MMMX Approach / Tower Feedback 1530Z - 16:45Z

I had a slightly frustrating experience today with approach taking the best part of an hour due to a missed approach which was further compounded by two go arounds on final.

Now I appreciate it was busy and other than the frustrations (and I was probably just unlucky), ATC were doing a fantastic job. But I just wanted to highlight what happened as feedback to the ATCs on duty and to allow anyone to point out whether there was anything I could have done differently to help develop my own virtual piloting skills!

As you can see, I came in from the north before being routed east, turning south through to west, north west, south west and south east where the controller was then clearing the approach into runways 23R and 23L (dark blue lines).

However, at roughly the red spot, the controller changed without any announcement and there was a period where no approach instructions were being given which meant I continued heading in a north east direction.

You can see in the screenshot above where traffic gets stuck in a no mans land with no one making a approach to land - the new ATC had their work cut out to organise this! Albeit this resulted in another long go around (light blue lines).

When I finally get to short final and roughly 1nm away from TD, tower gives clearance for an aircraft to takeoff who isn’t able to get away in time, forcing me to announce a go around. At which point, I enter left downwind with 3 aircraft on final and I’m sequenced as number 5. Therefore, I enter left base and onto final after the third aircraft (there was no fourth!) but by this time, another aircraft has entered final behind me fairly quickly and squeezed the gap down to 1nm behind. This resulted in me being given a go around instruction from Tower.

Eventually landed when the Tower controller changed and I was able to enter final in a large gap (which was good as I had 5 minutes of fuel remaining!).

Could I have done anything differently here? Should I have been handed back to approach?

2 Likes

I remember seeing your name when I was controlling. One of the issues that I saw on your end was the 280kts that you were flying on a 5nm final. I understand that you had 5 mins of fuel remaining but that was never announced. It would’ve been a good idea to divert rather than waiting until you had 5 mins of fuel left. I probably would’ve diverted if I had an hour of fuel because if I were in your shoes as the pilot, I would’ve looked at my map to see if there would be any reason to expect a delay.

Lots of aircraft were inbound and outbound at MMMX. Can’t expect to have priority handling when you’re running on fumes. Help us help you by planning the appropriate amount of fuel and flying appropriate speeds. Thanks!

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Thanks DeerCrusher, although I’ve had a look at the replay and I went to 250 knots to widen the gap with the aircraft coming up behind to help ATC with spacing but was below 180 knots and was well established when I was given the go around.

In terms of fuel, I had an hours spare (from a two hour flight) will bear in mind to divert next time. Do you know at what point the emergency fuel option comes up? I looked for this several times but couldn’t see it.

It comes up when you have 30 minutes of fuel left and you have been flying for at least an hour!

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