A pilot logbook, one of the most important accessories for a pilot. But which one should you get? Finding the correct logbook is not that easy as there are so many of them on the market. When I started my training I received a logbook from my flight school and I still use it today. However, I honestly regret the fact that I did not buy another one in the beginning of my flying career, simply because it is waaay too big.
A lot of people asked me which pilot logbook I have and my thoughts on other logbooks. Here’s my opinion and guide to not making the same mistakes as I did.
I think the perfect paper logbook should be small and easy to bring along. I also suggest that, at least until you unfreeze your ATPL, you should keep track of your flight hours in a paper logbook. That doesn’t mean you can’t use an app or program to log your flight hours but it might be best to do so as a back up. The reason for advising against an app at the beginning of a professional pilot career is because you need to add a lot of signatures to flights while in flight training and PICUS programs. Adding those to a digital logbook can be inconvenient and if it crashes you lose all the important data. Besides you need to prove you fulfill all the requirements in order to unfreeze the ATPL at some point.
The licensing authority and/or examiner needs to verify the accumulated experience so you would have to print all of those pages anyway. Still want to use a digital logbook? Take a look at LogTen Pro or mccPILOTLOG.
One of the most used pilot logbooks is this one: The Jeppesen Professional Pilot Master Logbook in black or brown. A very strong and durable logbook. Adding flights is easy and convenient, for flight training but also for your professional career later on. I see many colleagues walking around with this logbook and they all seem happy with the size. Talking about sizes… 12 x 9 x 1 inches is what you can expect.
The best one, the one I wish I bought a couple of years ago, is this pilot logbook: The Standard Pilot Logbook in blue or black. This logbook is super small, thin and surprisingly light. Exactly the thing you need when traveling around a lot, especially on charter flights or in business aviation. It is also one of the cheapest on the market. The size: 4.5” x 0.5” x 7.8”.
Only interested in a private pilot license? Sure you don’t want to make it your profession? Really? In that case investing in a relative expensive book is not necessary at all. Go for an easy and small logbook to write your hours in. The Jeppesen PPL Pilot Logbook would be perfect for flying in small airplanes or in this case it’s even worth considering to start with a digital logbook straightaway. Size: 8″ x 5 1/4”.
So in short: Just flying for recreational purposes? Get yourself a cheap logbook or a digital one. In all other cases, use a paper pilot logbook at least until you unfreeze the ATPL. Use a digital logbook as a back up, that way you can also easily make a transition to only logging flight hours digitally once you have unfrozen your ATPL. Buy a small and convenient logbook instead of a bulky one. My logbook is really way to big at it’s quite annoying sometimes. I even made a video in which I address this, check it out here.
So you probably have an idea about logbooks now. Lets not forget about the aviation headset, sunglasses and books shall we? Let me now if you have anything to add in the comments below 🙂
14 thoughts on “Pilot Logbook – This is the one you should get!”
14 years, tried every single electronic logbook, all of them are various versions of trash. MCC was okay, upgraded to crewlounge, completely lost the plot. I made a template in word, got it printed and bound to log stuff exactly how I like it.
I ended up using a custom made Excel spreadsheet (but one that is really good to is Excel Pilot Logbook), that I keep adapting to my needs if needed. It is the only one that is customizable, cross platform and subscription-free!!!
I just started using Complete Aviation as they have everything I need in one app. Roster import, logbook, weather info and notams. The app also has a smart auto log thing that saves me so much time. Can also export to pdf for future interviews. I Imported my current logbook over from LogTen Pro and worked a treat!
I am so excited that I found your site. My son is a Junior in High School and has been wanting to be a pilot since he was very young. We are starting our research into schools etc. This site is very helpful.
Hey Michelle,for the professional pilot logbook,who can use it?can ppl student pilots use it as well or is it better to use when you start hour building or when you start working for an airline ?
I have been using My Pilot Log, a new one to the market which just released in 2020. Very simple to use and can be used on most devices. Only £10 Per Year and offer most of the features that others do at a fraction of the price. EASA and FAA and UKCAA, very new so threr should be a lot more features to come
When considering a digital pilot logbook, it is good to check out RB Logbook as well. It’s a very solid logbook with some innovative features (ACARS scan for example!) at a reasonable price.
RB Logbook is complete trash, and a knockoff of Logten Pro. ACARS scan takes longer than me running a shutdown checklist, doing a full walk around, and back in time to watch it still get my information WRONG.
When is the best time to but the logbook?
Like when did you but it? Do we need to track all of our flying hrs even during fight training?
Hi Jazib, I recommend getting a logbook as soon as you start flying 😉 During your flight training you definitely need to log all of your hours.
pilot is one of the best and honorable job and you write useful knowledge about it so thanks for it
Hi! Is there a professional logbook that can be used to log both FAA & EASA standards? For example FAA ususlly do not put the time, but only the flight duration, and they log the x-ctry or simulated instrument, that is not logged in EASA standards. It could be useful to show some pictures of the internal pages of the logbooks you mentioned here, at least to do a direct comparison.
Hello Michelle How do You do ?
Let me share one of an article Which I read on a magazine of a University. There was an interview with an officer Who adjust the flight hours of Pilots in an Airline Company. He stated that The maximum flying hours for a pilot is 35 Hours for a week and it is against law to exceed this 35 Hours Limit. And they ( The Management Boards of Airline Companies ) adjust the pilots flight hours by the help of Computer Programmes and They avoid Pilots to exceed the flying hours limit Which is 35 hours. I think Pliotbook is like a Transcript of a Pilot. Doesn’t it ? Because It is asked When You want to transfer from one Airline Company to another.So You can get this Datas from your predecessor Airline Company’s Personel department When You will move your career to another Airline Company just as getting your Transcript from a University after Graduation. Ofcourse If I were a Pilot ofcourse I would keet my flight datas regulary on Pilot logbook just for having accurate information and having good memorials of my whole flights during my Career in order to look after sometime and at my retirement and show them to my family as my memorials after I retire too.
Kindly regards to You. Good Luck and God bless You.
Hi Omer, a pilot is required to keep track of the flight hours for many reasons. And you are right about switching from one airline to the other, you need to show them your logbook so they can review your experience. The logbook can also serve as a memory to interesting flights but the purpose of a logbook is to keep track of your experience.
Some moments you have to present your logbook: During check rides (exams), while flying as pilot in command under supervision (signature required), when you finish flight training, when applying for a license, when applying for a new job. etc.
Have a nice day! Michelle