Takeoff lines and "Lane-cutters"

Hey Pilots,

Over the last few months I have been experiencing a certain issue with Pilots in the Takeoff Line.


As you can see in this picture of NZAA there are 2 parallel taxiways leading towards the runway (23L), this leads to a lot of people trying to cut the takeoff line. Usually this isn’t a big problem as I (the Controller) tell them to hold Position and write down the Name of the Plane that the Pilot trying to cut the line would be behind if he had gone the common way. Once it is his/her turn I tell the Plane in the right Lane to give way to them and all works fine. If it’s only a few I use the new progressive taxi instrucrions.

That is how it is should work…

Here comes the issue:
As you can see in the picture a lot of the Piots have allready switched to the Tower frequencie, thus taking away the Control that the Ground-controller had over the line… -> No way to sequence the departure line in it’s correct order.
Many would say to let the “Lanecutters” sit where they are and wait for a gap to fit them in, yet I find this not to be fair and usually results in them taxing through others -> getting ghosted. Of course this isn´t the case at all airports, as you can see below there is not much the ground Controler has to do at WADD …


So my request: Please stay on the Ground frequencie as long as you could still be in any form of conflict with others / until you are Number 2 for departure. As you all know you only request takeoff when first in line, so there is realy no need to switch frequencies that realy.

Help us out and we will help you out !

Enjoy the test of your Weekend…

Oskar (Flying_Pencil)


Just flew out of DEN. 34R was in use for departure. Taxiways are perpendicular, depending on the ramp an aircraft was parked at. One can taxi from the south to 34R, or from the east to 34R.

As the PIC it is my responsibility to be situationally aware. There have been times when ground is on top of things, and there have been times when, well, not so much. Still, it is ultimately the PIC’s job to be aware of what’s going on around them (even when in the air).

Just now at DEN, I found that pilots were very courteous and cautious, and tower was pushing the tin out at a brisk pace.

The suggestion to wait until 2nd in line for departure to change to tower is a good, reasonable one, thank you.

Happy flying.



I’m not experienced with ATC, so correct me if I’m wrong, but can’t you click on the person and tell them to switch to a different frequency?

“Please contact ground on…” etc.

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Yes, you can do that.

That could solve this problem then. Of course, it’s a good reminder to also tell people not to immediately switch to Tower frequency…

Technically, they should stay with ground until they’re number 2 or so for departure. We shouldn’t be telling them to switch and what not which is what the topic is talking about.

Actually, the topic is all about telling people when to switch frequencies. Giving people the reminder that they should hold out longer until switching to tower would alleviate the whole problem of people trying to cut in line.

Notifying them that they should still be on the ground frequency would allow for more control over aircraft that need to hold short, etc.

Yes that’s correct, but we don’t want to give a frequency change when 2 minutes later he’s going to have to switch again, and if he doesn’t because he was told to switch to ground, that may cause confusion and will most likely require another frequency change, to tower.


Ah, I understand what you mean. Thanks for clarifying.

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On top of that, if ground is very busy then telling Tower to make the frequency change can make you lose a lot of time. Tower also might me busy and might not see your message. So it is much easier if the aircraft stays on ground frequency until 2nd in line.

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Exactly, I try and avoid having to bug the busy Tower controller every 2 mins “Can you send back XXX” … :)


That shouldn’t be a big Problem, as we (the controllers) usually use two devices and check the Messages that our fellow Controllers “tag” us on. But yes the object is to make Pilots aware of what I said able. ;)

@Flying_Pencil I know that, I’m also IFATC. Sometimes some controllers are so concentrated that they won’t look at the messages.

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