40 Things About Air Travel That Only Flight Attendants Know

18. How Much Power Does the Pilot Have?

Basically, a lot. The pilot has ultimate authority on a plane, including command decisions, leading the crew, handling emergencies and troublesome passengers. Despite the urban legend, the captain cannot make arrests mid-flight. However, in emergencies, they can contact authorities who will meet the plane once it lands and arrest the problematic person.


Although they cannot make arrests in the legal sense, a commercial pilot can give orders to place someone in handcuffs or restraints in-air if they are deemed to be endangering the safety of the flight. Did you know, pilots can even take a dying passenger’s will?

The next airplane secret will probably change your travel habits, keep reading!

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