Holding or holding pattern is a designated flight path followed by an aircraft as it awaits clearance to proceed with landing at an airport. These patterns are typically used during situations such as air traffic congestion, adverse weather conditions, or when an aircraft is ahead of its scheduled arrival time. They were put in place to provide a systematic and safe means of delaying an aircraft’s approach or landing.

Read our holdings series

01: Aircraft holdings explained: Breaking down the basics
02: Handling holdings: Execution and procedures