- Don't fly to a major airline airport until you are totally comfortable with air traffic control communications. The controllers are busy; the frequency is congested; and there is no time to repeat instructions. The whole system works because pilots and controllers anticipate each other's words and actions, and there is very little margin to repeat words or explain a clearance. Any time spent talking to a pilot who can't keep up is communications time that is unavailable to keep airplanes separated in the air and on the runway.
- Don't fly to a major airport-no matter how nice the weather-unless you can fly to IFR standards of heading, altitude and airspeed control. Even on perfectly clear days the major airports operate to instrument flying standards, so, even if you don't have an instrument rating, you will be expected to be able to fly to that level of basic aircraft control. Radar separation is the norm, and it only works if every pilot follows the controller's instructions exactly.
- Don't fly to a major airport unless you are prepared to maintain at least 100 knots indicated airspeed until reaching the middle marker, which is approximately one-half mile from the runway threshold. Most basic singles are capable of flying that fast, particularly since you are descending to land, but many pilots don't know how to do it. You must forget all of that stuff about a "stabilized approach" and keep the power and flaps up. There will be plenty of runway ahead of you to slow down and land at any airport where that kind of speed is required on final.
- Don't fly to a major airline airport if there is a viable general aviation airport alternative. I know that it is our right to fly into any airport, and I cherish that privilege, but we can only keep it by not abusing it. General aviation is only a tiny component of the airport and airspace congestion problem, and we need to keep it that way.