Though most broadcasters don’t even think about this, there is a small but significant audience tuned to satellite radio in many of the general aviation aircraft in flight at any given moment. Also not generally known is that SiriusXM provides them with aviation weather and information services, in addition to its better known music and entertainment channels. A partnership between the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association and SiriusXM aims to promote the satellite broadcasters aviation services to pilots, as SiriusXM supports AOPA’s Air Safety Institute programs.
Delivered to the cockpit by satellite, SiriusXM weather has no altitude or line of sight restrictions, and is available throughout the continental United States as well as many parts of Canada. SiriusXM Aviation weather and audio is available on some Garmin receivers and displays, on the Garmin Pilot app, and on the ForeFlight app. Pilots subscribing to SiriusXM Aviation services can also add SiriusXM’s audio entertainment channels at a discounted rate, giving them access to commercial-free music, plus live sports, news, talk, comedy and more while flying.
AOPA and its members will benefit from SiriusXM’s financial support of AOPA Air Safety Institute seminars, which qualify as the ground portion of the FAA WINGS program. ASI conducts roughly 200 free live safety seminars across the country each year, which cover important and relevant safety topics such as aeronautical decision making, GPS operations, fuel management, IFR operations, takeoffs and landings, navigation charts and weather. Pilots who attend these presentations are taught by an experienced group of instructors how to avoid the most common types of accidents.
For its part, SiriusXM benefits from the relationship through AOPA’s ongoing promotion of its services. Its satellite weather service will be showcased in the aircraft flown by AOPA’s You Can Fly Ambassadors. These flying representatives visit airports nationwide to meet with flight schools and flying clubs and host educational seminars, bringing AOPA’s resources directly to the pilot community with the aim of making flying more accessible, affordable, and enjoyable.
AOPA represents more than 320,000 active members — including over two-thirds of all private pilots in the United States. With representatives based in Frederick, Md., Washington and seven regions across the United States, AOPA provides member services that range from advocacy at the federal, state, and local levels to legal services, flight planning products and a variety of safety programs.