While we've gleaned travel insights from flight attendants in the past, pilots know just as much (if not more) about the fascinating inner workings of the travel industry. Case in point: Business Insider's recent article on pilot travel hacks, which pulled quotes from real-life pilots on Quora. The thread, which asked specifically about the tips, tricks, and travel scares airline pilots won't tell you about, revealed enlightening, helpful, and downright shocking truths about air travel that may change the way you think about flying. Find their answers below.
Flight durations are inflated. This is so flights always appear "on time" even if they're late.
Pilots don't eat the same food or drink the same water. They get special meals so that if a food shipment was contaminated, they won't get sick. Similarly, the tap water on planes is located near the ports to empty the toilets—one in eight planes fails the EPA's standards for water safety.
Oxygen masks only last 15 minutes. That's all the time pilots need to get to a lower altitude so people can breathe normally.
They may take a nap in the cockpit. So much of flying is automated these days; co-pilots can easily relax during long flights.
They will downplay any problems. "There's some fog" could very well mean that they can't see anything in front of them, while a delay for "technical reasons" most likely means something is broken. It's their job to keep passengers calm.
Head over to Business Insider for the rest of their answers.