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Want To Be Your Pilot's Favorite Passenger? Here Are 7 Tips.

Want to have an awesome flight? Learn how to become the world's best passenger.

1) If the pilot looks busy, they probably are.

Taxi, takeoff, climb, descent, and landing are the worst times to interact with a pilot. Between numerous checklists, radio calls, and scanning for traffic, it's best to leave questions or conversation until you're in cruise or stopped on the ground.


2) Pilots love snacks.

A busy day of flying means it's sometimes hard to get a good meal in. If you have something to give your pilot when you board, you'll quickly become a favorite.


3) Avoid backseat flying.

Backseat driving just hit a new level. A few weeks ago, I received vectors that took us above the Honolulu Airport and resulted in a 10-mile southbound tour of the ocean before turning inbound behind other traffic. Passengers in the pack started waving and pointing back to the airport, like the destination was missed and we were going the wrong way. Don't worry, your pilot knows where they're going! Whether it's an instrument procedure or busy day at the airport, it's rare to get the most direct route to the runway.

4) If you had a good time, let your crew know!

There's nothing better than knowing you did a good job and your passengers enjoyed their flight. If you had a good time, don't be afraid to share the love!

Swayne Martin

5) Don't be afraid to ask questions.

Have a question about the airplane? Pilots love sharing knowledge with their passengers.

Swayne Martin

6) Pay attention to the safety briefing.

Whether you're flying for fun with a friend or you're on board a commercial flight, pilots appreciate passengers that pay attention to the safety briefing. Besides being federally required, a pilot's primary goal is always to keep you safe. If something goes wrong, knowing what to do will keep you and those around you safe.

Swayne Martin

7) If you want a picture, ask to take them after the flight.

Departure is a busy time for everyone. The pressure is on to make an on-time departure, and pilots and crew members are busy performing pre-flight checks. Once you're back on the ground, there's usually more flexibility to interact with the crew.


What's the best thing a passenger can do? 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.

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