What do I say when I announce inbound for landing at a 45 degree entry?

Has anyone else have experienced confusion when you are entering the glide path at a 45-degree angle and wondered whether to say you are making right or left traffic or just simply state that you’re going straight in for the runway? Since, when I am going at a perfect 45-degree angle I am neither going left or right base nor final. So I was wondering when I announce I am inbound for landing for a case like this what is to be said here?

I mean is it even an ATC topic when this has nothing to do with ATC and just unicom?

Hello mate, hope you’re well!

That’s a great question you have. When you enter the pattern to land or complete a touch and go, you will always be making left or right traffic regardless of your entry point unless you are entering straight in on runway heading.

If you are entering at a 45 degree angle where you will have to turn your aircraft to the left to establish yourself on final, then you are making left traffic for that said runway, and you would be making right traffic if you had to turn your aircraft to the right to establish yourself on final. The direction of your turns to establish yourself on final approach is the traffic direction you are making.

If you are entering on a 45 degree angle as you have mentioned above, you would be best to call in on left or right traffic as mentioned above and then report your position on left or right base for runway XX (runway you are landing on), depending if the runway is to your left or right.

Hope this makes sense and helps you out.

Also, I changed this to ATC because the #support category is for technical issues with the app, such as bugs, scenery issues etc.

Let us know if you have any more questions.



Unicom is a form of ATC.

If I’m heading in to the cone at a 45 deg angle I call “straight in”, as the positioning doesn’t conform to any normal pattern legs. That is, I haven’t flown around the airfield in any way, just approached it directly.

An ATC supervisor has already answered the query :) I’m afraid you aren’t entirely correct because:

Since it’s Unicom if you say straight in then it’s not the end of the world. Choosing the correct direction will just make it easier for the other pilots in the airspace to understand where you are and how you’ll be entering the pattern.


45 degrees is a fairly significant angle. Calling it as a base gives the eyeballs looking for traffic a somewhat better cue than straight in.

If I am in the traffic pattern at 135-degrees am I downwind or base?

If I’m visualizing correctly what you mean, I’d say you’ve already made your turn onto base - do you mean you’ve made a left (assuming left traffic) 45 degree turn from downwind?

Visualizing that you’re entering the traffic pattern 45 degrees from both downwind and base.

You’re not even technically anywhere near entering the pattern if you’re outside the cone as well.

Edit: What I mean by that is that it’s used to indicate which direction you will be entering the traffic pattern. You can be flying inbound from any direction, but if you’d like to enter the pattern on left base, you’d say left traffic instead of right or straight in.

For Active Tower they would say “continue inbound” for that case and as for Unicom, you don’t report position until you really are at a traffic pattern since at that angle you’re still clearly entering the traffic pattern for the runway.

They wouldn’t say continue inbound. They’d just issue a pattern entry.

But which one? enter downwind or enter base?

Sorry I’m not clear on what you mean, as to where the 45 degrees applies.

I would personally have them enter final rather than base since they’d probably be on their way to intercepting the ILS if it’s applicable.

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In this scenario, of course I’d have them enter downwind. This isn’t the case in the original post though.

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Based on the picture posted above, referring to the position shown all the way in the top.