For your flight instructor to provide effective remote coaching, there are two key things that need to be shared:
- Voice communications
- A view of your simulator (outside view, cockpit, instruments, external panels, etc.)
Generally, Zoom is used to facilitate sharing both of these with your instructor.
All you have to do is join your instructor’s Zoom meeting using a link, and press the Share Screen button.
At that point, the instructor will see everything that you see on your screen, and they can provide coaching services
Once you have determined which flight instructor best fits your needs, we invite you to schedule a free consultation call, where your instructor will discuss a recommended coaching plan to fit your exact needs.
After the consult, you can schedule your first full session. Our scheduling software makes it easy – even if your instructor is halfway across the world – by converting all scheduling into your local time zone.
There are three main reasons why Flight Sim Coach exists:
- To enhance the quality and efficiency of pilot training using desktop flight simulators
- To help hobbyist flight simmers learn more efficiently from real-world pilots/instructors
- To help provide technical assistance to all flight simulator users
While YouTube is an excellent resource, our clients appreciate the ability to get instant feedback on their performance, get immediate answers to their questions, and receive coaching that is targeted to reach their goals as efficiently as possible.
One of our students put it this way: “Friends, as much I love YouTube for figuring things out, it has rudely never once answered a question I pondered out loud. In direct contrast, Dave was patient and happy to answer my many questions during our session.“
You can filter our instructor list to see which one has expertise in your simulator and type of flying. Check out their calendars to see which instructor’s availability matches your own. If you are not sure who to pick, please fill out this form.
Yes. Our instructors generally offer free consultation sessions. See our instructor list for scheduling links.
Generally, an internet upload speed of 5 Mbps is sufficient for your instructor to provide remote coaching services. If your upload speed is less, please contact us.
No. The use of webcam is at your discretion. The main thing is that your instructor can see your screen.
The minimum requirement is to have some kind of audio headset (or other speaker/microphone combination) hooked up to your flight simulation computer to facilitate clear voice communications.
If you do not have one, please contact us before your session.
Yes. Users must be recognized as adults by applicable law. Minors may only use the service under parental or adult supervision. All users must be at least 13 years old.
- The remote coaching service must not be used while you are flying a Full Flight Simulator (FFS) or Flight Training Device (FTD), except with prior coordination and permission. This does not apply to those flying uncertified home flight simulators or Aviation Training Devices (ATDs).
- The remote coaching service is to be used solely for entertainment purposes or as a supplement to pilot training. It must not be used as the primary source of training for the operation of any actual aircraft.
- The remote coaching service is not considered to be loggable flight, simulator, or ground instruction.
- The remote coaching service is not a substitute for formal, loggable in-aircraft training or ground instruction with the Certified Flight Instructor who will be signing your logbook.
Flight Simulator Questions
Software: We have instructors with experience in most types of desktop flight simulator software and hardware, so there is no specific requirement. Most of our clients use X-Plane and/or Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020.
Hardware: Either a yoke or joystick with throttle control is sufficient. Rudder pedals are highly recommended.
Yes. Check out our Flight sim setup and tech support service.
I don’t have a simulator yet. Can you help me pick out the computer, software, and accessories I should purchase?
Yes. Check out our Pre-Purchase Consult service.
Yes. Your flight instructor can generally help with basic flight control calibration. For detailed technical support, please see our dedicated Tech Support service.
Real-World Pilots and Flight Students
Why do I need to work with a Certified Flight Instructor (CFI)? Can’t I practice using a desktop simulator on my own?
The value you get from simulator training, and the likelihood of not developing bad habits, is highly dependent on the quality of the instruction you receive. An FAA-certified instructor is trained in the fundamentals of teaching and learning. One of the most important aspects of this is the “law of primacy”, which the FAA describes as:
“Primacy, the state of being first, often creates a strong, almost unshakable impression and underlies the reason an instructor must teach correctly the first time and the student must learn correctly the first time.”
A high-quality real-world instructor will be able to teach you properly, using real-world procedures and airmanship thinking, from day 1. This will help to avoid costly “reteaching” of material and fixing bad habits you would otherwise develop on your own, without the help of an instructor.
Yes. We typically do not provide remote coaching to real-world student pilots on maneuvers and topics which are highly dependent on the “feel” of the aircraft. For example, we do not advise that student pilots practice landing flares, low-speed handling characteristics, etc.
For everything else, even though the simulator may not react to your control inputs in the same way the real airplane would, this can be a good thing for developing your flexibility as a pilot. You will have to learn to adapt to multiple aircraft types as you fly new airplanes as a pilot; think of your simulator as being just one of those many aircraft types you will eventually want to learn.
Working with our team of experienced flight instructors and simulator users can help mitigate this, by explaining what things may feel or behave differently in the actual aircraft versus the simulator.
No. The use of a non-certified simulator is not considered logable by the FAA. Our coaching is simply a supplement to your real-world flight training.
However, we are confident that training with us will reduce your actual number of hours required in the actual aircraft – significantly reducing the cost of your pilot training.
I’ve heard that students who fly flight simulators look inside at the instruments too much, and this is a hard habit to break. How will you help me avoid this?
This is a valid concern. This is one of the main reasons to use a skilled instructor – to ensure that the proper habits of using a visual “sight picture” are taught from day one.
Your instructor will generally have the ability to cover up various instruments (or even the entire panel) using our screen sharing software to help mitigate this and force you to focus on external visual references.
While we firmly believe in the value of desktop simulator training, there are definite limitations. Here are some items that are impractical to teach properly in a desktop simulator environment:
- Takeoffs / landings: While there is definite training value in practicing traffic patterns and approaches, we cannot effectively teach landings in a simulator, as they are highly dependent on seat of the pants feel, proper height above runway/visual cues with peripheral vision, etc.However, the good thing is that when you don’t have to think as much about the other tasks which we can effectively train in the simulator (the relationships between pitch and power, approach procedures, monitoring ATC, etc.), you will be able to focus more on just landing the airplane, and learn landings more quickly.
- Preflight / fueling procedures / walkarounds / postflight
- Seat-of-the-pants cues, such as the feeling of uncoordinated flight and buffeting as you get close to stall
- Muscle memory (pushing buttons on the GPS, for example) – unless you have a more sophisticated setup with physical hardware or touchscreens
Check out this article to see our comparison of a typical 1.5 hour flight lesson to a typical 1.5 hour remote coaching session.
Hobbyist Flight Sim Enthusiasts
No. We understand the value of flight simulation as a rewarding hobby, even if you have no intention of flying in real life.
Some of our instructors began their aviation careers based on an interest in flight simulation from a young age – so we completely understand the perspective of the hobbyist simmer who wants to learn as realistically and accurately as possible, in a way that other flight instructors and pilots might not.
We absolutely encourage hobbyist simmers to use our service.
Probably. We have instructors who are specialized in a variety of aircraft types and add-ons, including airliners, corporate jets, and helicopters. Check out the profiles of our Flight Instructors for more details, or contact us to get matched with the best instructor for your situation.
We offer a discount if you purchase a package of hours. Note that this discount does not apply to all instructors.
We accept payment via credit card (processed by Stripe). If you require an alternative payment method, please contact us.
You can schedule sessions in your Hours and Scheduling Portal.
First wait at least 15 minutes. If you still do not see the hours, please contact us.
Please try to let us know as early as possible if you need to cancel or make a change, and we will do our best to accommodate your needs. However, to respect the time of our instructors, we have the following cancellation policy.
For cancellations/reschedulings with less than 24 hours of notice but more than 12 hours of notice, we reserve the right to charge you for 50% of the scheduled time of the lesson.
For no-shows and cancellations/reschedulings with 12 hours or less of notice, we reserve the right to charge you for 100% of the scheduled time of the lesson.
For more details, please see our terms and conditions.
We highly recommend that you contact your instructor as soon as possible if you know that you will be running late.
A no-show will be considered to occur if you do not join your coaching session within 15 minutes of the start time without informing your instructor that you will be late. Your instructor will make at least one attempt to contact you via email or phone during the first 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, the session will be considered to be over and the instructor will not be obligated to wait further. No refund will be available.
For more details, please see our terms and conditions.
You may only complete one free consultation per flight instructor. If you have already paid for a one-on-one coaching session with a given instructor, you are no longer eligible to take a free consultation with them.
Free consultations which are canceled with less than 24 hours of notice, or which result in a no-show, cannot be rescheduled. If this happens, to complete the consultation, you will need to purchase a full coaching session at normal rates. In either case, you will not be eligible for free consultations with other flight instructors.
Upon scheduling a session, you will receive a confirmation email or calendar invitation.
If you use a Gmail or iCloud email address, first check Google Calendar or iCloud calendar to see if your prior bookings are shown.
If you do not see the bookings there, search your inbox for all messages from Calendly (our scheduling system) to find your prior bookings.
Contact us if you need additional assistance.