20 mile radio contact requirement when approaching a Class C airspace.
Answered By AOPA
I will be flying a Piper Cub cross country and will be passing several Class C airspaces. I will only have a handheld radio, and flying 2500 above the ground. I am worried about transiting the 20 mile ring and not being able contact the CTC 20 miles out. Can I enter the 20 mile ring and fly under 10 mile ring and land at an airport uunder the 10 mile ring without contacting the designated approach controller?
3 Replies
AOPA Staff Answer
Jonathan is correct in what he said. Here's the reference FAR 91.130 . You aren't even required to have a Mode C transponder or ADS-B out underneath the outer 10 mile ring (though it is required within and above.)

Another thing you want to look out for is the departure corridors from the primary Class C airport. You'll want to make sure you determine the runway(s) in use and that you avoid those as you get closer in to the airport.
Class C communication requirements apply within 10, not 20, miles of the primary airport for a standard configuration. Class C services are optional but nor required from 10-20 miles out, in what is known as the Outer Area. You only need to have communications established for the area which appears on the sectional chart. So, the answer to your question is yes,you can do the operation you described.
All correct, but I will also point out that flight within the class C, and above it, is not permitted without ads-b out or an ADAPT waiver. Not that you were planning that, but just in case for unforeseen circumstances.