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Airline Timekeeping


Mar 15, 2004
Fountain Hills, AZ
Push time is the time the tug driver starts pushing the aircraft back from the gate. Most airline pilots get paid starting at "push time".

The "push" generallyoccurs shortly after the cabin doorsare closed and the jetwayis backed away from aircraft. Now here's the technicality: Most aircraft automatic time recording sytems (ACARS) record "push time" as the time the parking brake is released after all the doors are closed, NOT when the aircraft actually starts moving.

So, most airline pilots start getting paid the moment the parking brake is released (after the main cabin doors are closed), whether or not the aircraft has started moving or not.

This is because, even though the aircraft is not moving, the crew is now "at work",responsible forthings like evacuating the aircraft using the slides in case of a fire, obtaining push clearances, ensuring the main cabin is secure, etc.