Simon Calder

Simon Calder’s career in travel started at Gatwick Airport, where he cleaned aircraft for Laker Airways and later worked as a security officer. He became The Independent’s Travel Correspondent in 1994, and is known as “the Man Who Pays His Way” because he does not accept free travel facilities. He writes across the Independent titles, as well as for the Evening Standard.

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An Airbus A320 passenger aircraft

AirAsia flight QZ8501 crash: Airlines had been warned about over-reliance on automation 16 months ago

Report from US safety regulators expressed 'concerns about degradation of pilot knowledge and skills'

Emergency vehicles attend to the Virgin Atlantic Boeing 747 at Gatwick airport in West Sussex in London

Virgin Atlantic Flight VS43 Q&A: How close did the aircraft come to disaster?

Simon Calder answers the questions raised by the drama played out in the skies above Gatwick airport

Family members of passengers onboard the missing Malaysian air carrier AirAsia flight QZ8501 react after watching news reports showing an unidentified body floating in the Java sea, inside the crisis-centre set up at Juanda International Airport in Surabaya

AirAsia flight QZ8501 crash: Investigators piecing together the final fatal minutes

Will evidence lend weight to possibility that pilots lost control when they encountered fast-evolving tropical storm?

Personnel from Singapore's Air Force on board a C-130 Hercules during a search and rescue operation for the missing AirAsia flight QZ8501

Missing AirAsia flight QZ8501: Anger grows over flight tracking lessons not learnt as Indonesian authorities conclude the plane is on the seabed

Authorities in Indonesia admit that flight QZ8501 is likely to have sunk to the bottom of the Java Sea. Now some are again questioning the effectiveness of modern flight tracking

Still from a video showing sparks from under the aircraft as it touches down

Virgin Atlantic Flight VS43: Gatwick in chaos after emergency plane landing disrupts more than 10,000 travellers

The Boeing 747, flying to Las Vegas, was forced into a 'non-standard landing procedure' after flight crew discovered a problem with the landing gear

Virgin Atlantic flight VS43 lands safely in 'non-standard' landing at Gatwick after faulty undercarriage discovered

Boeing 747 was due to travel from Gatwick to Las Vegas

Relatives await news of the missing AirAsia flight QZ8501 at Juanda airport in Surabaya, Indonesia

Missing AirAsia flight QZ8501: Fears for 162 people on board as jet disappears from radar

Frantic scenes at airport as relatives are told plane is missing, while British-Malaysian owner of airline describes incident as 'his worst nightmare'

Air Asia boss Tony Fernandes, left, with the boss of Indonesia AirAsia, Sunu Widyatmoko in Surabaya

Missing AirAsia flight QZ8501: Don't rush to conclusions about this latest tragedy

The fact that the three worst disasters of 2014 befell airlines based in Malaysia is nothing more than awful coincidence

The vessel Norman Atlantic is seen in this photo taken on September 26, 2014

Norman Atlantic ferry fire Q and A: What has happened to the vessel, and what do we know about its evacuation?

Simon Calder Q&A: What is the vessel, and what do we know about it?

A Malaysian woman watches AirAsia Airbus A320 airplanes parked on the tarmac at the low-cost carrier Kuala Lumpur International Airport 2 (KLIA2) in Sepang on 28 December 2014

AirAsia flight QZ8501 missing: Q&A - what is known about the flight and what possible causes will be investigated?

The aircraft is the third belonging to airlines based in Malaysia that has been lost in 2014. Is that significant?

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