Jason spent 24 years as an air traffic controller at Los Angeles Center, and recently moved east to work in DC in the Airspace office as an air traffic subject matter expert. He is a Sport Pilot, owns a Rans S12XL E-LSA, and got his >87 knot endorsement so he can rent a C162. He's here to answer your questions about ATC procedures and rules, in a strictly unofficial capacity.
Agree with Tim et al if you are explicitly cleared to cross, follow instructions. However, when in doubt nothing wrong with asking. I did a x-country up to Shreveport into class C. It was busy when we left, a flight of B-52's were coming into Barksdale AFB from who knows where so everything was getting vectored and a little Cessna was low priority. Things were moving pretty fast for my student mind to handle clearance, taxi, and what seemed like endless vectors. I had to ask 3x for clarification on the handoff from departure to Polk Approach for flight following, first time it was blocked by a "heavy", second time I reversed the numbers and knew it was not right, third time I felt embarrassed, but asked anyway. Every time the controller, who had his hands full, answered politely and I'm sure he was annoyed. Moral of the story, better to ask permission than beg forgiveness.
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