The solo: one of the most significant days in a pilot’s life. We remember that special day—perhaps more vividly than we recall the day we took a checkride—because it signifies the day we could truly call ourselves pilots. Case in point: an 87-year-old pilot who recently planned a visit to AOPA headquarters to talk about the seventieth anniversary of his solo.
What other occasion in aviation is the punchline of its very own joke, supposedly uttered by a nonflying friend: “You mean they let you fly the airplane by yourself?”
It’s a big deal. And if you’re not making it a big deal, you’re missing out on a significant marketing opportunity.
The solo is proof not only of your customer’s achievement, but also of yours. After all, your instructor got the new pilot to the point where he or she could take off and land an airplane without any help.
Taking a photo is the least (and I mean the very least) you should do. Here are some other ideas:
If you celebrate solos in a fashion that’s more creative than these suggestions, I’d love to hear about it ([email protected]).
Jill W. Tallman is editor of Flight School Business.