Basically we provide a space for the passengers to wait (think upscale terminal) sell fuel, and places to park the airplane (ramp and hangar space). It's a medium sized airport, but smaller than most any international airports.

I'm a lowly ramp guy but it's a fun/interesting job.

Every day there is at least 100 million dollars of aircraft that cycles through our ramp. AMA!


Comments: 102 • Responses: 38  • Date: 

Sinaman7 karma

Craziest thing you witnessed?

pilotthrowaway14 karma

The craziest thing I tend to see are the people who get off of massive aircraft, all alone except the crew.

Saw what couldn't have been older than a 23 year old kid get off of a Gulfstream 550 the other day. Pretty nuts. Never seen anything too crazy from what I can immediately think of right now. I'll make another post if anything else comes to mind.

Edit: guy a few months ago tore a huge whole in the side of the hangar with the wing of a jet while he was towing it. Took a big clip out of the wing, combined it was at least a few tens of thousands of dollars of damage. That was an employee of course.

waterbuffalo7503 karma

Is he still an employee?

pilotthrowaway4 karma

He got fired a few months later for some other stuff as well.

[deleted]6 karma


pilotthrowaway5 karma

Do I have to dress like a Victorian maid?

palbuddy12345 karma

How does the whole TSA thing work if you are on a private jet? Do you fill out forms on the plane? Before the plane?
Also if you have a million a year to spend on a private jet, do you think it's worth it? Why or why not?!

pilotthrowaway9 karma

There is no TSA for private operations. They're technically in charge of airport badges and stuff but you would never see the stereotypical "blue shirt fake cop" TSA screener here. Only in the passenger terminal for scheduled airline flights. So nope, no forms. One of many of the advantages of private flight.

If you only have a million, that's chump change it this world. You'd be leasing a 4-50 million dollar plane. Only the ultra rich actually own large jets. By a large margin, most people are doing charter flights.

On the other hand, it's certainly traveling in style. Think of every inconvenience you deal with flying commercially and take it out, and you have private jets. And then some!

palbuddy12342 karma

Thanks for answering. I've loved planes and airports since I was 5. Being middle class me, I just wondered what's the advantage to using a charter airline. I suppose you have a lot more leeway in plane schedules, and no flight grind that I'm used to when I travel. Can you fly basically whenever you want using a charter airline? Supposing they're not booked I suppose. Like could I call up and say 'can you fly me to Cancun tomorrow?' give my CC details and actually make that happen?

pilotthrowaway5 karma

Yeah, you could. I'm not super intimate in my knowledge of it but just saying be prepared to have your mouth dropped at the cost, depending on the route and time. The advantage is you can fly into a much smaller, municipal airport instead of having to go to a big city international airport. Also any time of day, whenever you want. Any tons of creature comforts depending on what you take.

I would check out wheels up and jetsuite to start off. Those would be some lower cost ones. Fly the whale if you're in the northeast.

JustAnOrdinaryBloke4 karma

Well JetSuite wants $20,000 for New York to Paris. But the plane holds 7, so thats about $2900 per person, which is comparable to first-class rates on regular carriers.

Much nicer, though. And, you can take your pets along.

pilotthrowaway2 karma

I didn't know that! Neat.

oliversjgilmour4 karma

Who was the most famous person you ever met on the job?

pilotthrowaway9 karma

A professional hockey player. Or one of the Koch brothers. A fortune 50 CEO.

oliversjgilmour2 karma

How much do you get payed?

pilotthrowaway8 karma

Been paid 9/hr previously at my last place but they were cheap haha. Now I'm getting about 12/hr. Career guys could be making up to 15 or more.

reagansdeathsquads11 karma

reaganomics in action..?

pilotthrowaway2 karma

Eh I guess so. It's a pretty entry level job.

[deleted]-47 karma


pilotthrowaway9 karma


[deleted]-36 karma


pilotthrowaway12 karma

I figured, just not exactly sure why you decided I was mysogonyst.

IsThatJesus4 karma

How much does it traditionally cost the customers?

pilotthrowaway4 karma

We charge depending on plane size. So if a midsized private jet lands and stays overnight they usually pay like 300 bucks and then buy maybe $800-1000 of fuel (~250 gal).

davidfayour3 karma

Do the rich live in a different world than the rest of us? Do you think that the way they experience life is fundemantally different from our perception?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

I'm not the best person to answer this, but I think everyone sees the world in a different perspective based on how they were brought up and where they are now. Being wealthy certainly affects this. In what ways, it depends. Good or bad can come from it.

As much as I love airplanes, sometimes it all feels a bit wasteful. Depending on the operation of course. I know airplanes are often the most efficient way to travel.

cara1234567892 karma

most outlandish request?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

When pilots keep asking to have their plane moved into the wind. Lol I actually haven't really gotten anything that crazy...

TheSanityInspector2 karma

Do you ever have to load any pets of these people? What are those like, if so?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

Yeah lots of people. Only ever seen dogs. Often times the stereotypical lap dog like some terriers but also big ones. They're my favorite flights.

Anablue2 karma

Most famous person you've dealt with ? And were they nice :)

pilotthrowaway4 karma

CEO of a very major car company (post bailout he was hired). Nice guy! Famous hockey player/legend. Also a really salty funny old dude.

jutct2 karma

So you work at an FBO? The FBO at Tweed New Haven airport has some crazy private jets coming through. I've seen quite a few famous people come through. I don't work there, but I fly planes out of there.

pilotthrowaway2 karma

Yep, work at an FBO! You're a pilot? You should check out /r/flying!

JustGreg2 karma

Do you get any military aircraft?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

I've fueled some military helicopters as well as police ones but that's it.

RalphWiggum42 karma

What city do you do this in?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

Medium sized vacation destination on the east coast :P

congee1 karma

Just my imagination, but are there often hookers or 'escorts' with these rich and famous ppl?

pilotthrowaway2 karma

Hahaha not that I know of.

NorbitGorbit1 karma

it feels as though people who pilot their own private jets tend to crash more often than in commercial jets -- have you witnessed this phenomenon?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

People who aren't professional pilots are by far generally more dangerous simply because of the lack of experience, training, and currency. But that doesn't mean it's always unsafe to fly with a private pilot. Be careful of someone however who gets rich, and buys way more plane than they can handle with that money.

Most pilots we get are professionals.

NorbitGorbit1 karma

do you think it would be consistently cheaper to charter a jet as a group than fly first class commercial?

pilotthrowaway2 karma


Haha I know that seems curt but the answer is almost certainly no. You do it for convenience and comfort, not savings.

If you bought your own small plane and learned to fly you might be able to though. Large companies are able to save some money by owning a fleet for executive transport.

mpstein1 karma

Do you work for a national chain on a local FBO?

pilotthrowaway1 karma

Chain. There's only five or six of them though. It's a pretty upscale one.

Jeffums1 karma

What's the deal with airline food?

pilotthrowaway4 karma


derpex1 karma

You don't work at a Million Air do you?

pilotthrowaway1 karma


IsThatJesus1 karma

Meanest customer you've ever had?

pilotthrowaway1 karma

Honestly, hard to say. I've never had someone be outright mean to me really. Probably just haven't worked long enough yet.

Sabugo1 karma

Do you get to go park nice cars ? If so wich one was the best and was it hard not "playing" with it for a couple of minutes ?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

Yep! We had an Aston Martin get dropped off here but I never got to drive it, bummer. Drove an s5 the other day which was a personal favorite. Also an AMG, escalade, stuff like that.

Sometimes I wish we did get to take them for a spin... alas it's usually only for a few yards.

Sabugo5 karma

By s5 you mean the audi s5 ? Great car !!

pilotthrowaway3 karma

I know!

aro5411 karma

These are my questions:

  1. Do you get a lot of pauses?
  2. For how long have you been working there?
  3. Is it a cool job?
  4. What is the most fun thing to do?
  5. What is the biggest tip you have gotten?

pilotthrowaway9 karma

  1. Yeah, lots of down time punctuated by periods of extreme busyness it seems like. That's why I did this AMA, bored on a rainy day haha.

  2. A few months. It's a summer job for me but I've done it for 3 years at various airports.

  3. Yes! It's really cool especially if you like airplanes.

  4. Just pretty much talking to the pilots and hanging out when we can. We get extra food from planes that people don't eat which can on occasion be really good. Booze, sandwiches, pastries, stuff like that. I also like towing planes... makes me feel powerful to have 50 million dollars under my control!

  5. 60 bucks for some baggage!

aro5411 karma

Seems like a cool summer job, how old are you and where can I apply?

pilotthrowaway8 karma

20, but got my first job when I was 18. With almost no experience! Just a bit of office work and I was flight training which helped.

Google FBOs at nearby locations. Don't think you know all the airports around you, either. There's a lot of tiny or midsized airports you may have never heard of just down the street from you!

Jety281 karma

How are the guys who work in tower? With what you do how closely do you work with them? Im leaving for training in ATC soon so im kinda curious about the day to day on the more private airports.

pilotthrowaway2 karma

We don't have any interactions with them really. An FBO ramp is a non movement area meaning it's not under ATC authority. Good luck in your training!

someoneinsignificant1 karma

Do you meet a lot of rich assholes? What are they like? What are the nice rich people like?

pilotthrowaway13 karma

Actually the majority of people are fine. It's a little different than say, being a cashier because there's this sort of filter on the people you meet in that almost everyone is very successful. Passengers who are rude usually only are in the sense that they are kind of dismissive, like they ignore you.

Nice people tip nicely. And acknowledge you. Say hi or something. As in treat you like you exist.

On the other hand, the people we mainly deal with are the crews (pilots and on occasion, flight attendants). They're more used to dealing with FBOs and are often under pressure from their companies so it gets passed down to us. Or they're just assholes, haha. One guy is extremely particular about how his aircraft is treated, where he parks, what kind of rental car he wants, etc. Just overall very tiring.

rastel1 karma

Are they generally rude and demanding or nice and easy-going?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

The passengers are usually pretty nice, the pilots can be a bit demanding ("we need to be on line now! Why the fuck is the fueler taking so long? Why did you park us there?")

AffreuxLex3 karma

"I fly a $175,000 Cirrus! I need free coffee, food, premium parking, a dedicated attendant, computer and wifi access, and papers in the morning! Don't you dare look at my baby the wrong way. You want to tow it? You don't have the experience or equipment to do it right, where do you want it? I'll taxi it."

"Huh, what? Yeah, I fly the G5. Yes, brakes are off. Okay, see you tomorrow. Thanks for the help."

Pretty much sums up my experience :) (Stereotyped of course, not everyone is like that)

BuffaloBagel3 karma

The Cirrus driver bought his ride with his own blood and sweat. Gulfstream pilot's job is a paid gig with someone's else's iron.

pilotthrowaway3 karma

Yeah but one of them is a professional ;)

pilotthrowaway2 karma

Yeah, sometimes it seems like that!

Yuza-Mei1 karma

What are the requirements you needed to get your job?

pilotthrowaway2 karma

Nothing really. Some experience helps depending on who's hiring. They train you. Clean pee.

themanwhosleptin1 karma

What is the best part of your job?

pilotthrowaway3 karma

I love aviation. While I'm not flying, it's nice to be able to still be around planes. I try not to get jaded and just think of it as any other job.

SiverVixon-8 karma

Can you do the world a favor and blow up the jets with the rich people in the them?

Not a question just a hopeful aspiration

pilotthrowaway4 karma

What the fuck....