General aviation is non-commercial aviation, which doesn't affect the agricultural, medical, and administrative purposes of flights. The name comes from the words "avia" (air) and "motion".
Private amateur flights are made in a wide variety of aircraft: light and ultralight aircraft, sport aircraft, homebuilt aircraft, gyroplane, small turboprops, jets, and gliders. You can become an amateur pilot at special practical courses — they are organized on the basis of flight educational institutions. The courses include several hours of theoretical training, and then training flights with an instructor. The rules of training in many countries may differ, but on average, if the courses are held on the basis of a state school, then the organization provides the student with an airplane and a runway strip. If this is a private school, you will have to rent a plane or fly on your own. Upon completion of training, a certificate and a flight license are issued.
You can fly on a private jet almost anywhere. The main thing is to have permission and that there is a runway at the start and end of the route. A small plane can be rented or bought into ownership. Then it must be registered. In order for private pilots to fly internationally, their country of residence must be a member of the ICAO — the International Civil Aviation Organization, which regulates air traffic, sets rules, and makes flights safer.
Light aircraft can be flown at any time of day or season with good weather. Weather elements such as the absence or presence of wind, cloud cover and cloud types, precipitation, air temperature, and others are important to aviation.
General aviation is not only convenient and fast transportation but also an exciting outdoor activity. Amateurs spend a lot of time doing maintenance of their aircraft and practicing flying skills. However, unlike many other sports that are relatively easy to learn and practice, aviation is a more challenging activity.
Text: Natalia Kirasheva. Ivan Kuznetsov contributed to this guide
Cover photo: Michel Paz / Unsplash