Direction of departure

When departing, is it perferred to announce my departure to the general direction of the flight or the direction of my first turn? Especially if I am doing 180 or 270 after departure?

Also when do I call straight out (I usually never use it).

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Umm, you would want to announce your departure to the direction of your first turn (that’s what I do) and you use “Departing Straight Out” when you are taking off in the same direction of your first turn (that’s what I do)
I may be wrong, I may be correct. This is just a suggestion of what you could do.

I use my global flight orientation, not first turn, but not sure…

You are supposed to use your first turn/series of turns in order to inform other pilots on parallel runways, in the pattern etc. of which way you intend to go after take off. Straight out mean you will follow the approach cone for the other end of the runway nearly to the end of it (say 10 miles as entire cone is 12 miles)

Quite debatable actually… Cuz 10 miles often come after 5000ft in a climb

Is it an actual rule or yours? Personally I use my general destination.

I am pretty sure it’s the direction you intend to leave the approach/departure airspace.

Probably one of the IFATC members can confirm/correct this though.

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To me, straight out is when you will fly the runway heading out from almost the end of the ILS/GPS cones onwards.
Anything before that you say which direction you will be turning

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I am pretty sure that is what it is intended for but it isn’t enforced.

Logically speaking IFATC would be more interested in your first turn compared to which direction your destination is if there are parallel departures etc. This is because their intention and focus is on getting you through their airspace safely and efficiently and not what your final destination is

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That makes more sense to inform what way you are going through the airspace

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Generally, the answers will be roughly the same, but not always, but “departing X” is in reference to how you are departing the airspace . Tower doesn’t care what direction you’ll be flying at cruise.

For example, here’s a flight plan which uses the published departure from LTFM. My destination was essentially east, but I’m departing the airspace south.

That would be what tower is interested in. We don’t care what you do outside our airspace and off our frequency.



Thanks for confirming me!

MaxSez: Here’s the FAA AIM Departure guidance:

  1. Departure Procedures.

  2. Specify direction of takeoff/turn or initial heading to be flown after takeoff as follows:

  3. Locations with Airport Traffic Control Service-Specify direction of takeoff/turn or initial heading as necessary, consistent with published:

  4. Departure Procedures (DP). If an aircraft is vectored off a published Standard Instrument Departure (SID) or Obstacle Departure Procedure (ODP), that vector cancels the DP and ATC becomes responsible for separation from terrain and /or obstructions. IFR aircraft must be assigned an altitude.

  5. Diverse Vector Areas (DVA). The assignment of an initial heading using a DVA can be given to the pilot as part of the initial clearance, but must be given no later than with the takeoff clearance. Once airborne, an aircraft assigned headings within the DVA can be vectored below the MVA/MIA. Controllers cannot interrupt an aircraft’s climb in the DVA until the aircraft is at or above the MVA/MIA.

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