The #AvGeek bug is a beautiful thing. Having an attachment to airplanes…there is nothing wrong with that, right? Just in case you were questioning if you caught the aviation bug, we have outlined 16 common symptoms. If these symptoms persist, seek immediate aviation stimulation.
1. Pulling the car over to take a picture of an airplane.
You know it and your family and friends know it too: you are a huge geek about airplanes. You are not afraid to shift four lanes on an interstate in heavy traffic to grab a shot of that special livery…even if you have other people in the car.
2. Purposely cutting through the airport when possible.
You are on your way home from work after a long day at the office…you take the airport exit and cut through the airport because you could and wanted to.
3. Keeping a camera with four (plus) lenses in your car.
While most people keep other items in their trunk, you keep a camera with at least four lenses because you never know when that aircraft change may occur at your local airport.
4. Getting a thrilling sensation when watching takeoff videos.
Real takeoffs are thrilling, but all #AvGeeks know the sensation of watching an aircraft takeoff in a heavy crosswind, even if it is on a computer.
5. Being able to name the exact aircraft…to the very last digit.
Upon looking up a the sky, you see an airplane. Most people would call it a 737 or even a 737-800, but you call it a 737-824 with split-scimitar winglets.
6. Visiting the cockpit.
You may be approaching the big 50, but visiting the cockpit as a kid is still just as fun now as it was then.
7. Having to view AT LEAST one aviation picture or you will have withdraws.
Flipping through aviation photos never gets old and you have to view one at least every day to be satisfied.
8. Being up close to big airplanes is always super cool.
You love getting out on the ramp and straining your neck looking up at a massive airliner.
9. Begging someone for the window seat.
Accidentally booked the aisle and really want a shot of that special livery at the next gate over? You kindly ask the person in the window to switch…explaining your situation.
10. Being able to name an entire airline’s fleet…including the variants of aircraft.
It is like reciting a poem from memory. You know every aircraft and all its variants in an airline’s fleet.
11. Your favorite hotel has a runway\airport view.
Yes, you know it, you booked that hotel just to fall asleep to the soothing sound of jet engine noise. You also booked it to sit in a comfortable chair and watch airplanes.
You booked that later flight just to fly on the 737-900ER opposed to the 737-800, didn’t you?
13. You intentionally arrive at the airport way early.
Most people think you’re crazy when you say that you are getting to the airport at 7 a.m. for a 10 a.m. flight. You aren’t there for the reasonably good airport coffee, but you are there to wander the terminals and take photos of airplanes.
14. You brave the freezing cold to the blazing hot just to see an airplane or two.
You and your buddies pack up the camera gear and head to the airport, but you are not flying; you are going to the airport to take pictures of airplanes.
15. You download a movie for a flight but forget to watch it after aimlessly staring out the window.
Downloaded the latest TV episode of your favorite show or a new movie? Good luck watching it. You lose track of flight time by aimlessly staring out the window in awe (No, not AWE…as in America West).
16. You drive out to the airport just because.
Your flight school might be 15 miles north of town, but that’s not stopping you at all. Fill the tank up, and let’s get driving! Don’t forget the camera.
Editor’s Note: Want to hear the story of the awakening of an aviation enthusiast’s inner-AvGeek? Click here for more.
He has about two hours of flying "under his belt" and he has a collection of 40 plus airplane models, plus airline memorabilia, collectibles and hundreds of aviation photos. Now, Ryan mainly writes articles and collects avgeek stuff. He's had his head in the clouds for more than 16 years and will always look up when he hears a jet roar. In addition to writing and editing for AirlineGeeks, he volunteers as a Travelers Aid at Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C.