Introduction to Ultralight Aviation

Ultralight Flying in India

Some wouldn't expect to see article about India here. Aren't people there poor and too concerned for their problems to fly? Guess what - India is one of the pioneers in ultralight aircraft innovations. One of the best ideas in the recent years came from there. Don't underestimate a country with population of more than a billion and a lot of smart people and educated engineers.

People in India do fly ultralights. And you can fly there too.

India
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Regulations

India has no Part 103 - every aircraft must be registered, periodically inspected and its permit to fly must be renewed every year. It's not like the USA where you can fly a single-seat ultralight without license. In India two seaters also qualify as ultralights as long as their all up weight is less than 450kg without a parachute.

The full list of requirements that make an ultralight in India can be found here.

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Indian Ultralight Aircraft

There are several very interesting ultralight airplanes and helicopters built in India. One of the most famous is the Indian Ultralight Helicopter that we have discussed many times on this site. It's experimental homebuilt helicopter with cost of building less than $8,000. It falls under Part 103 (of course as long as you don't fly it in India).

There is an interesting company called Raj Hamsa which produces nice ultralights - ultralight trikes, fixed-wing aircraft, and hang gliders. Have a look at the X Air and their powered hang glider.

A company called Ace Aviation is manufacturing ultralight trikes in India. Their management is in UK. The site doesn't offer pricing information but the models look good.

Did you know that the excellent Flightstar Microlight Aircraft is also built in India? The company is called Albatros Flying Systems and also builds powered hang gliders and paramotors.

Flying Schools

Because flying anything in India requires license, you have to go to a flying school there. You have to be at least 16 years old to start your pilot training for Private pilot license. The cost to get such license (accordingly to this site) is at least INR 200,000 (approx. $3,500). This is a lot in India but not that much for a westerner who wants to fly there. Getting a Commercial pilot license is a lot more expensive and can go over a million rupees.

If you are looking for a suggestion of the best flying schools in India see here

The Future

Regardless of the hard economical situation and the decline of recreational aviation in general, I believe its future in India is bright. Most of the country has good weather conditions most time of the year. The nation is young and the economy grows. Don't forget India's population is over a billion people and very few are currently flying. This is a huge market for the ultralight industry and as the middle class grows there will be more and more ultralight pilots. Let's also not forget the bad infrastructure which means flying a private airplane is sometimes the only option for a business person to reach their destination quickly.

If there are any Indians reading this artcile - please freinds, let us know your personal impressions about ultralight aviation in India!



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User comments:

V RAMESH BABU at Jun, 26 '15 07:41
I would like to get the perticulars to know about the institutions
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Sabin at Jul, 30 '15 23:30
Very well put forward.
Hoping to see ultralight flight boom in India in coming days.
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Manoj at Nov, 07 '15 16:39
Hi Guys, My name is Manoj and Im a Ultralight Pilot working for Avia Club Nepal (aviaclubnepal.com).. If you guys want to learn to fly or cruise the skies and explore the mountains for a affordable price, write back to me and I ll send the details.
Thank you
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shrikant prasad at Jan, 07 '16 17:14
yeah sure, i have desire to learn flying of ultralight aircraft so plz i m ready

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ADISH CHAUDHARI at Mar, 18 '16 16:02
Hi Manoj,

Email me your contact details.
adish1234@gmail.com
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HYU JEONG CHANG at Jan, 29 '17 05:12
I am from Korea and working in Vadodara. Do foreign nationals require clearance from Home Ministry before flying ultralight in India?
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Sireesh Kumar at Feb, 17 '17 10:11
Hi Manoj,

I am staying in Hyderabad, India. My son 17 yrs old and he has completed his Intermediate education. He is very interested in ultralight flying and want to become a pilot. Can you please share some info?

Thank you,
Sireesh
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Ranjan S at Feb, 21 '17 18:26
Hi All, If you are Intrested in Learning to Fly, own or being a member of fractional ownership of Microlights or even looking forward to a career as an Airline Transport Pilot Licence, Call us at 7400158833 , Jetstreamaviationpune.blogspot.com

Jet Stream Aviation
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