If you dream of strapping into a Martin Jetpack and taking to the skies Boba Fett-style but you don't have a lazy US$86K lying around, there is another option. New Zealand adventure travel specialist Total Experience has teamed up with Martin Aircraft to offer a Jetpack "test pilot" program where anyone who is under 18, less than 90kg and holds a current driver’s license can experience solo flight for the (relatively cheaper) outlay of NZD15,000 (about US$10,700).
The "test pilot" training program is held at the Martin Aircraft in Christchurch, New Zealand in a supervised, controlled environment and thankfully, new pilots "will not be expected to participate in any flights that put you or your aircraft at risk."
The Martin Aircraft flight team has flown over 5000 tests flights of the VTOL "Jetpack" in the past year.
One of the key selling points is that the Jetpack is easy to fly, so you don't need previous flying experience. Apparently a complete novice pilot has flown a safe solo flight after just 12 minutes.
Up to four extra people can join you in the adventure, but this means you'll have to sacrifice some of your own flight time. Safety gear including test pilot jumpsuit is provided and you'll also go home with a video that will trump the skydiving exploits of your friends.
Via Total Experience.