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Latest Travel Tips And Updates

Preparing to Launch: Coordinating with Support Crews

From the cockpit,

            In the previous few posts, we discussed the internal and external preflight inspections airline pilots conduct prior to departure. In addition to those important tasks, pilots must coordinate with a variety of support crews to ensure the aircraft is ready for pushback. While these support teams are largely capable of completing their respective tasks independently, the captain is [...]

Preparing to Launch: Preflight Inspection 2

From the cockpit,

Last time, we highlighted many of the cockpit tasks airline pilots perform prior to each departure. In this post, we’ll head outside the airplane to examine the external aircraft walkaround. This preflight procedure is equally important to all pre-takeoff cockpit checks and is a mandatory part of each flight leg. Through the walkaround, pilots are able to further enhance the safety and comfo [...]

Approach and Landing

From the cockpit,

In A Look at the Descent Leg, we discussed some of the steps pilots take upon vacating cruise altitude. With this post, we’ll go into more detail about the final portion of the descent segment: the approach and landing. As you probably know, this final segment is one of the most vital of the entire flight and requires the crew’s full attention. Let’s examine some of these duties your crewmem [...]

Takeoff & Climb

From the cockpit,

Thus far, most of our posts have looked at the steps leading up to takeoff. Today we’ll examine what happens once the plane departs terra firma. While the takeoff and climb legs might appear simple and self-explanatory, both involve important steps that greatly contribute to the safety of each flight. V1:  A Critical Airspeed Although we previously reviewed the need to calculate speeds [...]

The cockpit door

From the cockpit,

In the post-9/11 world of commercial aviation, security is no doubt at the forefront of air travelers’ minds. From invasive body checks to restrictions on liquid carryons and constant reminders about prohibited items, air travelers have come to accept security as an ever-present reality of airline flying. In addition, these security measures don’t end after passing the metal detectors. Once [...]

Turbulence: Understanding the Causes of a Rough Ride

From the cockpit,

For most air travelers, turbulence is a word that invokes at least a little dread and discomfort. However, in most cases such apprehension is at least partly due to fear of the unknown. Once we better understand the subject, our newfound knowledge can help allay unnecessary anxiety. With this series of posts, we’ll examine the causes of turbulence and methods for avoiding and mitigating any [...]

Collision avoidance 1

From the cockpit,

If you’ve spent much time as a commercial airline passenger, you’ve no doubt noticed the large number of airplanes that operate into and out of each hub airport. Perhaps you’ve wondered just how all those airliners avoid each other, as well as all other forms of air traffic, when airborne. With this post, we’ll explore some of the procedural safeguards in place that help keep aircraft a safe [...]

The cruise altitude selection

From the cockpit,

In Avoiding Other Aircraft, we highlighted the cruise altitudes available to pilots depending on the type (VFR/IFR) and direction of flight. With this post, we’ll take cruising altitudes a step further and examine how to choose the best altitude for existing circumstances. As you might imagine, a variety of factors affect the altitudes pilots and dispatchers ultimately decide on. Let’s get s [...]