A general request. When I see an ATC controlled airport, I often like to pick GA or Cargo, and will pick a spot that may not need a pushback. I can then choose anything from a C172 to a 747 space and airport dependant. Anywhoo, after I file my flight plan, if I dont need to push back, I will request TAXI. Most Ground ATC’s force a response Pushback Approved.
That is not the correct response. You cannot give an answer to a question the person did not ask for. I asked to taxi, ad you say pushback approved. I did not ask for a pushback. Thats like saying I want to taxi, and you are cleared for take off. Conflicting instructions.
There are times that a pushback is not required based on aircraft type and location.
I would ask that ground keep an eye out on what the aircraft is, and where it is in the airport before responding with a pushback approval is not requested.
This is not something that is ideal for you of course, the issues would likely have stemmed from the fact that a lot of people think they can request taxi and do a 360 on the spot rather than pushback. If it was busy I can see a controller thinking its that exact thing happening, of course unless you look with the free cam or other camera views we won’t know this. I apologise that you experienced this and if you know the controllers name feel free to PM them and make them aware of any issues as we expect this from the pilots we serve.
I’ll explain the controller needs to get out of the radar screen and actually look out the control tower on the ramp. The OP is exactly correct that if a pushback isn’t required for the gate he is at he should be allowed to taxi. The part about conflicting instructions is some what correct however we see a lot of aircraft that do require a pushback request taxi. This is where that’s our only option to tell them what to do.
Message the controller in question and let him know the circumstance so he can learn from it.
When I control as IFATC I will nearly always use the tower cam and zoom in on a commercial jet that requests taxi without pushback and see if they are in an appropriate spot. That said I suspect I miss that occasionally (hopefully pretty rarely!) when really busy.
We get a lot of pilots that request taxi to save themselves a few seconds even though they are in a 747 facing a terminal. 🤦️
You might also be surprised with how many people request pushback in a TBM, etc. They of course get an immediate taxi instruction. :)
Bottom line other posters (a number of which are also IFATC) are correct. Reach out to the controller and let them know. Everyone I know welcomes feedback and is looking to improve.
So you’ve received some good answers to your query I believe. Agreed?
Now I have a question: surely, to ensure maximum realism, you park your airliner on a gate or a remote spot, and not on a tiny little GA spot, just so you can save yourself a pushback?
I respect your desire to not have to do a pushback. These seconds can really make a difference, I’m sure. And I don’t see freighters parking at a gate either. But how many airliner parking spots do you find on an airport, that don’t require you to push back first? Can’t be many…