It comes without saying that without air we cannot breath. It provides the basic element of live. But not only that I need air to breath, I need air for my profession. As an airline pilot I am only able to safely fly you to your destination because we have got air underneath our wings. Below you will find more information about this dream of mine.
Becoming a pilot was really the only profession I could imagine in my years as a teenager. It was in 1998 when I finally finished all the studying and flight training and when I was offered a First Officer position with an airline in Austria.
You can imagine that after all these weeks and months of hard work I felt like the happiest person alive.
I used to pilot small 50-seat turboprop aircraft on our European network. These aircraft, unlike modern jet-airliners, don’t fly as high above the clouds and therefore we were faced with some interesting, sometimes challenging flights. Especially de-icing the aircraft in winter was a complete new task for me.
Well, years went by in flight, literally, and soon I was promoted to Captain. Later within the same company I moved on to fly jet-airliners across Europe.
After the economical crisis in 2008/2009 it was time to move on to a new company. I joined in 2010 for the same seat, same routes, and unfortunately same financially unstable situation.
In 2014 it was my choice again to change companies. This time for some “real flying”: long-range.
For this I had to move to Dubai and soon I was released on an Airbus A-330. It was quite impressive but nothing compared to the biggest airliner I was about to fly very soon, the A-380.
What a difference those flights made. I remembered flights where we were airborne only between 15-20 minutes. Suddenly I logged 8 hours in my logbook when I used to fly to Denpasar in Indonesia. It was for me an exciting new experience. We were carrying more than 200 people on board of those aircraft, which was sometimes quite challenging as well. However, service on board was quite good, as you can see above, and the destinations were impressive, too: Harare, Entebbe, Addis Abeba, Khartoum. Or flights during the middle of the night over Somalia with no radio-contact to a ground-air controller was again something new to me.
As I mentioned earlier, I was soon able to fly the biggest airliner ever build for commercial air-transport: the A-380.
This aircraft was a complete new story. With state-of-the-art equipment, a take-off weight of more than 560 tonnes, more than 600 passengers in a three-class-layout and a crew of 30 people, I finally was at the top of long-range aviation.
I had flights to San Francisco, Sydney, Seoul, Aukland, or Hongkong with up to 17 hours in the air. Stunning places and monuments were explored but mostly after one or two days we headed back to home base.
Check out some impressions:
Even though I really wanted to fly long-range I soon realized that those flights were simply too long for my taste. And so, in 2017 I moved back to Europe where I knew “my” airports, the routes and the weather.
So stay tuned for some new footages of my flights across Europe…
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