VATSIM was founded in July 2001 by a group of individuals who came together with the idea of creating an online community which truly met the needs of flight simulator enthusiasts across the world. As well as providing a common network for flight simulation enthusiasts to connect to, VATSIM aimed to create a global community for learning, sharing experiences and pursuing new opportunities in the virtual aviation world.
That original group of individuals are referred to as the VATSIM Founders. They have held the ownership of VATSIM since its inception and helped steer the direction of the network together with the VATSIM Board of Governors, as well as help pay for many of the expenses that come with running a network like VATSIM for the past 20 plus years. That said, VATSIM’s real strength and core is the result of the countless volunteers that have contributed untold hours over the last two-plus decades that have created the leading online flight simulation network.
Now, over 20 years later, the VATSIM Founders are giving ownership of the network to the newly- formed VATSIM Inc. (a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation legally based in the United States) as part of succession plan to ensure VATSIM prospers into the future. VATSIM Inc., led by a newly formed Board of Directors, serving two-year terms, will oversee the financial and legal aspects of VATSIM. The Board of Governors will continue the day-to-day operational oversight of the network.
By taking this step, VATSIM can grow and strengthen itself while ensuring a financially stable and healthy future. VATSIM will become more independent, with an even larger focus on education. The network will no longer be solely reliant on the selfless personal contributions of the VATSIM Founders, the VATSIM Board of Governors, and so many other valued contributors that have kept the network running for the last 20 years.
Effective immediately, VATSIM will accept charitable donations. Everyone that wishes to support the VATSIM network financially will now be able to, through donations made at
All donations will go towards VATSIM infrastructure, maintenance, improvement, and growth of the VATSIM Network. Additionally, donations to VATSIM can be tax deductible for U.S. citizens and companies.
Donations will be handled separately from your VATSIM account; forms of payment include all major credit cards, Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal, Venmo or direct bank transfer. Donating is completely optional and does not entitle account holders to receive any additional benefits or services while using the VATSIM network. VATSIM will remain a free-to-use network like it has been for the past 20+ years. We are very excited to take this next big step in the future of VATSIM and, together with all of you, we will build bigger and better!
VATSIM Board of Directors & VATSIM Board of Governors