Join as ATC

Thank you for taking the time to consider joining the Virtual Air Traffic Simulation Network's USA Division (VATUSA). This network represents the single, most complex airspace in the world featuring 2015's world's most busiest airport, and 4 of the top 10 (according to Airports Council International). Each day, on average, over 2,000,000 passengers traverse across the US airspace on Air Transport (followed by China at just over 1 million, and the UK at 350,000). VATUSA airspace comprises of 20 Air Route Traffic Control Centers (contiguous US and Anchorage), 1 Control Facility (Honolulu Control Facility) and 1 CERAP (Guam CERAP, under management of HCF).

INFO: Controller information is updated on login. You may have to log out and log back in to see updated information from VATSIM.

If you are a member of the North American region but wish to transfer to the VATUSA division from VATCAN, VATCAR, or VATMEX, then open a new ticket.

If you are a member of another region (for example, South America, Europe, etc), you'll need to submit a change region request with VATSIM here.

VATUSA members wishing to begin their ATC training/certification:

  1. Please complete the VATUSA Academy material required below.  You may access the Academy by selecting the "Academy" link/button in the navigation bar on
  2. VATUSA members are auto-enrolled in the following Basic ATC/S1 Training Course Categories:
    • Intro to ATC
    • Clearance Delivery/Ground
  3. If you are a new controller, it may take up to two hours after your first login for the system to process your registration and enrollment.
    1. If it has been more than two hours, log out and log back into the website. Your enrollments should be processed within one hour after re-logging in.
    2. Enrollments are processed every twelve hours or on login, whichever comes first.
  4. OBS Students (or S1 Developmentals) need to complete the following courses:
    • Trainee Orientation
    • Basics of Air Traffic Control
    • Clearance Delivery
    • Ground Control
  5. After completing all of the prerequisite courses, S1 Developmentals are auto-enrolled in the Basic ATC/S1 Assessment Course and take the Basic ATC/S1 Exam.
    • The exam is linked to the last lesson at the end of the Ground Control course.
    • The exam link is only accessible after all prerequisites have been met.
    • Auto-enrollment into the assessment course means the 30-day enrollment period begins as soon as you have completed all of the prerequisites. It may take up to 12 hours for the server to reflect the enrollment.
      • If the enrollment period ends before all attempts have been made, the course will be locked.
      • Contact the Division Training Services by submitting a Support Ticket via the VATUSA website or VATUSA Discord.
    • Passing:
      • S1 Developmentals with a score of 80% or better pass the exam and must join a facility.
        • Note: Passing the exam does not earn the S1 Rating, as the student must complete a practical competency check at their arrival facility.
      • New Members:
        • On the VATUSA website, look under My VATUSA and click on the Join Facility link.
    • Failing:
      • The exam may be taken up to three (3) times within the 30-day enrollment period.
      • There is a two (2) hour delay between the first and second attempts.
      • Every additional attempt will be accessible after a 48-hour delay.
      • During the delay periods, students are encouraged to:
        • Review the questions that they got wrong.
        • Study the lessons on the subject areas that they found most challenging.
        • Receive extra help from division trainers by typing their questions in the VATUSA Discord server within the academy chat channel.
      • After a third failure, the course is locked. Contact the Division Training Services by submitting a Support Ticket via the VATUSA website or VATUSA Discord.
  6. You do not receive your S1 rating after passing this exam. You must go through your facility's training program first.
  7. Upon successful completion of the Basic ATC/S1 course and passing the final exam, look under My VATUSA.
    • For new members, never before in VATUSA, click on the "Join Facility" link

Important Notes

  • If your VATSIM membership has lapsed, you will need to reactivate your VATSIM membership before you can reactivate your membership with VATUSA. You can do so here.
  • Controller information is updated on login and twice a day. You may have to log out and log back in to see updated information from VATSIM.

Join as Pilot

To join a pilot, all you need is a VATSIM account. For more information, see VATSIM's Getting Started page.