“My soul is in the sky”
Hi, My Name is Sam Chui and I am one of the world’s most followed aviation bloggers; I am also a world renowned content creator (vlogger).
I enjoy anything related to aviation and travel. My fascination with airplanes stemmed from visiting Kai Tak airport as a teenager. I have spent some of the happiest times of my life in the air. It is that precious feeling of being above the clouds, the romance and the curiosity of flying which developed my passion towards aviation and travel.
I have now travelled to over 100 countries, flown over 2,000 flights and logged over 3 million miles around the globe in the pursuit of my lifelong passion. I contribute aviation commentary regularly to many global media outlets such as CNN, Bloomberg News and a range of aviation related media. I am also the author of 4 books published in 2008, 2012, 2014 and 2020.
Aviation & Travel is my Life!
I have been able to travel to amazing places, in a style I would never have thought possible; I travel the world in First and Business Class most of the time. I am passionate and fearless when it comes to my favourite subject, flying. My reviews are independent with my own views. English is my second language; I apologise if the grammar isn’t up to scratch on some of my reviews.
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For media query, please contact Sam here.
Sam in the Press
- First Place, Photo Competition 2003 Airliners International Convention, Colombus, Ohio, USA
- First Place, Photo Competition 2004 Airliners International Convention, Los Angeles, California, USA
- Runner Up, Photo Competition 2006 National Aviation Press Club, Australia
- Runner Up, Photo Competition 2009 National Aviation Press Club, Australia
Q: Where do you live?
A: I think the sky is my first home! My home base is in Dubai, UAE. I used to have a day job in the UAE and after quitting my day job, I continue to be based in the UAE.
Q: How do you monetise and support your travel?
A: I am a content creator and blogger. The better content I create, the more advertising income I earn from YouTube and Google Adsense. I also earn from affiliate marketing income and sponsorships on tech and travel related products. This supports my flight and travel costs.
Q: Do you take sponsored flights or pay for your own ticket?
A: I pay for 75% of my own travel out of my own pocket, in cash or using miles. I do take sponsor flights from time to time to create exclusive content. These may include delivery flights, invite only flights, VIP flights and special event flights.
Q: Do you accept sponsorship?
A: Many companies approach me for sponsorship, I’ve taken a few that I believe have the right purpose which can benefit my audience as well as supporting myself. These include travel accessories, VPN’s, travel luggage brands etc. Sponsorship will always be declared.
Q: How can I start a blog or vlog like you do?
A: You should always focus on the quality of the content. Focus on good content and aim for consistency, your presence will be noticed. There is lot of hard work and dedication behind the success of each blogger/vlogger. Take a small step each time towards an ambitious goal.
Q: Your comments on videos are generally positive. Why you rarely give negative reviews?
A: I have always given feedback in a constructive manner (Pros and Cons) consistently over the years. I focus on reviewing the product and stating the facts, instead of focusing on any variable/subjective elements which differ on each flight. I do not make extreme sensational remarks or put twists on my reviews.
Q: What camera equipment do you use for your vlog?
A: You can find my camera list here.
Timeline and highlight of my life
1980 – I was born in Beijing, China. In the mid-80s, I moved to Hong Kong with my parents. I flew on the Chinese Air Force Vickers Viscount, CAAC Trident and Dragonair Tristar.
1993 – I started flying extensively on my vacation and visiting over 20 countries, became an elite member of United Airlines Mileage Plus.
1997 – I moved to Sydney, Australia for high school and university. I continued to travel to more countries each year.
1998 – I got my first car, and drove to the airport as the first destination.
1999 – I started this website, originally call SamChuiPhotos.com
2004 – On my first trip to Russia, I flew with IL-62, IL-86, An-24, Yak-40, Tu-134, Tu-154 aircraft.
2005 – I was invited to Toulouse, France to observe the maiden flight of Airbus A380.
2007 – I flew on the world inaugural A380 flight of Singapore Airlines in Singapore Airlines Suite.
2009 – I flew on a Lockheed Constellation “Connie” L1049G!
2010 – Landed on a glacier with Ski Plane in South Island of New Zealand.
2011 – I relocated to Abu Dhabi, UAE and married in the same year. I visited the most dangerous airport in the world, Lukla in Nepal.
2012 – Flew on the last ever flight of The B747 Singapore Airlines from Hong Kong to Singapore.
2012 – I visited North Korea and flew classic Soviet planes with Air Koryo and went on to visit 3 more times!
2013 – I flew to the North Pole on a special chartered “Polarflug” by airberlin. I also flew on the longest commercial flight in the world from Singapore to Newark with Singapore Airlines.
2014 – Flew on the Southern Polar flight from Sydney nonstop to Buenos Aires. I also visited Somalia and flew on a classic DC-9 in Africa. I also flew on my first B747-8 with Lufthansa in First Class
2015 – On-board the world’s inaugural A350 commercial flight with Qatar Airways from Doha to Frankfurt. I also became the organizer of the highly successful Iran Aviation Tours.
2016 – I also attended the first air show in North Korea at Wonsan. Flew on the Soviet vintage fleet IL-18, IL-62, IL-76, Tu-134, Tu-154 of Air Koryo during the air show.
05-08 May 2017, organised a South African vintage aviation tour, flew DC-3, DC-4, Beech-18 and Boeing 727 VIP in South Africa with 50 tour participants.
01 July 2017, flew The Residence of Etihad Airways A380 on inaugural A380 flight to Paris from Abu Dhabi.
05 Aug 2017, flew restored IL-14 low over Veiliky Novogrod near Saint Petersburg and inside Romanian made chase plane IAR-823 on Air to Air photo mission.
29 Oct 2017, flew the last United B747-400 International flight from Incheon to San Francisco on UA892.
02 Nov 2017, passed 3,000,000 flown miles on Singapore Airlines flight SQ26, A380-800 from Singapore to Frankfurt to attend Emirates 100th A380 delivery ceremony in Hamburg.
13 Dec 2017, took part in the new Singapore Airlines A380 delivery ferry flight from Toulouse to Singapore.
27 Jan 2018, flew Emirates new First Class “Game Changer” fully enclosed Suite from Dubai to Brussels.
21 Feb 2018, took part in the world’s first A350-1000 delivery to launch customer Qatar Airways from Toulouse to Doha with spectacular low fly pass over Doha.
01 March 2018, flew a private Dassault Aviation Falcon 8X from Abu Dhabi to Paris.
26 March 2018, took part in the world’s first B787-10 delivery to launch customer Singapore Airlines. Flew nearly 24 hours from Boeing South Carolina in Charleston to Singapore via Osaka.
29 May 2018, took part in Delta Air Lines new uniform launch on-board a fashion flight from Atlanta to Minneapolis to LA with fashion designer Zac Posen.
19 June 2018, took part in the delivery flight of Cathay Pacific’s first A350-1000 from Toulouse to Hong Kong.
27 June 2018, took part in the delivery flight of Oman Air’s first tri-class B787-9 from Seattle Paine Field to Muscat.
12 July 2018, took part in the last A350-900 delivery flight of Malaysia Airlines from Toulouse to Kuala Lumpur all the way in the cockpit.
14 July 2018, took part in the first A350-900 delivery flight of Philippine Airlines from Toulouse to Manila.
12 Sep 2018, flew non-stop on Qantas B787-9 between UK (London) and Australia (Perth) for the first time.
09 Oct 2018, flew Embraer latest Executive Jet Praetor 500 from Punta Cana to Ft Lauderdale.
12 Oct 2018, flew the World’s Longest Flight on Singapore Airlines A350-900ULR, SQ21 from EWR to SIN in 17 hour 30 minutes over the North Pole. (Polar Route)
12 April 2019, flew Bhutan Airlines A319 jumpseat landing into Paro, Bhutan from Kathmandu. Saw 4 of 5 highest mountain enroute.
17 May 2019, flew Pilatus Aircraft company PC-24 “The Super Versatile Jet” over Switzerland with test pilot Matthew Hartkop. We performed air work such as stalls, 1G, 2G Banking, touch and go, missed approach and a spectacular landing into Gstaad (Sannen) airport.
31 May 2019, travelled on Sichuan Airlines A319 to Daocheng-Yading; the World Highest Airport at 4,411m (14,472 ft)
01 June 2019, flew the first made in China jet; ARJ21-700 from Chengdu to Linfen and back.
19 June 2019, first time flew Bombardier CS100 of Swiss Int’l Airlines from Paris to Zurich.
01 July 2019, double A380 inaugural on the same day. Flew The World’s Shortest A380 on Emirates from Dubai to Muscat to Dubai and The Residence of Etihad Airways inaugural A380 flight to Incheon from Abu Dhabi.
06 July 2019, Opera de Paris performed a ballet in the air on Air France flight AF117 from Shanghai to Paris.
02 Aug 2019, flew B737-200Combi of NOLINOR Aviation to Meadowbank Gold Mine, first time landing on gravel strip.
05 Aug 2019, flew the inaugural British Airways A350-1000 flight from London to Madrid.
02 Sep 2019, flew Qatar Airways Cargo B747-8F from Hong Kong to Doha on a video filming project.
11 Sep 2019, flew ANA New Business Class “The Room” on a one month old B777-300/ER from Tokyo to London.
04 Oct 2019, traveled alone on a Private VIP B747-SP, N7477S from Hamilton, Ontario, Canada to Marana, Pinal Air Park, AZ, USA.
03 Nov 2019, traveled on the last ever EL AL B747-400 from Rome to Tel Aviv. We drew a “B747” at 10,000ft over the Med in Cyprus airspace.
08 Nov 2019, traveled on Orbis Flying Eye Hospital MD-10-30 from Dubai DWC to Accra, Ghana via Jeddah. Documented Orbis operation in Ghana.
14 Nov 2019, flew on Qantas Project Sunrise research flight from London non-stop to Sydney in 19 hours and 19 minutes on QF7879.
29 Nov 2019, flew on a one off historic Emirates A380 with Most Nationalities on-board (145) around the UAE to celebrate UAE National Day and UAE Year of Tolerance.
27 Jan 2020, flew on Volga Dnepr An-124 Ruslan Cargo Transporter from East Midlands To Toulouse.
16 July 2020, Solo flying as a student pilot in Sling 2 from Torrance, Ca, USA to Torrance, Ca USA in 3 traffic patterns.
17 Sep 2020, flew on Antonov Airlines An-22 Antei from Leipzig to Bremen and back
9 Oct 2020, flew on newly refurbished private jet B767 BBJ “SkyLady”
7 Nov 2020, celebrated my 40th birthday onboard Emirates A380 from Dubai to Cairo and back.
17 Dec 2020, flew on the retirement flight of Hi Fly “Save the Coral Reef” A380 from Beja, Portugal to Toulouse. The plane drew a heart shape in the sky. I was the only passenger onboard.
My Travel Map
I have now flown on a total of 240+ airlines with over 180 aircraft types.
My favourite aircraft is The Boeing 747. I’ve flown on her over 350 times across all The B747 models and variants.
Below is where I have flown in the world so far…
For media query, please contact Sam here.