How to DECODE a METAR report (part 1) / Explained by CAPTAIN JOE

Captain Joe

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    Dear friends and followers, welcome back to my channel!
    Firstly the METAR or Meteorological Aerodrome Report is simply a report of the current weather at an aerodrome or airport. They are usually produced automatically every half an hour using a number of weather sensors from around the airport and coded together for pilots to access before or during flight. They are used to show the current conditions but importantly do NOT contain any weather forecasting, except in some special cases. (They can however be used to see trends by looking for changes between two or three METARs. For example; let's say that London Heathrow has issued 4 METARs which show the temperature and QNH is decreasing and cloud cover is steadily increasing. We can see from the reports that the weather has been getting worse and therefore you can assume it will continue to get even worse making flying or landing at Heathrow more difficult.) For a more accurate and reliable weather forecast pilots use TAF’s which we’ll get more into in a future video.
    Nevertheless, as for reading METARs they can be very confusing to the untrained eye but I’ll break down the key points so that they make a little more sense even if you’ve never seen one before. So in this example we have a METAR issued at Auckland International Airport in New Zealand (February 21st at 0830 NZDT) which I've broken up into sections for us to decode. It is important to note here that this is a general guide as different countries will have slightly different ways of writing aviation reports like this.
    The first useful part of a METAR will be the airport code and time of issue, highlighted here. The 4 letter code NZAA is the ICAO code for Auckland Airport and the time code breaks down as a date and a time on that day to show when the report was issued. Note that the time of issue is always given in UTC which is why it is marked with a 'z' for Zulu Time. This means that this report was issued at 7:30pm zulu on the 20th, but is relevant to conditions in New Zealand at 8:30am on the 21st due to the 13 hour time difference, kapisch? Looking at an old report by mistake is an easy trap to fall into so always double check you have the right time and date when checking aviation weather. The next part, “AUTO” means the report was generated automatically by a weather computer using sensors from around the airport. Almost all airports which serve commercial airline flights will have METARS issued automatically every half hour.
    Thank you very much for your time! I hope you enjoy this video!
    Wishing you all the best!
    Your "Captain" Joe
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    күнү жарыяланды 8 ай мурун


    1. Ravi Kumar

      I came across .....33007KT 3000 FU FEW020.... What is FU ??

    2. nanying chen

      forecast is TAF.

    3. IX C 25 Tanushree Mandal

      I am patiently waiting for that day when Joe will have 4 stripes on his shoulder 🙃🙃

    4. Malik Abrar Hussain

      Hello Capt Joe. Wonderful job. Thx alot for the very beneficial videos. I am not sure whether U have covered the topics such as contents of the Takeoff reference page and Approach Reference page?? I mean important terms like Delta Vref, Approach climb gradient, Landing climb gradient and MCT etc etc. Regards. Capt Malik, pakistan

    5. Soham Saraf

      Thanks Joe! This was an informative video, though it is a bit confusing as well! Before seeing this video, I only knew the long form of METAR which is Meteorological Aerodrome Report, but I didn't know a thing of what's written in it. Same parts are easy to grasp, while some are a bit difficult and might take some time to master! But thanks for your help!🙏🙏🙏

    6. Jeanette Armstrong

      Omg I'm lazy but how I clicked on this video was so fast I was as fast as my heartbeat

    7. It’s MMarquez

      Ummm im still confused🧍‍♀️

    8. Maddie B

      I’m a meteorology major in the United States and I learned this the other day. SKC means the sky is completely clear and CLR means the sky is clear. These may sound like they mean the same thing about if you see SKC on a METAR that means the observation was made by a human while CLR means that it was made by the laser. The difference in these are because the laser can pick up a clear sky straight above it but there can be thick, dense clouds/fog around it that the laser won’t pick up. This could be different in other countries but that’s how it is in America. I’m hoping to go into aviation meteorology in the next few years so stuff like this is very interesting to me.

    9. Sapphire 1

      My dad has the same type of reponsibilty as a taxi driver.

    10. Silvia Kathia Pazos Hernández

      Captain Joe be carefull someone are using your photos on instagram for cheating and scam and it's sad you are a very correct person, the person say that your name is Phillip Campbell Johnnson Smith. If you want i can give you more datails because he contact me and was very suspect so i try to collect more information. Am so sorry for telling you this 😢

    11. Crunchy FARTS Gam3r

      Hey, first time seeing your videos, was wanting to get into air traffic control, how do I go about taking my METAR test? Specifically in missouri

    12. Pilot Ulli

      Hey Joe, thank you very much for explaining METAR in this detail. I am curious about the history of the METAR and how to get it (today and in the past). Maybe I'll make my own video about it.

    13. Dirk van den Berg

      The most complicated subject so far.

    14. Kasun Munasinghe

      This video helped me alot when I study Aviation Weather part in class..😍👍❤️

    15. Hossein Askari

      Great video

    16. charu mathi

      what equal to (=) means capt.joe ?

    17. Singaravelu

      @Captain Joe What is table top runway and explain about that. Kindly make one video for that Thank you

      1. ZK-APA

        Singaravelu table top runway is basically just a runway over a plateau.

    18. Eric Chang

      After completing flight training in 2018, I almost forget "seeing is true" rule, thank you captain joe :D

    19. Christian Barnay

      The aviation history has a fair share of crashes due to conversion errors, and we still have consistently inconsistent sources of information like the wind direction that is given in magnetic degrees by both instruments and ATC but in true degrees on the METAR. This is ridiculous.

    20. Username

      Why is this a thing 😭😭😭 Can't it just be written normally? At least let us have conversion charts

      1. ZK-APA

        Username because this is a lot of information, just condensed. Yes it looks daunting, but once you're used to it, its really simple to read.

    21. Siama Ch

      What is your favourite WW2 US, UK, German and Japan fighters ?

    22. The Aircraft Aviation #FreeCoco

      anybody realise he doesn't have real plane models this time on the right?

    23. Son Nguyen kid

      hello from New Zealand eveyone

    24. Ritesh

      in suriname METARs are produced manualy

    25. Reactor Four

      I’m so used to pressure in millibars, because that’s what it is most isobaric maps that I’ve seen.

    26. Boy Vloger

      I’m from Auckland New Zealand 🇳🇿 also your vids are the best love then keep up the good work👍

    27. MedEL

      Couldn't find the link to the pdf booklet !

    28. sonal patel

    29. wweraw1123

      When he uses KPIT. The airport you fly out of in real life and in sims all the time.

    30. Will Lennox

      I wonder if Joe has ever flown his own merch

    31. Sahil Bhere

      Thanks sir... Sir ur look is similar to Scott Lang of Avengers Endgame.... Love u sir

    32. Bernd Heiden

      Wow, this is far too complicated and with far too many exceptions (true / magnetic, hectopascal / mercury), not to mention the ancient metric / imperial mixup, aggravated by generally using naval units (knots / miles) and then. „hey, surprise, surprise“ now we use „statute miles“. In an environment where ANY mixup could possibly be desasterous, this is not tolerable. I‘m not saying, that in the best of all possibilities it is not possible to cope with any illogical regulation (in German medical system I had to cope with totally idiotic regulations all my active professional life) but with modern technology we should be able to come up with a solution that will give the absolute true position of an aircraft (latitude, longitude and hight) combined with a database of terrain and restrictions to take the guesswork out of navigation!

      1. ZK-APA

        Bernd Heiden thing is that the system is designed to be the same for everyone in aviation. Whether you're flying a small Cessna or a big jumbo, these are standard, and once you get used to it, its not that difficult. PS in airliners, the database and GPS concept is already there. The ground based navigation (vor dme etc) is more to verify that the GPS data being used is the same as per the ground signals.

    33. Michal Wilkowski

      I am 9 but i still watch you to have a big brain


      I love your videos! Great resource to complement my studying! Question, what if temperature is below 0°c, would a ‐ symbol would appear just before the temprature digit? Thanks in advance, greetings from México City!


        @Tevildo thanks for the response!

      2. Tevildo

        ARTURO - For negative temperatures, the code uses "M". So, "M04/M07" means temperature -4C, dew point -7C.

    35. Joshua Hall a.k.a. Controlla

      Great video. ☺️

    36. Wing Hong Chan

      I did not know that metars are different in other countries

    37. Philiae

      @Captain Joe what if the QNH in like 999.5? I‘m glider pilot at an airfield in Germany , which has these situation. Thanks

      1. Philiae

        @ZK-APA ok thanks I don‘t care so much about this as a glider pilot, so thanks

      2. ZK-APA

        Phil Star qnh in such cases will be rounded up, so 999.5 will be 1000

    38. Elli P

      I love it when Captain Joe gets all... technical. :-)

    39. Philippus Cesena

      Thank you!

    40. Anony Mous

      16 KM? I thought it was 1.6KM

      1. ZK-APA

        LLEaglsuite 16km for 10sm

    41. CACTUSPOWER Vandewoestijn

      What is the NOSIG= at the end?

      1. Mike P

        It means "no significant change".

    42. Bartek F.

      Cpt Joe.. What about CAVOK?

    43. DiveNL

      5:51 1940-45

    44. Nikos Manoli

      You always cap jeo ❤😍

    45. Reactor Four

      I thought the pressure would be in millibars.

    46. scose

      What is the instrument shown while you are talking about visibility?

    47. Prince Chanakya

      Hii captain joe can u make a video on " why does runways looks bumpy?" .

    48. Daniel Fan

      hey captain joe, can you do a review on the movie “7500” on amazon prime?

    49. Ghadeer Tanbor

      Hey man just letting you know your an actual life saver and I appreciate your help a lot I am a 14 year old kid just trying to get my dream job and you’ve helped me from 2019 thank you

    50. sauger345

      Is there an problem, when i use the remove before flight as an aditional Tag on an Bag?

    51. Air Strike

      Hey joe what happen when a plastic bag go into the plane engine

    52. Barry The Gamerz

      Part 2?

    53. Tarpan Kumar

      how many business class seats can be added in a350 1000 in a single class configuration.. pls answer it..

    54. Hugo Wong

      oh hong kong international airport (VHHH) LOL

    55. Antony Jeyaraj

    56. Aircraft Expert

    57. Pilot Ulli

      Thank you Joe for this refresher! 👍 Didn't know the wind is in true degrees. My literature doesn't mention that. 😮

    58. saqib muneer

      Captain joe u r videos r awesome as u r such a sweetheart

    59. Girish pai

      Boycott air Asia #flyingbeast army Sir what do you think about this AirAsia controversy in India where piolets are forced to land on flap 3 landing even in unsafe places to land

    60. Vikash Patel

      The model planes😭😭😭

    61. HauntedShadowsLegacy

      3:19 "21th" um... Joe?

      1. Klaro3001

        I think he's German, Like me

    62. Malcolm

      NZCH is 2nmat 300deg from me now.

    63. AB flyer

      Captain Joe what are the meaning of the letters associated with the airport. Like London Heathrow airport is EGLL and Frankfurt airport is EDDF??

      1. AB flyer

        @ZK-APA ok Thanks a lot👍👍

      2. ZK-APA

        AB flyer it’s already pre allocated. So you can just search it up.

      3. AB flyer

        @ZK-APA ok thanks but how do you know the letter for the region?

      4. ZK-APA

        AB flyer first or first two letters give the region name. Last two (or last three) is for the airport (could be reference to the city or the airport name itself) Eg in your example for London heathrow, EG is for the UK and LL is for London. Similarly for Frankfurt, ED is for the Germany region and DF is Frankfurt There are other examples too, each with unique meanings. Eg: LA international is KLAX where K is for the USA region and LAX is the IATA code. Or Delhi airport which is VIDP where VI is Indian region (more specifically North India), D is Delhi and P is Palam (the region where the airport is)

    64. Riyaz Samnani

      Hello captain joe my son has not yet heard anything from you as he have mailed it on your website he found out online he is a very big fan of your just 11years old a have a ambition to be commercial pilot he watch’s you’re Video and loves that we will be so great full to hear from you thank you so much he always get inspiration from you his name is Armaan one again thank you very much on his behalf

    65. Stephen Britton

      METARS - important back when data was sent via slow radio link and every character counted. Today's modern data links can transmit huge amounts of data in the time it used to take to send a few characters. What I'm getting at, is there is NO reason that METARs cannot be in plain language in this day and age.

      1. Stephen Britton

        @ZK-APA True, however I believe in the NTSB has made it a recommendation after a miss read METAR was part of a crash a few years back if memory serves.

      2. ZK-APA

        Stephen Britton yes, but in a metar format more information is condensed, which is easily identifiable (metar understanding is a skill which every pilot gets used to) Plain language may be easier to read, but it would be too long.

    66. Jackson Parker

      Hey Captain Joe. The day you did a live stream I wasn’t home to watch it, and I’m a school student who is willing to become a pilot. So please can you make another live stream for us “future pilots” to ask you questions about aviation....Thank you ❤️

    67. Antitheus

      Please can you make a video about the jet engine vortices

    68. Alan Grant

      Cool to see my home town Auckland and hear Zed!! Here’s the AKL METAR online. Might be useful for boating since the airport is right on one of the 3 harbours in Auckland 👍

      1. Alan Grant

    69. gulalai afridi

      i am in grade 10 and complete college after 2 years. what am i gonna do then? shall i apply for aviation school?

      1. gulalai afridi

        ok thankyou :)

      2. ZK-APA

        gulalai afridi wait does now. See how the market is 2 years later, then decide.

    70. Looey Barndog

      How muck is the key ring?

    71. souocara38

      Do pilots normally use metars in this form or do they get the information from a service that translates it into something much easier to understand?

      1. Mike P

        Of course if you see a Metar first time in your life it looks complicated but when you actually use them you can very fast to learn to read them.

      2. ZK-APA

        souocara38 they have the atis as well, which in verbal form is in simple english

    72. Michael

      I have been taught "if its written, it must be true" when it comes to remembering wind direction true or magnetic.

    73. Captain Ammar

      You are my idol and my coach,im only 14 but my courage to become pilot as big as Mriya,Antonov

    74. Kaz Boy

      why there is no ground effect vehicle airliner??

    75. André

      Are u german?

    76. alex xu

      Or you can download windy or AeroWeather and get a decoded version 😂

    77. Remix Vibe

      can a plane refuel in the air while flying?

      1. Mike P

        Military aircraft have this system and they can do it.

    78. A7MED UMAIR


    79. ST_ pointeau

      Hello im french and i would like you put french lyrics on this video . And i love your channel 😁 continue like this

    80. Minh Gamer Official

      3 MCDU in cockpit

    81. Rohit Nambi

      Can you please explain me about units in aviation.🤨

    82. DCDFM18 BF

      can you fly a a350 and a 777-300er like you fly two 747

      1. ZK-APA

        DCDFM18 BF nope, all of them have a separate type rating

    83. Ratnadeep Kar

      Captain Joe please react to Flying Beast latest video( ) He got expelled from his pilot job...Can you please take a stand with him...I would love to see that...Thank you for everything Joe.

    84. Hemangi Dandekar

      Hi Joe can you make a video on flap 3 and flap 4 landing of aircraft and explain how fuel is saved by this. Thank you from India

      1. ZK-APA

        Hemangi Dandekar in flap 3 landing, there is less drag, so less thrust is needed to maintain flight. Therefore fuel burnt is less. Flaps full has more drag, hence uses slightly more fuel. But it gives better landing performance.


      Just learn from FSX guys

    86. SIMON GOL

      super likeee

    87. Peter Wainaina

      Have learned a lot from Captain Joe. Am a layman but I think if given a plane I will have it airborne. Keep up Joe.


      It takes a special kind of teacher to take a confusing subject and make it truly understandable. Thanks captain Joe.

    89. Pennymurp

      Thanks so much Cpt Joe!

    90. II SmileyBun28 II

      I missed your videos. They remind me of the good times when I would be in the airport figuring out if a plane is an Airbus or a Boeing...

    91. Marc van der Linden

      Again great video! Just a shame you have abandoned the real aircrastmodels in the background, replacing them by digital pictures :(. Btw. I remember back in the 80's the atis here at Maastricht-Aachen airport (EHBK) was read by a person, and recorded (than still on tape I guess), to broadcast continouusly. And back then the clouds were reported in octa's. That changed later into the word as you described them here. Tnks.

    92. SwordQuake

      This is waaay too overcomplicated, it should be standardized to be the same for all countries.

      1. Felix Beutin

        Practice makes perfect.. Personally id love aviation to be completely metric but eh i can work with imperial

      2. Craig Hunter

        I agree but good luck getting America, Russia and China to standardise.

    93. Cruel Victron

      I always learn so much for your videos

    94. Noemie Rouchon

      Another great video, thank you cap’ you’re the best! CAN’T WAIT for the next one ;)

    95. Justin

      SO HARD Q.Q BEFORE Cpt. JOE ^.^

    96. Science Pasanga

      What looks like aircraft key..?

    97. IFly Aviation

      The airplanes besides the screen actually shows his journey to the cockpit

      1. ZK-APA

        IFly Aviation almost yea lol. Just missing the porter and the king air

    98. Migo Del Rosario

      Thank you Capt. Joe ❤️

    99. IraMcCLoL

      Hey Captain Joe, As someone who works in the Aviation Industry, I love seeing your videos!! I do have a big question tho. When I preplan my flights, I use OTIS (Operations Terminal Information System) at Southwest Airlines. Once i get my Pax, Fuel, and Bags on board. I sign and send the information to the pilots. And then they get it in the plane. When you get it on board and as your Operations/Gate Agent for Version 1, what is it that you see on board?

    100. Hussien Alsafi