With even a simple flight plan, actually flying an aircraft
is considerably easier than if no flight plan at all is prepared.
In the real world, one would add "and much safer", and under
IFR, a flight plan is mandatory. The flight plan being discussed
here is the flight plan for the pilot, and may be alternatively
called the "Pilot's Log". The flight plan required
for VATSIM is for the benefit of the Air Traffic Controller.
They are slightly different, but the VATSIM flight plan is
simpler and can be quickly generated from the Pilot's flight
plan using the built in Flight Plan forms included with the
VATSIM & IVAO Pilot Client software.
The spreadsheets, designed by a Club member, can be opened in Microsoft Office/Excel, Open Office or Libre Office.