Radar Contact #8 Interview with an Approach Controller

Who are you talking to at Approach Control?

Who is on the other end of the radio when you talk to Approach Control? You are about to find out. Jack Bowers, a recently retired radar controller from the St. Louis TRACON, talks about what to expect when you check in with Approach.

Here’s what to expect:

  • How approach controllers take the handoff of your aircraft from enroute control.
  • Find out how VFR aircraft are handled when the sky fills up with IFR traffic.
  • Learn what you can do to get the best possible service from Approach and Departure control.
  • Discover why it’s a good thing to say “Student pilot,” on the radio when you are in training.
  • Learn what you really get when you hook up to ATC for fight following.

All this, and more, from a person who is not only a very experienced air traffic controller, but also a current certified flight instructor.


Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

On Key

Related Posts

Learning Radio Skills from Pilots

There is a misconception among new pilots that listening to other pilots speak on the radio is a good way to learn radio phrasing. My opinion is, maybe, but probably not. Listen to the audio in this 1:10 video. These are all presumably experienced pilots communicating with Peachtree Tower at Dekalb-Peachtree Airport (KPDK). Ear-opening, yes?

New Day, New Jet

"New day, new jet." That is an Air Force Instructor Pilot's standard statement that means the current training scenario is over, and a new one has begun. It is a line of demarcation that reminds student pilots it is time to move on to the next challenging scenario. It's a new day here at ATCcommunication.com,

Flying into Class B for the First Time

If you are anticipating flying into Class B airspace for the first time, not to worry. The procedures ATC uses inside of Class B are nearly identical to those used in other classes of airspace. The subtle variations in procedure will most likely be unnoticeable to you. What may jump out at you is the

Pilot’s Discretion Descents

As you approach your destination, ATC will clear you to begin a descent from your enroute altitude to some lower altitude. Often descent clearances will come in a series of lower altitudes. This series of step-down clearances is issued to allow you to descend without conflicting with other traffic at lower altitudes. Occasionally, and in

I Hate Holding

No one likes to have their forward progress stopped. You know what I mean. When you are stuck in a traffic jam on the road, it’s very aggravating. Waiting at a long red stoplight when you need to be somewhere can raise your blood pressure. Similarly, when ATC says, “Expect holding at [a navigation fix],”

Scroll to Top