Jump to content

Getting Started

Wings Over New England (WINGS) flights may be attempted any time the airspace covered on the flight you wish to attempt is actively being controlled. Whenever you see Boston Center online, you’ll be able to complete any of the flights. Using the pre-approved “Alternate Airports”, several flights also may be completed with one or more lower-level controllers online. 

There is no need to pre-schedule or set up time to fly, though you will need to check with ATC to ensure they can cover your entire flight before you get started. You can use the “Expected ATC Coverage” information posted on our homepage to get a sense of when air traffic control will be available.


To participate in WINGS, pilots must be: 


How to Participate

Follow the steps below to complete each WINGS flight:


Earning Your Rating

Once you arrive at your destination airport, speak to air traffic control to determine whether you passed the rating. The controller may also provide additional comments or suggestions. If you pass, air traffic control will update the Pilot Ratings, normally right away. However, please allow up to 24 hours for the update to take place. If you don’t see your rating within 24 hours, email [email protected] for assistance.

After completing a Wings Over New England flight, you can move to the next one immediately, whether or not your rating has been assigned.

If you make a mistake during your flight, don’t panic! This is a learning-oriented program and there no real “failures”. If you acknowledge the error, air traffic control will likely give you another chance, or at least make sure you understand what should have been done differently. BVA's controllers are not monitoring your flight to fail you if you make one mistake; the goal is that you learn something from each and every rating.

Alternate Airports - Flying with ATC

Any Wings Over New England flight can be flown when Boston Center is online. However, we encourage you to plan your flights to experience as much air traffic control availability as possible. When you see ATC online at one of our satellite airports like Nantucket or Portland, chances are it’s a newer controller. Flying to or from their airports helps them develop the skills needed to “make it” to controlling at Boston and is a great gesture of support from our pilot members.

Every Wings Over New England flight includes an “Alternate Airports” section listing airports (other than those listed on the flight) that will allow you to meet the Test Standards. If you don’t see local ATC coverage (like a Tower or Ground) online at the published airports, consider planning your flight for airports that do have coverage. For example, WINGS IFR 4 is an IFR flight between KMVY and KALB. However, if Ground, Tower, and Approach are online at KPWM, “Alternate Airports” allows the pilot to instead fly WINGS IFR 4 from KPWM to KALB. 

Get Started!

If you're ready to get started, visit the Flights page to browse the available flights.