Audio Lesson #2 Anticipating ATC Clearances

In this broadcast, we'll ask the question: "Is it a good idea to anticipate instructions from air traffic control?" You'll be referring to the airport diagram for Daytona Beach Airport (DAB), shown above.

Show Notes:

In this broadcast, we’ll ask the question: “Is it a good idea to anticipate instructions from air traffic control?” You’ll be referring to the airport diagram for Daytona Beach Airport (DAB), shown below.

Refer to this airport diagram during the show.

Daytona Beach Airport Diagram
Daytona Beach Airport Diagram
  1. I wrote an article not too long ago that it pays to listen to what other pilots are getting for clearances. By listening, you can anticipate what you will get from ATC. Here is the link to that article
  2. The problem with anticipation is, it can mislead you. A big factor in misunderstanding ATC instructions is, you hear what you expected to hear, not what ATC said.
  3. Anticipation works well when you use it to mentally prepare for various options from ATC, not just one particular path, or directive.
  4. For example, when anticipating taxi instructions from ground control, you can mentally prepare by briefing or reviewing the various taxi routes that might get you from your parking position to the active runway.
  5. Anticipating various taxi routes is just one example of an overall strategy. Think about what may come your way during all communication with ATC. Be ready for anything.
  6. Questions, comments, or heartburn about this show or anything else in this website?

    Use the comments section below to talk to me. I’ll answer as fast as possible.


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7 thoughts on “Audio Lesson #2 Anticipating ATC Clearances”

  1. Hello, I’m training for my Sport Pilot lic. and ATC communications is becoming the problem. Seems like my mind is just to slow to hear the phraseology, decipher the phraseology, visually process the intructions in my mind and then organize my thoughts to repeat what I just chewed on in a “lightening strike”.. I may be reduced to just flying in the desert… I’m hoping with practice I can achieve proper communication or something that gets me by safley… Please let me know when your software is avaiable… Thank You, Eddie

    1. Eddie,

      In my opinion, your mind is not slow to decipher the phraseology. You mind is occupied with the processes required to maintain aircraft control. Until you learn the habits of aircraft control, and free your mind to think about other things as you fly, absorbing ATC clearances will be a struggle. Learning the communication ropes takes time and patience. Stick with it. You’ll get it.


    1. Thank you Sharlene! Let me know if you have questions or if there is anything I can do to help you with radio work.


  2. Dear Jeff,
    I’m working towards getting my Instrument rating. I greatly appreciate the Podcasts. Listening to clearances on the ground is way less dangerous and less expensive.
    live 1 hour away from DFW. Got to know what to say and when to say it. I have been looking for a program for a while. I like yours the best. Keep on teaching please.

    1. Harriet,

      I’m so glad to hear the podcast show helps. Stay in touch and give me shout if you have any questions.


  3. As more I reading and listening your web site as more I like it and admire your job! How many you help already and will help in the future!!!! Especially in radio communication. English is my second lengvich and for now ATC communication is a jungle for understanding . Waiting for your simulator. And may be you san recommend any site to listen these real life communication as much as possible. Thank you so much for your job!!!

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