QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
Q. Where is the training conducted?
A. The training is conducted in Sydney Harbour at Rose Bay, from
Bankstown Airport, and in and around Pittwater the Hawkesbury River,
Brisbane Waters (at Gosford) and Tuggerah Lake (on the Central Coast).
Briefings can be conducted at Rose Bay, Bankstown Airport and our
Palm Beach facility.
Q. How long does a full endorsement take?
A. This can vary according to your requirements and our availability.
All flight training is conducted around our regular charter operations.
It is possible, if our charter commitments are quiet, to complete
an endorsement in 5 or 6 days – however this is unusual. The
constraints of weather, aircraft serviceability and charter commitments
can affect the program.
Q. How many hours to get my endorsement?
A. This varies and depends on the individual student’s aptitude, application, dedication and skills. As a rough guide, 11 or 12 hours will be sufficient, with up to 80 or 90 water-landings.
Q. What is the cost?
A. We do not do a “fixed price” endorsement. Once the student reaches the required standard, and we have conducted all sequences and briefings, then the endorsement is complete. Every student is different, however as a rough guide, somewhere around $9,000 to $11,000 for a full endorsement should be expected.
Q. How is this calculated?
A. Firstly, briefing notes on the course cost $65 (plus GST). Briefings
are charged at $75 per hour, plus GST. About 6 hours of briefings
is necessary for a full amphibious endorsement. The rate for
dual instruction is $22 per minute (plus GST). This is charged on
the basis of time in the air. IE: Floats Off to Floats On,
Wheels Off to Wheels On, etc. So, $1,320 plus GST per hour
usually will give you more time in your log book than we actually
charge for. A significant amount of time is spent working on the
water, and this is not charged at the ‘per minute rate’.
Additionally, $11 (plus GST) is charged for each take-off. This
Q. Why is it so costly?
A. You can get an endorsement or do seaplane training elsewhere in Australia at a lesser cost, however it is important to remember that when flying with Steve, all training is done in the Beaver Amphibian, which is a very expensive piece of equipment with very high operating costs. We pride ourselves on having a reliable and impeccably maintained aircraft, available when it is needed!
Q. Can I just do a float endorsement? (IE: not the amphibious ops portion of the training.)
A. Yes. You will need to discuss your requirements with Steve, and note that we are also available to
carry out re-currency and refresher training sessions for people who are already water-endorsed.
Q. Do you employ pilots.
A. No. (This is a one-pilot operation.)
Q. Do you offer ICUS.
A. No. Unfortunately we don’t have the resources to offer ICUS.
Q. What are the prospects for employment as a seaplane pilot – in general?
A. As with every other type of flying job, it is difficult to get in. There are only a handful of operators in Australia. You should make contact with each operator to assess prospects.
Q. Is it difficult to learn?
A. No. It is not difficult, but it is challenging, a lot of fun and the emphasis is on the practical side of flying. There is relatively little theory involved.
Q. Do you arrange transport and/or accommodation.
A. No. However, we can offer suggestions about where to stay while in Sydney and we would suggest that you hire a car for the duration of the training.
Q. How would I go, getting a job in another country – say Canada?
A. Every country that has seaplane operations appears to have different requirements both in terms of levels of experience required and work permit arrangements. You should enquire with as many operators as possible in the country you wish to work in order to get good advice. Bear in mind, places like Canada and Alaska have plenty of their own qualified and experienced seaplane pilots.
For further information Steve may be contacted most days after 6pm (winter months) or after 8pm (summer months) on Mobile: International: +61 411 704 650. Local: 0411 704 650.
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