Pilots around the world use a flight simulator for training purposes. The simulator allows extensive practice of handling aircraft as well as the chance to work emergency procedures in as close to real conditions as possible.
What you may not know is that in some places the general public can book time on the sims for a fun experience. One such place that does this is British Airways Flight Training.
Flight Simulator Experience
British Airways have sold flight simulator time to the general public for years now. You can book one, two or three hour flights and these are conducted with a training pilot accompanying you.
The simulators have a full range of motion and quite realistic video systems. For all intents and purposes, you will feel like you are flying an actual aircraft as the accuracy is incredible.
Clearly this would be a once in a lifetime thing for most people and it’s certainly priced to reflect that. A one hour flight costs £449 (€500, US$570), two hours is £849 (€940, US$1,075) and three is £1,199 (€1,329, US$1,520).
Visitors have a choice of flying the Boeing 747-400 or the Boeing 777-200 simulator. In the past, there was the option to fly other aircraft but I guess they have restricted it to those that are least busy for normal training.
Update: British Airways stopped selling these about two weeks after this article was published. Read on, as the below is still available.
How About Flying Concorde?
Brooklands Museum in Weybridge (around half an hour by train from London Waterloo station) is the home of the British Airways Concorde flight simulator. BA donated it to the museum after they withdrew Concorde from service.
Former Concorde pilots host your visit, which costs £199 for one hour with 15 minutes at the controls or £475 for two hours in the simulator with 30 minutes at the controls. The hydraulic motion system is gone, however all the rest is as it used to be.
A flight simulator experience would be a hell of a lot of fun to do. People who have taken the plunge all report back on how amazing the day is. As someone who has seen the simulators at Alaska Airlines, even that was exciting and we didn’t get the fly them.
Have you ever done a flight simulator experience? Do any other airlines sell time on their simulators like BA do? Thank you for reading and if you have any comments or questions, please leave them below.
Images via British Airways.
Concorde Simulator via Brooklands Museum.