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Frequently Asked Questions

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General (6)

What is FSA?
Flight Simulation Association (FSA) is an independent, community-driven association of enthusiasts, pilots, and industry developers that aims to make it easier for new simmers to get started in home flight simulation. By joining, members can unlock exclusive discounts, participate in free webinars/livestreams, and contribute ideas and suggestions. Read more about us.
Who is behind this organization?
Evan and Phil, the co-creators of FlightSimExpo, have partnered with a wide variety of content creators, flight simulation developers, and community members to create the content you see on this site. FSA is independently owned and operated by FlightSimExpo Management Inc., the same organization that operates FlightSimExpo. For the full story, read more About Us.
What are you trying to achieve with FSA?

As the organizers of FlightSimExpo, we regularly hear that it’s difficult to get started in flight simulation. Because there are so many fantastic free resources out there, knowing where to start isn’t always easy. Answering a basic question like “which simulator is right for me?” might be obvious to an experienced simmer, but is often overwhelming for newcomers. Even as simmers become more experienced, how do you know where to look for information on purchasing a HOTAS, adding VR to your setup, or updating aircraft navdata, especially if you don’t know what these terms mean?

Especially because not everyone is comfortable jumping onto a forum or asking questions in Discord on day one, we’re trying to centralize and link to great free content here. The idea is to help those who are just joining our community make connections with great content creators, high-quality developers, and even other nearby simmers.

What are the long-term plans?

We are working to build FSA into a place for flight simmers, pilots, and aviation enthusiasts to come together. Some of that already happens once a year at FlightSimExpo, our annual convention. But we can do more.

Your subscriptions have allowed us to present webinars to the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), advertise flight simulation as a hobby in aviation magazines, and exhibit flight simulation at events like SUN 'n FUN and Consumer Electronics Show. We're starting to connect simmers with local clubs and chapters that host smaller events throughout the country and across the world.

As we gather thousands of simmers together, we can begin to achieve the type of advocacy shown by the 'real-world' pilot organizations out there. What if governments started recognizing flight simulation time as valuable for real-world training? What if air traffic control organizations recruited from networks like IVAO and VATSIM? What if our community played a role in training the drone operators of the future?

We think it's possible, someday, through an independent, simmer-driven organization like this.

Content/Contributors (2)

How can I get involved?
We welcome people of all experience levels to contribute.
How can I make suggestions for the information on this website?
If you're a member, we encourage you to share your feedback and suggestions directly on our website pages. At the bottom of each article, you'll’ find forms that let you share feedback or post a public comment. We also welcome anyone to send feedback to us via email.

Accounts and Data Privacy (3)

Do you store credit card information?
Credit card processing is handled securely by our third-party provider. We do not have access to your credit card or billing information, except for the credit card brand and the last four digits of the card you used.
Can I cancel or delete my account?
You can cancel your account at any time via a prominent “Delete My Account” button in Your Account. You’ll have the option to ensure any data we have on you is wiped from our database. However, we do not offer refunds on subscription fees.
What are your data privacy and protection rules?

As two flight simmers who have grown up in the digital age, we’re very aware and conscious of privacy. The last thing we want to do is waste your time with spam or useless information. When we send emails to the community, we do so with your preferences in mind. We don’t share your contact information with third parties and don’t have access to your billing information (such as an address or full credit card number).

If you ask us to delete your account, we’ll do it without question. We’ll give you the option to have all of your data removed too.

We want to help developers understand simmers, so they can create products and services that are meaningful for you. To do so, with your consent, we hope to be able to collect and aggregate statistics and feedback from the community to help developers make decisions. However, you’re not required to create a profile and can always delete your profile information at any time.

For more information on our data practices, we welcome you to review our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

FSA Captains (6)

Do you offer a free membership?
Yes: anyone can create a free account, which provides access to all of our Guides, most Webinars, small discounts from our partners, and Learning Flight 1. Free accounts never expire.
What are FSA Captains?
Most of the content on FSA is available for free to the community. However, some features are reserved for FSA Captains, members who have chosen to support the site by subscribing. The subscription fees we receive are re-invested back into FSA and into growing the flight simulation community.
How can I become a Captain?
If you do not yet have an FSA account, subscribe by visiting our Membership page. If you are already an FSA Member, visit the subscription page within your account to upgrade to Captain.
What if I decide to cancel my subscription?
If you no longer wish to be an FSA Captain, you may cancel at any time. Your subscription will continue through the end of the current billing cycle, and then your account will revert to being a First Officer. As a First Officer, you will retain access to our free Discounts, Guides, and Webinars.
Can I change my subscription plan later?
Yes, you may upgrade or downgrade your account between First Officer and Captain status at any time.
If I subscribe to the website, what will you do with my subscription fees?

Although most of the content on FSA is available for free, we do offer a subscription for those who wish to support the website and help in our mission to grow the community.

As we’ve done with FlightSimExpo, we reinvest membership fees back into the community through exhibiting flight simulation to real-world pilots at events like SUN 'n FUN and placing ads in aviation magazines and gaming publications. These are the types of things that become possible when you have an independent organization, supported by subscriptions, that works to support both flight simmers and developers.

Subscription income also allow us to make our website available without advertisements.

Simmer Search (7)

What is Simmer Search?

Simmer Search is an optional membership database available to FSA Captains (those who have subscribed). If you have an active subscription, you can opt in to Simmer Search. Once you join, you’ll see a list of other FSA subscribers who are nearby.

Simmer Search only includes FSA Captains who specifically opt in. Unless you choose to, you will not be included.

Am I required to be visible in Simmer Search? Can other people find me without my permission?

Definitely not! Each FSA Captain has the option to participate in Simmer Search. You can choose not to provide or withdraw your consent at any time.

Note that Simmer Search is only available to Captains. First Officers are not currently eligible to participate.

Is my information shared automatically?
Negative. We’ll only include you in Simmer Search if you choose to take part. Of course, if you don’t take part, that also means other simmers won’t be able to find you.
What information is shared?

When you opt in to Simmer Search and create a public profile, it will display your first name, last initial, home airport, age, and the interests/experience you select. You’ll see and approve your profile before it becomes public.

When you “connect” with another simmer, you’ll receive each others’ email addresses.

Can other people see my address or location?
We do not share physical addresses in any situation. If you opt in, the only location information another simmer will receive is your home airport ICAO code and an approximate distance (rounded to the nearest 10 miles or kilometers).
Can I hide my information at any time?
Yes; you can opt out of Simmer Search at any time. Opting out will remove you from the Simmer Search database and reset all of your connections. However, anyone you have connected with could still have your email address.
Where can I find more information on Simmer Search?
Visit our Simmer Search page. If you’ve already created a Simmer Search profile, you may wish to visit the Simmer Search page while you are not logged into the site. You’ll see additional FAQs and more information there.