A pilot and Instagram influencer with nearly half a million followers reveals 7 secrets most people don’t know about the job

Maria Fagerström tells her followers insider secrets from the aviation world.

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Maria Fagerström tells her followers insider secrets from the aviation world.
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Maria the Pilot

Swedish pilot and Instagram influencer Maria Fagerström uses Instagram to share her work as a pilot, her travels, and her home with her boyfriend with her nearly 500,000 followers.

In her bio, she promises, “I’m here to give YOU a bit of insight into the aviation world,” and she follows through. Fagerström responds to comments, and she sometimes makes posts about certain questions that come up again and again.

She shared some common things people don’t know about being a pilot with Business Insider.


1. Pilots are allowed to sleep while working, although not both at the same time. “It’s called ‘controlled rest’ and there are of course procedures to follow, like setting a timer,” Fagerström told Business Insider.

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Maria the Pilot

2. Flying is actually relaxing, “once we’re up in the air and at cruising level,” if the weather is good.

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Maria the Pilot

3. For Fagerström, the best part of the job is the “feeling after touching down after a tricky approach, and you’ve done well with maneuvering the aircraft all the way from start to finish.”

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Maria the Pilot

4. Flight school is really intense, and you will be scrutinized. “You’ll most probably have to say goodbye to your social life for a year or two. But I can assure you it’s totally worth it when you get your wings” she said.

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Maria Fagerström

5. The busiest time of year for pilots is the holidays, when everyone else is trying to get home, so those are also the most difficult days to take off.

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Maria Fagerström

6. Going to the bathroom is surprisingly difficult. “When every single passenger is back in their seats with seat belts on, then you can come out … while everyone is watching you sneaking into the toilet … not ideal” she said.

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Maria Fagerström

7. You might have to skip dinner if there’s turbulence. Fagerström said that if her meal comes when the plane hits a rough patch, she’ll have to spend the rest of the flight “watching the speed like a hawk.”

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Maria Fagerström