Aviation is full of mnemonics to help you remember all sorts of important information. Below is a list to help you along.

A TOMATO FLAMES The required instruments for VFR flight.

  • A – altimeter
  • T – tachometer
  • O – oil temperature gauge
  • M – manifold pressure gauge (if applicable to the airplane)
  • A – airspeed indicator
  • T – temperature gauge (if applicable for liquid cooled engines)
  • O – oil pressure gauge
  • F – fuel gauges
  • L – landing gear position indicator (if applicable to the airplane)
  • A – anti collision lights
  • M – magnetic compass
  • E – ELT (emergency location transmitter)
  • S – seat belts

CRAFT This is the format in which you will get (and read back) your IFR clearance.

  • C – clearance
  • R – route
  • A – altitude
  • F – frequency
  • T – transponder code

DECIDE This mnemonic is essential for safe flying. DECIDE is part of your aeronautical decision making process and helps you get through emergency situations and other unexpected situations that you don’t want to be in.

  • D – detect that something has changed around you
  • E – estimate if you need to do something to react to that change
  • C – choose the outcome you want to have based on the change that occurred
  • I – identify the action you need to take to get to that outcome
  • D – do the action
  • E – evaluate whether or not the action had the desired outcome

I’M SAFE This will help you to decide if you are fit to be the pilot in command of an aircraft. If you answer “yes” to any of the following, you probably should not be flying.

  • I – illness… Am I feeling ill today? Am I sick? Do I have a head cold? Do I have a stomach bug?
  • M – medication… Am I currently taking any medication that I should not be flying while taking? Have I recently taken medication that requires time to get through my system? Am I or have I recently taken any medication that can negatively affect my mental ability?
  • S – stress… Are there any external factors stressing me out? Is my job stressing me out? Is my family live stressing me out? Did a recent life even cause stress?
  • A – alcohol… Was my last alcoholic drink less than 8 hours ago? Am I experiencing any affects from alcohol that was consumed prior to that?
  • F – fatigue… Am I tired – physically or mentally?
  • E – eating & emotion… Has it been a while since I last eat something? Is there something in my life that has emotionally unbalanced me?