Luukas11
Topic Author
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:26 pm

Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:41 am

Hi.

When a plane is leaving the aiport and everything is ready for take off, pilot ask permission or slot from airport authorothies. How long time before the time slot the plane should be ready?

Ex. You are leaving Hong Kong and flying A332 to Europe. The scheduled departure is 9:30 AM. When should the plane be ready to take of on time?

Antti
 
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thefactorypilot
Posts: 69
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Re: Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:52 pm

Luukas11 wrote:
Hi.

When a plane is leaving the aiport and everything is ready for take off, pilot ask permission or slot from airport authorothies. How long time before the time slot the plane should be ready?

Ex. You are leaving Hong Kong and flying A332 to Europe. The scheduled departure is 9:30 AM. When should the plane be ready to take of on time?

Antti

I can only give you an example for a domestic flight in the USA.

So lets say our scheduled departure time is 930am. To be "On TIme" that means that I, as captain, have to have the aircraft door closed and the parking brake released (it may be different for other types of aircraft... its whatever triggers your ACARS system to record and send the OUT TIME).

SO that is the official "Out Time" which is what we refer to as Departure TIme.

You were kinda referring to two different things. SLot time is totally different. We also call it EDCT Time "eedict" is how you pronounce it... that is basically your "WHEELS UP" time.
So lets say that my EDCT TIME is 1030am and my Departure Time was 930am. I need to be "blocked out" (ACARS registering doors closed and brake released) by 930am so that I am On Time. Then we will go taxi somewhere, really wherever the ATC ground controller wants us to go sit. Around 1015am I will start getting everything ready to go... both engines started, all checklists completed, cabin crew in their seats, etc... Typically you want to be ready to rock within 5 minutes of your wheels up time so that if they release you a few minutes early you can blast off.

Hope that all makes sense.
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:04 pm

The scheduled departure time is the scheduled departure time. If you're ready to push a few minutes before you're fine because it takes a minute or two from "ready" before you get your clearance and actually push.

HK doesn't have massively strict TOBT (Target Off Blocks Time) scheduling. You ask for the PDC at off-blocks -20 and when you're ready you tell them. If you're not ready exactly on time, it is still fine, but with any long expected delay you should let them know.

Other airports are way more strict, and if you're going to be more than 5 minutes off your TOBT (target off block time) you need to tell your handling agent so he/she can request a new time.

Having said that, at HK as in other places they're perfectly happy for you to sit in the conga line for 45 minutes once you've pushed, so it pays to be a bit tactical. As the factory pilot says, be ready to go when your number is about to come up.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
skyhawkmatthew
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Re: Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:05 pm

Luukas11 wrote:
Ex. You are leaving Hong Kong and flying A332 to Europe. The scheduled departure is 9:30 AM. When should the plane be ready to take of on time?


You want to be ready just before your scheduled departure time, because that's when ATC is expecting you.

Of course, for your specific example, departing HK to the north, you go when China says you can, regardless of when you're actually ready :wink2:

Edit: as Starlionblue points out, sometimes it pays to be "flexible" with calling ready, especially out of HK with so many flights vying for space on the same airways!
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gloom
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Re: Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:25 pm

Hey guys, look at the question again.

There are tho phases - one is slot confirmation, the other is departure time. Those two are quite often confused, even if dependant.

Where I live, and I guess it's like this more or less across the Europe, slot needs to be confirmed 15 mins ahead (usually by plane calling at freq for departure clearance). Your call is assumed as "ready on departure time", and needs to be at least 15 mins ahead.
Of course, there are some procedures for ops to delay, confirm otherwise etc. Above is more-or-less standard that most crews follow.

I imagine it is similar at any other busy airport (where the slots are used for capacity reasons).

I have heard of a couple of flights (and aircrews) who failed to call on time (or tried to delay), received "Your slot time has passed, contact your representatives" and were delayed by approx 4 hrs (waiting for another slot).

Cheers,Adam
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:39 pm

skyhawkmatthew wrote:
Luukas11 wrote:
Ex. You are leaving Hong Kong and flying A332 to Europe. The scheduled departure is 9:30 AM. When should the plane be ready to take of on time?


You want to be ready just before your scheduled departure time, because that's when ATC is expecting you.

Of course, for your specific example, departing HK to the north, you go when China says you can, regardless of when you're actually ready :wink2:

Edit: as Starlionblue points out, sometimes it pays to be "flexible" with calling ready, especially out of HK with so many flights vying for space on the same airways!


The entry into Mainland China airspace thing can be a "fun" wrinkle for all involved, especially when you combine with arrival slot times in Europe. Option 1: Leave "now" so you make your Mainland China slot but arrive an hour early for your arrival slot and have to hold or land and pay a fine. Option 2: Leave later, be massively delayed due to slot congestion entering China, and now you'll arrive late, meaning the return flight might be delayed.

Good times.
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
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zeke
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Re: Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 21, 2017 2:40 pm

Luukas11 wrote:
Ex. You are leaving Hong Kong and flying A332 to Europe. The scheduled departure is 9:30 AM. When should the plane be ready to take of on time?


Enroute slots out of HKG are obtained by delivery after you call ready. They will keep you on the gate until you have a slot. When you have your slot they switch you over to ground where you should be ready immediately for push and start, but in reality you can be delayed by other traffic either at the apron, at the holding point, or even significant weather in the area control.

Typically in HKG it takes a few minutes to get switched to ground, few minutes to get push and start, and around 20 minutes taxi before takeoff. I have called ready before to get a 10 hr delay.
Human rights lawyers are "ambulance chasers of the very worst kind.'" - Sky News
 
Luukas11
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Re: Time for departure on time

Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:41 am

Thank you for your answers. Very simple way: you are like in the shop, take your number to the line. If I understood right you cannot take the number until doors are closed and break released. After that there are many things that impact situation like in this Hong Kong - Europe flight (different airspace - China, Russia and Europe). And you need to be little tricky so that you can count on arriving on time. You must know when to be ready to be in the line that everything goes as planned.
 
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zeke
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Re: Time for departure on time

Sat Apr 22, 2017 8:22 am

Luukas11 wrote:
Thank you for your answers. Very simple way: you are like in the shop, take your number to the line. If I understood right you cannot take the number until doors are closed and break released. After that there are many things that impact situation like in this Hong Kong - Europe flight (different airspace - China, Russia and Europe). And you need to be little tricky so that you can count on arriving on time. You must know when to be ready to be in the line that everything goes as planned.


Doors should be shut with a tug connected to call ready, but some carriers call ready with the doors open and get caught out by ATC. It is a bit of a first in first served basis, it also depends on the initial cruising level you are after. If many aircraft are after the same cruising level ATC will delay you to have enroute separation. Some types have higher initial cruise altitudes than other so they have more choice of levels they can get assigned to get going. Normally I will just take any level to get going and then climb enroute. Chinese ATC will also reserve some levels for their own carriers, so when HKG calls them up other carriers are getting flow control, and Chinese carriers get no delay. HKG ATC does not play that game, if there is slot available, they tell China that the Chinese carrier does not get that slot and it goes the the next one in the HKG departure queue. Same happens going into HKG, I have been vectored way off track so that a Chinese carrier can hit the HKG FIR inbound point first and hence ahead in the HKG arrivals queue.

I must say this is not that unique to China, most of the countries in Asia will play the advantage card to the local carriers, except in HKG where it is first in the queue basis. HKG ATC will allow a carrier to swap departure/arrival slot in the queue with another aircraft from the same company. For example if the arrival queue had a CX aircraft as number 4 coming in from the east that is running early and has ample fuel, and say number 12 from the south was kept down below their planned levels for the whole flight and running tight on fuel, the operator in conjunction with ATC can swap the #12 with #4, it has no impact on others in the sequence. The #4 would get delayed to take the #12 slot, and the #12 would take the #4 slot.

The route between Europe and Hong Kong are also shared by the traffic to Japan, Korea, China etc, so the enroute delays may only become apparent when you get to Mongolia.

Airlines will have experience over the route on the time it needs to meet the arrival time, and builds "buffers" into the schedule so that flights would normally arrive on time.
Human rights lawyers are "ambulance chasers of the very worst kind.'" - Sky News
 
benbeny
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Re: Time for departure on time

Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:15 pm

So what can be considered as 'on time'? If I read above, it's -/+ 5 mins. Am I correct?
 
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Starlionblue
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Re: Time for departure on time

Sun Apr 23, 2017 12:50 pm

benbeny wrote:
So what can be considered as 'on time'? If I read above, it's -/+ 5 mins. Am I correct?


By whom? While captains might have to record even a minute of "delay" in the commander's report after a flight, that's not the same as sites like Flightaware consider "late".
"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots." - John Ringo
 
Luukas11
Topic Author
Posts: 6
Joined: Sun Apr 16, 2017 3:26 pm

Re: Time for departure on time

Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:15 pm

Hi. Most important is to land on time so that passengers will be on time their next flight, business meetings and so on and the plane can start its next flight on time. And if the plane leaves late there is more possibilities that it arrives also late than when it take off on its scheduled time.
 
VSMUT
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Re: Time for departure on time

Fri Apr 28, 2017 7:02 pm

Starlionblue wrote:
benbeny wrote:
So what can be considered as 'on time'? If I read above, it's -/+ 5 mins. Am I correct?


By whom? While captains might have to record even a minute of "delay" in the commander's report after a flight, that's not the same as sites like Flightaware consider "late".


I have heard the 5 minutes thing somewhere before, don't remember where though.

I do however know that in the cargo world it is pretty common to define late as anything more than 59 seconds after schedule. Contractually of course, not regulatory. Whether or not it gets reported as such is a different matter though.

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