Re: Questions from a Newbie...

Date:         29 Jun 98 02:38:19 
From:         Evan McElravy <evanm@penn.com>
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>>4.) Is it possible, as a layman, to see the cockpit during flight? I
>>do some free-lance writing and have been offered a story involving
>>business travel and nearly everyone I question about the story wants
>>to know if they can see the cockpit? Do they ask a flight attendant?
>>Write the airline in advance? Barge in during a coffee break? <g>
>
>...I Wish!  The FAA doesn't allow this.  :-(   you'll have to fly outside
>of the U.S.

No, you don't have to fly outside the U.S., just on a non-U.S. carrier.
Flights originating in the U.S. or with a final destination of the U.S. are
no different than flights totally outside the U.S. By the same token, a U.S.
carrier isn't allowed to give cockpit tours just becuase it operates a
flight outside the U.S., which many do (Northwest's Amsterdam-Delhi servce,
for example). I've been told Air Canada is an excellent for getting up
front. In fact, they ususally offer a quick look around to all unaccompanied
minors, assuming the captain is in the mood.

On the ground is no problem though, assuming the crew has the time to
accomodate your wishes (better chances after a flight than before). I got to
spend about ten minutes in the first officer's seat of a B-1900D a few years
back (during a layover) and have got quick runovers of other aircraft
before, too, most recently one of Continental's 737-700s. The captain
actually extended an invitation to all the gearheads to stick their heads in
their way out the door.

Evan McElravy
evanm@penn.com