ATC questions

So I know that each ATC is going to do their own different thing when controlling aircraft and I get that. I have been at some airports where I request taxi to either active or specific runway without the request for push back, and I get the clearance to taxi. Other ATC absolutely want you to request push back, then come back in the radio to request taxi. I feel the latter just creates excessive radio traffic and confusion when cleared for push back and to except a specific runway, especially when ground is busy. I found old messages from certain players that actually say that the request to push back is for trash pilots…their words not mine. Anyone else feel this way?

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Whether or not a clearance for pushback or taxi is given is not dependant on ATC preference. It depends on whether or not the aircraft has pushback capabilities or not, and the gate it is parked at. See 2.1.4 of the manual:

So for ATC to give a pushback clearance, the aircraft must be in a gate that you can pushback out of and the aircraft also needs to have pushback capabilities. If one of these is not true then a taxi clearance would be the right thing to give instead.


I guess you’re talking training sever here because IFATC wouldn’t stand for the behaviour you describe on expert.

A small number of planes aren’t pushback-capable and ATC will expect and give a taxi request. In all other cases if there isn’t a taxi line ahead, you should request pushback before requesting taxi.

Well I just got a lvl2 violation for, “taxi without approval”, at 0’hare on expert when requesting taxi, with a response from ATC with pushback approved expect runway 28R. With that said I started my taxi to 28R. And got booted. I know why he did it, and. Not really a big deal since it didn’t kick me from lvl3 but it proves the confusion with the different ATC’s and how they operate.

Expect a runway message as part of the pushback command is not a clearance to taxi. You must make the request to taxi and have it granted prior to taxing.

Contact the controller who issued the violation if you have additional questions.


No, it would pointless and he will give me the same explanation anyway. Like I said I get why he did it. It just tells me to request pushback anytime the option is available with an aircraft to avoid any confusion on my part.

Well, then you’re just going to get grumpy messages in the future as well if you blindly request pushbacks. There’s either a good reason you should have requested pushback (were you at a gate?) or a genuine mistake by the controller, in which case your violation should be reversed. PM them and include @appeals if necessary.

Not going to lose sleep over it. I’ll take grumpy messages over violations with the different personalities operating ATC. Below is a response I have from the same subject from an other player. It’s similar to your answer.

MaxSez: My Friend, “Push Back” is a “Pilot Option” not a requirement. Normally Trash Haulers Push due to space limitations at a confined gate or because of there limited turning radius on the apron . (Request. “Taxi” from Ground not Push if sufficiently clear 360deg any aircraft . If directed to Push after request your probably on the Training Server with a Novice Controller, Expert Controller know better)

The majority of people on IF request pushback as part of pilot etiquette, weather at a gate or a remote stand, but most of the time you would be parked at a gate that IRL would need pushback.

To me it seems like you have been reported for the taxi situation without permission.

Take it on the chin pal, that’s life

Oh I have no issue with the hit. I’ll carry on without issues.

This is just blatantly false. If you’re in a pushback gate, you must request pushback, and then request taxi before taxiing. Pushback clearance doesn’t grant you to taxi at all.

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See this is my exact issue. There is not a clear rule on how this is supposed to work. I get 50/50 for each side.

There is a clear rule. Pushback gates require a pushback request unless your plane doesn’t have a pushback ability, and if you ask for taxi instead, you will be given a pushback command. If you are in a gate where you can taxi-out, then you can simply request taxi. Please follow things listed in the User Guide and ATC Manual, rather than other “sources.”

The answer here is easy: if you need to pushback, you need to request it. If you don’t need to pushback, or if your aircraft does not have the capability to pushback, request taxi. Never move your aircraft without permission.

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@Maxmustang please clarify?

Not all ATC’s follow the guide to the T even on expert. Everyone handles traffic differently. We are ultimately at the mercy of ATC. Like I said I will request and or contact ATC before each new movement. It will ultimately help me to avoid confusion on my part. Carry on.

Well they should be, especially where it says “must”. This is why it’s important that you actually talk to the controller when you’ve had a problem, because one of you is going to learn something.

I’m a bit confused by what you mean when you say you’re “at the mercy of ATC.”

A lot of things are clear-cut, and are not up for interpretation. The controlling style may differ, but the meanings of the commands don’t change regardless.

What I have found out is that a lot of what controllers do is based on how many aircraft they are controlling. I have been at airports where 2 ground controllers are operating at the same time, and I get handed off to the other then a few seconds later get handed back off the the original controller. Again confusion: at that point do we repeat our requests to the previous controller at the risk of getting the, “ avoid sending duplicate messages”? Again I am always going to request movement to avoid violations. I’ll take a nasty gram over a violation.

Nobody is disputing that you need to request clearances before moving around. It only seems to be a question of when you should request pushback before requesting taxi, and I still can’t quite work out where you stand on that.

Case in point: just a moment ago I had an aircraft at a gate with a brick wall in front of them request taxi. The correct request would have been pushback, followed by a request to taxi.