Message From Airport Controllers

Everytime i fly in IF, I make mistakes. In fact I hope my simulated piloting will always be in a “learning mode”.

The “Training Server” is there for just that purpose
to help us hone our skills, and of course it is expected to see on ground and in air mistakes there.

But I ask my ATC trainees , please get the core basics straight unless I am dead wrong here. Example , I don’t think Tower should be contacting an approaching aircraft REPEATEDLY that they are in an Active Airspace and to contact them on the Tower Frequency when I am over 100 NM and over 20, 000 Alt. from the airport. First off I can’t get this frequency on my available frequencies to contact them. So do they control that airspace ? If so how do I reply ?

I learn every time my wheels go up and try to become a better virtual pilot with each new flight But I hope I by now I have the very basics understood. So can ATC students try to learn the radius of their authority in the function they are working also, if this is a error ?

If this repeating radio contact was in fact appropriate then I need to learn that or if its a auto generated message do to initial radar contact and Tower is acting as a defacto CENTER then I understand it.
So then I am to ignor these contacts until within radio range , correct ?

I post this so I can learn, and maybe others too



Do you mind clarifying these 2 and then I’d love to help you out!


If you are on guarded by tower for example, but approach is still giving you vectors for your approach without a frequency change, stay on approach until they are satisfied and they will hand you off to tower. On training server, people will on guard because they want the traffic. Just have to ignore it if approach is active. If approach isn’t active and you are in their airspace, contact them and go from there. (I think you are mentioning on guarding here)


I think I get these now

If you cannot contact them, you cannot contact them. Unfortunately, TS controllers will do this and it can get annoying. There’s no way to reply and tower doesn’t control that airspace. Tower’s airspace is usually a 25 mile radius and 10,000ft up.

Training server controllers aren’t students. They just aren’t IFATC qualified and use TS. Now, there are a few controllers who are in training for IFATC, but generally not all TS controllers are. You did nothing wrong but at the same time, there’s nothing that can really be done with these controllers. TS is there for a reason, unfortunately sometimes people abuse it or genuinely may not understand the ATC basics and there is no one enforcing their actions either.

If you need clarification let me know :)


I assume from far away we would have to find that controller by locating the airport on the map, and the frequency may be tunable from there?

But what would we say to that controller if we didn’t want to go to their airport?

Aah, thanks!

So for tower like I said, 25 miles and 10,000ft if their airspace.
Appr: 50 miles and FL180
Center: FL180

These are the only times you can contact them (you may be able to a little bit before hand). Center may want you below FL180, that’s the only exception.

If tower is calling you and you are out of their airspace, you don’t have to contact them. If you do, there isn’t anything you have to say, The only time would be if you are flying over and need a transition when you are within 5000ft off the surface and the 25 miles. But tower will never be an approach or center, tower is always tower.

Yes, I guess the OP was finding the repeated contacts annoying. Ideally of course we would like our training controllers to know the limits of their airspace. They apparently can see planes from far away and contact them via the on guard message. Maybe this should be more limited in terms of the distance, to more match the area of their control…?

As an avid ATC player on the TS I understand your pain. It’s quite annoying to be put on guard by a controller who’s territory you’re clearly outside of.
Since you’re obviously not in their airspace you can just ignore their on guard messages. I personally will generally tune in, see if they have something to relay, and if not, ask for a frequency change. I can think of a rare occasion or two that I, as tower, needed to contact an aircraft outside of my territory (although not 200 miles out).
Long story short, I feel your pain and yes, you’re good.
I think it would be nice, though, if the map were a little more clear about boundaries of each controller. Like when you click the open map it will always tell you it’s under control of Center, but what if when you clicked the map within approach/departure range it told you their control area and the same for tower? I feel like more well defined boundaries on the map would make it easier for newer controllers to understand their limits.

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Hi. if you have trolls on ATC giving you your in a active airspace contact tower when your 20 000 feet ignore them. You will always know the good controllers from those that use it for a laugh. That is not to say you ignore them all the time but when your asked to contact tower at 20 000 feet lol yeah that’s trolling or they may not understand the basics of ATC. If your out of range and you keep getting messages from tower at 20 000 feet its best to ignore them. (since you cant contact them anyway if out of range)

Thanks, there was no active Approach , just the Tower reaching out to make contact, once withiin radio range to respond to the Tower , I did and everything flowed as it should. My questioning here is the distance and repeated pinging me. I was thinking ok if I could speak to you , I would can’t you see where I am 🤔🙂

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I couldn’t contact tower because the Airport and Tower frequencies were not yet on my available frequencies to choose from. I believe I was still out of range . All of you have explained this well, so thank you
I will proceed next time in a similar manner.

Thanks !!!

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I was going to “his” airport, my flight plan included a STAR and vectors to the RWY threshold, unless directed otherwise I was going to show up and buy him lunch 🙂

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Sure to clarify

  1. I was instructed to communicate on a frequency that was not available for me to tune into and use. It was not on my frequencies menu. Unicom was not there either.

  2. By ATC students, I meant someone that has limited ATC experience. You have explained thank you that this is not an accurate description of whom I am referring to. There is a boundary for Tower Controllers to work within, so what I meant was , doesn’t a person operating as a Tower Controller understand the geographical parameters of which they hold responsibility ? We as pilots are expected to know some basic flight rules by time we are permitted to use the TS. Thats what I was trying to articulate.

My frustration here is the repeated contacting the aircraft 4 or more times, this has also happen with Ground. The ironic thing is I once announce “On Final” after being cleared to land on that RWY. The immediate response was not to use unessary communications, which was correct. So i see unecessary ATC contact as equally distracting.
thanks for the feedback

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This probably means that the controller sent you to a ‘ghost’ frequency i.e. it was previously manned. Hence, it won’t show you on the active frequency menu.

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You should always keep in mind that any person can control in TS. Unlike IFATCs they need no qualifications and minimal requirements. You may often times come across people who have no clue or just trolling

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I didn’t know that, thanks

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Thanks for this, I am still learning aspects of IF

Yes, give ATC a try if you want.

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Its not of any interest to me, and I have too much respect for the IF Controllers , they have a huge job
for my limited skills. My bringing this topic up is not meant in disrespect more for clarification and to see what the standards are. So too all ATC controllers thanks. To the “Trollers” well …

If you’re running the tower and you don’t have “Hide aircraft >10000 ft” turned on you’re making things harder on yourself.

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