When you live in Wisconsin, where this October day never really dawned under thick ominous clouds and the temperature is struggling to reach the 40s, an e-mail about flying to the Bahamas really gets a pilot’s attention. And by doing so, earning a chance to win 23 hotel nights at top resorts on various islands makes it that much more appealing.
The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism debuted its Pilot Challenge during the just concluded AOPA Aviation Summit in Palm Springs (ah, more warm and sunny skies). The goal is two-fold, said Neil Glazer, one of 11 Bahamas Flying Ambassadors in the US, and president of PilotMall.com, which is administering the challenge. The first is to attract new pilots to the island chain that starts about 60 miles from the Florida coast; if they’ve already made the flight, it’s cause to explore islands not already visited.
Pilots who document landings at 12 of the 20 Bahamas airports of entry before November 30, 2013 are eligible for one of four hotel-night prizes. Winners will be selected at random and announced in December 2013. Registering at www.bahamaspilotchallenge.com gets pilots the official challenge passport that customs officials must validate at qualifying airports. (It’s also where you’ll find FAQs, rules, and other info.)
First is eight nights, two each of four islands, Grand Bahamas, Bimini, Harbour, and Cat. Oh! Winners can enjoy them on separate trips. That would certainly even out any winter. The separate trips also apply to second prize, six nights on three islands, and four nights on two islands for third. A fourth and bonus prizes offer single visits of three and two-night stays respectively. It looks like the winners will be staying at some top resorts, too.
Hmm, getting current to fly myself might be a bit of a problem, especially with the approach of winter IFR. Let’s see, a number of my flying friends are current, I wonder what they are doing this winter? We could share the expenses and … –Scott