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Transiting Malaga (and other) airspace

Approuvez has been used in France for well over 40 years.So not new.
But you are right that “radar contact” is used a lot but normally after something else. For instance when you ask for activation of your flight plan on first radio contact when taking off from an IFR flight out of an airfield with no tower.
One of the problems is that aviation phraseology is constantly evolving often because of phrases that confuse as in eg
“descend to 2 thousand feet” the “to” should no longer be used. These things often do not appear in SERA or NCO but are included as guidance in the updated phraseology advice.

Last Edited by gallois at 25 Jan 12:15

Peter wrote:

In France, “radar contact” is often used to mean “cleared for the whole mentioned route including any CAS”

Q: is it an exception or an unspoken rule?
If everything is crystal clear, I hear that phrase in many countries, AT, CZ, PL come to mind


Peter wrote:

In France, “radar contact” is often used to mean “cleared for the whole mentioned route including any CAS”. It spooks pilots (like Brits) trained to fear CAS and fear ATC.

Are you not afraid someone might follow the information you provided and get into trouble? Because this is absolutely false information.

What is correct information is the following:
1. As per SERA a flight plan and a clearance are required before entering a CAS
2. Clearance is requested by PIC “Request zone transit via …”
3. ATC provides clearance and clearance limit “Transit approved via …, next report …”

Unless that exchange has happened you are not authorized to enter CAS. Follow Peter’s wrong information at your own peril.

Last Edited by hazek at 25 Jan 13:06
ELLX, Luxembourg

RV14 wrote:

Q: is it an exception or an unspoken rule?

It’s neither. Follow SERA if you want to be safe.

ELLX, Luxembourg

hazek wrote:

but if you read the AIP for ELLX, if you’re going to cross the centerline above 2000ft 11NM from threshold or closer they want you to speak to APP even if you are in G airspace below the 2500ft floor of the D TMA.

I don’t see how this is in accordance with regulations and enforceable. If ELLX wants an RMZ, it should be published the proper way.

Nympsfield, United Kingdom

If you want ATS to help you then you need to help them to help you. So even if you are doing nothing illegal, sometimes it’s good to talk.


Follow Peter’s wrong information at your own peril.

Stop trolling, Hazek, and do some flying. I’ve got a few hundred hours in French airspace, and a chunk of it under VFR.

I’ve even heard Brits question the “radar contact” with “am I cleared via XYZ” only to get the irritated ATCO saying “yes you are”.

I don’t actually like the French system because it is ambiguous; it enables them to shaft you if you do something they really don’t like, by saying they never cleared you. Their casual clearance only lets you into CAS; it does not take care of mil airspace and other “prohibited” areas which you need to be aware of and avoid them. This has happened to me. I imagine their system works because most French GA flies only very locally (where they know the place intimately) or they just use a suitable satnav app that shows the relevant bits. Also the phone numbers for the mil airspace (published in a booklet from the SIA) are unlikely to have ELP

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

@Peter I am sorry if it seems personal but I have to tell you that your last post is full of bs.
I have several hundred hours more than you in both VFR and IFR I’m France
If you are confused by the system it is because you don’t read what has been written.
@hazek is perfectly correct about “radar contact” just because it is not your experience it does not make him a troll.
“Radar contact” is not a clearance unless it has been said following something else or in answer to a previous question. Or it could be "radar contact squawk xxxx which can usually be taken as a clearance to enter CAS. There is very little ambiguous about it.
Secondly forget permission to enter a “P” zone unless you really know what you are doing. “P” zones are listed and described in both French and English in the Complimentaire to VFR if you can’t find the zone in the eAIP which also is where necessary in English and in French.
The same goes for “R” zones with the frequency to contact, their hours of operation and why they are “R” zones
Both “R” zones and “P” zones need a clearance to enter in the same way as CAS. You get this clearance from the published airspace controller. But as mentioned it is rare that you will get a clearance for a “P” zone but when it is possible the information can be found in both the eAIP and the complimentaire.
“D” zones are also covered in the same manner but do not need a clearance. Sometimes, though it is a good idea to check how dangerous they are going to be by consulting the Complimentaire or calling up the appropriate frequency.
(I have referred to the complimentaire on several occasions on this forum and in fact posted a copy of it, admittedly not up to date on a previous thread)
This all can be studied in the planning stage including activity during that day especially in the case of the fast jet corridors. Whether a zone is active or not can also be found out by talking to the SIV which will normally, also be able to get you clearance to enter CAS, as often it is the same person wearing different hats. The “R” zones are usually military, and if active, clearance will be via the military control frequency and is rarely withheld in most zones.
IFR does not normally need to do this as you will be on a pre agreed flight plan. That is the same for CAS also.
Finally, you keep repeating as if its something weird about France that we only fly locally. If you mean we rarely fly out of the country, that might be true for the majority of French pilots. But if you look on You Tube you will find French pilots travelling the world. One guy going round the world in his Nynja. And I know of many from round here that do a lot of travelling to other countries in their ULMs. I have mentioned it on euroga several times but you seem to ignore it.
But for me to go an fly in the east or south of France I will often be flying over 1000km each way. And there are many of us who do these sort of trips regularly. I don’t consider these local flights. Perhaps you do.
But yes we do have people who turn up and just do an hour long flight. We also have a lot of aerobatics (or did have) and yes these are local flights. As are the precision competitions, and the glider towers. Is that so much different from the UK or.anywhere else in Europe.
So Peter I beg you please stop spouting nonsense about flying in France. If you don’t understand how to do it without problems, I would happily advise you on any journey you wish.
But remember there are rules that we have to obey eg SERA and sometimes there are areas you will not be able to go at a particular time or perhaps ever.


Next time I fly to France I will for sure seek your counsel, Gallois, else I might get into huge trouble

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

You’re welcome🙂
We have done away with the guillotine. But not that long ago. And some would like to see it brought back. But I have never known it to be used on pilot’s entering CAS without clearance. Not even one marked “P” although those who have done it might say it was a pretty close run thing.😄😁

Last Edited by gallois at 26 Jan 09:32
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