Whether you’re looking for a simple stocking stuffer or something to really surprise your favorite pilot when he or she opens the hangar doors, these goodies are sure to brighten any aviation aficionados’ holidays—without breaking your piggy bank!
1. Flight Bags – FlightOutfitters.com
- Thrust ($79.95) – Getting a bag that breathes aviation can help pass the passion on to others. Flight Outfitters’ Thrust features the word “Flight” loudly and proudly while having compartments applicable for everyday use and some also more tailored towards the pilot. The Thrust is a shoulder sling pack with mesh organizers, pen and pencil pockets, and a fleece-lined protective headset pocket with elastic loops for extra batteries for ANR headsets.
- Lift ($99) – Their signature bag, the Lift, also sports the “Flight” logo while featuring impressive specs such as metal hardware, charging pockets, MA1 inspired rescue orange fleece lining and the same headset pocket featured within the Thrust.
2. Binoculars – Barska.com
Air View ($69.99) ($99.99) ($139.99) – Barska offers these compact, durable binoculars beefed up with rubber armor, coated lenses, and 10x zoom. The open bridge design allows for comfortable handling and stabilization for use during flight. These binoculars are perfect the backseat companions for those needing simple binoculars during their aerial expedition. The Air Views are available in 26mm, 34mm and 42mm priced respectively.
3. Solar Charging – GoalZero.com
Goal Zero Switch 8 & Nomad 3.5 Kit ($99.99) – Pilots are on the go and typically stick to days with sunny skies when they can. Solar charging kits offer an eco-friendly way to keep your portable tech juiced up while moving from point A to point B. The kit offers everything from the panel and cords to external batteries for efficient charging. The compact design makes the Switch 8 and Nomad 3.5 perfect for travel and outdoor use.
4. Flashlights – Brite-Strike.com
A flashlight can be an overlooked utility until the second that it’s most needed! Make sure you or the pilot you know keeps one on hand at all times. Brite Strike offers top tier flashlight technology at extremely reasonable prices.
- BTL-150-HLS ($80.00) – Featuring a very military/police feel among the grip and the output, the BTL offers a max output of 280 lumens and a strobe feature with an eight hour run-time at the low light function powered by two 123A lithium batteries all housed within a five-inch case.
- EPLI ($80.00) – With the much more low-profile case, this flashlight fits just as well into a suit pocket as a toolbox. With a lower output at 160 lumens max, the EPLI runs on two AAA batteries with a life of six hours on low, housed within a 5.125 case. The EPLI makes up for lower output with a sleeker and more user-friendly design.
5. Aviation Books (from Zenith Press)
- The Complete Book of the SR-71 Blackbird ($50)
- P-51 Mustang: Seventy-Five Years of America’s Most Famous Warbird ($40)
- Warbird Factory: North American Aviation in World War II ($40)
- Wings of War: Great Combat Tales of Allied and Axis Pilots During World ($30)
Zenith Press’ new aviation books are the perfect gifts for pilots that are self-proclaimed history buffs, or grandkids looking to learn more about the rich history of aviation. These new books highlight classic planes such as the P-51 Mustang, SR-71 Blackbird, and historic processes such as warbird production through the esteemed words of aviation historians. Books are available in hardcover. (Zenith Press books Available on Amazon and other online retailers)
6. Aviation Odds and Ends – ASA2Fly.com
When it comes to quick stocking stuffers, Aviation Supplies & Academics has you covered. From coffee cups to flight logs, their pilot oriented products will take the spirit of the sky into your living room.
- Auxiliary Tank ($9.95) – An aptly named thermal ceramic cup for the Pilot-In-Command.
- Pilot Hats ($12.95 – $18.95) – Embroidered with wings and futuristic insignias to draw the eyes to the skies.
- Flight logs and flight notebooks ($4.99- $19.99) – Every pilot’s best friends. Available in numerous styles, colors, and sizes.
7. Docking Accessories – AirGizmos.com
- iPhone 6 Plus/iPhone 6 Panel Docks ($79.95)
- AirGizmos Suction Mount for iPad ($79.95)
- iPad Panel Mount ($99.95)If you’re looking to make sure that your pilot is well-equipped in the driver’s seat, AirGizmos offers a variety of docking kits to make sure that no pilot is without their phone or tablet when they’re in the sky. The docks fit directly into the cockpit allowing pilots to forgo the need to hold mobile tech in their hands. The docks and mounts fit into standard instrument mounting holes while the suction mount will fit to any glass surface.
8. Survival Kits – SurvivalMetrics.com
- Tactical Survival Kit ($119.95)
Nobody wants to end up in the worst-case-scenario, but as any post-doomsday prepper can tell you: you can never be too prepared. Having a tactical survival kit under your backseat can give you some piece of mind in case you have a malfunction in an offsite location and need to set up camp. It includes everything you need to survive—fishing and sewing kits, rescue whistle, tinder, water treatment bags, a survival blanket and more—packed into a waterproof pouch.
9. Aircraft Models – Revell.com
- Aircraft Models ($14.99 and up)
When it comes to adding a little flavor to the dimly lit concrete workshop that is a hangar, sometimes collectable mementos can add a much needed touch. Pre-mounted busts are available, as well as constructible and paintable models for the more meticulous and artistic pilots. Revell offers kits that pay tribute to private aircraft, war birds, jetliners, and everything in-between.
10. Tools – CruzTools.com
There’s no compromising on having a working set of tools. Maybe you’re pitching in to the hangar’s commons, or your private tool, regardless; a compact kit is a crucial component to any pilot’s preparedness.
- SPEEDKIT AERO ($39.95) – Designed to be compact, affordable, and effective, the SPEEDKIT offers hex wrenches, a pressure gauge, a 5-in-1 screwdriver, an 11/32” nut driver, and diagonal cutters within a convenient zip pouch.
- Pilot’s Tool Kit ($99.95) – The Pilot’s Tool Kit adds a variety of extra components to the package, such as an adjustable wrench, locking pliers, and an aviator’s shock plug socket among a host of other must-have tools.
While the sport of flying can be a pricey lifestyle, hopefully this guide provided some guidance on how you can alleviate some of the stress of satisfying such expensive taste. If you’re still stumped, check out the respective retailer sites for more gift ideas.