That’s Not a [Pushback]…This is a [Pushback] Mate

Pushback. The simplest concept in the world, right? From your first flight ever on the sim, you’ve probably got it nailed, no?

Well…apparently not, because, increasingly, on the Expert (that word has a meaning) Server, I see pilots who seem to think that simply moving back a couple inches and then requesting taxi is sufficient.

Think of your last trip to the airport. Then count in your head how many times you watched a plane pushback 5 feet without any change in tail orientation then taxi forward through all of the adjacent gates and maybe the terminal.


When you start at a gate like this:


First, don’t request taxi (unless in a plane that doesn’t pushback). That I even have to say that on Expert is an abomination. Request pushback.

Now, here’s where the trend is becoming ludicrous:


More times than I care to remember, pilots have begun to stop their pushback here and request taxi. This is not pushed back. If you were at an airport, you would not see a single plane taxi from this position. Ever.

You will not be given taxi from this position.

This is pushed back:

Fully out of the gate, turned 90 degrees, with nose gear on the taxi line and nose pointed toward the expected runway (another trend is ignoring the expected runway and just choosing a direction at random). You may taxi from this position.

Every day, we toss the word Realism™ around, but are more than willing to discard it if it gets us to the runway faster. No bueno.

This is how planes prepare to taxi. You will not be given clearance to taxi (by me) if you’re a couple feet back of the wall. Taxiing forward with a 180 through the adjacent gates is not how it’s done.

Take the time. Pushback all the way. Then request taxi. The runway will still be there I promise.

And if you do request taxi 2 feet back of your spawn point and are told to keep pushing back, that is not taxi clearance. It’s not a mistake. I did hear you. You’re just not in a position from which you may taxi. It’s your cue to keep pushing back to a realistic position for taxi.


Great post, sadly not everyone would still follow that sequence…there are just somethings that we will never really get fully out of just by description and i totally understand how you feel about it. There should be something implemented so as to prevent this further. Well that’s my personal view, might create a feature request for this when i think of one :) Cheers mate


Also if there is clearly an aircraft behind you and you know you can’t pushback then don’t bother requesting it. It wastes the controllers time as they have to send a command back to the pilot.


Agreed Tim. So many people think that because there are not many other planes around they should just scoot back and then cut through all of the gates. I think too many Pilots are in big rushes to get in the air, but pushback and taxi are important parts of flying. Thanks for the post.

Also, during taxi, STOP RIDING ON MY TAIL! If I’m taxiing at 20 kts, I’M NOT SUNDAY DRIVING, I’m staying in the speed limit. When I hit a turn going less that 10 kts like I’m supposed to, I’m not intentionally slowing down to make you mad. Too many people are riding my tail because they want to be first on the runway. Be patient!


Great post! It’s so frustrating when this happens…

On the topic of pushback, I would like to add that if you are at an airport that has a taxi line continuing through the parking spot and there is a taxiway in front you can just taxi straight from the gate and there is no need to request pushback. These gates exist to make it easier to start taxiing and it reduces workload for the ATC at that airport if you just request taxi instead of pushing back. :)


yeah deffinitly, so true :(

Also, if the plane in front of you while taxiing disappears, pretend it is still there and wait a minute or so before you fill in the spot. Chances are they will be back.


@Tim_B You’re Mark now. 😂


Another thing I’m starting to see is people pushback and pushback all the way into a 180degree spin then taxi while still in the gate area. Do not do this it’s annoying not only to other pilots but to the controller also. And this was on expert


I understand that this doesn’t reply to the majority of gates, but at quite a lot of airports you can just taxi out of the stands. This sometimes isn’t understood by ATC I feel.

Many flights (irl) will pushback facing whichever gets them out of the apron and onto the main taxiway fastest and I understand that some people may just ignore the expect runway command, but if I’m facing a different direction, that’s usually why.

I agree with you with all your other points, I have seen people taxiing out of gates that require pushback and it’s really quite frustrating. I just wanted to raise those points.


I see this all the time and it annoys the hell out of me. If you’re gonna request a taxi, complete the pushback first. That’s what I do when i’m ATC - if they’re not fully pushed back, they’re not getting approved.


I don’t have quite the docile baritone drawl, but I’ve been called worse


Not only is that an issue, but people don’t utilize the free cam to mentally plot out their taxi route prior to pushback. Again, people are too quick to spawn in and pushback immediately. I’m often sitting at the gate for 5-10 mins before I even request a pushback. During that time, I will also observe traffic and listen to ground before requesting anything. This whole process is information gathering. The more info that I have, the easier and more expeditiously I can make my way to the runway without any hiccups or issues with other aircraft or ATC. People are treating this sim like some knock off “flightsim” with cheap physics. Infinite Flight is the real deal and people need to wake up.


I always look. If that’s possible, I grant taxi. I don’t just have a blanket process. I look at every position

This was specifically about gates.


This made me laugh so much.
Thank you for creating this topic and insisting on simple things that everyone should do, even if they are in a hurry.

Since I’m here, I have a question for you. Imagine you are at a gate, and you want to request pushback. But you see one or more planes taxiing in your direction (they are about to taxi behind you).

  1. do you rather want me to request pushback immediately (and you’re probably going to tell me to hold position)
  2. do you want me to wait that every plane passed behind me and then request pushback?

In my opinion, I’d like to request pushback immediately even though I will have to hold position, so ATC already knows I’m ready and can program the next steps in his/her head. But of course, I would do this in a crowded airport, if there is only one plane passing behind, I would just wait him to pass.


Oops. Didn’t see that. Their pics look similar. Sorry @Tim_B

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hope you dont have an issue with me sharing my views as well, If i were to be ATC i would appreciate if you would wait for the other planes to pass first as sometimes if it were to be a busy airport there may be too many planes to keep track of that after sending you the hold position too many request might have been made and yours could have been all the way below by the time you’re cleared, so for me it would be better if you wait for the planes to go pass in order for a quick and smooth communication for you to push back as you would be clear of all traffic :) as for a not so busy airport by all means go ahead and request on ahead as it is easier to keep track of in an airport with lesser traffic


As a IFATC I would tell you that you can do your part. By that I mean is don’t request push if you know your gonna have to hold position. Look around your gate and see if anyone is about to taxi behind you. Request taxi when your ready and the controller will give a clearance. While taxing if you see someone coming towards you give way to them. Most of the time you or another plane will get a “give way to…” command. Just always be aware of your surroundings and help the controller help you. 🙂


Thanks for your explanations, I’ll take note :-) @XaviurHtx @con


@DeerCrusher this is important. I think you should pin this.