The best watch for a student pilot

The best watch for a student pilot

If you search Instagram for pictures of pilots you will see them flashing fancy watches, this is all well and good when you have passed, but these watches are not so great for a student pilot. In this post we will help you to find the best watch for a student pilot.

My flying watch

As a student pilot the watch you purchase must have the following three things.

  1. Stopwatch – The watch must have a stopwatch function. This is very important as you will use it to time your legs (how long it takes to get from one place to the next).
  2. Time – This may seem obvious but you need to be able to read the time very quickly and put it down on your plog (Pilot Log).
  3. Backlight – You need a watch with a decent backlight on it for when you are doing your night flying. You do not want the watches with the cheap backlight that only lights up from the sides, on a Casio the good backlight is called the Illuminator.

On my first navigation flight I made the mistake of wearing an analogue watch. When you have just a few seconds to glance at your watch and then write it down on your plog while still flying the plane, trying to work out if the time says 10:32 or 10:33 is a few seconds that you don’t really have.
For this reason a digital watch is a million times better than an analogue watch during training. You also really do not need anything fancy at all, a simple watch with a clear to read display is ideal.
I use a Casio Calculator watch simply because I already had it before my training and the display is nice and bright and it has all the functions I need.
On the recommendation of my instructor I have also purchased a stand alone stopwatch as well.
Any of the basic digital watches should work, in fact this basic Casio on Amazon is quite possibly the perfect watch for flying and the cost is just a few quid.
What watch did you go for? Let me know in the comments.

Thinking of training via the modular route? Or started and still have questions? Then read The Essential Modular Flight Training Guide.

The essential flight training guide

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