As a pilot there are few things better than wandering around the local airport on a blue-sky Saturday morning and chatting with other pilots about current events, what’s wrong with the FAA, flying stories (some might even be true) and dreaming of a future airplane purchase. Pilots naturally gravitate towards this sense of community, which allows us to share a common passion for aviation and help learn a few things along the way.
While the iPad and online communities will never replace what the airport has to offer, a new app is aiming to make that experience a little more accessible from your mobile device. Airfoil is an app for iPhone, iPad and Android that allows you to interact with other pilots at your local airport and around the world and stay connected. It allows you to:
- Join discussions with pilots and share photos
- See upcoming aviation events in your area, and list your own event
- Buy, sell, rent, trade, partner and lease your plane
- Buy and sell parts and gear
- Buy, list and lease property, including hangars and airport land
- Find a flight school
You can view all the discussions and listings after creating a free account, or filter those that only apply to your local area. The discussions section covers a wide spectrum of topics from flight training advice, checkride tips, airplane comparisons and flying photos. Anyone with an account can also start a new discussion topic, which could be used to ask a question to the group or share past experiences.
A separate listings section of the app is broken down into five categories, with items for sale and things to do. This includes aircraft, parts & gear for sale, property for sale, aviation events and flight school directory.
An app like this is only as good as the content submitted by users, and since Airfoil has only been out for a few weeks you’ll notice that it has a ways to go before establishing itself as a go-to resource for the aviation community. The lack of a search function also makes it difficult to find specific topics or content, but hopefully that functionality will come in a future update. The app seems to have an active group of users though in several of the discussions, so it’s worth keeping an eye on as it gains traction over the next few months.