Realistic Center Control

To all the IFATC guys out there that will give you an altitude when requested, thank you.

Its a bit more realistic than “altitude at your discretion” 🤣

Why even run center at that point.

Cheers 🕺✈️


i agree it is more realistic, but it lowers the workload for ATC as ‘alt at your disc’ is easy access while they would have to look for the specific alt you requested to reply to you. simpler and efficient.

i dont think because ATC sends ‘alt at your disc’ means they shouldnt open centre

Hey, Taylor!

After you check-in (if departing) or ATC has approved your descend via your STAR (If arriving), or you just received a “continue as filed”, you are automatically expected to follow your flight plan and planned altitude(s) to your destination. Requesting specific altitudes after that is not needed. You should climb/descend at your discretion after that unless ATC issues you a specific altitude due to a separation conflict with other traffic.

When pilots keep requesting altitudes we usually issue them an “Altitude at your discretion” to inform the pilot that they can climb/descend at their discretion without asking us permission every time they want to change altitude.


If you would like more information about how Center works from a controller perspective, here is a video to better understand:

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