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Would I have to file a flight plan to do a traffic pattern.?

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Welcome to VATSIM Emmett! You generally aren’t required to file a flight plan for VFR flights or pattern work. However it is helpful to the controller ([Mod - Happy Thoughts]uming there is one online) if you do go ahead and file a fp anyways.


Good luck and I hope you really enjoy your soon-to-be addiction



Josh Jenk

CZVR C1 controller


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type = vfr

origin & destination = same

cruise altitude = field elevation + 1000

time enroute = 0:30 (or however long you plan to do it)



... though, as stated, all this is optional. When you call the controller for taxi to the active for closed traffic, the controller will fill in a basic plan for you. They may ask your aircraft type.


FYI, there are minor regional phraseology differences in how you ask for closed traffic, but, the gist of it should be essentially the same.




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In the U.S., you do not have to file a flight plan. In fact, in real world operations, you don't file a flight plan for closed traffic.


An example closed traffic call: "Van Nuys Ground, N12345 at general aviation ramp, request closed traffic. Ready to taxi with information alpha."


That's it.

Los Angeles ARTCC Air Traffic Manager
VATUSA Division

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Some airports IRL require you to file a flightplan in order to fly to and or from the airport. And some airports also prohibts training circuits.


Some controllers like to simulate this on VATSIM as well, although myself and many other try to accomodate circuits as long as traffic permits. I know that we on vatsim aren't allowed to refuse pilots flying, but on busy times on larger airports it would be hard to do the circuits as IFR have priority over VFR and likely would need to expect a lot of holding.


Just remember filing a flightplan doesn't necessarily mean you have to prefile it. You could just file it by voice to the controller as he has the possibility to add the FPL to the system through his ATC client.

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