Bahamas My Out Island

Bahamas Flying Ambassadors


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For more than a decade, The Bahamas Fly-in program has proven to be a very successful initiative for The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Aviation. The increased participation of pilots wanting to fly to The Islands Of The Bahamas prompted the Aviation Department to start a Bahamas Flying Ambassadors program. Our Ambassadors assist The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism by making themselves available to share their knowledge of The Islands Of The Bahamas, specifically the ease of flying across the Gulf Stream.

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US - Based Bahamas Flying Ambassadors:

Brad Elliott
Gateway FBO & Flying Ambassador
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Phone: 954-491-3170
Brad@flyingambassador.com
I have been a pilot since 2008 and most of my flying has been in a single engine to and from The Bahamas.

I have extensive experience in Business Aviation, FBO business, and currently work full time for Banyan Air Service at the Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport (KFXE) as the Customer Relations Manager. I also recently served a four year term on the National Business Aviation Association Schedulers & Dispatchers Committee. I have been a pilot since 2008 and most of my flying has been in a single engine to and from The Bahamas.

How long have you been flying to the Out Islands?
Since 2008

What Islands have you visited in the Out Islands:
The Abacos
The Berry Islands
Bimini
Eleuthera
The Exumas
Harbour Island
San Salvador

Which is your favorite island in the Out Islands?
Exuma Island Chain

Your Perfect Island Hopping Experience
Start out in the Northern Bahamas and fly into Treasure Cay - MYAT, but carry extra 100LL because they do not offer it at this airport.
- Take the ferry boat over to Green Turtle Club, spend a day with Brendal snorkeling/diving for lobsters; grill them up on a private beach.
- Rent a boat and visit Guana Cay for some lunch and refreshments.

Fly down to North Eleuthera – MYEH, and bring some Bahamas Habitat Supplies for the Zion Childrens' Home.
- Take the ferry boat to Harbour Island , rent a golf cart from Valentines then drive over to Ma Ruby’s to enjoy a special punch, then make it down to the Pink Sands.

Ultimate favorite spot is to fly into Georgetown – MYEF
- Visit Shervin Penn at Odyssey Aviation; excellent service and new facility.
- Take a taxi into town or stay at Hideaways at Palm Bay, Peace & Plenty, or rent a house for a week.
- Must take the ferry to Stocking Island and spend a day (or two) at Chat-N-Chill
- Hire a boat to take you up to Staniel Cay or fly in for the day to go snorkeling in Thunderball Grotto & wrecked plane reef and feed the swimming pigs.

Fly in the morning when it is cool and relax during the day to avoid getting caught in afternoon showers during the summer months.

Why did you become a Flying Ambassador for The Bahamas?
I was originally working at an Official Bahamas Gateway FBO in Orlando (Showalter Flying Service) as the onsite Bahamas expert and became highly involved with The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism & Aviation putting together a Bahamas Day Event. I help hundreds of pilots at the FBO flying through Central Florida with recommendations, destinations and shared knowledge flying to-and-from The Bahamas. From there I assisted at Sun-N-Fun booth to provide pilots with hands on experience from pilots at the show and hosted flying seminars. I did a number of familiarization trips throughout The Bahamas for a few years and was asked to join the team.

Mark Steinberg
Chair Person, Flying Ambassador Program
Fort Myers. Florida
Phone: 239-910-2460
pilot@capecoralbuilder.net
I really love the combination of Long Island, Cat Island, and The Exumas. There the water is clear and amazingly blue

I have been a pilot for 19 years as well as a cruising boater for the past 48 years. My son, Sean, has somewhat followed in my footsteps and is a boat captain who can be frequently found in the waters of The Bahamas.

The Out Islands of The Bahamas have been a place where my children have spent their vacations and now grown up, mature and very sophisticated, they still come back and proudly call The Bahamas “home”.

How long have you been flying to the Out Islands?
19 years

What island have you visited in the Out Islands:
- The Abacos
- Acklins
- Andros
- The Berry Islands
- Bimini
- Cat Island
- Crooked Island
- Eleuthera
- The Exumas
- Harbour Island
- Long Island
- San Salvador
- Great Inagua and others

What is your favorite Island in the Out Islands?
I do like them all and it is very difficult to pick a favorite or island group, but I really love the combination of Long Island, Cat Island, and The Exumas. There the water is clear and amazingly blue, the weather and folks are warm and there are no locks on the doors.

Visiting Thunderball Grotto and swimming with the pigs at Staniel Cay is a must. Collecting sea salt on Cat Island is a requirement of my wife and beaching and diving blue holes on Long Island are some of my favorite things to do. Stella Maris has a combination of old world (German) charm and quality, combined with Bahamian roots and you will find no better beach than Fernandez Bay on Cat Island.

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
I became an ambassador to encourage my fellow pilots to sample what I have found to be some of the best flying destinations in the world.

Thierry Pouille
Owner - Air Journey
Jupiter, Florida
Phone: 561-841-1551
Thierry@airjourney.com
Regardless of flying the many destinations of the world, The Bahamas is still my preferred flying destination.

I have been flying since 1984 - 31 years. The reason that Air Journey was created was to share the beauty of The Bahamas with fellow pilots. Regardless of flying the many destinations of the world, The Bahamas is still my preferred flying destination. Nowhere in the world, except The Bahamas, can you be so free to fly.

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
Since 1984 – 31 years

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
- The Abacos
- Acklins
- Andros
- The Berry Islands
- Bimini
- Cat Island
- Crooked Island
- Eleuthera
- The Exumas
- Harbour Island
- Long Island
- San Salvador

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
The Abacos

Your perfect island hopping experience?
Marsh Harbour, Harbour Island, The Exumas, Staniel Cay, Cat Island (New Bight), Crooked Island, Long Island, Andros, Bimini

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
To share with fellow pilots the beauty, excitement and many friendly destinations of The Bahamas.

Rick Gardner
AOPA Authorized Representative for
the Bahams & Bahamas Flying Ambassador
Miami, FL/Mexico
Phone: 786-206-6147
info@caribbeanskytours.com
Known as “Conchy Joe”, my wife Pia and I have dedicated ourselves to providing information and services to private pilots

I am a Commercial Pilot and CFII/MEI and am also an avid boater and scuba diver, which has allowed me to explore The Bahamas from above, below and on the surface. Originally from Nassau, and known as “Conchy Joe”, my wife Pia and I have dedicated ourselves to providing information and services to private pilots and their families who want to experience the magic of flying in The Bahamas.

Through organized Fly-Ins, free on-line forums, member websites, free teleconferences, AOPA Webinars and presentations at major Aviation Events, we have assisted countless pilots in making the trip to The Islands Of The Bahamas.

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
I am from Nassau, Bahamas and my family lives there so between our Bahamas Fly-ins and visiting family we visit The Bahamas regularly.

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
- The Abacos
- Acklins
- Andros
- The Berry Islands
- Bimini
- Cat Island
- Eleuthera
- The Exumas
- Harbour Island
- Long Island
- San Salvador

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
Only one? Cat Island, Long Island, The Abacos, Eleuthera…

Your perfect island hopping experience?
Dean’s Blue Hole
Clarence Town
Swimming Pigs on Big Majors Point
Wall Diving on Nassau & Little San Salvador
Flamingos on Inagua

Favorite hotels to stay:
Fernandez Bay Village
Stella Maris Resort
Staniel Cay Yacht Club
Hope Town Harbour Lodge
Abaco Beach Resort
Treasure Cay Beach, Marina & Golf Resort

Important Tips:
Plan your fuel stops and verify availability of fuel, have good overwater survival equipment; plan routes over islands or shallow water as much as possible – safer and more beautiful.

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
I was asked to and I am happy to share my lifelong experiences flying and boating the Family Islands.

John & Betty Obradovich
Publishers, Bahamas & Caribbean Pilot’s Guides
La Quinta, California
Phone: (760) 775-1900
pilotpub@aol.com
We now fly the islands two or three times a year for several weeks at a time, taking photos, taking notes . . . and having fun.

We have been flying for more than 20 years, for fun. We bought The Bahamas & Caribbean Pilot’s Guide in 1996 and the 1997 Pilot’s Guide was the first edition we produced. The Guide was started in 1979, and there were four prior publishers. With backgrounds in printing, specifically pre-press and typesetting, we enhanced the quality of the Pilot’s Guide, changing it from mostly black & white to an all-color publication with hundreds of beautiful photographs. Additionally, the Guide was expanded to cover the entire Caribbean region. We now fly the islands two or three times a year for several weeks at a time, taking photos, taking notes . . . and having fun.

For the first nine years we flew in our 1976 Piper Lance. Now we are delighted to be flying a 1986 Piper Malibu and are enjoying the much quicker flight from California to Florida and back. While flying in the islands, the distances are short, and we prefer to fly low to take photos and enjoy the view out the window

Additionally, we are also builders and developers. We have built hangars in Pauma Valley and Beckwourth, both in California, as well as, All Inside RV Storage in Indio, a 100,000 square foot motor home storage facility with 142 first-class motor home garages, and another 100,000 square foot Premium facility with large “hangars” for motor homes, custom cars and toys.

At Jacqueline Cochran Regional Airport in Thermal, we built 77 hangars on nine acres, known as Thermal Aviation, and own Thermal Self-Serve with 100LL and Jet A fuel – our motto is “Get it Yourself!”

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
20 Years

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
All of them!

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
The Exumas because there are so many small islands in the chain. The Abacos because there are so many choices and for boating in the Sea of Abaco. Cat Island for the laid back, relaxing atmosphere, and Harbour Island for the fabulous pink sand beach.

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
Because we publish the Pilot’s Guides, we have lots of information, and because we have spent two to four weeks in the islands for 20 years, we have lots of great experiences to share.

Anthony (Tony) Restaino
Florida Aero Club State President
Pembroke Pines FL
Phone: 954-558-4914
arrestaino@bellsouth.net
I am a Private Pilot and fly a V Tail Bonanza.

I am the President of a state-wide flying club (and no, we do not rent airplanes). I have been flying the Islands fairly often for 35 years and I enjoy their beauty and the people of the islands.

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
35 Years

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
- The Abacos
- Andros
- The Berry Islands
- Bimini
- Crooked Island
- Eleuthera
- The Exumas
- Harbour Island
- Long Island
- San Salvador

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
The Exumas

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
It’s simple…I really enjoy the Out Islands!

Terry Spurlock
Senior Flying Ambassador
Naples, Florida
Phone: 239-595-9820
tspurlock@aol.com
Terry is a recently retired banker after 45 years in the industry.

Terry has been a pilot since 1992 with previous trips to The Bahamas by boats in the 80’s. He was part of the original Fly In group, assisting in the creation of the Flying Ambassadors Program. Personal signature is the sponsorship of the Halloween Fly In at Green Turtle. Check out Facebook for photos.

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
Since 1992 at the beginning of the Fly Ins.

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
All numerous times, except the Acklins. Also, I’ve been to Rum Cay although it is not included.

- The Abacos
- Andros
- The Berry Islands
- Bimini
- Cat Island
- Eleuthera
- The Exumas
- Harbour Island
- Long Island
- San Salvador

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
Abaco overall, but each island has its own allure.

Your perfect island hopping experience?
As I indicated, Abaco is my favorite because you have all of the other islands that you can visit easily by boat. I also recommend either Treasure Cay or Marsh Harbour. Marsh is the better choice if you need aviation fuel. From either island, you can easily rent a boat to visit these worthy spots.

Treasure Cay - one of the top ten beaches in the world.
Green Turtle Cay - neat little New England type community of New Plymouth.
Great Guana Cay - a must for Sunday pig roast at Nippers.
Man-o-War Cay - known for boat building and very picturesque village.
Hope Town - must climb to top of lighthouse for fantastic views and pink sand beach; it is a very quaint village.

Although Treasure Cay Beach is outstanding, each island has its own special beach; with the opportunity to find one without anyone's footprints before you.

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
I became a Flying Ambassador to introduce and share The Bahamas with everyone; especially "newbies" that have never seen the Out Islands. I want everyone to really appreciate The Bahamas.

Neil Glazer
President, PilotMall.com
Lakeland, Florida
Phone: 863-226-1106
neil@pilotmall.com
Neil Glazer has been involved in the aviation industry since 1998.

He is a Commercial Rated Pilot (ASMEL, I). He’s the President of PilotMall.com Inc., a Florida-based aviation retailer, and he owns and flies a Mooney Ovation 3.

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
I’ve been flying for 7 years.

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
I’ve been to all of the Out Islands.

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
Harbour Island

Your perfect island hopping experience?
I would fly into MYAT (Treasure Cay) and take the ferry to Green Turtle Cay. I like to stay at Bluff House or Green Turtle Club. Brendal’s Diver Center has been around for over 30 years and Brendal is world renowned. A tour with Brendal is a must-do island experience. Exploring New Plymouth and all of the shops is another great way to spend a day.

My next stop would be MYEH (North Eleuthera Airport) where I would take the ferry out to Harbour Island. Pink Sands Resort and Coral Sands Resort are two luxurious hotels you can stay at on the island. Rock House Restaurant will provide a delicious meal with an amazing view. The Landing is another hotel/restaurant with a delectable menu. Similar to Green Turtle, this island has lots of little shops that are fun to explore. It also has pink sand beaches that are perfect for catching some rays.

Back on the main island of North Eleuthera, I would spend a relaxing day or two at The Cove. This newly remodeled resort is one of my favorites. Guest rooms are just a few feet from a spectacular pink sand beach. The resort has impeccable service, and some of the finest amenities you’ll find in The Bahamas.

A few notes:

There is no fuel on MYAT, but nearby MYAM (Marsh Harbour) has fuel.

It’s important to note the Green Turtle Ferry Schedule so you don’t sit around waiting for your adventure to begin. You can find the schedule here: Visit Website.

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
I became a Flying Ambassador because I absolutely love flying to The Out Islands of The Bahamas and sharing my experiences with others.

Terry L Carbonell
Bahamas Ambassador - Women
Florida Keys
Phone: 239-633-0077
godusty@hotmail.com
My mantra for life is "Never let fear, alone, stop you."

I started flying at the ripe ole' age of 44 at the request of my husband, a private pilot who passed away in 2008 from Alzheimer's Disease. I did not take to flying: the development of wings has been an evolutionary process which has taken its' jolly old time. But after over 9 years, 2400+ hours, an instrument rating, a commercial rating, tail wheel rating, a sea plane rating, ground instructor certificates, CFI, CFI-I, multi-engine and lots of help from other pilots, instructors and friends, my flight feathers are becoming fully developed, and I look forward to a long love affair with life above this earth.  My friends tell me I suffer from "terra-firma phobia" as I would much rather be scuba diving or flying. Flying to The Bahamas is perfect - fly out to go scuba diving in some of the best diving sites in the world.

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
I’ve been flying out to the Out Islands for 8 years.

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
I've been to all the Out Islands except Acklins and Crooked Island.

- The Abacos
- Andros
- The Berry Islands
- Bimini
- Cat Island
- Eleuthera
- The Exumas
- Harbour Island
- Long Island
- San Salvador

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
My favorite island is Andros.

Your perfect island hopping experience?
I love sampling the conch salad at all of the different islands - so much variety. I would like to organize a Conch Salad tour for the perfect island hopping experience.

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
As an avid flyer with the 99s and Air Race Classic, I meet many women who want new experiences but lack the experience. I enjoy introducing ladies to the thrills of flying in The Bahamas - so easy, so much fun!

Mike Zidziunas
Light Sport Aircraft Flying Ambassador
Sun n Fun, Lakeland, FL
Email: mikezcfi@gmail.com
Phone: (941) 915-8883

How long have you been flying to the out islands?
I have been flying to the Outs Islands for over 25 years.

What islands have you visited in the out islands:
- The Abacos
- Acklins
- Andros
- The Berry Islands
- Bimini
- Cat Island
- Crooked Island
- Eleuthera
- The Exumas
- Harbour Island
- Long Island
- San Salvador

Which is your favorite island in the out islands?
Pittstown Point, Crooked Island
Stella Maris, Long Island
Fernandez Bay, Cat Island
Staniel Cay, The Exumas

Why did you become a flying ambassador for The Bahamas?
My love for The Islands Of The Bahamas