How to Use the Flight Planner in FSX
By Michael Larkin
Updated September 22, 2017
Microsoft's "Flight Simulator X" is an in-depth flight simulation game in which you take on a variety of different roles associated with flying. Tasks include everything from building a fleet of aircraft to creating flight plans to actually flying the planes. The flight planner screen allows you to map out every aspect of your flight before you ever get airborne so that you can make sure that it is as efficient as possible and that none of your other managed flights conflict.
Click on "Free Flight" in the menu bar on the left side of the screen. Select "Flight Planner" from the Free Flight screen.
Click on the "Create" tab, and click on "Departure Airport."
Click on the airport you will be departing from on the map.
Click on "Destination Airport," and select the airport you will be arriving at on the map.
Select "High-Altitude Airways" from the "IFR Flight" drop-down menu to build a flight plan using a high-altitude route or "Low-Altitude Airways" to build a flight plan that stays closer to the ground.
Click on "Find Route." The Flight Planner will automatically build a flight plan.
Click the "Edit" tab if it did not come up automatically to view the pre-made flight plan.
Mouse over the icons at the top of the screen to display the name of each. Click on the "Delete Waypoint" button to enable the deletion tool.
Click on any of the purple triangle-shaped waypoints to delete them and create a more direct route. Look for other colored lines representing other flight plans to make sure that you do not create a collision course with another aircraft.
Click on the "Add Waypoint" tool to enable the add tool. Click on any location on the map to add a new waypoint to the route.
Click the "Up" and "Down" arrows below the map to raise or lower your planned cruising altitude.
Click on the "NavLog" button on the lower right to view all of the specifications for your planned flight.
Click "Print" to print out a copy for reference during your flight.
Click "Fly Now!" in the lower right to exit the flight planner and depart.
You can click "Fly Now!" any time after Step 6 if you do not want to make any changes to the pre-loaded flight plan.
Michael Larkin has been writing since 2005. He has worked as a photojournalist for CBS affiliates in Spokane, Washington, and Boise, Idaho. He has also freelanced for ESPN and PBS. Larkin currently writes a wide range of material, including corporate newsletters, blogs and ad copy, as well as the occasional magazine article. Larkin holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism/mass communication from Whitworth College.