To: (Separate email addresses with commas)
From: (Your email address)
Message: (Optional)



The 23 Rules Of Flight

We get it, you're a pilot (Yes, we saw you flip your scarf over your shoulder and put aviators on). But there are some rules you've got to follow...

1) Every takeoff is optional. Every landing is mandatory.

2) If you push the stick forward, the houses get bigger. If you pull the stick back, the houses get smaller. That is, unless you pull the stick all the way back, then they get bigger again.

3) Flying isn't dangerous. Crashing is what's dangerous.

Jim Raeder

4) It's better to be down here wishing you were up there, than up there wishing you were down here.

5) The only time you have too much fuel is when you're on fire.


6) The propellor is just a big fan in front used to keep the pilot cool. When it stops, you can actually watch the pilot start sweating.

7) When in doubt, hold on to your altitude. No one has every collided with the sky.

8) A "good" landing is one from which you can walk away. A "great" landing is one from which you can use the plane again.

Jason Pineau

9) Learn from the mistakes of others. You won't live long enough to make all of them yourself.

10) You know you've landed with the wheels up if it takes full power to taxi to the ramp.

11) The probability of survival is inversely proportional to the angle of arrival. Large angle of arrival, small probability of survival and vice versa.

12) Stay out of the clouds. The silver lining everyone keeps talking about might be another airplane going the opposite direction. Mountains have also been known to hide out in clouds.


13) Always try to keep the number of landings you make equal to the number of takeoffs you've made.

14) There are three simple rules for making a smooth landing. Unfortunately no one knows what they are.

15) You start with a bag full of luck and an empty bag of experience. The trick is to fill the back of experience before you empty the bag of luck.


16) If all you can see out of the window is ground that's going round and round and all you can hear is commotion coming from the passenger compartment, things are not as they should be.

17) In the ongoing battle between objects made of aluminum going hundreds of miles per hour and the ground going zero miles per hour, the ground has yet to lose.

18) Good judgement comes from experience. Unfortunately, the experience usually comes from bad judgement.

19) It's always a good idea to keep the pointy end going forward as much as possible.


20) Keep looking around. There's always something you've missed.

21) Remember, gravity is not just a good idea. It's the law. And it's not subject to repeal.


22) The four most useless things to a pilot are altitude above you, runway behind you, gas back at the airport, and a 10th of a second ago.

23) There are old pilots and there are bold pilots. There are, however, no old, bold pilots.

Jim Raeder

This was re-published from an awesome newspaper clipping, presumably from the UK (hence the spelling found inside). Check out the original image below:

What other rules of flight are there? Tell us in the comments below.

Swayne Martin

Swayne is an editor at Boldmethod, certified flight instructor, and an Embraer 145 First Officer for a regional airline. He graduated as an aviation major from the University of North Dakota in 2018, holds a PIC Type Rating for Cessna Citation Jets (CE-525), and is a former pilot for Mokulele Airlines. He's the author of articles, quizzes and lists on Boldmethod every week. You can reach Swayne at, and follow his flying adventures on his YouTube Channel.

Images Courtesy:

Recommended Stories

Latest Stories

    Load More
    Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share via Email