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CTOT nonsense

Had an IFR departure from Deauville to Guernsey today which was scheduled for 1000Z and got a CTOT for 1006. So called for start and clearance at 0950 and got start but no clearance with instruction to call for taxi when ready. Taxi to the hold and told to report 3 minutes before ready for departure. So reported at 1003 and then a wait for the clearance and finally cleared for departure via a SID. Actual departure was now at 1010 due to the delay in the clearance. The SID quickly disappeared and a virtual direct to Guernsey followed and finally a rather windy landing at Guernsey. On checking my phone after landing I had an email from RR, which I used for filing, that my flightplan had been cancelled due to not being airborne by my CTOT. It hadn’t made a jot of difference to the flight and all the controllers were fully aware of the flightplan so what on earth was all the nonsense about the CTOT?

Last Edited by JohnR at 10 Aug 16:46
EGBW, United Kingdom

You are misunderstanding the CTOT nonsense. CTOTs are artefacts created by a computer. They have little correlation with what the involved human controllers do, think, or with what kind of clearance they will issue. The only correlation is that they are not allowed to let you give outside of the -5 to +10 window of the CTOT.

So, you just got to live with these. But don‘t expect to „notice“ any restriction in flight once you have complied with the CTOT.

Mainz (EDFZ), Germany

You seemed to have missed the point of my post. The flight plan was cancelled because apparently I missed the CTOT slot time and yet it didn’t mean a thing to anyone. So what was the point of the CTOT?

EGBW, United Kingdom

JohnR wrote:

So what was the point of the CTOT?

The point of the CTOT in your case was to cancel the flight plan. The question is what is the point of the flight plan if you can fly without problems when it is cancelled. I say that with a dose of sarcasm, of course.

LSZH, LSZF, Switzerland

I don’t understand why the flight plan was suspended (I guess that’s what really happened rather than being cancelled).

The CTOT was 1006. Take-off was 1010 which is CTOT+4 and the allowed margin is CTOT-5 to CTOT+10.

ESKC (Uppsala/Sundbro), Sweden

AIUI, if you miss the last departure time then the FP gets a suspend not a cancel.

The tower has the power to unsuspend it, but once cancelled they cannot (normally) resubmit it; for that you have to do it yourself.

How long a FP can be suspended before it is binned, I don’t know.

The detail of what happens varies. For example one tower I know about will, when the deadline is approaching, but there is no sign of you, issue a delay of say 15 mins and keep doing that for a while.

If there is no FP (i.e. if it has been cancelled) then the tower won’t let you depart (normally ). Often they will let you depart VFR.

CTOTs are generated by the Eurocontrol algorithm which often does weird things…

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Likely that, for some reason, the departure message from Deauville did not get through to RR. Hence you got the suspension info from them. Just disregard it. You got your clearance and got to your destination, so all good.

Anyway, I don‘t think much of RR (not only because it is insanely expensive), but recommend autorouter instead.

Last Edited by boscomantico at 11 Aug 07:49
Mainz (EDFZ), Germany

Interesting point regarding whether RR is efficient since when I returned from Guernsey to the UK this afternoon I got a message from the tower after landing that border force had been on the phone to complain that there was no GAR form filed for the flight. I had used RR to file the GAR and had a confirmation email to confirm filing. This isn’t the first time I have had exactly the same problem. When I called Border Force they said it must have been an IT problem and just thanked me for the call. I suspect that if I had not called them it would have been a more forceful response. RR is looking into why they said they didn’t receive the GAR.

All together an interesting couple of flights this weekend!

EGBW, United Kingdom

I believe that RR just email the GAR to the “hmrc” address. @RocketTeam might know more The Autorouter certainly did that (when I was involved with it, until 2-3 years ago). Only OnlineGAR had a special gateway to HMRC.

And the last few GARs emailed to the “hmrc” address were indeed lost, so now I CC them to the local address (the actual guy who complained he didn’t receive it) which for me happens to be some police department in Newhaven.

It looks like there is a problem with the “hmrc” address / subsequent distribution.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

JohnR wrote:

On checking my phone after landing I had an email from RR, which I used for filing, that my flightplan had been cancelled due to not being airborne by my CTOT.

Happens to me, too, with autorouter. Usually when the tower makes me depart at CTOT+11 while I was ready at the runway entry point at CTOT (or CTOT+5), but they had other traffic.

Peter wrote:

It looks like there is a problem with the “hmrc” address / subsequent distribution.

Yes. But having discharged my obligation that way through Autorouter, I find that much more convenient than redoing everything in OnlineGAR, and again for each delay.

ELLX
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