Pro Member Captain
Doyley Captain

Hi all,

I have got VATSIM up and running now but I was having some trouble getting clearence.
What would you recommend as a good starting flight where the ATC will be helpful?

Thanks 😀

8 Responses

Pro Member Captain
John Hodges (originalgrunge) Captain

Well, just a few questions to clarify:

First, was there ATC on line to give you clearance?

Second, have you read through all of the materials in the Pilot-Resource-Center (PRC)?

and Third, was it a very busy time for the controllers? 😉 That usually gets you the most discourteous responses!

Also, what were you getting clearance to do?

Pro Member Captain
Doyley Captain

ATC was online but then the one I was speaking to went offline, it was going ok until then.

I have read throught the manuals.

It wasnt a buy time I dont think, it was about 4am here in the UK, probably too quiet to be honest.

Originally I was going to fly VFR from KLAX to KJFK but I think its a bit too far on reflection.

Pro Member Captain
Doyley Captain

Oh id just been given permission to taxi before the ATC that I was speaking to left.
When I got to the runway, I contacted the other ATC but never got any response from them, as if they couldnt hear me but I could hear them.

How do you guys know which runway is which without progressive taxi?

Pro Member Captain
John Hodges (originalgrunge) Captain

Very good questions. So first, if the ATC announces he is leaving he should give you a heads-up about who to contact. If he doesn't, it probably means he got kicked off, so give him the benefit-of-the-doubt and wait about 5 minutes before switching (unless you're already at the runway threshold).

When you switched to the approach/center frequency (which I'm assuming you did after the lower ATC was knocked off), announce your request when he's got a free moment, and give him about a minute to respond. If nothing happens request again, and then write to him on text. Lastly, if he really doesn't even acknowledge your presence, DON'T get angry, because that's the quickest way to not get help 😉 . The guys on VATSIM can get a little punchy sometimes. Sent him a private message.

If all those things, fail, try restarting either squawkbox or flight sim, or just go somewhere else. Don't try and fly without clearance (and never go airborn without squawking normal!)

Taxiing without progressive taxi is pretty complicated the first few times you do it. Paper handling becomes a must, and your collection of charts will grow without measure if you keep flying on VATSIM. will get you started with nearly every official and up-to-date U.S. taxiway chart, approach chart, and SID/STAR procedure. To taxi comfortable, simply print out the airport diagram (or keep it open in the background) and find where you are on it. Hit "Ctrl+S" to get a top-down view of your plane, and zoom in or out as necessary until you find a few landmarks that you can go by. Now that you have your start point, when you get clearance you should be given the runway you want to go to. Now you know roughly which direction you want to go in, and whatever taxiway clearance is read back should fit nicely inbetween your start and end points on your handy little map. If it doesn't, ASK FOR HELP! 😀

It will take time to get used to it, and you'll probably rely on Ctrl+S a lot, but it's a handy skill to have.

Hope to see you in the skies!

Pro Member Captain
Doyley Captain

Hey thanks for that, very useful!!

One more question, I am having trouble understanding routes. I filled a route with the VOR's but he said that wasnt enough as it didnt have a SID whatever that is. He made one for me but I didnt understand a word of it.

Thanks 😀 Ill be up there soon

Pro Member Captain
Bindolaf Captain
Pro Member First Officer
fourby First Officer

Off topic I know, but credit where credit is due. Well done originalgrunge 👍 I like how you've answered in these posts and obviously know your stuff and what your talking about, a credit to the forum (as others 😉 ). The help and advice on this site that is given to one another never ceases to amaze me. Group Wave

Pro Member Captain
John Hodges (originalgrunge) Captain

Haha, thanks fourby! But all the information I've learned has come from everyone else here and on the net. Aside from a few rare "gimmicks" of making things work, most of it has just been 2 years of reading Add-on manufacturer's forums, AVSIM libraries, following RadarMan's never ending list of links, and the training with United Virtual Airlines. CrashGordon, FEM, crosscheck, augus404, you name them, everyone has chipped in to this big strange collection of facts I call my brain 😉 .

Oh and I almost forgot to list GPS-kid (turned Pro-sim). He definitly had probably the most profound effect on how I purchase addons, learn about them, and fly them today. Look up his posts and you'll see where I get it from!

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