see an aunt after FIL passes and we'll probably fly for that. Driving from WV to OR is probably more than we'll want to do. TSA and being treated like cattle is the primary disincentive.

But light aircraft are a whole different story. Fifteen or 20 minutes after driving through the airport gate and you're climbing out. None of that "get there two hours before departure stuff". That I love doing and helped a friend build a Pitts Special a couple of years after retiring. The airport is the one I used to fly out of in the 70's and yes, that's me sitting in the fuselage making engine noises.
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Old 10-16-2013, 06:17 AM   #42
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This year, I've flown four times: FL, NYC, Boston and Scotland. I am thinking about going to CA this winter for a week or two, primarily to visit my sister and her family but might also want to revisit some old haunts. No plans for big travel on the horizon at present but this might change after I retire next July. My second cousin and I are kicking around the idea of New Zealand and also possibly visiting Ireland again, specifically for the Dublin theater festival which we enjoyed immensely in October 2012.
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Old 10-16-2013, 06:34 AM   #43
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4-5x a year; all international last two years. DD and DS live abroad so no real choice; I am NOT a fan but have no choice.
Same here. We avoid flying in and out of the US, though, as much as possible. TSA is a PITA, but Germany and Denmark are getting goofy as well.
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Old 10-16-2013, 06:50 AM   #44
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I like to think I'm better looking. I could certainly relate but my flights were more to/from Europe and Asia. One year I did 9 circumnavigations of the globe. (BOS/CDG/AMS/NRT/BOS)
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Old 10-16-2013, 10:30 AM   #45
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I haven't flown commercially since I retired and no longer traveled for training/teaching. DW does want to make the trip to Oregon to see an aunt after FIL passes and we'll probably fly for that. Driving from WV to OR is probably more than we'll want to do. TSA and being treated like cattle is the primary disincentive.

But light aircraft are a whole different story. Fifteen or 20 minutes after driving through the airport gate and you're climbing out. None of that "get there two hours before departure stuff". That I love doing and helped a friend build a Pitts Special a couple of years after retiring. The airport is the one I used to fly out of in the 70's and yes, that's me sitting in the fuselage making engine noises.
That is awesome! Beautiful plane!

I HATE commercial air travel. HATE it. When I hopefully (semi?) retire from my IT job in early 2015, I want to move back to the high country in Colorado (think Summit, Eagle, or Pitkin counties), get my private pilot's license, and my own plane.

I love the idea of just waking up one morning and saying, "I want to fly to Yellowstone today" and (weather permitting), just doing it.

I'm actually holding off starting flight training while I live in San Jose, because I think I would take it for granted, almost like I'm just doing it to pass time until I can move away, and I don't want it to be about that. I'd rather wait until I'm 100% free and back in Colorado, and then start. That way, I can also devote all my time and energy to it, and really enjoy it and have fun.

Can't wait.
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Old 10-16-2013, 10:44 AM   #46
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Flew extensively for business.

Fly at least twice, often three times a year for pleasure now that we are retired. It is difficult to get to Europe, Asia, or Africa from where we live without flying.

Do we like it? Not especially. But our desire to travel and visit other countries greatly overrides our dislike of flying.
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Old 10-16-2013, 11:01 AM   #47
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I've gotten used to flying working for Megacorp. At times I held jobs that required 2-3 flights a month. When I was young and full of energy that was fun. Now... not so much. Fortunately I'm down to 4-8 flights a year for business. Our retirement budget has us flying once a quarter for some type of vacation or family visit.

The actual flight I'm fine with - it is easy for me to fall asleep on a flight, I've even slept through takeoffs and landings. It's the getting to the flight that is the hassle - primarily the TSA (no issues with security but they seem to do it in the most inefficient manner as possible) and the overhead bins ballet. I've resigned myself to getting to the airport 2-3 hours in advance and, for personal travel, flying Southwest as much as possible with no baggage fees and much easier to get an aisle seat.
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Old 10-16-2013, 11:50 AM   #48
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Lets see, things I don't miss about flying
Amen and Amen. And it's about to get worse. Southwest and United are cutting back on seat sizes again.
Airlines trim seat sizes, weights to boost capacity, reduce fuel costs - NY Daily News

If you fly Southwest, they just cut another inch between rows.
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Old 10-16-2013, 05:59 PM   #49
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I love the idea of just waking up one morning and saying, "I want to fly to Yellowstone today" and (weather permitting), just doing it.
It is a ball, but bring your checkbook. I assume you already know that. I had a Piper TriPacer in the mid 70's for a couple of years and had a blast with it. I thought for sure it would be a great chick magnet - how could any girl refuse "Want to go to Tangier Island for lunch?" Turned out most were deathly afraid of single-engine airplanes and the thought of flying over water made it worse.

Another dream smashed on the rocky shores of reality.
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Old 10-16-2013, 08:34 PM   #50
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Take 6-8 Chicago -Phoenix trips per year usually with one other trip per year somewhere else. All personal, no business flights. Probably flew 4 times for business in working career. I see more road trips after DW retires
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Old 10-16-2013, 09:51 PM   #51
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I am in a fortunate position to fly to anywhere in the world for free but don't unless my wife is pointing a gun to my head.
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Old 10-16-2013, 10:10 PM   #52
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That I love doing and helped a friend build a Pitts Special a couple of years after retiring. The airport is the one I used to fly out of in the 70's and yes, that's me sitting in the fuselage making engine noises.
Nice Walt. Here is something that I threw together years ago. A guy flew this same model around the world twice.

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Old 10-17-2013, 01:21 AM   #53
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I have flown over 4,000,000 miles with one airline alone. Several years ago I was their best customer. I assume because of this, they treat me better than the average flyer. No complaints from here.
Wow. I have over 2MM on American, for which they gave me lifetime platinum status.

Comparatively speaking, I don't fly much in retirement. Maybe 3-4 times a year.

I don't mind it that much, the platinum status lets me use the first class lines, which helps a lot. Being on the plane sucks more now though, when traveling for business I rarely flew coach. Now it's all I fly.
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Old 10-17-2013, 05:07 AM   #54
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Nice Walt. Here is something that I threw together years ago. A guy flew this same model around the world twice.

Sweet! I think I remember reading about the guy flying his around the world. He'd modified it to hold extra tanks that gave him ~1,500 mile range. Could be all wrong on that, it's been a while.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:48 AM   #55
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Not sure what the flightrader24 was supposed to illustrate? Find a train or car tracker and let us know how they compare...this is a country with a population of 314 million.

I have no reservations re: flying. I fly when it makes sense in terms of time and cost - that simple. If you book in advance, 3 weeks or so, flying can be an incredible bargain (actually less than combined cost of gas-wear&tear plus hotels for a long trip). While flying isn't a comfortable experience, neither is sitting in a car for 10-15 hours.

And flying is safer by a long shot (here we go...).
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Old 10-17-2013, 09:32 AM   #56
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We would fly if there time constraints and somewhere we really wanted to see. Now we drive the truck camper everywhere. Put 10k miles in two months going to Alaska.

Come to think of it, we parked th TC and flew to Juneau for a few days, then ferried back to the camper. It was fun an expedient.
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Old 10-17-2013, 09:47 AM   #57
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I have never liked flying and only did it if required by my job. Now I am never in a hurry and can enjoy a leisurely trip. If the trip is long enough that I don't want to drive I prefer Amtrack.
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:49 PM   #58
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It is a ball, but bring your checkbook. I assume you already know that.
Yepper - I've read planes are worse than boats, and I have a BIL who has a small boat, and have heard him talk about the $$$ involved.

I just have to tell myself that I will never attempt to financially justify owning my own plane. There's a price to pay for that kind of fun and freedom I guess, so I'll just have to ante up
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:46 AM   #59
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Yepper - I've read planes are worse than boats, and I have a BIL who has a small boat, and have heard him talk about the $$$ involved.

I just have to tell myself that I will never attempt to financially justify owning my own plane. There's a price to pay for that kind of fun and freedom I guess, so I'll just have to ante up
Two of the boatowners I sail with regularly used to fly/own planes. They both adored flying but gave it up many years ago because of the expense. Their boats are 36 and 44 feet respectively, so flying must be really expensive...
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Old 10-18-2013, 10:29 AM   #60
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Two of the boatowners I sail with regularly used to fly/own planes. They both adored flying but gave it up many years ago because of the expense. Their boats are 36 and 44 feet respectively, so flying must be really expensive...
It can be. I had a 1955 Piper TriPacer that I bought in late 1974 for $3,900, or about $15k today. It had a 150hp engine, would seat 4 skinny people (150 lbs each, max) had one radio for communications and navigation and a basic set of panel instruments. I think it was legal for instrument flying but only a fool would do that with the nav and comm gear it had. It did have navigation lights so it was legal for night flying but I didn't do much of that unless the skies were crystal clear for 500 miles around. So if the weather was foggy, rainy, etc. it stayed on the ground.

It burned 9 gallons of fuel per hour and today's fuel prices are about $4.50/gallon. 38 gallons of fuel gave it a practical range (with a 1-hour reserve) of about 400 miles.

Spend more money - a lot more - gets you navigation and comm gear for instrument flying and longer range. It isn't uncommon to spend the price of the airplane on navigation/comm radios, autopilot and the like and that's getting to light airplanes with price tags of $200-$300k. But that also buys pressurization, range and foul-weather capability including flight into known icing conditions if equipped for it.

Two engines almost double the operational expenses (engines are the main maintenance expense) and of course fuel consumption goes to well north of $100/hour.

At the other end a basic sport airplane holds two people, has about a 65 hp engine and burns ~4 gallons/hour. It may or may not have even a radio or electrical system. This is for daylight clear weather flying only and has a range of a few hundred miles but can be found for less than five figures.
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