Hobby flying is also known as recreational flying or fun flying. Hobby flying includes Aero sports and Light Aircraft flying. As a hobby flier you can fly with an instructor or an additional pilot or as solo pilot of a flying machine and take your friends and family along on a joyride (based on capacity of the flying machine).
The kind of flying machine options available in India for hobby flying are wide and vary from gliders, powered gliders, powered hang glider, paramotors, Microlight, light sport aircraft, Light aeroplanes with single or multi-engine aeroplanes.
Some of these above flying machine options that primarily falls under aero sports and do not require formal licensing are Powered hang gliders and Paramotors. Whereas, Gliders, Microlight, Light sport Aircraft and Light aeroplane requires formal licensing to fly the machines. Options that do not require formal licensing like powered hang glider or paramotors are cheaper to learn (and buy too). Although, they are very specific purpose and flown in very limited range.
Microlight is defined as a flying machine made up of fabric or metal skin and powered by an engine with power ranging any where from 60 bhp to 100 bhp. Usually, single seater microlight do not weight over 330 Kgs all up weight whereas two seater Microlight may weight over 450 Kg all up weight. Flying Microlight needs license known as Pilot License -Microlight. Cost of training may range between 5-8 lakhs and you can own a new one as low as 30 Lacs.
Light sport Aircrafts (LSA) has little higher all up weight than Microlight and usually may not exceeds two seats. They can be fabric or metal or composite body machines with all up weight ranging between 450-600 Kgs. They are usually powered by 80-100 bhp engines.
To fly an LSA, license is required known as Pilot License -LSA. Cost of training may range between 6-9 lakhs and you can own a new one starting around 43 Lakhs.
Light Aeroplanes offers a broad range of aircrafts starting from single engine airplanes weighing more than 600 kgs to twin engines aircrafts weighing up to 5700 Kgs. They offer greater range, speed and passenger capacity. License required to fly these aeroplanes is at least Private Pilot License and in private use these aeroplanes are usually single Pilot certified. Cost of seeking Private Pilot License in India range from 7-11 Lacs based on flight training school and aircraft. Owning a fair condition pre-owned 4 seater light aeroplane may cost around INR 1 Cr. Whereas a new light aeroplane may have a list price of INR 2.25 Cr.