First day as controller on Expert Server

Well today was my first day in Tower on the expert server. I’m breaking myself in gently and did an hour at PHOG in Hawaii which looks to be at the foot of a volcano. A beautiful approach.

My session got a bit stressful at times as I have never experienced that volume of traffic on the ground before. There were only about 10 or so but when they all talk at once the flashing flight strips go a bit nuts. If it was Hells Kitchen I would expect Gordon Ramsey to shout at me and call me something unpleasant. Also at the airport I had pattern aircraft and mainly departures.

The biggest difference for me between the expert and the training server is the pilots are more curteous. I didn’t get repeated requests like ready to taxi over and over again until you respond and it’s generally more pleasurable to provide a service. It’s more relaxed and the pilots give you the time you require.

I did find getting the departures out difficult with pattern and inbound and was suprised at how slow some people are at getting on the runway and buzzing off, this resulted in me sending my pattern guy around twice! It seemed like ‘cleared for immediate take off’ was an instruction to amble onto the runway and do your lipstick and perhaps the ironing before you set off. I shall know for next time - create more space!

So I hope to continue to grow and get better and not have too many disasters on the way and in a few weeks I will comment on here with update on my progress for anyone who is interested. See if I can stick it out. I hope I can.

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Congrats on reaching the point of IFATC and I hope that you continue to strive to be the best

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Ah I remember my first time controlling on expert. I actually didn’t open an airport for a while for the fear of stuffing up and getting kicked out haha (I know I was just being paranoid)
Opened up La Guardia and I almost collided someone with @Panther while they were doing pattern work (we don’t speak of this 😂)

You get used to it after a while and as you get more confidence, you will find that your experience as a member of IFATC becomes a lot more enjoyable.
Good luck with your future endeavours :)

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How did Gordon Ramsey’s name manage to make it on the fourms 😂

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Congrats I bet you will make a great controller

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Love this comment, that really did make me laugh out loud 😂

PS When did you pass Michael?

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Best wishes Michael!!

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Has he ever called someone something pleasant? 😂

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Congrats, Hope it is a great experience controlling on the first day

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Congrats!The first day would be the hardest but it will get easier.

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I passed a week or so ago… Been finding reasons to chicken out of taking on the tower up until now.

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Congrats! Welcome to the team 🤝

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Congrats on making it to IFATC! There’s nothing like a first session on Expert. I did mine back in November, and was absolutely thrilled that everyone was actually listening to my commands. I actually have quite a bit less stress while controlling since i started on Expert, even at high traffic levels. This is because 99% of the pilots actully know what “hold short” means. It’s such a different experience.

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Congrats! I still consider myself as being “new” in the IFATC team. (Less than 3 weeks I’d say).
You’ll gain your confidence really quickly.
Have fun! See ya around!

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Congratulations! I hope to see you around on the Expert Server! ;)

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Congrats mate! I believe I was there. BJNA714 in a Cessna Citation X ring a bell? 😂 You did fantastic overall. I couldn’t tell it was your first time controlling on expert. Well done!

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Beautiful, touching, glorious. Mwah.

I need a blood sample from you as soon as possible, FYI. Never got around to telling you yet, but yeah.

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Your post put a warm smile on my face 😊
Very nice to read about this first experience. I recognise a lot from what you wrote and I’ll leave all the comments to the others. I just want to say: nice to have you on the team and keep writing these nice posts!

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Hahah this would’ve been ages ago. Like march last year or something.
I don’t have a very good memory of it but thanks for the compliments 😀

I cannot recall my very first ATC session as a Tower, but I do remember one of my very first ATC Approach sessions, which was October 2015 I reckon (before my break from Infinite Flight).

I believe I opened KASE, as I’ve been trained there for Approach. It started to get really busy, and Laura was approaching my airspace. I provide equal service / priority to any member, but I was on extra watch because of her presence.

I can not recall how exactly this happened, but “I” managed to get Laura to basically crash into one of the mountains. I noticed it when she was no longer on my radar, so I panicked and decided to look through my logs to see what I had done wrong and prepare for a “not so nice” message on Slack.

But, after reading through the logs and recalling her positions, I was certain that I did not vector her into any mountains. I did not receive a message from her or from Tyler, so I decided to take the matter into my own hands. I believe I messaged her after a few hours, and she explained she did not set her altitude correctly and had a phone call or something along those lines, which forced her to crash. It was such a relief…


Thanks for sharing your story; it did bring back some old memories such as this one. I’m sure you will look back on this thread one day and see how far you have come.

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