Requirement to answer to "say intentions" to approach at arriving airport

Hi everyone,

I just want to point out that when you are requested to “say intentions” by an approach controller at your arriving airport , you are requested to say intention. By this I mean either request ILS approach or GPS approach.

“With you” is not a valid intention.

People are under the impression that you can file a flight plan and tell the approach controller “with you” and you will automatically be vectored to the destination airport guide slope. I can tell you that this is not the case.

Approach controllers can not, and I mean physically can not, give you clearance for approach unless you request it explicitly. This is because we do not even have a button for that approach clearance unless it’s requested from a pilot.

ATC Supervisor


This would be nice if when you have already logged to an ATC or Unicom your flight intentions and they keep requesting you to contact their control. Why does an ATC not know if I have already contacted a different control within range?

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Your question has nothing to do with this topic.
You may open a separate topic about why people ask you contact their frequency when you are already being vectored or controlled by someone else.

Even though I have already given my intentions to another ATC or controller? I think it is a pertinent question.


Yes, because different frequencies are monitored by different people, so you need to state your intention every time when you are passed from one frequency to another.

Typical example is below:

You to Approach: xxx is 20nm south of YSSY at 6000ft, request ILS approach 34R at YSSY.

Approach: Turn left to xxxx descend and maintain 3000, clear for the ILS 34R approach, contract YSSY tower at xxx.xx

You to tower: xxx is inbound for landing on the ILS for runway 34R.

Something like that.

Or if you are passed from one approach to another approach, your first request may be for a radar vector to an airport, and after you are handed to the next approach frequency, you should ask for ILS or GPS approach to the runway. In this scenario, if you only say “with you” to the second approach frequency, he/she will not know your intention because he/she doesn’t know what you have requested from the first approach.

Ah you are missing my point.

Scenario, I get within 25 miles of airport x and Request Traffic or Call Inbound to Unicom for that tower. I have now made my final intentions known and am heading for a full stop. I then get contacted by another ATC which now requests my intentions. Since I have logged with Unicom my intentions why am I getting yanked off that frequency to provide a 3rd party my intentions to only have to recontact Unicom to complete my flight. Does the ATC not know that I am currently active with a different frequency?

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That depends on the airspace jurisdiction, if you’re in the approach controller’s airspace, then you have to say intentions. If you’re not in that controller’s airspace, then you have no obligation to say anything, although it might help the ATC to paint a better picture of what’s going on around him/her.

Unicom is not manned. You still have to tell the active ATC what your intentions are if you are flying through his/her airspace.

If you have a flight plan you only has to say with you, if you come to close to another plane the controller can vector you also if you have a flightplan
If you don’t have a flight plan you must say you intensions

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That is incorrect. You MUST state your intention regardless of whether you have a flight plan or not. Otherwise there is no way the approach controller can give you clearance for the guide slope.

This is the whole point of this thread! Please read.

It is correct ask it to Joe saud this to me he is a mod and he has it mostly right

A couple things:

  1. If you state intentions to the first controller, the next controller will see that you’ve already requested vectors to your destination, an approach, etc. That is built into the ATC system.

  2. @DS2001, unfortunately the current ATC system doesn’t work if you don’t request something (Flight following, vectors, approach, etc). The ATC could vector you around, but you must state intentions to at least one controller for your request to be marked in the system.

  3. I hope that in the future this will all be solved by an improved ATC system. Whether it be a clearance delivery or the ability to put your final intentions into the flight plan. Then ATC would not need to ask for intentions and you could just check in when switching from controller to controller.


So No a APP controller don’t need to know that you want a FF
And if someone ask vectors and the ATC see that he Just can follow his flight plan he don’t Will vector you

Ehm no the pilot only have to say with you (if he has a FF)
If he can’t follow that FF because he and another plane come to close to eatchother then the ATC will vector you away

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James, delete this topic, this is wrong. A “with you” command IS the correct way to letting a controller know that you want to follow your flight plan. I have stated this multiple times on Slack, and Tyler made a statement about it. I have also flagged this topic for review.

Pilots; the only time you should be getting a “say intentions” command from a controller when checking in is when you haven’t filed a flight plan. If you get a say intentions, and you believe this is wrong, screenshot the ATC log and your flight plan, and send it to me or another Advanced controller, and we will make sure it doesn’t happen again.



We are talking entire different things.

If pilots want to follow their flight plan, it’s fine to say “with you” to make the approach controller aware of him/her.

But if you want approach controller to vector you for an ILS or GPS approach, you HAVE to request the approach.

Open this topic, you shouldn’t close it just because it’s not agreeing with your opinion.

James is talking about approach controller which is very clear, check in you could use for contacting departure / center OR approach when you are departing from a field. For landing you need to request something


Again from a frustrated user who is NOT an experienced pilot in real life! What is wrong with my logic.

I set up a list of nodes which includes a target airport. This in IF I believe to be the flight plan. Correct or incorrect.

I am in range of a tower and have made known to that tower (which could be Unicom) my express intentions Landing at Runway xxxx

Since I have now technically associated myself with the tower why do I need to tell another ATC my intentions? This really gets me annoyed. Especially in Playground where people on ATC come and go. If I have locked on to a tower and expressly defined my intentions with Unicom in my humble opinion suppress the ability for ATC elsewhere from demanding ‘say intentions’

There is nothing worse than being on final and you get distracted by ‘Say Intentions’

Am I missing something?


If you are already with a tower frequency, you will not be contacted by another frequency.

But people do what ever they want on the playground server.