Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Transportation Commercial

This Is Your Captain Speaking

Stories from the Flight Deck

by (author) Doug Morris

ECW Press
Initial publish date
Apr 2022
Commercial, Piloting & Flight Instruction, Meteorology & Climatology
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2022
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Apr 2022
    List Price

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it



For everyone from frequent fliers to aviation geeks, travel buffs to nervous travelers, Captain Doug Morris tells you everything you want (and need!) to know about flight

Captain Doug Morris has been writing for his airline’s in-flight magazine for 24 years and has answered a gamut of questions. This Is Your Captain Speaking will draw from his extensive experience and explain everything you ever wanted to know about airline travel: whether airliners have keys, why the bumps, what aircrew get up to on layovers, what’s the deal with “mile-high memberships,” and how to become a pilot. It also provides entertaining anecdotes from air travel’s unsung heroes — flight attendants. It’s the A to Z of airline travel with a twist of humor. The flight deck door will always be closed, but Doug exposes the unique inner world of aviation to the public.


About the author

Contributor Notes


Captain Doug Morris flies the B787, a.k.a. the Dreamliner, worldwide for an airline with a maple leaf emblazoned on its livery. He is a meteorologist and has written for his company’s in-flight magazine since 1998. Doug recently completed his master’s degree in Aviation and Aerospace Management at Purdue University (Indiana). He resides in downtown Toronto with his wife and has three adult children. This is his fourth book.


Excerpt: This Is Your Captain Speaking: Stories from the Flight Deck (by (author) Doug Morris)


Cracking the three-letter airport code.

When booking a flight, reading your trip’s itinerary, or looking at the tags on your checked baggage, you’ll notice three-letter codes that identify airports. Sometimes it makes sense: BOS is Boston, MIA is Miami. But how do you get MCO for Orlando? Often, especially in Canada, where every three-letter code begins with a “Y”, they are illogical abbreviations. For most of us, it is one of the mysteries of travel. I will try to dispel some of the secrecy and unravel this Da Vinci Code mystery of flight.

So why not CHI instead of ORD for one of the busiest airports on the planet? History, along with geographical locations, names of airports, and personal tributes — with politicians’ names ranked up there — are what these three letters cater to. Years ago, the National Weather Service devised a two-letter identification system (blame it on the weatherman) to keep a handle on weather throughout the United States. When aviation was at its infancy, airlines simply adopted the system. However, expansion meant that towns without weather stations needed codes as well, so IATA (International Air Transport Association) created three-letter identifiers for airports around the world. Canadian weather offices associated with airports used “Y,” which made them easy to identify as Canadian. For some airports, it is easy to decipher: YVR is Vancouver, YWG is Winnipeg, and YQB stands for Quebec City. But where did they get YYZ for Canada’s busiest airport, Toronto Lester B. Pearson? Pearson, by the way, was a Canadian prime minister. There is still some shade of doubt about its true origin, but Toronto’s original airport, located in the town of Malton, had been assigned YZ for its Morse code telegraph identifier.

Incidentally, Chicago’s ORD is derived from “Orchard Field,” and the airstrip’s moniker is a tribute to pilot Lieutenant Commander Edward O’Hare. Orlando’s MCO stemmed from McCoy Airforce base. It’s neat to know that FFA is for First Flight Airport in Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.


Editorial Reviews


“Captain Doug Morris has done a wonderful job explaining many of the mysteries of airline travel while reminding us of its romance. He loves his job, and we can see why!” — Michael Ott, veteran international captain and aviation safety advocate

“Anyone with an interest in aircraft, aviation, or simply hearing from those with interesting jobs (few jobs can be as varied and well-traveled as that of a pilot) will love this one.” — Geek Mom

“I loved every second of it.” — Lady Reading 365 blog


Other titles by Doug Morris