Tag: France (page 1 of 3)

Paris Le Bourget – New Requirement to list parking in Flight Plan

In the recent France AIP August update a new requirement was added for all aircraft inbound to LFPB/Paris Le Bourget to list their parking position and handler on Field 18 of their flight plan.

Mentioned twice in the local traffic regulations (the translation is a little iffy but you get the idea):

Mandatory assistance by approved based companies. The name of the assistant society must be stated in field 18 of the FPL as a remark (RMK).


It is required to the crews to indicate in field 18 of the flight plan, the traffic area of destination and the name of the handling provider.

We understand that this came about due to “much confusion” of the parking stand locations after aircraft land.

Remark 18 should include

  1. Handler Name
  2. Your parking stand location (e.g. HANDLER ABC T1 APRON FOXTROT 2)
    • For heavy aircraft (A330/A340/A350/B747/B787/B767/C130) apron Golf, Sierra or Foxtrot 3 will suffice. Your local handler should give you confirmation ahead of your expected flight.
  3. Your handlers phone number.

So it should look something like this:







Do you know more? Feel free to comment or drop us a line!

Also- here is a video of a Beech Bonanza flying under the Eiffel Tower 

Aircraft security search now a requirement departing France

Update July 20th: Looks like this is not only happening in France, but some other EU countries too: we’ve had reports of the same procedure being required at some airports in Italy, Greece, and the Netherlands. If you have any further knowledge or recent experience to share, please let us know!

According to various reports we’ve had from Business Aviation aircrew and handlers, as of July 16, all aircraft departing specific French airports are now required to have completed a security search before departure, and to complete a form to be left with the handler. This applies to all aircraft unless the previous departure point was one of the following:

  • 28 countries of the European Union + Norway / Iceland / Switzerland / Lichtenstein
  • USA
  • Canada
  • Isle of Man
  • Montenegro
  • Faeroe Islands
  • Guernsey and Jersey

This new rule applies to all aircraft, no matter the country of registration or status (private, commercial or charter).

The security search is basically to check that no “prohibited articles” are on board (the usual things – guns, explosives, etc.). It’s common practice amongst airlines, but seems until now not to have been enforced as a rule for business aviation or private operations.

Once completed, this form must then be given to the ground handler, who will store it, in case the French authorities want to see it at some point.

It seems this new procedure is governed by an EU directive that was published in 2015, namely: the European decision (UE) C (2015) 8005 (Appendix 3-A) and the regulation (UE n°2015/1998 (Appendix 3-B32). Who would have thought that a new rule with such a tantalising name as this could go unnoticed until now ?

So it seems that all EU countries should be implementing this new procedure, but so far only certain French airports have done so – the ones we know about so far are:


(Quite possibly the reason that it’s only French airports which have implemented the new procedure is that it was something that was cited in a French national audit conducted in Nov 2017!)

Can the handler provide the crew with a “security search” form?
Answer – Probably not. As the security search is done by the crew, it’s down to the operator to provide the form – the only responsibility of the handler is to receive it signed from the Captain and store it, that’s it.

What about flights that have arrived from the United Kingdom ?
Answer – You won’t need to do the search, as the UK is still part of the EU… for now! We will wait and see what their status will be once the “Brexit” happens, but until then, no worries 🙂

If a flight is operating PART 135 Air Ambulance, would they be subject to this search as well ?
Answer – Yes, if they arrived in from somewhere other than those countries mentioned above. The procedure is linked to where the aircraft came from, not to the aircraft reg or its status (be it commercial, private, charter, cargo, air ambulance, quick-turn, night-stop, fuel stop, transit flight, etc).

What kind of info should be in the form?
Answer – This kind of info:
Flight Information: Flight number / Date / Aircraft Number / Airport of Origin / Airport of Destination
Aircraft Interior: Flight Deck / Storage Area in the Galleys / Lavatories / Catering Trolley and Containers / Seat Pockets / Area Under the Seats / Area Between Seats / Area Between Seats and Bulkheads/ Jump Seats / Trash Bins / Overhead compartments / Pax and Crew Storage Compartment.
Between 5 and 10% of the life vest bags are to be checked as well.
Aircraft Exterior: Aircraft Holds / Service Panels / Bays / Wheel Wells / Fuselage / Engines / AOG Spare in Hold
Search Information : The search must be performed by a member of the cockpit crew. The name of the Captain must appear on the form as well as the date and a place for him/her to sign the document.

You probably have a standard form in your OEM for something like this. But if not, then fear not! The good folks at Signature have provided us with a standard template. Click the image below to download!

If you have any further knowledge or recent experience to share, please let us know!

Further reading:

French ATC strike 22 May – this one’s looking bad

Impact from todays ATC French strike is looking worse than usual.

As things stand at 0600Z, there are a total of 400,000 delay minutes attributed to ATC Industrial Action in the ATC system for Europe,  an average of 20 minutes for every flight in Europe. That average is calculated for all 22,000 aircraft that will operate today in Europe, so assuming at most 2000 flights would operate through French airspace, it works out at around 220 minutes delay for every aircraft. And yep, finishing off the maths, that’s about 4 hours.

Those figures are pretty fluid because the good people at NM (CFMU) work really hard to reroute flights around the worst of it, but it’s safe to say, if you are operating in, over, near, or thinking about France today, you will have a pretty decent delay.

See below for the best places to get updates on todays strike.

Further reading:


French ATC Strike March 2018

A French ATC strike is due to take place from 18z on Mar 21 until 05z on Mar 23, and it looks like it’s going to be a bad one.

En-route regulations are expected to applied across all sectors – which means big delays pretty much everywhere for overflying traffic. Minimum service will be guaranteed only at the following airports:

LFPG/Paris Charles de Gaulle
LFPO/Paris Orly
LFLC/Clermont-Ferrand Auvergne
LFBO/Toulouse Blagnac
and overseas airports

For all other airports, ATS services may not be provided at all at certain times – and you’ll probably need to check the airport’s own Notams for any signs of that.

For real-time updates of any airspace issues once the strike has started, keep an eye on this handy French ATC webpage: http://dsnado.canalblog.com/

And click here for everything else you need to know about how to survive French ATC strikes!

French ATC Strike November 2017

The ATC strike seems to be winding down. The only en-route regulations still in place are in the LFBB/Bordeaux and LFRR/Brest sectors in the West. At the airports, some delays of around 30-40 minutes are expected between 17-19z, but generally the situation seems to be stable.


Here’s the situation for en-route traffic across the various sectors:

LFBB/Bordeaux: Whole airspace regulated with moderate to high delays.

LFRR/Brest: Whole airspace regulated with moderate to high delays.

LFEE/Reims: No regulations for en-route traffic, but expect delays at both the LFSB/Basel and LFST/Strasbourg TMA’s.

LFFF/Paris: No regulations for en-route traffic, but arrivals are currently being regulated at LFPO/Paris Orly.

LFMM/Marseille: No regulations.

For real-time updates of any airspace issues, keep an eye on this handy French ATC webpage: http://dsnado.canalblog.com/


TANGO Routes
Low delays on T9 and T213 – these are available for suitably equipped aircraft. Read “The Three Sisters” for more info on those. For oceanic clearance on Tango routes during the strike, you need to make sure you request your oceanic clearance 45 minutes before entry to the ocean.

Re-routes through Algeria
If you want to avoid French airspace by flying through DAAA/Algeria instead, you can do so – and until the end of the strike, you won’t have to get an overflight permit. Just make sure you send a new FPL (plus any subsequent DLA messages) to DAAAZQZX and DTTCZQZX addresses, as they will not have received the original FPL.

Depending on where you’re flying to/from, here’s what you need to do:

1. All traffic overflying DAAA/Algeria airspace with destination within the LECB/Barcelona FIR must file via point LUXUR at FL300 or above, and at only EVEN flight levels.Traffic dest LEPA/Palma via LUXUR should FPL UM134-LUXUR-GENIO-UN859-OSGAL with STAR OSGAL.

2. All traffic departing from the LECB/Barcelona FIR and overflying DAAA/Algeria must file via point SADAF at FL310 or above, and at only ODD flight levels.

3. All traffic departing from LEPA/Palma to any airport in DAAA/Algeria must file max FL290 over point SADAF. Departures from LEPA/Palma must also file SID MEBUT: MEBUT-NINES-UM134-OLMIR-UN861-SADAF at FL290.

4. Entering GMMM/Morocco via DTTC/Tunisia and DAAA/Algeria:

  • Route: DOPEL UM126 KAWKA UG14 CSO UA31 CHE shall be used. DAAA/Algeria ATC will tactically approve direct routing to ALR where possible.
  • Route: DOPEL DCT LUXUR SADAF CHE cannot be planned.

5. Entering DAAA/Algeria and DTTC/Tunisia then LIRR/Italy from GMMM/Morocco:

  • Route: CHE UA31 CSO UG14 KAWKA UM126 DOPEL shall be used. DAAA/Algeria ATC will tactically approve direct routing from ALR where possible.
  • Route: Traffic between DAAA/Algeria and DTTC/Tunisia via SADAF-KAWKA at FL300 and above (only even flight levels).

Re-routes through Tunisia
Tunisia also let operators fly through their airspace when there’s a French ATC strike on, without having to get a permit. Just make sure you copy your FPL (plus any subsequent DLA messages) to DTTCZQZX and DTTCZRZX.

Even when there’s no strike going on, there are a bunch of routes you can use through DTTC/Tunisia airspace that do not require overflight permission. These are:

a) Traffic between DTTC/Tunisia and DAAA/Algeria via DOPEL-LUXUR at FL310 and above (only ‘odd’ flight levels)

b) Traffic between DAAA/Algeria and DTTC/Tunisia via SADAF-KAWKA-DOPEL at FL300 and above (only ‘even’ flight levels)

During the strike, they also open up routes connecting LMMM/Malta with DAAA/Algeria, for flights from Europe to Africa and South America. For that, you should file FPL using following routes:

  • Route: PAN – BIRSA – ELO (after ELO traffic can fly DCT GHA) at FL195-465 to be filed for traffic destination West Africa and South America, or
  • Route: PAN – RALAK – EBA at FL195-465 to be filed for traffic destination South/South West of Africa.


French ATC strike updates

Several ATC unions have called for a national strike, affecting French airports and airspace from Monday evening at 1700UTC (Oct 9) through Wednesday at 0400UTC (Oct 11).

All FIRs are experiencing high delays.

Impact expected to the FIR’s per current  (10OCT) information are as follows:


LFRR/Brest Experiencing high delays

LFFF/Paris All sectors experiencing delays with highest delays in the west. Situation is starting to show signs of improvement.

LFEE/Reims All sectors experiencing delays with highest delays in the East and North

LFBB/Bordeaux Some high delays and with no ease forseen

LFMM/Marseille High delays all around. Regulations will be in place until a least 2359UTC

The following routes are available:
Tango 9 Global and Tango 213 Global, UM30 and UZ180 are fully available.
T9 is still dealing with alot of delays.


LFPG/Paris DeGaulle and LFPO/Paris Orly are experiencing delays and there is a 30% capacity reduction in both airports plus at the following airports:

LFOB/Beauvais, LFLL/Lyon, LFML/Marseille, LFMN/Nice, LFBO/Toulouse and LFRS/Nantes
LFSB/Basel – unconfirmed as of yet but may be used as an alternate
LFPB /Paris-Le Bourget will not be affected.


Expect high impact. Ops over or to France are best avoided today.

We will continue to post any further information here as soon as received.

Week-long ATC Strike announced: France

This is different to last years Summer of Strikes – where we had 12  French ATC strikes, but almost all were for 48 periods. This new strike is posted for a Monday-Friday, starting at 6am on Monday 6th March and running through to Friday evening, taking out the LFRR/Brest and LFBB/Bordeaux FIR’s.

Brest and Bordeaux FIR’s cover the west of France, meaning this will squeeze the offloaded traffic into Paris, Reims, and Marseilles FIR’s. As usual, our advice is to avoid overflying France if possible. We look forward to the day we can announce French Strikes are over (like the joy that Iceland brought us) but for now … no end in sight.

So, if you want some different options for getting around the Bordeaux FIR:

  • For north-south flights The Tango Routes – via Shanwick
  • For east-west flights try to file further north, into Belgian/Eurocontrol/German airspace, or come south into Barcelona/Marseilles
  • Read the Eurocontrol NOP for any relief routes accepted by other ACC’s
  • And, here’s a map :

Reroutes via Tunisia, Algeria

Tunisia and Algeria regularly open up their airspace to reroutes during French ATC action – and will likely do so again for this strike.

  • Tunisia (DTTC FIR): Overflight permit is required (AFTN direct DTTVYAYX)
  • Algeria (DAAA FIR): Overflight permit not required during this strike but copy FPL to DAAAZQZX and DTTCZQZX

Reroutes via Shanwick Airspace

Read our earlier post on this: https://ops.group/blog/the-three-sisters-shanwicks-tango-routes/

A teleconference will be held by DSNA (in French) on Wed 1st March at 1400 UTC.

Login details:
Call: +33 1 48 50 50 80
Pin Code: 34835821#

Keep an eye on the Eurocontrol NOP for updated info.

Reroutes over France … not because of an ATC strike, this time

You’ll see lots of new acronyms being bandied about, like ERATO, EEE, a new DSNA ATM system in LFBB in accordance with SESAR … but in simple terms (our favourite words): France is changing from using paper strips to electronic strips for separating enroute aircraft, from November 17th, 2016.

Since more or less day one of Air Traffic Control, paper has been used to record where the airplane is, and then placed somewhat geographically in relation to the other airplanes that might affect it. Changes are written on the strip by hand, with a pen.

Like the picture above.

Because getting rid of any paper whatsoever is the most important thing in the world right now, there is a new electronic version of the same thing (and France is calling theirs ‘ERATO‘). Which looks a little like this:



So, Bordeaux (LFBB) Center is first … starting today, November 17th. And because nobody is entirely sure how well this is all going to work, a whole bunch of traffic has to be rerouted away from Bordeaux, so that there aren’t too many aircraft per controller – both to allow them to learn, and in case it goes feet up.

Which means mass reroutes, and delays. There are contingency routes – which have become very familiar to operators after this years “Summer of Strikes” – the Tango Routes will be popular again.

Looking ahead, the plan calls for two weeks of fairly heavy reroutes, and then another two weeks of lower impact restrictions. They have said though, that normalisation won’t occur until after Christmas.

So, if you want some different options for getting around the Bordeaux FIR:

  • For north-south flights The Tango Routes – via Shanwick
  • For east-west flights try to file further north, into Belgian/Eurocontrol/German airspace, or come south into Barcelona/Marseilles
  • Read the Eurocontrol NOP – especially on the Tactical page on the ATFCM Measures (Scenarios) portlet -and selecting the link Scenario List: ID RR*ERA
  • And, here’s a map – the red part is LFBB/Bordeaux FIR – don’t file through here:


The transition from paper to paperless has been going on for a while: Shanwick went ‘electronic’ in the mid 1980’s: this is what the enroute controllers’ screen looked like.



Finally, here’s the ‘official version’:

DSNA, France’s air navigation service provider, is carrying out an in-depth modernisation of its en-route air traffic management system to cope with the increase of air traffic in France.

From November 17, 280 air traffic controllers at the Bordeaux Area Control Centre (ACC) will handle flights with a new-generation, stripless ATC system called ERATO Electronic Environment (EEE).

The EEE programme based on a SESAR solution has been co-financed by the European Union. EEE provides a modern work environment and innovative control assistance tools.

Nevertheless, as a prelude to any major ATC system implementation, capacities have to be temporarily reduced to allow each air traffic controller to master in real time operations all the new capabilities.

Delays in the south-west of France are therefore to be expected during two weeks. No flight cancellations have been requested by DSNA.

To minimise the impact on flight punctuality, DSNA, has developed a transitioning plan in close cooperation with the Network Manager (Eurocontrol), neighbouring air navigation service providers, and the most affected airlines and airport operators.

Eurocontrol traffic simulations shown that for this transition period, up to 500 flights will need to be rerouted each day to avoid the airspace under the responsibility of Bordeaux ACC.

Moreover, military activities in high altitude training areas will be limited. Regional airports will be impacted along with all flights from or to Paris from the south.

ERATO2Maurice Georges, CEO of DSNA, said: “DSNA staff is totally mobilised with the implementation of this major project. I appreciate the efforts made by the entire aviation community to ensure a successful commissioning of the Electronic Environment ERATO in Bordeaux.

“The transitioning phase ahead of us relies on high predictability for all flights and trustworthy collaborative processes with our customers and partners”.
This major technological step will enable DSNA to deliver a high level of performance. Within the framework of the FABEC and in line with our Single European Sky commitments, DSNA will thus meet new challenges ahead for safe and sustainable air transport.”


France ATC Strike #11

We’ve been notified of an ATC strike planned for France on 14 and 15 September – that is, Wednesday and Thursday this coming week. This follows the normal pattern, where ATC and Area Control Centres and Airports will see union members striking, thereby preventing most flights from arriving and overflying in France during this period.

This is shorter notice than usual for a French ATC Strike, and no confirmation is likely until Monday, but we’d put the likelihood of this going ahead at around 50% at present.



Summer of ATC Strikes: This weeks update

European Air Traffic Controllers are striking in a fight against changes emanating from labour reform and the Single European Sky initiative. Curiously, Greece – normally a big fan of ATC strikes during the summer – has remained off the radar.

Here’s the latest, and it’s a growing list:

– Ongoing ATC Strikes – the latest ended on 06JUL at 0400Z. Nothing else on the horizon – for now.
– French overseas territories are also included in these strikes – so Tahiti, New Caledonia, Martinique, Guadeloupe have all joined in the action when it takes place.

– Strike announced for 23JUL, affecting Area Control Centre’s and Airports in Italy. Normally Italian strikes permit overflying traffic without restriction.

– Ongoing sporadic strike action affecting BIKF, BIRK airports, and BIRD Oceanic FIR. Occasional entire closures of the airspace except for Emergency and scheduled flights. Eastbound Traffic from the US/Canada to Europe not accepted during these closures unless destination is in Scandinavia, the Baltics, or Russia.
– Since first week of July, westbound traffic is also not accepted in BIRD during strike periods. Check BIRD Notams.

– Strikes announced for every Friday in July were cancelled last week

We’ll keep this page updated as we get updates.


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