More specifically: in Canada what are reasons and protocols of keeping a logbook?


Almost everything in flying is measured in hours, including your experience.

To start with, in most places you need to have trained a certain number of hours before taking your flying skills test, regardless of how good you are.

And then it continues, want to do an instrument rating, you need x hours. Want to be an instructor, you need y hours. Want to be a Captain on a 747, well you'll need z hours as First Officer first and to be First Officer, you'll need....guess what!

Beyond that, many countries place restrictions on what you can and can't do based on your recent experience. For example, in the UK, to take passengers you must have performed three landings on type within 90 days.

And then it carries on outside of legislation, too - if you want to rent a plane most places will place some sort of hour requirement, whether it be your total hours or hours on type etc.

And so it follows that you need somewhere to log this. As a pilot your log book is sacrosanct - its a legal document forming a factual record of your flying experience.

  • $\begingroup$ What if people record inaccurate hours to reach their goal faster? How is that checked? $\endgroup$
    – verve
    Aug 21 '15 at 21:11
  • $\begingroup$ @verve It's mostly not, from what I gather. Some things will need signing off as true by an instructor, but if you fake hours then you do so knowing that if you ever do have an incident then you stand a chance of having your whole history audited. You may get away with padding hours flying around in a radio less microlight, but padding your big jet time leaves a big trail. $\endgroup$
    – Dan
    Aug 21 '15 at 21:17
  • $\begingroup$ How do some pilots manage without keeping a logbook if it's so important? $\endgroup$
    – verve
    Aug 22 '15 at 2:50
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ @verve I can't imagine many qualified pilots not keeping a logbook. $\endgroup$
    – Dan
    Aug 22 '15 at 8:49
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Just to throw it in here: I got to known a former airline pilot who is now only flying for fun. He has stopped logging his hours after he quit flying for an airline, and is only logging his biennial flight review (as required by law). He simply doesn't need the experience or the ours to fly the plane he rents as they know him well. $\endgroup$ Aug 23 '15 at 22:33

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