Sunday, February 21, 2010

Planes, planes everywhere there's planes.

Every now and again, 'tail spotter' Erik from FRA (Frankfurt, Germany) sends me his photos. I think they are great shots worthy of sharing. (Of course you all know to click on the photo to enlarge them). Danke schön Erik!

When I travel the world I'm always amazed how many airlines/airplanes there are out there. Some words of wisdom for the upstart pilots: Even though your dream is to fly for the National carrier or fly the jet fighter in the air force, you may be piloting planes (for numerous reasons) either than your first choice. I could write a book on the "curve balls" pilots encountered while chasing their dreams.


Alex said...

Dear Captain Doug:

I have ambition to be an airline pilot. Last year I was on a British Airways Boeing 777 and I recognized the Captain's face from the Flying Scotsman before he had to hide it.

We had a long chat (he might remember me, I'm Alex and a girl!!) and gave me great advice, and let me see the flight deck.

I'm 16 now, and are there any specific issues you have seen for women pilots on an airline? I know at British they have several hundred female pilots now, some captains.

Appreciate your ideas and advice.

Alex - or Alexandra.

From the Flight Deck said...

Alex. You got to see the elusive Flying Scotsman? (Sorry Ian, I couldn't resist). I say that because we haven't met in person yet. I'm certain Ian did a great job.

Alex, are you Canadian? If so, there is a great book (beside mine :), "So you want to be a Pilot, eh?" available for aspiring Canadian pilots. There is a link on my blog.

At Air Canada we have roughly four percent that are female pilots which translates into 130 to 140 pilots. It does not sound like much, but that number is huge. Regrettably there are some airlines out there yet to hire their first female pilot.

Standing by for further.

Captain Doug

Alex said...

Dear Captain Doug,

I am both Canadian and British - my dad was born in New Brunswick and my mum is English.

We live in England now - so my question was really about how female pilots are accepted in airlines.

Captain Ian told me at British Airways everyone is measured on merit, but I have heard stories about female pilots being unfairly treated and picked upon, so I wondered your thoughts on this.

I am starting my PPL soon, and was going to go to university too. I am studying my GCSEs at the moment, before my A levels - and have all the sciences covered - maths, physics, chemistry and geography.

We live in Surrey, not far from Gatwick Airport, and I love watching the aeroplanes turning downwind and lining up for finals.

I don't see any Air Canada planes - I guess you don't fly to Gatwick.

Thank you Captain Doug. I spent almost half an hour with Ian!

Thanks again.


From the Flight Deck said...

Alex. Sounds like you have the best of both worlds. As far as acceptance of females in the airlines, you have another advantage.

Air Canada does not fly into Gatwick. If you get to Heathrow, we have about 12-15 flights a day there in the summer.

Gone flying.

Captain Doug

Lakotahope said...

Capt Doug,
Yes, it has been a little while since I blabbed on your blogs. Sorry, thought I was busy around here, but the girlfriend laughed at that idea. (sigh!) Anyway, yup, those pics are worthy of adorning my 'puter for wallpaper. I change 'em all the time, so the variation is real nice. Alex sounds like she is ahead of the game too! Good for her!

mlesser said...

Ahh great photos. Im only around.. haha who knows till i get the parole hearing on whether im worthy of leaving general aviation.

I have always wanted to fly a 3 engined plane ie - Md-11. not much opportunity for these days, so i think i'll settle with any jet :)

Good blog as usual.


From the Flight Deck said...

Hi Mike. What are you flying in Australia?

You're still young, the jets will come.

Doug on a layover.

mlesser said...

I fly C210's at the moment, and have been also flying Beech Barons in the past. The new company i work for has a fleet of singles, barons, C402, C404, C441 metros and recently a Brasilia.

You can follow my blog if you are keen on my stories.

Regards, Mike.