Aviators on, sun shining, the world spread out before you like a fantastic quilt, your hands on the yoke of an airplane flying over the American Southwest. If you've ever harbored fantasies of piloting your own private jet, All in Aviation is the business of making those dreams reality.
Founded in 2016 by Paul Sallach, All in Aviation is a Las Vegas-based flight school where students can get full licenses or sign up for a one-time training flight with an instructor sitting co-pilot.
"Out-of-town people are normally here for a couple days, and they just want to experience what being a pilot is all about," said Sallach. "It's more of an experience opportunity for people to get in front of the controls of an aircraft and fly over some of the most scenic territory in the world."
The standard class starts with you, a flight instructor and a Cirrus plane, which All in Aviation uses exclusively. Sallach called the planes the "Mercedes of the sky," luxurious aircraft with technology that looks more akin to what you'd find in a modern car than some older model prop planes and a parachute that floats the entire aircraft back down to the ground if things get really hairy.
Up to three guests are welcome to come along for the ride, provided you don't go over the weight limit, but for the person taking the lesson, this isn't a sightseeing tour. You meet your instructor, learn the basics of the aircraft and then "you're actually going to take off the airplane and get into the sky and fly wherever you want to fly in that lesson," Sallach said.
Yes, that's right. You get to do takeoff.
Once you're up in the air, Las Vegas' geography makes it an ideal place for a flight school. You can fly over the Valley of Fire, soar above the Grand Canyon or go all the way to Sedona, Ariz., where Sallach said the airport is perched atop a mesa and makes for a perfect lunch break before turning around to head home. Pricing is a la carte and by the hour for both the airplane and instruction, with most invoices running $800 to $1,000. A roundtrip Grand Canyon lesson will last about 90 minutes.
While your instructor has a full set of controls should you find your pilot fantasies overwhelming in real life, Sallach pointed out that All in Aviation offers hands-on flights.
"What delineates us from others is we do put you at the controls. We're not a typical tour company where you sit in the back along for the ride. You're part of the experience," he said. "There are very few places where you can just rent a jet and be at the controls."
And if velocity is your adrenaline rush of choice or you have previous flying experience, All in Aviation recently added a Cirrus SF50 Vision Jet to its fleet, which goes twice as fast as the other model, reaching speeds of almost 400 mph.
"It's double the cost," said Sallach, "but it's double the experience."
For more information visit allinaviation.com.