Pilot Discussion With a Global Perspective
By Alexander Deyneko 1187292
#548386 Hi,
I little bit confusing about a situation when I take off from a small airport. I have some questions:

Situation 1. I take off (IFR) from a small airport which is located in a big X Center area.
When I taxiing and take off, I use UNICOM.
After take off when I need to contact with X Center controller (time, alt, etc)? Or do I need to contact with him before take off?

Situation 2. I took off from a small airport and after 10 mins I enter an approach zone. How I need to contact with a controller? Like this - "X approach, Cessna alpha bravo charlie, heading to airport x " or I need to ask permission? What I need to do?
By Robert Shearman Jr 1155655
#548404 It depends on whether the airport you're taking off from is towered or non-towered. And if it's towered but the tower is not 24/7, some ARTCCs/FIRs simulate its actual operating hours, and some just treat it as towered all the time.

With that in mind:

Situation 1. I take off (IFR) from a small airport which is located in a big X Center area.
When I taxiing and take off, I use UNICOM.
After take off when I need to contact with X Center controller (time, alt, etc)? Or do I need to contact with him before take off?

1.A. If the field has a control tower, you should *already* be in contact with the Center controller, as he is acting as that field's tower controller as well -- although, he's doing so on his own Center frequency and should still be called "{xxxxx} Center."

1.B. If the field is non-towered (or towered but the tower is being simulated as closed), and you're IFR, you should contact that Center controller for your IFR clearance before moving. You'll receive your clearance but with a "hold for release" or a "void if not airborne by {xxxx}z". You'll be handed back to UNICOM/CTAF to taxi and depart, and should contact the Center controller once airborne, per the instructions in the clearance.

1.C. If the field is non-towered and you're VFR, you can depart via UNICOM/CTAF but then contact Center for a "pop-up IFR" once airborne. Format is: their callsign, your callsign, your location, your altitude, your intentions.

Situation 2. I took off from a small airport and after 10 mins I enter an approach zone. How I need to contact with a controller? Like this - "X approach, Cessna alpha bravo charlie, heading to airport x " or I need to ask permission? What I need to do?

Their callsign, your callsign, your location, your altitude, your intentions. If the terminal areas has an ATIS running, fetch that information first and then end your initial call by saying "... with [Information] Foxtrot." (or whatever letter was current.)

I actually did a tutorial video on this topic, if you want to check that out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aitdZ86xq30
By Tobias Dammers 1442528
#548410 To add to that: if you're taking off from an uncontrolled airfield within a controlled CTR (case 2), and you contact the controller for an IFR clearance before moving, they may ask you to take off without clearance and contact them again to pick up your clearance once you're airborne. In this case, you're basically VFR until you receive your clearance.
By Alexander Deyneko 1187292
#548419 Yes, I am talking about "non-towered" small airports or even airfields.

As I well understood, I should warned a center controller for my IFR clearance before take off - right?
Additionally I need to use UNICOM also - to warn other local pilots too - right?
For IFR from a small airport which is located in airspace Class G:
1. I ask a center controller for clearance and he will give me squak code
2. I use UNICOM for taxiing and take off
3. After take off I contact to the center controller and stay in contact with him until he/she will ask to change frequency (UNICOM, approach, tower etc).
Is it right?
4. If I do IFR at 5000 or lower - do I need always contact with control center?


P.S. I had a couple situations in VATSIM and frankly speaking felt myself not comfortable. Looks like that controllers really accustomed for standard flights GND -> Tower -> .... Control. When I entered a "controlled area" report who I am etc, the center controller answered kind of, "... and what?". Other controller said, "how can I help you?" Then it was a pause because I tried to understand how he can help me LOL.
By Simon Kelsey 810049
#548488 Hi Alexander,

It would be helpful if you could elaborate as to where specifically you are referring to because the answer may vary.

You have been given some very US specific answers so far. In the UK, for instance, in Class G airspace there is no requirement for either a flight plan or a clearance for IFR flight and you do not need to speak to anybody unless you are intending to enter controlled airspace (or an aerodrome Air Traffic Zone).
By Alexander Deyneko 1187292
#548587 UPDATE!
I tried to fly yesterday from CSU3 to KMPV and CYUL APP was opened.
According our talking here + my friend (from IVAO) and he is real pilot who flies here, I expected that a controller will ask me to switch UNICOM after the clearance and then switch back to APP frequency after taking off.
But he didn't ask me to use UNICOM we stayed on CYUL APP frequency all the time until I left Canada airspace. Well, I couldn't aware all local pilots in CSU3 (VFR mainly) about my taxiing, take off etc bc I stayed with him on his CYUL APP frequency.

This situation confused me more :?
Any comments?

+ the controller, Alexandre Dufresne, demanded to change my flight plan but I will ask about it in other topic.
By Robert Shearman Jr 1155655
#548602 I would've expected the same.

Generally we try not to call out pilots or controllers by name on the forums for perceived mistakes or poor service. (Although we may find out our expectations were wrong somehow!) You may wish to edit your post accordingly.
By Kirk Christie 956763
#548656
Simon Kelsey 810049 wrote:
You have been given some very US specific answers so far. In the UK, for instance, in Class G airspace there is no requirement for either a flight plan or a clearance for IFR flight and you do not need to speak to anybody unless you are intending to enter controlled airspace (or an aerodrome Air Traffic Zone).



Which again is different to Australia, if you are IFR regardless of airspace you need a plan and 2 way comms to ATC at all times. As ATC provides a traffic information service to IFR in G about other IFR and Known VFR.

If you are taxiing at an uncontrolled airfield and CTR is online you need to advise CTR of your movements, as they are required to provide that info to any other IFR traffic inbound or outbound of that Aerodrome.
By Alexander Deyneko 1187292
#548662 Update.
Well I discussed about this not only here.... Well we reached a real pilot, who flies GA often in this region. He said that local traffic must be warned via UNICOM and if it IFR then a pilot should be in contact with Center or Approach. It is logically bc we will use routes.

About local traffic it is very important in the real life. I have some experience when I went for paragliding I had two dangerous air proximities with Yak-18s (two, in formation) and L-410. It was my (our) fault in both cases :wink:

Here, in Montreal area when I flew on a glider we often miss visually GA traffic, usually Cessnas and noticed about them via UNICOM - and only after the warning by the radio we started to search them. Once it was a hanglider with engine which was ~500m exactly above my ASK-21, my instructor and I didn't see it until we received an info from our airfield.
By Tobias Dammers 1442528
#548707
Alexander Deyneko 1187292 wrote:UPDATE!
I tried to fly yesterday from CSU3 to KMPV and CYUL APP was opened.
According our talking here + my friend (from IVAO) and he is real pilot who flies here, I expected that a controller will ask me to switch UNICOM after the clearance and then switch back to APP frequency after taking off.
But he didn't ask me to use UNICOM we stayed on CYUL APP frequency all the time until I left Canada airspace. Well, I couldn't aware all local pilots in CSU3 (VFR mainly) about my taxiing, take off etc bc I stayed with him on his CYUL APP frequency.

This situation confused me more :?
Any comments?

+ the controller, Alexandre Dufresne, demanded to change my flight plan but I will ask about it in other topic.


Top-down coverage. Controllers on APP or CTR positions will routinely also cover the positions below them, at least for major airports, but, at their discretion, also for smaller ones.