Pilot’s Guide: 10 Airport Signs and Markings

Did you ever think that aviation is not as different from driving a car as we think? There is no doubt that it is significantly more complex and demands extensive knowledge and experience. However, regarding air navigation, there are indeed some similarities to be discovered.


Although they may not look like your average road signs or markings, they serve the same purpose at their core. Taxiway signs and markings are essential for ensuring the safety of aircraft traffic, similar to road signs for vehicles. They provide clear guidance to pilots as they maneuver their way to and from runways. To ensure safety, all airport signs and markings are standardized internationally by the ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation). In the following, we sum up what you need to know about them and present some of the most important ones as well. Let’s get going!

The importance of taxiway signs and markings

One common question that arises is: are taxiway signs utilized in LVP situations? There is no concrete answer to this question since the purpose of taxiway signs can be related to LVP situations. Airport signs and markings are incredibly valuable during low visibility situations. Equipped with both external and internal lighting, they are designed to provide optimal visibility in LVP scenarios. This is extremely advantageous for nighttime operations, while also being equally significant for improving visibility during daytime.

10 Essential Airport Signs and Markings

1. No Entry sign

They block traffic from or to one direction and are located on both sides of the taxiway for extra visibility. No Entry Signs are painted red with white letters and designations.

2. Taxiway location sign

Their purpose is to indicate where the pilot is located. Taxiway location signs are painted black and feature only a simple letter that refers to its name.

3. Directional signs

These signs have bold black letters and arrows displayed on a vibrant yellow background, perfectly indicating the direction of the corresponding taxiway.

4. (RTHP) Runway Taxi-Holding Position

These signs are used to work together with RTHP markings. The goal is to denote entrance to the runway from a taxiway.

5. (ITHP) Intermediate Taxi-Holding Position

ITHP signs are also to supplement ITHP markings. They are used when two taxiways cross each other, and it is needed to protect traffic in the prioritized taxiway.

Taxiway markings, the pilot’s guides to keep on track

Taxiway markings, just as their name suggests, are painted on the taxiway’s surface in yellow. The reason behind this is mostly to help pilots by increasing visibility and adding extra contrast where it is needed.

6. Edge markings

Some taxiways have their edge marked with double solid yellow stripes on each side. It brightens the contrast on the surface of the taxiway’s starting and ending points.

7. Information markings

These are to help with directional, location, or no-entry signs or used as an alternative to them. They are used in the same way as the corresponding signs, only displayed differently.

8. Centerline marking

The centerline is one of the most crucial markings on a taxiway. By displaying the precise midpoint of the taxiway’s surface, this tool aids pilots in effortlessly maintaining the plane’s position in the middle of the taxiway.

9. (RTHP) Runway Taxi-Holding Position

As previously mentioned, they collaborate with the corresponding signals to ensure that no aircraft enters the protection zone of the runway. It contains two solid and two broken lines across the full width of the taxiway.

10. (ITHP) Intermediate Taxi-Holding Position

ITHP markings are also mostly used together with ITHP signs. The holding plane is strategically positioned to ensure a safe distance from passing aircraft, clearly marked by a single broken line extending across the entire width of the taxiway.

Would you like to learn more about aviation? – Practice with training apps

IFR Flight Trainer Simulator offers a flexible flight training environment to create any conditions of instrument flying. If you would like to check your IFR flying approach, look at one of the IFR Flight Trainer Simulator’s in-built tasks. You can practice approach procedures, challenge yourself with windy situations, choose between cockpit or map view, etc.

Have a safe flight,

Team FlyGo-Aviation