A New York Times bestsellerFor millions of people, travel by air is a confounding, uncomfortable, and even fearful experience. Patrick Smith, airline pilot and author of the popular website www.askthepilot.com, separates fact from fallacy and tells you everything you need to know: How planes fly, and a revealing look at the men and women who fly them Straight talk on turbulence, pilot training, and safety. The real story on delays, congestion, and the dysfunction of the modern airport The myths and misconceptions of cabin air and cockpit automation Terrorism in perspective, and a provocative look at security Airfares, seating woes, and the pitfalls of airline customer service The colors and cultures of the airlines we love to hateCOCKPIT CONFIDENTIAL covers not only the nuts and bolts of flying, but the grand theater of air travel, from airport architecture to inflight service to the excitement of travel abroad. It’s a thoughtful, funny, at times deeply personal look into the strange and misunderstood world of commercial flying. “Patrick Smith is extraordinarily knowledgeable about modern aviation…the ideal seatmate, a companion, writer and explorer.” —Boston Globe “Anyone remotely afraid of flying should read this book, as should anyone who appreciates good writing and great information.” —The New York Times, on ASK THE PILOT.