Holding Pattern

Updated: 2017-03-27.

In aviation parlance, a holding pattern, sometimes called flying a hold, is a maneuver which air traffic control may request of an incoming flight to delay its landing while keeping the aircraft in nearby airspace. When a landing slot is not yet available, due to congestion, ground stop, or other incident, flying a holding pattern is requested from the control tower, which is essentially like a car circling the parking lot until a space becomes available.

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Categories: Air Travel Terms
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