How to Land a Plane (Hardcover)

By Mark Vanhoenacker

The Experiment, 9781615195466, 64pp.

Publication Date: April 30, 2019

List Price: 12.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


Take a seat—the captain’s seat, that is—and relax. You’re about to land a Boeing 747.

The mystery of flight is magical; the reality, still more so—from the physics that keeps a 450-ton vehicle aloft, to the symphony of technology and teamwork that safely sets it down again. Take it from Mark Vanhoenacker—British Airways pilot, internationally bestselling author, and your new flight instructor. This is How to Land a Plane.

Vanhoenacker covers every step—from approach to touchdown— with precision, wit, and infectious enthusiasm. Aided by dozens of illustrations, you’ll learn all the tools and rules of his craft: altimeters, glidepaths, alignment, and more. Before you know it, you’ll be on the ground, exiting the aircraft with a whole new appreciation for the art and science of flying.

About the Author

Mark Vanhoenacker is the author of the international bestseller Skyfaring, a Financial Times columnist, and a regular contributor to The New York Times and Slate. A management consultant until 2001, Vanhoenacker is a Senior First Officer for British Airways. He recently piloted his final flight with his beloved Boeing 747 (which he chronicled for Financial Times) and now flies 787s for British Airways.

Praise For How to Land a Plane

The Daily Mail and The Spectator Book of the Year (2017)

“With a unique wit and immense expertise, Vanhoenacker illuminates the mysteries of flight in a straightforward manner that even beginners can enjoy. . . . Readers will feel like they are in the captain’s seat as the author . . . does an excellent job of making air-travel accessible and enjoyable.”—Hook magazine

Praise from the UK

“A work of humorous and outright poetic travel geekery.”—National Geographic Traveler
“A remarkably good idea . . . illuminates the practical reality of piloting in a concise and useful manner.”Times Literary Supplement
“Perfect inflight reading . . . brilliant.”—The Sunday Times
“Explains simply and clearly the abiding mysteries of flight.”—Daily Mail