The General Aviation Safety Council (GASCo) held a webinar recently on the subject of airspace infringements. There was a lot of useful information much of which related to the use of RTF including Frequency Monitoring Codes (FMC) aka ‘listening squawks, what to do when lost, planning your flight (including frequencies that you may need) DACS, DAAIS, ATSOCAS etc etc.
The recording can be watched here.
Also present was Amanda Rhodes (Air Traffic Controller, Luton and Stansted). Amanda’s talk (starting at 32:00 mins into the online session) was very interesting as it was from the perspective of the air traffic controller. A great deal of RTF training is understanding the view from ‘the other side’, as having this empathy helps when planning your flight and making requests to, for example cross controlled airspace.
There were a couple of reference made to ‘sounding slick’ over the radio in order to maximise your chances of getting a clearance. I am not sure I agree 100% with that. At least in my experience the controllers do all they can to assist those pilots who appear to be less confident.
Back in 2004, my friend and I flew an identical route through London City, Stansted, Luton, Heathrow, Solent and Gatwick airspace initially in his Aztec with me on the radio in my then rather unconfident PPL manner and then again in my C172 with his rather more confident ATPL manner. The result…the same clearance were given and the pretty much the same route flown. Flyer published the article and I have uploaded it here.