My Top 5 Flights of 2021

Commercial aviation was in a recovery year in the year 2021, and many of us have started flying again.

I flew 150,000 miles in total, which is still half of what I flew before the disease. This was mostly on long-haul flights between the U.S. and Dubai to see my family. Out of 104 flights I flew, I have picked my top 5 flights.

1. My own flight as a pilot.

I passed my private pilot checkride in July.

I didn't think I could become a pilot. I was too content with flying as a backseat passenger and I had very little confidence in my physical ability to fly a plane.

I have gained a lot of satisfaction throughout my journey as a pilot. Once you break through a mental wall or make a good landing, the confidence will increase and you will be able to achieve your goals. You can too if I can do it.

In this video, I will show you my experience on the pilot exams and give you some useful tips. The cost of getting a private pilot license, getting the right instructor, and several key factors to help you throughout the training are discussed.

2. 40 hours inside a plane.

I was delivering medical cargo aids on a humanitarian mission inside a National Airlines plane.

I flew from Pakistan to Kathmandu, Nepal. The flight from the USA to Pakistan and Nepal was carrying 80 tons of USAid.

The landing into Kathmandu was very exciting. The entire Kathmandu valley came into view after passing through the last clouds. Our descent was much harder than usual due to the high altitude and we had to stop at the end of the runway.

It's a great honor to be part of the team that sends these supplies around the world, and to be able to document the mission behind the scenes. I stayed inside the B747 for 40 hours, from dark to light to dark again. A charter cargo crew has just 2 days to do their job. It is very different to the passenger airlines.

3. How many airliners can fly within 200 feet?

I was in two of the four Saudi airliners that were part of the Saudi 91st National Day Airshow.

Four Saudi Airliners are involved in the formation.

Saudia B787-9 is on the phone.
The Saudia B777-300/ER is in Retro Livery.
Flyadeal A320neo is on the phone.
Flynas A320 is on the phone.

On the first day of the rehearsal, I flew inside a Saudia B777-300/ER Retro 75th anniversary special livery. The pilots explained the procedure. The 4 airliners were flying at a very low altitude of 200 feet.

I flew inside a new A320neo to film the other formation aircraft. I was treated to some amazing and incredible air-to-air flying footage of Saudia.

4. An-32 plane is on the tarmac.

I flew inside an An-32P "Fire Killer" in Turkey during the summer.

The pilot and crew demonstrated their skills. The An-32P can hold 8,000 liters of water and has 2 external tanks.

We left the airport on a training flight. The water was just 40 meters over the target. The water was released with precision. Dropping water too high above the target would cause water to evaporate.

The An-32 did a great job during the flight. It was very hot inside the cargo hold. After the flight, pilot Arytem explained the challenges and dangerous nature of aerial firefighting operations.

5. Funchal, Madeira is one of Europe's most challenging airports.

I've heard a lot about landing at Funchal, Madeira airport in Portugal, so I've wanted to go there for a long time. I flew from Lisbon to Madeira on a plane. Funchal, Madeira is difficult to land on. The draft from the mountain and the wind on the final approach make it difficult for planes to land.

I went planespotting after landing in Madeira. There are a lot of amazing places to spot planes. I went underneath the pillars where the runway has been extended.

You can share your top flights in the comment section.