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Using stock FSX GPS and Flight Planner

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I want to share how I plan my IFR flights to get some feedback as to how I can make it easier, because I know I can do better than this. To start, I don’t have any add-on GPS or flight planner. To plan I flight, I use the “Flight Planner” dialog in FSX, hit “high altitude airways”, and load whatever it gives me as my VATSIM flight plan. 

On the topic of GPS, I am using the “stock” FSX GPS, the one the sim came with. This presented a huge problem once when a nice controller gave me a route shortcut and said “proceed direct XXX”. In that GPS, when I took the shortcut and went direct, it deleted my entire flight plan with the exception of the VOR I was cleared direct to. 

Can you guys recommend a better GPS suite that is compatible with FSX? Also, maybe a recommendation on a better method of flight planning, maybe a website where I can build the flight plan and import it into FSX (and the GPS)? How do you guys using FSX do it?

Thank you in advance,


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Honestly the answer is that very few people use the stock FSX GPS, for those very limitations you mentioned.  Of the few still using FSX I assume most are using add-on payware aircraft which are modeled with more fully-functioning Flight Management Systems.  Those are not inexpensive and often come with a requirement for a source of updated navigation data, also a paid product.  If budget is not an issue, Google "PMDG" and "Navigraph."

If trying to do things more on a budget, my two recommendations would be either (a) vasFMC, or (b) learning to fly via just the old-school radio-based nav systems and planning your routes accordingly.

SimBrief offers some of the flight planning resources you're seeking, but, would be highly optimized for modern RNAV-based routing, and not so great for conventionally-navigated routes.  For the latter I would recommend building your route yourself via SkyVector.  I have some tutorials on my YouTube channel which can help.  Search "Slant Alpha Adventures" on YouTube and a playlist called "VATSIM Tutorials."



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There is a program named FSTramp (FST) which I have used for years with aircraft that make use of only the stock FSX/P3D GPS (example CLS DC-10).

FST is a multi-faceted utility including flight planning, navigational display, autopilot and other tools. It is able to make use of the latest Navigraph AIRACs.

When a flight plan is created within FST or loaded from Simbrief, it is also loaded into the stock GPS, even though the stock GPS database is out of date.

Note: it may be necessary, after creating/loading a flight plan in FST, to save it (anywhere) on your computer to force the flight plan to appear in the GPS.

To fly direct to any waypoint in the GPS flight plan and preserve the flight plan, switch to heading mode, use FST’s Fly To Here function, and as you near the waypoint, activate the appropriate GPS leg and return to GPS navigation.

Caveat: FSTramp is a bit pricey, and for best use Navigraph is required.

Good luck.

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