Do you find that it’s hard to pick out gifts for pilots? Maybe you aren’t sure what your favorite pilot would want, or you have come up with themed gift ideas for so many years that you are running low on inspiration. If so, this post is for you!
Get ideas for all different types of gifts ranging from the high-end deluxe options to little “thinking of you” or hostess gifts under $10 each.
This list will get the ideas and creativity flowing as you hunt down that perfect gift.
Deluxe Gifts for Pilots
Let’s start with the top-of-the-line big ticket gifts that will have any pilot in your life drooling. These are the perfect choice for those with a generous budget who want to give a truly impressive and useful gift.
Bose is the king of sound and their A20 aviation headset is a shining example of Bose’s legendary quality. Enjoy crystal clear sound for both radio traffic and listening to your Bluetooth devices. Designed for comfort, this headset has plenty of cushy padding that will be appreciated on long flights.
- Electronic Noise Cancellation (ENC)
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Flex-boom noise-canceling electret mic
- Twin plug
Help your favorite pilot get set up to meet the 2020 ADS-B Out requirements. This kit offers you the lowest cost, easiest installation method of all the ADS-B out options.
- Mounts in under 10 minutes
- Provides integrated ADS-B Out, WAAS GPS, LED navigation light and barometric altitude sensor
3. Folding Bike
For pilots who want to explore on land as well as by air, a portable, lightweight bike is key. The trick is to find a model that can be stowed aboard even small aircraft. The answer? A foldable style. Whether you need a mountain bike to hit the trails or a pavement bike to peddle the streets, there is a folding bike that will meet your needs
- Average folded size: 36”x28”12”
- No tools required
- Average weight: 30 pounds
- Can be stored in heavy-duty carrying case for protection and ease of transport
A souped-up smart watch built especially for pilots, Garmin’s D2 Delta PX aviator watch has an extensive list of features that have made it one of the top-ranked watches for 2019.
Imagine one watch with a GPS-based flight system, Pulse Ox sensor, sport watch features and smart phone pairing function. This robust watch is built to withstand daily use and to put all the telemetry – both yours and your aircraft’s – at your fingertips.
- Pulse Ox sensor
- Elevate wrist-based heart rate monitoring
- Compatible with Garmin Pilot app
Unique and Memorable Gifts for Pilots
Go the extra mile and give your favorite pilot a gift that is unique, memorable and stands out in the crowd. Whether you’re looking for a statement piece of home décor to liven up a hangar home or a fun party accessory, we’ve got you covered.
What better statement décor to grace the walls of a hangar home than a classic wooden propeller? Hanging a prop on your wall instantly sets the tone and the feel for whole space. Choose from several historic models.
- WWI and WWII replicas
- Handcrafted from authentic woods
Travel in style both in the air and once you land. Your Cesna vintage stow bag is just the right size for weekend adventures.
- Rugged cotton twill construction
- Embroidered with Cessna Aircraft Company logo
- Cotton webbing handles
Jazz up your library and make sure everyone knows where to find the aviation section with a pair of vintage biplane bookends. Consider them a part of functional décor and a way to turn an otherwise average shelf of books into an artistic display.
- 75” tall
- Resin construction
- Classic colors and traditional design
Give your favorite pilot a signature place to hang his bomber jacket. Three metal airplane shaped wall hooks set the mood for a hanger home. Their vintage distressed styling turns them into functional artwork.
- Set of 3 hooks
- Dimensions: 3.94” L x 1.77” W x 6.5” H
- Set includes 1 black, 1 gray, and 1 red hook
Who doesn’t love a memorable centerpiece for a get-together? Get a pilot party started in style with a statement cooler shaped like a biplane. The plane is made of distressed recycled oil drums and is sure to get the conversation going while keeping those drinks chilled.
- Made of recycled materials
- Dimensions: 28.4”L x 26.2”W x 35”H
10. Aircraft Models
Do you know a pilot who has empty space on his desk or bookshelf that is just waiting to be filled with something special? Imagine how it would look with models of all the aircraft he has piloted or historic aircraft whose cockpits he wishes he could step into.
From limited edition models of the P-51D Mustang flown by the Tuskegee Airmen of WWII to commercial liners like Airbus and Boeing or historical throwbacks all the way back to the Wright Flyer, there is a model for every pilot or fan.
- Scale models of modern and historic aircraft
- Military and civilian aircraft
- Many (but not all) models are mounted on a mahogany base
Pilot Gear Gifts for Pilots
Pilots need to purchase a lot of gear, especially when they are just getting started or when it is time to upgrade their equipment. Help them out and cross some of the essentials off their list with these pilot gear gifts:
11. Flight Bag
Whether you are looking for a modular compartmentalized bag with all the features that an Airline Transport Pilot needs for a life in the sky or a duffle bag for a private pilot to pack for a weekend getaway, there is a flight bag for you.
- Modular bags with pockets for headsets, navigation charts and paperwork
- Expandable rolling spinner bags
- Durable nylon duffle bags
A good kneeboard is a pilot’s best friend in the cockpit. It helps to keep everything organized and ensures fast and easy access to the charts, digital devices and checklists needed for a smooth flight.
- Standard models designed to hold paper charts and checklists
- Digital-device-ready models for all sizes of digital devices from cell phones to tablets
- Rotating and reversible options available
In case you missed the memo, polarized lenses have now made their way into the cockpit, so the whole spectrum of shades are available to choose from. Classic aviators? Limited edition moonwalker specs? Vintage Oakleys? There’s a functional fashion statement for every pilot or aviation fan.
- Choose from black, grey, brown, blue and even violet tint options
- Some shades like the Altitude 8B are available with different levels of visible light transmission (VLT) are designed to work with headsets and oxygen masks
- Infant and child sizes available in select brands
The Surefire brand of flashlight is legendary. The classic model was originally designed for pilots and to honor the brand’s aviation origins, they have released a special Aviator model. The Aviator is like 2 lights in one with a white primary LED and a secondary colored LED. Compact and high power, this is the ultimate flashlight to add to a flight bag.
- System disable setting to prevent accidental activation
- High (250 lumens) and low (5 lumens) setting for main light
- Red secondary light to protect night vision when consulting red-light-readable topo maps in the dark
When you need to write something down inflight, that is not the time to find out that your pen isn’t working. Set your favorite pilot up for success with a classy and legendary space pen. It’s the same style of pen that has been rigorously tested by the military and the US space program since the mid-‘60s. If it works in space, it will certainly work in the cockpit.
- Matte black metal body
- Works in temperatures from -30°F to an unbelievable 400°F
- 40 PSI pressurization allows writing from any angle
Celebrate a pilot’s promotion to a new rank and help them update their uniform at the same time. Present them with a beautifully wrapped box containing their new epaulets.
- Available in 1, 2, 3 or 4 stripe versions
- Blue or black fabric
- Silver or gold stripes
Classy Gifts for Pilots
Do you have an aviator with sophisticated taste on your shopping list? Choose an appropriately classy gift that will be sure to impress.
17. Aviation Artwork
Opt for a striking piece of aviation artwork to add to an existing collection or to become a focal point on an office wall.
- Choose from colorful paintings or stunning photography
- Multiple size options
- Prints are available on either matte or canvas
Who says you can’t incorporate a little personal style into a shirt and tie look? Give a subtle classy nod to aviation with jet engine cufflinks, showcase Army aircraft or let your inner geek out with Star Wars Tie Fighter, Superman or Batman links.
- Jet engine links are made from aircraft grade aluminum
- Superman and Batman links each hide an integrated 2GB USB flash drive so you always have access to your important files
- Army links are rhodium plated base metal with enamel
Don’t forget the female pilot on your list. She will appreciate the elegant, understated nod to her profession every time she wears this stunning necklace and earring set. Both the pendant and the earrings are designed in the shape of a traditional aircraft attitude indicator.
- Sterling silver
20. Wall Clock
Creativity knows no bounds when it comes to all the ways you can re-imagine an aircraft inspired wall clock. Altimeters, artificial horizons, propellers, retro airport styles, 24-hour Zulu Time – everyone can find a timepiece that speaks to them. There is even an extra special P-40 Flying Tiger Airplane Hangar WWII Tribute clock that is 3D and has intricate detailing.
- Over 20 styles to choose from
21. Desk Clock
- Available in more than 10 styles
- Option for a combo set of a clock and a pen mounted on a stylish wood base
What type of décor do you most often see gracing the walls of garages or hangars? Metal and wood signs with logos, retro prints and quippy sayings, right?
Imagine a sultry nose art girl, a Lockheed Martin Skunk Works logo or a jibe about how the co-pilot’s job is to not touch anything and to keep his mouth shut.
- Various sizes and shapes
- Available in metal and wood material
- American made signs are available
23. Coaster Sets
Provide guests a welcome place to set their tumbler in between sips of scotch. Aviation themed coasters add extra attention to detail in a hangar home bar.
- Available in 4 styles: modern instrument, classic round instrument, Cessna classic round instrument and glass etched flying is freedom logo
- Each set includes 4 coasters
What do you pair with a set of aviation coasters? Continue the aviation bar theme and serve up a bottle of wine that flies in on a specialty bottle holder. Fellow pilots and aviation fans will be fascinated by the way your wine bottle mounts atop a silver prop-driven taildragger. Bonus points when you twist off the prop and reveal the ingenious hidden corkscrew.
- Dimensions: 8” x 8” x 10”
- Dishwasher safe
- Polished silver color
You may not want anything creating excess drag on your actual aircraft, but this little chrome airplane paperweight is perfect for keeping your files grounded. The metallic prop offers an unexpected place to keep a couple of paperclips at the ready.
- Dimensions: 4.4” x 4.4” x 2”
- Chrome-plated metal
- Magnetic propeller
Unwind after a long flight with a quality cigar. Keep your cigars nice and fresh by storing it in your aviation themed humidor.
Celebrate the big moments in your favorite pilot’s life with a commemorative plaque to mark the occasion.
27. First Solo Commemorative Plaque
A pilot’s first solo flight is a proud moment and one that should be immortalized. Commission a special plaque for the occasion. Your inscription plate is set on your choice of simulated marble or walnut.
- 9” x 12” overall plaque dimensions
- 7” x 10” silver or gold-toned plate
- 6 lines of engraving
28. Pilot Achievement Plaque
Choose your own reason to celebrate and have a plaque created to mark the occasion. Your plaque will be engraved with an achievement of your choosing along with the pilot’s name, date, airport, city/state, and options for instructor and examiner.
- Available on a simulated mahogany or simulated walnut base
- 9” x 12” overall plaque dimensions
- 7” x 10” silver or gold-toned plate
29. FAA License Plaque
Celebrate the day a pilot earns an FAA license with a custom high-quality replica plaque showcasing the front side of the actual FAA certificate.
For Future Aviators
You don’t have to be an adult to be drawn to the skies. Cultivate a love of flight in the young future aviators in your life. Give them a special gift that encourages that newfound interest.
30. Plush Toys
What do you get the toddler who wants to be a pilot? We love the idea of a stuffed animal who is also an aviator. Select from a whole zoo worth of cute plush animals with their classic aviator goggles, bomber jackets and scarves.
- Available in heights ranging from 6” – 18”
- Soft plush fabric
Give the gift of action. Die-cast pull-backs replicate real planes, jets, helicopters and even the infamous Predator Drone. A model that actually “does something” will keep the kids engaged.
- Some models come with light and sound features
- Most models can glide up to 10’ once launched
- Extra detailing like moving doors
32. Cobi Blocks Set
Work together and build your own replica with the kids. You can explore historical military aircraft, modern jets and even craft from the U.S. space program. Each set ranges from 175 blocks for the Red Baron’s Fokker Dr. 1 to 900 blocks for a B-17 Flying Fortress.
- Meant for ages 3+
- Fully compatible with all other brick and block building lines
33. Hot Wings
Some parents get their kids Hot Wheels. Pilots get their kids Hot Wings. Start young and teach your kids to recognize all your favorite aircraft with these collectable diecast toys.
- Diecast metal components
- Includes a collector’s card with stats and info about the aircraft
Gifts under $10
A good hostess gift, holiday stocking stuffer or little unexpected treat to slip in a flight bag – all of these gifts for pilots are under $10.
34. 9MM Ear Plugs
Anyone who sees these earplugs will do a doubletake. The standard silicone base of the earplug is capped with a real 9mm bullet casing from a fired round. Range day has never been so memorable. (Keep these unique plugs away from the airport though – TSA agents are not known for their sense of humor.)
- Noise reduction rating of 27
- Come with a carrying case
- Authentic minor blemishes or scratches from being fired
Keep a bottle opener handy and give a nod to aviation history with a P-40 Warhawk keychain. After all, you never know when a cold brew will be waiting for you at the end of the tarmac.
- Antique silver finish
- Made of zinc
- Dimensions: 2” x 1”
You’ve seen the intricate little metal laser cut models of famous buildings, right? Did you know they make some impressively detailed aircraft versions as well? Choose from the Cessna 172, F15 Eagle, F-22 Raptor or P-51 Mustang.
- 11cm metal sheet
- Display stand included
Help your pilot stock up on pins to give and trade or get him a few new ones to add to his personal collection. There are loads of retro options plus newer designs.
- Pewter, gold, silver tones
- Choose from wings, logos, aircraft and more
Help your pilot keep track of her keys in a fun way with an aviation keychain. There are so many different styles and materials. Think fun sayings printed on ribbons, aircraft shapes, instrument dial replicas, and even a mini battery charger to juice up your phone.
- Many styles and materials
Patches are the other collectible for aviators, right up there with the pins. Showcase your favorite airline, your status as captain, or choose from another standout print.
- Iron on application
Let everyone behind you on the roads know that you would rather be in the skies. Designed for the proud pilot and for those who appreciate some aviation humor, these are a fun little “just because” gift.
- Black with white font
- Fits around standard vehicle license plates