"Continue Approach" command


The continue approach instruction is a part of the Landing Phraseology and is used by the Tower. It occurs when there’s departing traffic, an aircraft is lined up or is Backtracking. This actions occurs when another aircraft handed-off by Radar calls for landing. Generally there’s no sequence, but sometimes, to ensure separation they use this but NOT for landing.
Here is an example:

XC-SCE: Schiphol Tower, XC-SCE, inbound on the ILS runway 18C
SCHIPHOL Tower: XC-SCE, Runway 18C, Continue Approach
XC-SCE: Continuing Approach, Runway 18C, XC-SCE

As I said above, they can use sequencng IRL too.

XC-SCE: Pearson Tower, XC-SCE, Inbound on the GPS Runway 15L
TORONTO Tower: XC-SCE, Runway 15L, continue approach, you’re number 2.
XC-SCE: Roger, continuing Approach, Runway 15L, XC.SCE

After a departing or landing aircraft leaves the runway, they will give them its landing clearance.


This command can be utilized by controllers when on ILS or GPS approach, so the contrllers can let them know that they can expect a late landing clearance or there’s a plane on runway, and the sequencing in them is important when on a busy airport. If is visual approach, or aircraft inbound with no Radar services or there’s some aircraft doing patterns, the controllers should use the “Number X, RWY XX, Cleared to land/For the option”.

NOTE: Don’t confuse this command with the “Continue Inbound”. The Continue Approach is for planes in final who had Radar services.

Hope you liked the idea, see you in the virtual skies.

This is interesting. My main thought is that there’s not too many airports where this command would need to be used, but where it would be applicable is at hubs. And generally, controllers are extremely busy at hubs. Adding this command with the option to sequence may be a bit stressful for controllers, as it would add another command for the controller to say to inbounds. Additionally, some controllers would probably forget to give a landing clearance after a continue approach command.

So in my opinion I think clearing to land right away and calling a go around if necessary would be a bit more time effective. But definitely an interesting idea!


Yes yes yes! This is would be such a lovely command. I almost always use “continue inbound” (with permission from an IFATC higher up) at busy airports outside of the United States to simulate a realistic tower experience.

However, IFATC runs on the FAA controlling rules, where “continue approach” is rarely used. In the US, controllers clear aircraft to land when the runway is not technically “clear”. I’m not sure this would be added but it’s a great feature request. Well done!


This would be a great command to have.

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Don’t we already have continued as filed? Perhaps I missed something, but what’s the difference?

@bcc.123 Continue as filed is for a radar controller to tell an aircraft that they can continue on their IFR flight plan and altitude(s).

Continue Approach is a whole different thing which involves tower not clearing an aircraft to land until the runway is actually clear. This includes departures, landings, crossings and aircraft that are back tracking.


Ok, so I understand where I was lost a little bit. My apologies for not reading correctly.

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I love this! Upvote!


I think this sums it up. I like when controllers simulate the non anticipated separation of nonFAA countries. I would too love this, but because of IFATC following FAA procedures, I don’t think it would be added.

Come on we need this :)

As another command :)

With the real life “continue approach” technique, does tower have to issue a go-around at a certain point if unable to clear, or does the pilot automatically initiate a go-around at minimums if not cleared?

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Yes, as a normal G/A, the pilot or ATC can start it

Bump. I think we need this :)