Pro Member Trainee
MRGPS Trainee

Hi guys,

When you are flying an IFR, how do you know when to ignore the ATC and use the SIDS or STARS for the Airport.

Do you ignore the vectors that the ATC give you and just fly the STARs.
Also how does the FS9 know that you intend to use the STARS.

Hope my question makes sense

Answers 5 Answers

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Pro Member Captain
John Hodges (originalgrunge) Captain

I've never quite figured out the FS logic in vectoring you 80 miles from your destination, but yes, if you choose to use STARS, you need to ignore FS ATC. It requires a bit more planning on your part in getting down (i.e., predicting top of descent, follwing STARs and approaches, etc) but it does let you fly slightly more realistically.

If you want to use published SIDs, STARs, approaches, and deal with actually competent ATC, try flying on line through VATSIM ( It takes time to get your feet wet but it definitly keeps you from going back to default ATC!

Pro Member First Officer
Michael_H First Officer

Hope my question makes sense

It does make sense.

When I am descending under ATC control, I come out of VNAV and LNAV controls in the autopilot and use the Heading, Altutude and Airspeed on the panel. You are going to be vectored to the places ATC needs you to be, not the FMC.

or use your STAR and follow originalgrunge's advice re: ATC.

Don Wood Guest

I do not know how FS9 uses them but in the real world, deciding on your own to fly a SID or STAR and ignore ATC vectors or other instructions is a really good way to be grounded for a very long time.

When you file an IFR flight plan, unless you specify "No SIDs/STAR's" in the comments section, ATC will feel free to include a SID as part of your departure clearance or a STAR as part of your arrival clearance. Even so, if you are on a published procedure and ATC issues vectors or other instructions deviating from the procedure, you are obligated to accept and comply with those instructions unless you refuse them and then you better have a very good justification. Usually, safety of flight issues is about the only reasonable justification for refusing an ATC instruction.

Pro Member Captain
John Hodges (originalgrunge) Captain

It is true that you should follow ATC when flying in the real world or on VATSIM for instance, but we're speaking about the default ATC built into FS9. The default ATC has no capacity for understanding SIDs or STARs, good vectoring techniques, or sense of traffic flow/management. Regardless of your route, flightplan, etc, you will be vectored quite far from published arrivals nearly every time. So while I agree that you should always follow ATC in the real world (or on places like IVAO and VATSIM), I don't agree that the default ATC should be respected as a full "virtual" equivalent.

Pro Member Chief Captain
CrashGordon Chief Captain

I agree. in the real world, vatsim or ivao, do what you are told. The default ATC is flawed. I've lost count of the number of times I've been handed off to approach control and been totally forgotten about.

Needless to say, if I saw the runway at that point and no AI in the immediate area, I landed.

On the other hand, once on Vatsim, I was parked at the edge of the airport and didn't think I was in the way of anything. I was asked to move, and I did.

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