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Why fly a Paramotor?
See how powered paragliders stack up against other ultralights

The aircraft listed below each have advantages and disadvantages. No one aircraft does everything well. There are always trade offs, even with Powered Paragliders. The chart below ranks aircraft in 6 categories. A rating of 5 is the best, 1 is the worst.

  easy to
set up
runway
required
easy to
learn
easy to
transport
weather
constrants
top
speed
Powered            
Paramotor
5 5 4 5 1 1
Powered Parachute 3 3 5 2 2 2
Hang Glider Trike
2 2 3
2
4 3
Gyrocopter
3 3 1
2
5 5
Powered Hang Glider
2 4 2
3
1 2
Fixed Wing Ultralight
1 1 3
1
4 4
Unpowered            
Paraglider 5 NA 3
5
2 2
Hang Glider 3 NA 2
3
3 3

Paramotors
Powered Paragliders are the most convenient, easy to fly, and affordable aircraft available today. No other aircraft that lets you skim the ground as safely and legally. Whether you are launching in sand or snow, you can get airborne in a few steps. The trade off is that paramotoring is limited to relatively smooth air and has a top speed of 37 mph. Long distance flights in a paramotor is not at practical as in other aircraft.

Powered Parachutes
Powered Parachutes are slightly easier to learn to fly than PPG's, but the feeling is much less like flying. The PPC wing is less efficient than the more sailplane like wing of a paraglider. PPC's are expensive and require a trailer for transport. They also need more room and smoother surfaces to launch and land.

Hang Glider Trikes
Hang glider trikes are fun, easy to fly, though not as easy as a paramotor. Hang glider trikes are fast and handle a wider variety of conditions. Transporting a trike requires a trailer and set up time runs around 40 minutes. Hang glider trikes are usually based at an airport or ultralight strip because of transport issues and because they require long smooth runways. They can be expensive and are not as safe for low flying due to their increased cruise speed.

Gyrocopters
Gyrocopter are amazing aircraft. The range of speed and short field capabilities can only be beat by a helicopter. However, the learning curve on grycopters is the steepest, and its safety record is the worst of all these aircraft. Gyrocopters require a trailer for transport and set up time is similar to a hang glider trike.

Fixed Wing Ultralights
Fixed Wing Ultralights have fallen out of favor for many reasons. You can find them collecting dust in ultralight fields all over the world. Since they can't be easily transported and require longer runways, fixed wings suffer from the same limitations that effect regular general aviation aircraft. They can only fly from airport to airport.

Paragliders
Soaring silently in ridge lift or thermals in a paraglider is one of the most fantastic forms of flight. The same paraglider wing used for paramotoring can be used in paragliding or "free flight". All you need is a free flight harness. However, paragliding is inherently more dangerous than powered paragliding. Because they don't use motors, paraglider pilots seek out lifting air, not the smooth stabile air we prefer for powered paragliding. This lifting dynamic air is more likely to cause a collapse, and if you are close to the ground, which is often the case, the result could be a hard landing.

Hang Gliders
The founder of Lite Touch started Hang Gliding back in 1973. Of all forms of flying, this is the most birdlike. Hang gliding has a much steeper learning curve than paragliding or powered paragliding. Set up time is long, around 20 minutes. Also, hang gliders do not fold up as small as paragliders so transporting them requires a roof rack and shipping them can be an ordeal.

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