Tag Archives: planes

Staying Calm When Travelling

Travelling especially air travel can be quite stressful for a lot of people.

There are ways that a person can calm themselves before travel with some simple steps.

flight deck
The Flight Deck
  1. Arrive Early

Time is your friend when you travel. Being there on time will give you ample opportunity to find the gate and terminal and even leave some leeway for getting a little bit lost without stress.

2. Plan

Many people feel that in the age of Google, planning is over rated. Particularly for people who tend to be anxious or stress there is no replacement for planning. Plan your mode of transport to and from the airport. Have a notebook with all your contacts that are important. Yes, you can store them on your phone but phones are dependent on power sources, a paper will be with you no matter what.

3. Pack Essentials in Carry-On Bag

Don’t go overboard with this but if you have worries about your luggage being lost then pack everything that is absolutely essential to you in a bag that will be with you at all times. Don’t go scrounging around the house looking for what may be essentially necessary to you, have a pre made list and check the list off as you put the items in the bag. Anxiety comes from the sense that there are many variables that are not in a person’s control, be meticulous to ensure that you are in control of as many things as possible.

4. Focus on your Reason for Travel

If the reason you are travelling is a valid one then your need to travel is validated. Book a flight that gets you into your destination with enough time before you are needed there to rest up and get back to yourself. Air travel is far more reliable then people give it credit for.

How much fuel can the Airbus A380 hold?

The answer to that is 320,000 liters. Or if you prefer 84,435 gallons. The maximum range listed for the Airbus A380 is 15,500 kilometers. This gives you a fair indication of how much fuel is used per kilometer.

jet fuel
Jet Fuel being pumped into a plane

This amount of fuel is the equivalent of about 3 average sized swimming pools full of fuel.

Believe it not with modern capabilities in the fuel tankers and the hoses, it does not take that long to fill the Airbus A380 for their long haul flights. Fuelers can pump the fuel into the tank of the plane at a rate of about 1000 gallons a minute, which means the plane is fueled in about 90 minutes. Consider how long it would take to fill your car at that rate? A marvel indeed.

Filling the plane up at such a high speed is a technological marvel in its own right. Filling at the speed with which they do can create enough static to cause a spark, which would no doubt be a total disaster for the plane. Therefore the hose is a semi-conductive and that prevents the possible static spark.

When you think about the amount of flights that are taking off each and everyday from airports around the world, you get an insight as to the amount of jet fuel that is being used and burned on a daily basis.

Some of the busy airports around the world like London, Heathrow are said to be filling up 3,000,000 gallons of fuel every day. There is no doubt airports like LAX, JFK and O’Hare that are matching that amount or at least very close to it.




How to become an Air Traffic Controller?

One of the most interesting and fascinating jobs in the world is the job of an air traffic controller. If you have ever lived in close proximity to a major airport and seen aircraft lining up to land in perfect order and with great design, you realize the skill and great aptitude that must go into being an air traffic controller.

For those that love aviation and are not inclined for any reason not to become a pilot, air traffic control can be a very rewarding and enjoyable job. It is taxing and requires a lot of cool headed thinking under immense pressure.

air traffic controller
The beauty of planes lining up to land

So there are essentially three ways that you can go about being a FAA compliant air traffic controller.

1. Through the Military

Whilst in the military, it is possible to gain the necessary experience as an air traffic controller. This experience can be deemed acceptable and allow a person to then continue on as a civil FAA compliant air traffic controller.

2. Air Traffic Collegiate Training Initiative Training

There are colleges and schools that will offer an FAA course that will give the course participant the necessary training and experience to work as a civil air traffic controller. Participants in this course will however need to attend the FAA’s specialized air traffic control academy in order to be passed for meeting all FAA requirements.

3. Three years of progressively responsible job experience, a bachelor’s degree or a combination of the two.

This means that if you have a bachelor’s degree, it is possible for you to become an air traffic controller. You will however have to attend the FAA specialized air traffic control academy in order to ensure that you have the skills and experience for the job. It may be difficult to find progressively responsible job experience and this would be a difficult option to pursue, considering that once again FAA Air Traffic Control Academy would be necessary.

How much does an F-35 Cost?

The cost of airplanes and jets has been in the news recently as Donald Trump decried the price of Air Force One’s planned upgrade from Boeing. The President-elect of the United States of America was also not pleased with the most expensive weapons program ever and that is the new F-35 fighter jets. The F-35 fighter jets are an upgrade of the world famous F-16 fighter jets but the question is:

How much does an F-35 cost?


In order to come up with a figure, you will have to remove the cost of research and development from each jet to get a steady figure on the jet itself.

There are 3 types of F-35 jets. There is the  A model, the B model for the Marine Corps and the C model for the Navy. There is also a generic F model F-35.

An A model F-35 costs approximately 148 million dollars, the B model costs 251 million dollars, the C model costs 337 million dollars and the generic F model costs 178 million dollars.

All variants of the F35 travel at supersonic speeds.

The main difference in the model variations would be the take-off and landing capabilities of the various models of F-35.

The F-35 A is built for conventional runway take-off and landing. This would be for regular military use with a conventional airstrip or runway available.

Both the F35B and F35C have short take-off and short landing capabilities. This is of course an essential when it comes to take-off and landings from the deck of aircraft carrying naval ships.

The F35C is different in that it is said to have radar evading stealth capabilities.

Every model is a single seat jet as could be expected from a modern fighter jet.

These planes may be expensive but for the safety and security that they have been designed to achieve, it may just be a price worth paying.

Hero Pilots

The title of “hero” is not only reserved for policemen, firemen and soldiers.  There are many pilots who carry this title too, below are just a few.

Captain Chris Henkey

Captain Henkey was a pilot for 42 years when he issued a mayday call and brought a plane to a complete stop after the engine burst into flames.  Henkey evacuated 157 passengers and 13 crew members off the Boeing 777 that was heading from Las Vegas to Gatwick International.  Henkey has been praised for demonstrating quick thinking in the face of destruction.

Chelsey ‘Sully’ Sullenberger

Who Could Forget the Images of the Plane on the Hudson River

History’s most famous landing may have been demonstrated by Chelsey Sullenberger.  On 15 January 2009 Captain ‘Sully’ crash landed US Airways Flight 1549 carrying 155 passengers on the Hudson River.  The plane hit a large flock of birds, disabling the engine and forcing the captain to land the plane.  Sullenberger, celebrated as a national hero has been dubbed ‘Hero of the Hudson’.

Captain Eric Moody

“Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. This is your captain speaking. We have a small problem. All four engines have stopped. We are all doing our damnedest to get them going again. I trust you are not in too much distress.”

This was Captain Moody’s announcement in 1982 after he flew a Boeing 747 through volcanic ash while passing through Jakarta.

Moody managed to get the plane to descend by using autopilot. Eventually the engines came back to life after the molten ash solidified and broke off.

This hero’s calm demeanor ensured a safe landing in Jakarta.

Alastair Atchison

After British Airways flight 5290 had taken off from London on it way to Spain in June 1990, part of the windshield became loose and sucked Captain Lancaster out of the plane. While a flight attendant held on to him, Atchison the co-pilot tried to radio to declare an emergency but he could not hear a response because of the noise going on around him.  In an act of bravery and courage, Atchison got permission to land the plane in Southampton and guided the plane down as debris flew around him, and a flight attendant held on to Captain Tim Lancaster.  Lancaster survived, suffering a few fractures and frostbite.

The pilots above showed courage and bravery.  Still, everyday and every hour when a pilot successfully lands his passengers at their destination, he too is a hero.


Kobe Bryant and His Helicopter

Kobe Bryant one of the best basketball players ever to grace the NBA has called time on his professional career. As is well known Kobe was a Los Angeles Laker for the entirety of his career. There is one thing that Kobe taught everyone about LA and that is that people like Kobe don’t sit in LA traffic. It is well known that the star point guard used to take a helicopter to all of his home games.

Kobe and his chopper

For Kobe, taking a helicopter to work every day was not so much about saving the time but more about preserving his fitness and conditioning for when the game begins. Sitting in a car from his home in Orange County would cause him to seize up therefore simply for performance reasons it made sense for him to fly into Staples Center on an helicopter.

For many A-listers, sports star and businessmen avoiding heavy inner city traffic that plagues cities like Los Angeles and New York City is an essential part of maintaining a productive day. With many landing options in Manhattan and in Downtown, Los Angeles, helicopters are a great option.

It is already well documented that when flying into these big cities many high powered people avoid the big airports like LAX and JFK.

A great option for getting into New York City for high powered people is Teterboro Airport, it has fast access to Manhattan and Brooklyn. When flying into Los Angeles many sports stars and the like make use of Van Nuys Airport. Van Nuys Airport provides fast access to Hollywood and Downtown Los Angeles.

The best of these airports is that it offers discreet entry to the metropolis cities. ElJet is the private jet charter company to be in touch with for your Van Nuys and Teterboro travel needs.

How Long Does It Take To Build A Boeing?

Less Than 3 Months!

Boeing Manufacturing Floor

Yes, believe it or not, it takes less than 3 months for a Boeing to be built from first parts till it’s ready for flight. This does not mean that if you order a Boeing jetliner it will be ready in less than 3 months. The wait time till you reach the head of the production line is considerably longer than that.


The airline manufacturer needs to ensure that he has all the necessary parts to put the plane together. There are certain items that are considered “long lead” items. These are things like castings and extrusions. These items once they hit the aircraft manufacturing floor still need a lot of work to put the aircraft together.

What About Finishing?

Well believe it or not, it only takes 4 days in a paint chamber to have the plane painted to the order requirements of the customer.

How About Testing?

Testing for commercial aircraft take on average 30 days. The aircraft are tested for things that are beyond the normal conditions in a regular flight. This is even beyond the testing for extreme cold or extreme heat conditions. All the electrical equipment and of course on-board technology is also tested to ensure that the plane is supremely safe.

Everett Factory

The Boeing factory in Everett is the largest manufacturing building in the world. The process at the factory is so efficient that a plane leaves the manufacturing floor, ready for testing, on average every 3 days. That is quite a staggering number considering the amount of parts and collaboration that goes into building an aircraft.


A brand new top of the range Boeing 747 will set you back 357 million dollars. However if you place your order today, no you won’t get a second one free, but there is a good chance that the price would have changed based on the cost of the parts.

Things You Won’t Believe Used to Be on Planes

Meat Carving Seat Side

On Board Meat Carving

Pan Am had 707 Clippers. The most marketable part of their Trans-Atlantic flights was the fact that they had restaurant quality meals. The center piece of this service was the fact that there was seat side meat carving. Chefs were on board and would walk around and serve the meat. This was not financially viable and it soon came to an end.



Yes, believe it or not there were planes with pianos at the rear. From 1970 to 1974, American Airlines had pianos at the back of their Boeing 747’s. Not sure what the thinking was behind having a piano at the back of the planes. Perhaps before the days of in-flight entertainment, a wannabee Mozart would board the plane and entertain the passengers. Seems more of a nuisance than anything else.

Vased Flowers

The Pan Am 707 Clippers had a bunch of stuff going on. Seems something out of a Richard Branson styled dream and they advertised themselves as being a vibration free airliner. In order to prove their non-vibration, the tray tables would have vased flowers on them. I guess, a sign of how times have changed that vased flowers would probably be considered a huge nuisance these days.

The truth is that these things are all still a possibility if you fly with private jet charter. Perhaps one of the greatest advantages of flying with private jet charter is that you get to choose exactly what you want on board. From gourmet meals to tailor made entertainment to suit your tastes and desires.

ElJet is a premier private jet charter company that maintains exclusive relationships with private jet owners and operators. This ensures that ElJet customers get the luxury of private jet travel at the best industry prices.

5 Funny Things That Happened on a Plane

When people spend up to 18 hours confined in a small space, without the use of cellphones, bizarre things are bound to happen.

Here is a collection of some of the funniest, quirkiest and most bizarre things to have ever happened on an airplane.

1.Plane Hits Cow

Plane hits cow, not sure if it was this plane and this cow but it happened

In December 2008, a plane in Britain hit a cow when it was making an emergency landing because of engine trouble. The cow had wandered out onto the runway. The cow was knocked down, but OK. You can be sure that the pilot, crew and passengers of that flight will be repeating that story till the cows come home…


2. A match made in heaven… well close.

Many singles have met there soul mates on board a flight somewhere, you know the drill, he smiles at her, they strike up a conversation, they laugh and live happily ever after. Not too bizarre right? However Dottie Coven and Keith Stewart took it further when they tied the knot at 35,000 feet. Using their frequent flier miles, the couple secured seats for 30 of their closest family and friends.  They were wed somewhere between Nashville and Dallas, and they were literally in the clouds with happiness.

3.“Ladies and gentleman, please secure all your belongings in the overhead locker before takeoff.”

This is the moment where bags are usually stowed above us.  On a flight from Fiji to Sydney, a flight attendant put a toddler in the overhead locker and closed the latch.  The mother of the 17 Month old was less than thrilled. The flight attendant claims he was joining in a game of peekaboo.  One really should be careful when opening and closing the overhead compartments…

4.Aisles of Poop

An airplane is probably not the best place to have a bout of diarrhea, at least us humans have somewhat of a space to relieve ourselves.  A US Airways flight was forced to make an unscheduled stop after a dog kept pooing in the aisle.  Man’s best friend that day was his pair of nose plugs…

5. Eyes in the Wrong Place

Even after embarking the flight, passengers have left some of their strangest belongings behind.  Some of these personal items include a parrot, a bag of onions, a bag of diamonds and a prosthetic leg.  One passenger even left a glass eye on the plane after embarking.  The captain did say “look out for our specials”.

Whether weird or wonderful, flying is always memorable, and hey what’s better than a crazy plane story to make your friends and family laugh?


How old is the plane I am flying on?

If you are flying on any airlines there is a really neat way to figure out a lot of detail about the aircraft you are flying on. It is very simple and can be quite calming for nervous flyers. It takes a lot of research and is not guaranteed success, for one simple reason.

All US aircraft are registered with an “N” number, this number is unique to a particular aircraft. In order to figure out how old your plane is, you will need to figure out that number.

Old Aircraft
If your plane looks like this it may be an older plane.

Sometimes the “N” number can be found by checking the flights status of your flight and using the 4 digit aircraft number to decipher the fleet number, once you have deciphered the fleet number, you can go on and figure out the “N” number.

The best place to punch in your “N” number that you have discovered would be on a site like Planespotters. Using the search tab, you can bring up the particulars about your aircraft.

Planespotters will not only have particulars of your aircraft but will also have a picture of the aircraft. It may not give away too much but like so many nervous flyers know, small information tidbits can sometimes be very soothing.

Alternatively, you can look for some tell-tale sign on the aircraft. Ash trays in between the seats is a dead giveaway that the aircraft is particularly old. And if the “no-smoking” light has been replaced by the “no-electronics” light, you know that your plane is fairly new.

Yet,  new vs. old plane is a discussion in its own right. Some feel safe in the fuselage of a well traveled aircraft with many flight hours under the belt. While others, feel safer on a new aircraft, assured that all the pieces and parts are spanking new out-of-the-box.