15. Planes Regularly Get Struck By Lightning

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Don’t freak out–although this sounds like just about the scariest thing that could ever happen, it’s not really that big of a deal. Most pilots have experienced being struck by lighting either mid-flight or on the ground. Planes are built to withstand the force and if it happens to you, it’ll sound like a big boom and you’ll see a loud flash, but that’s about it. Chances are they’ll never tell you when it happens either because they don’t want to alarm anyone when there is no threat of danger.

14. Regional Airlines

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When you purchase a ticket for a big airliner, sometimes you can get a seat on a regional airline instead. The planes will have similar names to the flight that you’ve booked, like the one pictured above, but the pilots aren’t held to the same safety standards. In fact, the pilots don’t have to complete the same amount of training and flying hours and ones who fly with major airlines. You have a right to the flight you paid for, so next time make sure you’re paying attention.

13. Nervous Flyer? Book Morning Flights

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People are nervous flyers for all types of reasons, and if you’re one of them you might want to start booking your flights in the early mornings. Although early morning flights can be painful because of how early you have to get up, the overall ride will cause you less anxiety. When the ground heats up later in the day it causes the air to be bumpier and there is more of a chance that there will be turbulence. Although, turbulence isn’t dangerous it can cause anxiety and nervousness which are never good during long flights.

12. Smoothest Ride Is Near The Wing

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If you can choose, it’s best to choose seats near the middle and if you can look out and see the wings than you’re in a good position. A plane flies like a see-saw, the front and back are the bumpiest. If you’re worried about air quality or getting too hot, sit at the front of the plane because the air filters from front to back. As far as safety is concerned, anywhere you sit is equally as safe, as there could be a variety of accidents affecting different parts of the plane.

11. Why You Can’t Use Your Phone

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It may be annoying that you can’t use your phone on the plane, but it’s for good reason. If multiple people use their phones to make calls when they’re about to land, it can give the pilot false readings on his instruments. If he gets false altitude readings it could throw off the landing causing a serious accident. Laptops must also be stored because of safety concerns, as they could go flying and seriously injure someone during turbulence or landing.

10. Some Rules Aren’t So Logical

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What most pilots won’t tell you is that some of the rules put in place by the FAA aren’t logical at all. Take for example how passengers must be seated with proper belts on when flight attendants can move about the cabin freely, serving hot coffee. There could be turbulence at any second and the FAA believes that serving hot beverages near passengers is a good idea–it doesn’t really make sense. On top of that, they’re freely moving about at nearly 39,000 feet but have to be seated when the plane is taxing around on the runway–once again, not so logical.

9. Turbulence Isn’t Bad, An Uplift Is

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Like I said before, turbulence isn’t dangerous, it’s hitting an uplift pilots are really worried about. Hitting an uplift can feel like hitting a giant speed bump at over 400 miles per hour and they can be nearly impossible to see at night. Avoiding turbulence is mainly to keep the passengers calm and to avoid annoying movements. Knowing about the danger of an uplift adds to the reasons why flying in the morning is beneficial, at least they can see the danger and avoid it.

8. Being On Time Is More Important Than You

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For pilots, being on time is the most important thing and they won’t wait for you. Pilots are pressured by the Department of Transportation to keep to tight flight schedules and their essentially not allowed to delay a flight, for any reason. Oh and by the way, you’re not going crazy, when a flight time is estimated longer than the flight actually takes, it’s because airlines intentionally try and increase their records for on-time arrivals by giving themselves a little leeway. The better record they have, the more people will fly with them.

7. Captains Feel Pressure About Fuel Levels

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This is the most alarming fact on this list because pilots have been known to feel intense pressure over fuel levels. Carrying fuel burns fuel so airlines like to tip-toe the line on the acceptable amount of fuel for the destination. Sometimes, weather causes delays and pilots have to land at closer airports due to fuel shortages. This is not something they want passengers knowing.

6. They Sugar Coat Messages From The Cabin

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Captains are known for touching base with the passengers multiple times during the flight, usually to tell them how the weather is, the flight time, or what to be expecting. What’s shocking is how they will sugar coat the messages when problems occur. If an engine goes down, you won’t hear, “we’ve just lost an engine”, you’ll hear, “one of our engines is indicating improperly”; or, you might hear nothing at all. What’s surprising is, it’s actually common for planes to function properly with one fully working engine, so I guess there is nothing to be alarmed about? If you hear something like, “seems to be a bit of fog in the —- area” it means they can’t see anything.

5. There’s No Such Thing As A Water Landing

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Pilots get trained in many emergency procedures, and that includes many different landing scenarios. However, what most pilots feel is that there really is no such thing as a water landing, it’s essentially just crashing into the body of water and hoping for the best. The best thing they can do is close any openings to slow water from entering the cabin and brace for impact. If the plane isn’t torn to shreds, there are only minutes before it fills with water and sinks. The outcome depends entirely on how much time there is between realizing the problem and acting out the best solution.

4. Pilots Are Exhausted

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It’s not uncommon for pilots to work 16 hours straight without a break, which is extremely alarming considering they are responsible for hundreds of lives. Due to long flights, pilots have been known to take “cat-naps” in the cockpit to make it through. Even when they do get a break, the hotels the airlines provide them with are less than average, which doesn’t help them get the much-needed rest they deserve. Airlines are so bad, that flight attendants have delayed flights because they haven’t been able to eat for almost a day.

3. Sickness Comes From Touching, Not Breathing

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Most of the time when people get sick from flying it’s because of what they touch on the plane, not from the air. With hundreds of people confined in a small space for hours on end, it makes sense that the filtered air may be cause for concern, but in reality, the germs come from the tray table and seat. What pilots don’t want to tell you is that the seats and tables are not usually wiped down or sanitised, only the restrooms are. I don’t know about you, but I’m bringing anti-bacterial wipes with me next time I fly.

2. Landing Is An Indicator Of Skill

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Most of the time, as you probably guessed, the success of a landing indicates the skill level of the pilot. It’s hard to land a plane gently and when it happens, don’t forget to let the captain know you appreciated it. In fact, it’s just about the best compliment you can give a captain. That being said, the next time you have a bumpy landing don’t harp on the pilot, he got you there safely, after all.

1. Holding Your Baby While Flying Is Not Safe

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Although it’s economical to have a child on your lap while flying because you can avoid spending hundreds or even thousands on another ticket. It seems to be a natural reflex, as both mom and baby want to be together during the long flight, but it’s actually not safe. Due to the threat of turbulence at any time, your child needs to be secured or there is a risk of losing grip of your child. Child carriers that attach to the body are best, as it keeps the baby securely attached at all times.