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If you're one of the nearly 43.6 million people who plans to travel this Thanksgiving weekend, you might want to pay attention to what airline pilot and air travel columnist Patrick Smith has to say.

Smith, who runs the blog Ask the Pilot, joined Boston Public Radio's Edgar B. Herwick III on Monday to talk travel advice, and give us the inside scoop on the airline industry. Smith's foremost piece of travel advice: Get to the airport early. Don't get stuck in a two hour TSA line. Plan ahead and leave earlier.

Do full flights make it harder to fly airplanes? Smith, who has been a pilot since 1990s, said in larger planes the entire weight of the passengers and their luggage might only add up to 10 percent of the total weight of the plane. A full flight has little effect on how a pilot would fly a larger plane, but smaller planes

Is there a pilot shortage on the horizon? Yes and no. Major carriers will never really have a problem recruiting pilots, but the regional airline industry will have a tougher time because they don't offer much in terms of salary, working conditions, or job security, Smith said. Starting salaries for pilots of regional airplanes are around $20,000, and the pool of applicants is drying up.