A Day as a GA Pilot in the Caribbean

Flight(s) Info

Aircraft: Cessna 172 (F-HATZ)
Departure Airport(s): Various
Arrival Airport(s): Various
Flight Time: Total of 42 minutes
Server: Expert

As a pilot for hire based in Saint Maarten, every day looks different.

I started my morning at Grand Case Airport, on the north side of the island.

I was conducting a sunrise tour of the island, and showed up at 6:00 AM to preflight my aircraft and get things ready. I had 3 people on this trip, and no cargo, so not a lot of fuel was needed to get around the little island.

We took off, and did a loop around the whole island, flying right over the much larger Princess Juliana International Airport, Saint Maarten’s main gateway. A couple of A332s were parked on stand, getting ready for a flight to Paris (CDG).

The landing was a little windy, but I still greased it.

After a few hours on the ground at Grand Case, I did a charter with 4 scuba divers heading over to the nearby island of Saba, to do some diving, which the territory is world famous for. A quick takeoff roll later, we were in the air, cruising at 2,500 feet for this short hop across the ocean.

Flying over Princess Juliana yet again. A little turbulent as we crossed out over the ocean, but flying at such low altitudes in the Caribbean is always a treat.

The most stressful part of my day was coming in to land at Saba’s 1,300 foot runway, with a gusty crosswind.

Landed right at the threshold, and ate up most of the runway on our rollout.

after just a few short minutes on the ground, it was back in the air again, taking a different group of divers home. This time, however, we were flying into Saint Maarten’s main airport, so that these folks could get right onto their commercial flight back home to Amsterdam.

We just made it off the runway in time. Departures from short runways are always a thrill.

Coming down over Maho Beach just before making a floaty but smooth touchdown and taxing over to the GA stands, just past the Terminal building.

Which was your favorite picture?

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awesome shots! love the storyline too!


do more of these! love it!


You should try one with the TBM930