There’s a good chance you’ll never fly again.
The good news is, it’s only a matter of time before the FAA gets around to cracking down on what’s now a widespread trend.
And, if you’re one of the lucky few who got a flight in this year’s inaugural season, it might just be the ticket you need to take your flying to the next level.
And if you haven’t been flying, you’re not alone.
In the first few months of this year, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reported that it had received 2.8 million applications for pilot certificates, or PICs.
This is about one-quarter of the number of PIC applications received during the same period last year, which was a record-breaking number for the agency.
“We’re getting more applications per day than ever before,” FAA Commissioner Robert Cardillo said.
“And that’s great.”
For now, though, the agency is focusing its attention on the growing number of private companies offering PIC services, including the airlines and the airlines’ subsidiaries.
These companies are often known for being cheap and relatively easy to fly, and many have found that they’re not the best match for the pilot who’s looking for a more advanced route to get around the world.
“It’s a really complicated market,” said Paul Jansen, an aviation law expert at the University of Arizona.
“They’re competing for a niche market.”
In the past, the FAA has allowed these companies to fly their planes under a limited set of rules.
Now, those restrictions have been loosened, allowing for the flying of even the most basic aircraft, including small, medium and large planes.
And in recent years, some PIC companies have even started offering their planes as passenger charter flights.
“The FAA has recognized that this market has tremendous potential for growth,” Jansen said.
The FAA says it has taken measures to ensure that the market is not being used to sell drugs or weapons, but that the agency hasn’t identified a clear line in the sand.
So how exactly are PIC planes being used?
And are they safe?
For now at least, PIC pilots have to fly under strict regulations and are generally not allowed to bring weapons or drugs onto the plane.
But some companies, including those run by the United Arab Emirates, have begun flying their planes with guns and other contraband on board.
“These are very dangerous aircraft,” Janssen said.
According to Jansen’s research, there are five PIC operators operating in the United States right now, including a handful of companies that operate with the U.S. military.
That’s a lot of planes to keep tabs on, which is why he’s excited to see them expand their operations.
“This is the future,” Jannssen said, pointing out that this is the first year since 2006 that the number has grown to reach the level it has.
Jansen says that there are some airlines, like Frontier, that have already begun operating with the PIC service.
But, as the number grows, so does the risk of getting shot down.
And there are also some companies that fly with weapons, including United Airlines.
Frontier Airlines, for example, is one of many that fly without guns on board, but its pilot is required to carry weapons.
That requirement has made it a prime target for security officers.
“When they see an F-16 in the cockpit, they will be looking at this as a very high risk,” Jancssen told The Daily Beast.
“If they see somebody carrying a gun, they’ll be looking to shoot at them.”
And when the UAV is shot down, the pilots of the PIPs are in for a fight.
There are already concerns that these flights could result in more accidents and deaths.
For example, when a passenger aboard a Frontier Airlines plane was forced to land safely at the airport in Phoenix, Arizona, he was shot down and killed.
In March, an American Airlines plane crashed near Denver, Colorado, killing all 16 on board the plane, including all six pilots.
And two months ago, an Indian Air Force PIC crashed in Pakistan after a pilot failed to take off.
“There is a lot more risk here than people realize,” JANNSEN said.
He’s not alone in his enthusiasm for PIC flights.
For years, the pilot-pilot relationship has been a bit of a minefield.
There have been reports of pilots taking too long to take the required training and that they were being disrespectful to their passengers.
And the pilots themselves have sometimes expressed frustration at how difficult it is to fly with the same kind of equipment as the rest of the pilots.
“I know how it feels to be in control, but I have to say I find that difficult,” one pilot told a CNN interviewer earlier this year.
In some cases,