Filing the flight plan & annoying individuals on ATC.

Forgive me if this is answered in another thread but I’ve yet to find the question being answered. Here’s the situation: I spawn on to the tarmac and immediately switch my beacon lights off to signify my engines are off. I do this because I make my flight plan from origin to destination. My problems are these two communications from ATC. I haven’t been making my flight plan for even ten seconds yet and I have a ground controller repeatedly commanding me to pushback and taxi to x runway. When I respond “standby” I get “say intentions” over and over again. This is extremely annoying and not at all realistic. The second issue is when I’m in the air transitioning from frequency to frequency and the new ATC immediately says “say intentions”. So here’s the question, is there another step to actually FILE the flight plan that I’ve created or are they just not doing their job and checking to see if I have one or not? If I’m missing a step in filing a flight plan I would certainly like to know. The addition of ATC in this simulator is awesome and horrible at the same time. Any responses are greatly appreciated. Thank you!!


This is on playground, right?

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  1. Is this advanced server?
  2. Did you catch the controllers name (if it is advanced)
  3. When you were asked intentions in air, he was wondering if you were departing or remaining in the pattern.

That was weird if he was contacting you on the ground like that. Shouldn’t happen.

If this is playground you’d have to expect that. Advanced server controllers are “quality tested” if I may.


I experience the same issues on a regular basis on the ATC Playground server.

On the ground, if instructions are given to me before I am ready, I also use stand by. I will ignore all further instructions until I am ready, I’ll turn volume down temporarily if it gets annoying.

In the air, if I haven’t filed a full flight plan I.e. just inputted my destination airport, then I again use stand by if the controller asks for my intentions before I have had a chance to find the airport in the list and request an approach. I can’t recall ever having this repeated. However, if you have filed a full flight plan, as soon as you connect to a departure, centre, approach frequency, immediately “check in”, the controller should use this as an indication to check your flight plan and try to vector you as close as it is convenient to do so. In ATC mode, tapping on any aircraft draws its flight plan on the map and no additional filing step is needed on your behalf.

This is just two of many issues you will encounter, however you’ll quickly learn how best to cope with each. I often wish for a pilot -> controller “check help pages for assistance” button!


The check in really should be used after you state your intentions.

I learnt otherwise from previous threads, though I may be wrong. It should be clear what your intentions are from your flight plan, if not then asking for intentions is fine. I used to think that check in was used as a way of saying “hello, I’m still here, don’t forget about me”, but apparently not.

I see you were involved in a discussion regarding this last year ( The 'Check In' message), the general trend I see is that it should be used in the manner I described, at least until the ATC system is improved.

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Tyler has stated if you just want to check in that’s fine. But in larger regions it’s sometimes difficult to span out for every aircraft to check their flight plan and see where and what they are doing. It’s a lot easier all the way thru if upon first contact you state your intentions and then use the check in message when switching frequency’s then the controller can see what you told the last controller and doesn’t have to ask for intentions, and you don’t have to re give them. I also created this thread about it.


I have had the same issue on the playground server as well like the others have mentioned! There have been times where I just land on the runway spoilers just activate tower is in the middle of telling me exit runway when able contact ground on the taxiway but I have ground repeatedly telling me to switch to his frequency and when I do ask me to “say intentions”. Answer to your question there is no way of really escaping that annoyance on the playground server hence I guess why they called it a playground server.

Rather if you go on the advance server you will have a more realistic flight and the controllers that are active on the advance server have been tested by the moderators (literally a physical test, I have taken it) and you need to score 80% or higher to qualify to a next round before given the authority to control.

Now to fly on the advance server and get the best ATC experience I am not sure if it changed (I will try to find the exact info and reply after I send this) all you need is over 10 hours of in game flying as a whole and 0 Violations (that being not being violated going over 250 knots under 10,000) and you can check all these stats if you click your name on the top right of your screen while the app is open.

Hope this helps


Here are the qualifications to fly on the advance server:

Min XP: 10,000
Min Flight Time: 10 hrs
Min Landing Count: 50
Max Reports (Last 24h): 0
Max Reports (Last 7 days): 3
Max Violations (Last 24h): 3
Max Violations (Last 7 days): 10
Min Flight Time (Last 90 days): 1
Min Landing: (Last 90 days): 3


As others said, I would recommend checking out the Advanced server. If you’re a reasonably experienced pilot and want a better experience, that’s the best place to find it.

The reasons for this are: anyone can control on playground. (Ironically enough, Advanced controllers are restricted, so you won’t find the best ones there anyway). This is done basically to provide a ‘lite’ ATC experience so that players can both get a taste of what it’s like for themselves, and for pilots to get an idea of what sort of messages they’d hear from a controller and thus fix any lapses in their knowledge before moving onto the ‘serious flyers’ area in Advanced.

The second reason is that controllers on PG cannot ghost players (last I checked). So any people that do the wrong thing can’t be removed from play and thus don’t learn. Between the free-flight server and advanced, the PG server is essentially a convenient middle ground, resulting in what you described.

And finally, advanced server has a proper feedback process. Since controllers have to pass two tests in order to qualify and form a part of a team with a leadership group, any errors or inconsistencies can be addressed and the experience improved for everyone.

The downside, of course, is that there are far fewer controllers (in comparison - the total number is much greater than it used to be). There are also fewer pilots. Main reason that I tend to hear for people flying on PG is due to this. The only thing that can fix this particular part of the problem is time - so arm yourself with some patience and use advanced server when you can do so.

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If you was on the advanced server and this happened then all controllers involved would be bumped back to delta airports. My point is you will not have this problem on adv. server. I never contact an aircraft first if on the ground freq. Let them do their checklists, FPL,etc. I could care less if you sit for hrs.


Exactly. Until the pilot asks for pushback/taxi, they could be having a mojito party in the cockpit for all I care.


I really appreciate all of your responses. It really is more of an annoyance than anything else. I’m happy to know that I’m not missing a step when making my flight plan. I’m looking forward to jumping to the advanced server but I still have some flying to do. The occasional speed violation under 10k is my white whale, especially if I’m trying to descend in turbulence while managing ATC comms. You guys answered my question though, thank you so much.


Hi Mike, I think you mean me… Well sometimes it’s quite hard to see the lights especially when the visibility is low so I hope you’ll forgive me. And yes, I do require pilots to state their intention if I don’t see any filed flight plans.

I totally understand asking pilot’s their intentions if they don’t have a flight plan. I’m also not at all positive that you were the ATC controller, I don’t know how that could be determined anyways. Asking intentions is very reasonable, however it takes more than a few moments to complete a flight plan.

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Ok so here are the problems with these so called flight plans.

  1. They are a direct route in commercial aircraft which doesn’t happen.
  2. They only include an approach to the runway at the destination airport.
  3. They just plain out don’t file one.
  4. People are requesting flight following with a commercial aircraft which flight following is reserved for GA aircraft and its only a request of traffic and the controller permits it.
    Is it good to file a flight plan yes will you always stick strictly to it no. Weather it’s IF or RL.
    The problem arises by the lack of knowledge of what to request when contacting these frequency’s as a controller I find it annoying and impossible to help correct.

When I first started flying IF I was a controller’s worst nightmare. I didn’t understand how the system worked. Since then I’ve spent a lot of time learning, plus I’m now a commercial flight student at a university and it all seems so simple now. However, I doubt that everyone is going to devote that kind of time to learning the correct comms, nor could we ask them to in my opinion. IF really attracts a very broad platform of users. It’s simple enough for anyone to enjoy, yet it still has details and capabilities to attract actual career guys/gals. I just wish that we had more preset communication options.


I would say that there are two major groups… Those that play for fun and those who really are into aviation

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As far as I know there is no rule that states you have to do anything within a certain amount of time after spawning.
I often just look around for a while. Also through the Tower cam. It’s just like spotting. I enjoy it a lot.
I also look at runways in use and if pattern work is being done. So I take my time deciding what I want to do.
ATC eager to know my intentions just have to wait until I’ve made up my mind.

There are aircraft just standing there in real life as well, so…

Beacon lights should always be on though, since you can’t actually shut down the engines (yet).

Just my two cents.


All very good points. The beacon light thing adds more realism for me personally. Once I formulate my flight plan I’ll turn the beacon lights on, swivel my view and check for traffic before pushing back. Landing lights go on after push back is finished and strobes go on once entering the runway or crossing a runway.


The only thing is that you’re not supposed to taxi with landing lights on.

It’s somewhere in this topic: