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TOPIC: How do you file a flight plan?

How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15903

  • flander
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Ok here is a question . . . perhaps worthy of a user pole.

Recently I went for a ride with an instructor doing some further training. He asked me to \"fill out\" the flight plan form and I chuckled. He was looking at me wondering why, so I explained to him that I've never actually \"filled out\" the form.

His question, as well as mine here for the group is . . .

\"How do you normally file a flight plan?\"

99.9% of the time I file by phone. . . Once I filed while already in the air on 126.7, but I had to give all my information over the air. oops!

The possible options that I know about are:

- Phone 1-866-WXBRIEF (992-7433)
- FAX
- 126.7 (or other FISE)
- Online

Perhaps I am missing some options?

Also. . .
Does your method of filing change based on your circumstances?
ie. WAY up north, or while in the USA, or other?
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15906

  • Sydney
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Fill out the form, phone it in, keep the form with you in flight. It's hassle-free proof.
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15907

  • Tony Hunt
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I normally file by phone.
Once I filed while already in the air on 126.7, but I had to give all my information over the air. oops!
When I bought my aeroplane, I completed a paper flight plan form with all the \"tombstone\" info and faxed it to Quebec FIC. They created a \"Master\" flight plan for my aircraft, and they kept all the info that never changes on the aircraft's file. Any time I call 1-866-WXBRIEF and give the callsign, they simply ask me for the route, ETA, # pax, fuel endurance and if the pilot is \"Mr Hunt\". All the other info such as aircraft colour, rafts, ELTs, survival gear, NOK and my cellphone number are already in their system.

I have filed one flight plan by phone while I was burning and turning on the ramp, warming up. I could not get a cellphone signal at the hangar so I phoned the FSS through the \"cellphone to the headset\" bluetooth connection after taxiing out. It worked very well.

Quebec Radio actually called me once on my cellphone before takeoff. They wanted to warn me about some pop-up thunderstorms along my planned route. We talked about the rapidly changing weather and I delayed the flight. It was good to feel that Big Brother was actually looking out for me that day. The FSS had my cellphone number because I asked for it to be included on my \"Master\" flight plan.

My flight planning software asks me if I want to file a flight plan electronically when I plan my route on the laptop. It is US software and it exports flight plans electronically into the US system using DUATS. It would be nice if we had a similar integrated capability in Canada.
Last Edit: 8 years 4 months ago by Tony Hunt.
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15918

I like to file online when I'm finishing up my planning. I use the Nav Canada site. You can then print out your plan report to bring with you. I often file the night before so if I find my times sliding I just phone in a revision.

This doesn't work when the destination is a US airport so I phone those in. I have heard of some who use fltplan.com to file internationally online. I haven't done that though. When I'm in the US and filing a return flight plan I call FSS to file on the phone at the FBO.

Anthony
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15934

Always by phone for me.

If you file online with Nav Canada, can you get a XPDR code at the same time?
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15935

gbaxjr wrote:
If you file online with Nav Canada, can you get a XPDR code at the same time?

No.
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15958

  • Bingo M2
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Don’t forget that if you are at an airport that still has an FSS, you can hand it over personally to the FSS guy. It will give him the opportunity to look at it while you’re still there and perhaps point out some information on how to fill out the form (format, order of info, etc).

Bingo
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15960

  • Tony Hunt
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bingom2 wrote:
Don’t forget that if you are at an airport that still has an FSS, you can hand it over personally to the FSS guy.
It depends. I did this a few times in the past, but I find it too difficult nowadays. Any airport that still has an FSS probably has secure doors but not enough commercial traffic to staff security 24/7. I have walked into several terminals from airside to look for washrooms, restaurant, FSS etc and once the airside doors close behind me I have been locked inside.

On a cross-country flight, I try to avoid terminal buildings. I might spend an hour looking for an agent to let me back out. Worst time was when I spent two hours at CYAM waiting for \"security\" to show up, and then he reviewed all my personal documentation and then demanded to see proof of ownership for the aircraft before letting me back out to airside. Then he walked me to the airplane and asked to inspect the logbooks. At that point I said \"enough\".
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15972

  • Andrew
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Tony,

What authority do airport security officials have to do that? Are they TC employees? A pilot I know who flies for a small charter operation said he has told them to \"piss off - this is a private flight\", and the security people walked away:laugh:. I can understand wanting to see that you are in fact a pilot before letting you out, but I don't carry proof of ownership of the aircraft with me - that stays with the rest of the documents in the plane.
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Re:How do you file a flight plan? 8 years 4 months ago #15976

  • Tony Hunt
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84c172 wrote:
Tony, What authority do airport security officials have to do that?
I agree that I should be able to prove why I need to go onto the ramp, and I was lucky that I was carrying my jacket with my wallet and license. Since I normally fly out of small places like Rockliffe where everyone knows me and there are no magic doors that lock you in, I don't always remember to carry ID when I run inside looking for a washroom.

This guy wore a private security company uniform and ID. When I told him I needed access to my plane, he expected me to \"prove it\". The only aircraft documentation that I have tucked in with my pilot license is a copy of the proof of insurance. The security guy said that would not be enough, and I told him that the registration was kept with the aircraft documentation in the aircraft. He still wanted to see it, so he escorted me to the plane.

After I unlocked the plane, unloaded half my camping gear to get my papers and then took the registration out of the document folder, he asked to see the journey log and the airworthiness certificate. At that point I knew he was overstepping himself since I had proven who I was and that the plane belonged to me. When I told him that, he turned and walked back into the terminal without another word.

I was quietly annoyed (a Canadian reflex?) after that episode and I called Kevin Psutka at COPA when I got home. I could not see the benefit of what that guy did. The guy seemed to be a pilot too since he examined my license and commented that my IFR renewal ride would be due soon. If I had not stopped him, he seemed determined to conduct an unofficial ramp check. Kevin Psutka brushed it off as \"too much enthusiasm\". I think that we have to draw the line somewhere or else we will be forced to empty our water bottles and hand over our Leatherman multi-tool to these guys before going flying.

Sorry I guess we got off the original flight plan topic. ;)
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