When departure hands you off to the destination airport unicom frequency

Hey everybody,
I just flew out of LAX and I’m on my way to San Francisco. However, i would like to report something that has already happened before: departure handing me off to unicom. So today, departure handed me off to San Francisco Unicom. But why? I mean, I’m like 250nm away from my destination and you’re telling me to already contact unicom? What? There isn’t any unicom since there is ATC at SFO so nobody would use it. Could someone please explain to me why departure hands me off to the destination airport unciom frequency? Thanks

What server was this on?

This was on expert server

They might have tapped the wrong button. The destination frequency is close to the “frequency change approved” button.

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This isn’t the first time that this has happened

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If departure tells you “frequency change approved”, you’re prompted to respond and then are supposed to manually tune out of the frequency you’re on.

If departure tells you to “contact SFO Unicom”, you’re prompted to send a response and automatically switch off of the departure frequency to your destination Unicom frequency.

It’s a way for departure controllers to get you off frequency and keep their airspace uncluttered.


Interesting. I’ve never had this happen to me, but maybe the controller thought that SFO was close enough to LAX that he could transfer you to SFO’s unicom. It’s odd that this happened on Expert, though.

But there’s ATC so no one would use it

This makes sense. However, can’t controllers “swipe” away the aircraft off their list?

The controller could’ve just said « frequency change approved, good day»

He could have assumed that transferring you to ATC would have annoyed the controller in SFO (I know I’d be annoyed if an aircraft tuned into my frequency when more than 200 mi. away :) )

why can’t the controller just say « frequency change approved, good day!»?

Not sure. You’ll have to take it up with him/her. Who was the controller?

This happened to me two times already. I don’t know who was the controller as he already left.

MaxSez: “Stuff Happens” no big deal… OUT


I was your controller. As @tomthetank said, there is really no difference between me handing you off to a specific Unicom and me just saying frequency change approved. I always hand people over to Unicom as lots of the time, there is no ATC at the pilots destination airport. If there is ATC there, you never know when they might leave. No matter what, if you’re on Unicom or are completely tuned out of all frequencies, you have to manually switch to your destination airports ATC frequencies. So there is really no disservice once soever in this situation.


Yes, but all this does is remove the aircraft from the (long and crowded) list and turn it white on the map. The white icon still has a tag displaying callsign, speed/altitude, and service. That represents most of the clutter.


Does it afect your gameplay? Most likley not
Does it really matter then?

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It has nothing to do with that. While not best practice, they do it just to get you off the frequency. The fewer tags, the better.

(Swiping off the tags is preferable, but tuning out would help on the pilot side.)

It’s very annoying, vote for this request I made it you prefer the data tag go away when you swipe away a flight strip.