there anything I can do to make it more likely I can get the transit.
Flight priorities are defined in a CAP document (can’t remember which one) such that if you’re in an ambulance or police flight, you’ll go right to the top...
Somewhere down that list you have the inbound flights where you and I will be paying fees to land. They won’t be asking you to remain outside for that long if so. Just be very careful of handling agent fees which can be ridiculous.
Then you also have flights that involve some scientific, filming or surveying work which really require access. Those are pre-notified and filed through the ATSU’s non-standard flight portal.
Then if you are flying IFR and have filed a flight plan with route validated with Eurocontrol, there are minimum overflight levels inside the CTA or TMA in order for you to be accepted.
But if you just want a low level VFR/IFR transit at little notice and you want to maximise your chances, I’d say:
- You can look for a quieter period on the airline schedule on the airport’s website. Note that any airport’s GA movements won’t show up there. Less flights mean the radio won’t sound like a machine gun when you tune in.
- A better weather day certainly helps, and not one with fog and thunderstorms and hail moving around the place.
- Don’t call up right outside the airspace boundary but do so several miles from it. Otherwise you may have to hold outside or risk an infringement. Controllers need some time to arrange for the transit to happen.
- Some electronic flight strip systems have a horrible user interface to input popup flight details over the radio. Filing a flight plan or telephone call before takeoff can help with the strip being earlier prepared. It’s not a guarantee of acceptance of clearance though.
- Flights crossing perpendicular to a runway would often be easier because you’re minimising your time in conflict with the landing and departing traffic.
Anyway, you can get more information from the unit concerned. The number is in the AIP.
And always have a plan B to route around in case it is refused.
If we don't take part in protecting GA access to infrastructure, the smaller aerodromes will be built over, the larger aerodromes will have exorbitant handling fees and awkward procedures, and airspace will be over-classified to Class A everywhere.