Ask a Pilot

Ask a Pilot

Busting myths and answering questions about aviation, aircraft, flying and pilots

Some of the most common questions airline pilots are asked . . .

What goes on behind the flight deck door has always been a big curiosity for many. Handing over control of where you are going and how you are going to get there to two individuals you have never met can raise a mix of emotions and ultimately relies on trust that your safety is their priority and assurances that they have been trained to a very high standard. This naturally raises interest in the role of pilots and their job. This page seeks to provide reassurance and address curiosities about pilots, flying on passenger jet and the aircraft you travel in.

There are many myths surrounding aircraft, aviation and pilots. Stories in the media about these subjects are often inaccurate and sensationalised, leading to common misconceptions. We’ve put together accurate answers to the most common questions we are asked by passengers, enthusiasts and prospective pilots to dispel such myths and inaccuracies.

Can’t find the answer to your question? Use the search facility below, or if you still can’t find it, you can submit a question and one our pilots will endeavour to answer it and might even add it to the collection.

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Aircraft Performance

How fast do airlines fly?
How much does jet fuel cost?
How much fuel are aircraft required to carry?
What speed does a B747 take-off an land?
How much fuel does a Boeing 747 Jumbo Jet burn?
Why do passenger jets fly so high?
Total Engine Failure on a passenger jet
How fast do airlines fly?
How much does jet fuel cost?
How much fuel are aircraft required to carry?
What speed does a B747 take-off an land?
How much fuel does a Boeing 747 Jumbo Jet burn?

Pilots – The training, lifestyle & pay

How much do pilots get pay?
How much does commercial flight training cost?
A day in the life of a long haul airline pilot
How many days do pilots get off a month?
Long Haul vs Short Haul - A pilot perspective
Do pilots sleep in flight?
What are the yearly training requirements for airline pilots
How long does it take to train as a pilot?
How long does it take to become a captain
How many hours can pilots fly a day?
How do pilots make decision?
a typical airline pilot roster and schedule
How much do pilots get pay?
How much does commercial flight training cost?
A day in the life of a long haul airline pilot
How many days do pilots get off a month?
Long Haul vs Short Haul - A pilot perspective
Do pilots sleep in flight?

Navigation & Weather

Can planes land in thick fog?
How do commercial aircraft navigate?
Wind limitations for commercial aircraft
What is turbulence?
Are thunderstorms dangerous for passenger jets?
What's an ILS approach?
Can aircraft detect thunderstorms?
Can planes land in thick fog?
How do commercial aircraft navigate?
Wind limitations for commercial aircraft
What is turbulence?
Are thunderstorms dangerous for passenger jets?

Passenger Experience

Why can't you vape on a plane?
why are there no smoking signs on planes?
Why are the lights dimmed for take off and landing?
How clean is aircraft air
What effects the cost of flying
Do pilots really only work 17 hours a week?
United Airlines Co-Pilot Recruitment
What do the number of stripes on a pilots uniform mean?
What effects the cost of flying
Why do passengers have to open the window blinds for take off and landing?
Singapore Airlines A380 on the ground
Aviation Abbreviations
What is Crew Resource Management (CRM)?
Why can't you vape on a plane?
why are there no smoking signs on planes?
Why are the lights dimmed for take off and landing?
How clean is aircraft air
What effects the cost of flying
Do pilots really only work 17 hours a week?

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Our qualifications to answer your questions

FlightDeckFriend.com’s Ask a Pilot authors are small team who have extensive aviation experience. Between us, we’ve been Training Captains, Airline Management, Line Captains, First Officers, flown both long and short haul and operated the B777, B747, B737, Embraer 170/190 and Avro RJ.