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Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Fri Jul 22, 2022 6:23 pm
by joefremont
Hi Flyers

Thinking about some package handling improvements for the next version of the client. One thing right now that is a bit inconvenient is as soon as the client reads the flight information from the server the packages are locked, if you have loaded too many to load the appropriate fuel the only recourse is to cancel the flight and then adjust. This is because once the client has read the flight info it has all the info it needs to start the flight and if package are added or removed its not going to know about it. Plus once the flight actually starts you don't want any changes.

What if we added an option to reduce the packages in the client during the confirmation process, if there are packages whose origin was the current airport they can be released, if you have a warehouse they can be transfered there. There is very limited screen space so we can't give too many options, the system would try to select the lowest value packages to remove but I could see possible complaints when the flight is loaded with a 20,000kg package and a 2000kg package and it needs to reduce payload by 2100 kg, the system would have to remove the large of the two, and if the VA has no warehouse and the packages did not start from that airport it would not be able to reduce and you would have to go back into the website.

As I write this it probably would be good that if the pilot cancels out of confirmation and goes back to the clients main menu that the flight is reset back to in hanger and that you can update the packages without having to cancel the flight.

One pilot recently made the suggestion that there should be an option in the client that when you arrive at an airport, give the option to transfer all packages not delivered to the VA's warehouse, obviously there would have to be a warehouse the pilot has permission to transfer packages to and the volume of the warehouse would have to be respected. Is this an option that anyone would be interested it?

Re: Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Sat Jul 23, 2022 7:36 pm
by Cat
I am a fan of simplifying things as one of the biggest issues with new pilots (and them quitting so fast) is the complexity of the FSAirlines system.

From what it was only a few years back to what it has become is like night and day. One has to be a full on virtual airline junkie to really get deep into each and every feature offered in today's FSAirlines. The casual flight sim pilot/VA operator is confused to the point of no longer participating.

The majority of the tutorial video's I have done to try to help the cause are now long outdated as feature updates have outpaced my ability to keep up with them via tutorial video's. (Time I just don't have right now)

Just my opinion of course, take it for what it is and nothing more please.

Re: Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Sun Jul 24, 2022 4:47 pm
by joefremont
Believe it or not I am not trying to make things more complex here, but am looking for ways to simplify and make the process smother.

One pain point I have seen is pilots who load up there aircraft to the max with packages and once they start the client there is no way to load enough fuel for the very long route they have chosen except cancel the flight, adjust the packages and then start again. So I was thinking out loud on ways to address that.

Mostly what I am thinking of is ways to streamline the process and provide ways out of those places in the system where they get into trouble.

Re: Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Thu Jul 28, 2022 3:01 pm
by Cat
Outside the box idea - what if in the pre flight briefing page, the system takes into account the amount of projected fuel use and then limits the amount of packages that can be loaded accordingly? This would also put an end to cheaters who load full fuel and full cargo and fly max range.

If you book a flight with packages already on board that exceed the flight weight limits based on projected fuel consumption, the system would just spit it out with a message letting the user know they cannot fly that far with that much stuff. "You need to offload XXX lb/kg package cargo before this flight can be booked".

Re: Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Thu Jul 28, 2022 7:17 pm
by joefremont
Hi Sam,

I have thought about limiting based expected fuel but then you will have those who will claim they are planning on making a technical stop to refuel or even load up the aircraft before booking the flight.

We already show "Max payload with estimated fuel" on the package loading screen after you book a flight. We could have the 'Select' button that auto selects packages only load up to that estimated max and force the pilots to manually select beyond that but I can anticipate the howling about that already.

We could make other enhancements like making the number shown red or bold if your above the suggested max but as long they are planning on making refueling stops we should allow it.

Re: Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Fri Jul 29, 2022 6:55 am
by stigooo
That would be really great if you could adjust the cargo weight later in the client. That would save me time to cancel everything, unload cargo and then restart. Maybe then a few more pilots will fly with cargo with our airline.
I think it's a great idea and I would really support it.

Re: Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Fri Jul 29, 2022 5:18 pm
by Cat
@Joe: valid point on the fueling stop, didn't think of that.

Re: Package handling in client ideas

Posted: Sat Jul 30, 2022 12:53 am
by joefremont
Certainly if we add a 'change' button for packages its going to have to release packages in a fairly simple way. Probably only recently picked up packages from the departure airport and only normal sized packages (not the bigger 20,000 kg and 100,000 kg packages) Anything with any complexity to it will require the pilot to go back to the website and make adjustments.

Right now when the client asks for flight information from the server it basically locks the flight so packages can not be changed, having a way for the client to 'unlock' the flight will probably be needed to make it easier to manage.