Tag: Greece

Is Athens busy, or does it just hate Business Aviation now?

Summer parking restrictions at Greek airports are now in full swing. In previous years, it was mainly just the island airports that suffered, and airports on the mainland were used to reposition aircraft for longer stays. This year however, parking at LGAV/Athens is becoming a nightmare too.

We’ve had several reports from Opsgroup members of requests for longer stays at Athens being denied, and also previously approved requests being revoked. If you are headed to Greece, don’t count on using Athens for anything for other than a quick tech stop.

Airport authorities at Athens have now issued a Notam for the whole summer season advising that all GA/BA flights require PPR for stays of longer than two hours:

A1641/18 - DUE TO OPERATIONAL REASONS THE FOLLOWING PROCEDURES ARE IN FORCE:
1.FOR AEROPLANES WITH MTOW MORE THAN 5700 KG, PRIOR PERMISSION IS REQUIRED (PPR).
FOR: GENERAL AVIATION, BUSINESS AVIATION, AIR TAXI FLIGHTS AND ALL TECHNICAL STOP FLIGHTS, WITH INTENTION TO STAY ON THE GROUND FOR MORE THAN TWO HOURS AND/OR STAY ON GROUND BETWEEN 1800 AND 0600 UTC.
2.LONG STAY OF AIRCRAFT IS NOT PERMITTED.
14 JUN 18:00 2018 UNTIL 20 AUG 06:00.

Local handlers have confirmed that PPR for tech stops of less than two hours almost always get granted. But for parking requests of more than two hours, prepare to be disappointed. In addition, until the end of the summer the airport will no longer accept any positioning flights without pax on board, regardless of how long you’re staying.

For operators wanting to do drop-and-go’s at Athens, always ask your agent which airports they recommend repositioning to for parking, but some options worth checking (as they do not currently have any restrictions in place for maximum parking length) are: LGKO/Kos, LGSM/Samos, LGIO/Ioannina, LGKV/Kavala, LGRX/Araxos.

Further reading:

Price hike at Greek airports

On 1st April 2018, Fraport will be increasing the rates for landing and parking fees at the 14 international airports it manages in Greece: Aktion, Chania, Corfu, Kavala, Kefalonia, Kos, Lesbos, Mykonos, Rhodes, Samos, Santorini, Skiathos, Thessaloniki and Zakynthos.

Parking charges used to be simple here: at every airport, it was free for the first five hours, and then EUR 1.08 per ton (MTOW) for every 24 hours after that. That same price applied regardless of aircraft size.

Now things are set to become a little more complicated, but effectively, parking will now be at least twice as expensive as it used to be, with even higher costs being introduced for longer stays during the summer months:

 

Landing fees are going up too. Aircraft below 10 tonnes have always had to pay a flat fee, and from 1st April, these are set to double. For larger aircraft, Fraport set the rate per ton (MTOW), and with the exception of LGKV/Kevala and LGSA/Chania, these are being increased across the board:

Operating to these Greek airports has become increasingly challenging since their privatisation in April 2017. Fraport initially struggled to deal with providing parking to non-scheduled and business aviation, and new slot procedures were introduced to try to better manage the volume of requests being made.

Ryanair have already complained about the price hike, as well as a new EUR 90 fee that will be charged to send a fire engine every time a plane refuels whilst passengers are being boarded – something which they say does not happen anywhere else in the world except Greece.

With the new rates set to come into force on 1st April 2018, many operators may prefer to take their business elsewhere. As the President of Corfu CAA Association, Dimitris Roussos, says – “[the price increase] is exorbitant and almost prohibitive. A lot of people will choose other airports such as Ioannina which have lower charges and where they can refuel and spend 1-2 days instead of coming to ‘expensive’ Corfu. It is quite probable that we will see the Corfu Air Club move to Ioannina as well as a significant decrease in the number of small private aircraft visiting Corfu in the summer.”

Full details of the changes to the landing and parking fees at all 14 airports can be found on Fraport’s dedicated page.

How to avoid delays into Greece – new procedures

Following on from the privatisation of Greek Airports this summer (see our article from earlier in June – Summer of Pain), there are new procedures for Greek Slots.

With delays super high into some of the smaller islands, especially at weekends, attention to the correct slot procedure is pretty important.

The slot you’ll get from the HSCA is valid +/- 30 mins. If you go outside that, then you’ll get a flight suspension message from Eurocontrol that looks like this.

FLIGHT PLAN SUSPENSION
ACCORDING TO YOUR FLIGHT PLAN
IFPLID 01020304
ARCID N765AC
ARCTYP C56X
EOBD 160201
EOBT 1945
ADEP LOWI
ADES LGMK
ELDT 2050
NO CORRESPONDING AIRPORT SLOT WAS RECOGNISED

To get a new slot, or the initial one, the official process is this:

  1. Go to www.online-coordination.com, check for avail times
  2. Pick a handler, and ask them to apply for it – use www.hsca.gr to find a handler.
  3. Refile the FPL with the Slot ID

If you have any issues, you can call H24 this number in Greece re. slots: +30 210 997 2656. And, we think, this email should also work: slot-hsca@athensairport.gr

References

 

 

 

Greek Summer Ops – Prepare for Pain

The challenges of operating to Greece during the summer look to be far worse than normal this year.

Fraport are not off to a good start with non-scheduled flights and business aviation. On April 11th this year, they took over control of 14 international airports from the state: Aktion, Chania, Corfu, Kavala, Kefalonia, Kos, Lesvos, Mykonos, Rhodes, Samos, Santorini, Skiathos, Thessaloniki and Zakynthos.

Initial reports on the Fraport change from OPSGROUP members are not positive:

  • “During the last few weeks, it has become clear that operations to these airports (including all popular Islands – Kos, Rhodes, Mykonos etc) is a nightmare. Very few slots are made available to non-scheduled ops, overnight parking is scarce, even quick turn arounds are extremely difficult in some cases. As a pilot flying in this area in the last 20 years, I have never seen such difficulty in operating.”
  • “Previously, LGMK/Mykonos was usually the only airport in the last 3 years to have parking problems. The parking Notams were limiting stays to 2-3 hours from June till September. Now, the max parking time there is 1 hour, PPR was introduced last year but we managed to have them “flexible” with the right handler. Now, with Fraport, no flexibility is allowed.”
  • “When we tried to fly to LGKO/Kos this weekend, we are forced to leave the ramp on Saturday at 8am local. Rhodes denied parking for 3 nights, which has never happened before…”

Last year, the capacity challenge at Greek Islands was most acute on weekends, with healthy slot delays if operating to LGIR/Iraklion, LGKP/Karpathos, LGMK/Mikonos, LGZA/Zakinthos, LGSR/Santorini, LGSK/Skiathos, or LGSA/Chania. Coupled with the Fraport changes, be prepared for difficulty in operating to Greece this summer.

The only answer is to plan as far ahead in advance as possible. We’d love to hear your reports from Greece – in Aireport if you are an OpsGroup member, or comment below if you’re not.

International Bulletin: Sharm El Sheikh reopens, New ICAO Phraseologies 10NOV

Sharm El Sheikh reopens 03NOV  HESH/Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt has reopened to international traffic, with a number of airlines starting services again on 01NOV. However, there are conflicting views on security at the airport, depending on your state of registry. Read article.

New ICAO Phraseologies 03NOV From 10NOV, new international aviation phraseology for SIDs and STARs is effective, but there’s a problem. Read article.


OEJN/Jeddah, Saudi Arabia On 27OCT, Saudi Arabia intercepted and destroyed a ballistic missile launched from Houthi-controlled territory in Yemen. The Houthis confirmed the launch via the Saba news agency, saying that the missile was targeting Jeddah International Airport (OEJN), not the holy city of Mecca, as some other news reports had claimed.

EHEH/Eindhoven has new procedures for PPR effective 30OCT – if you’re flying there, get PPR direct from the airport. You can read all the info on their new GA page. Oh, and there’s now a fee. €300 for PPR for a 21 ton aircraft, for example.

LFMN/Nice Runway 04R/22L will be closed during November.

WARR/Juanda Airport is closed due to works in progress except for helicopter medical evacuations from until 15NOV

UTZZ/Tajikistan Disagreement between Russia and Tajikistan may lead to operational restrictions between the two countries. Air traffic between Moscow and Dushanbe may be suspended from 08NOV.

FAZZ/South Africa Reports this week suggest that foreign nationals entering South Africa through any port of entry should expect delays up to four hours due to a new enhanced security measure that requires the capture of fingerprints and a photograph. OR Tambo in Jo’burg seems to be the worst offender.

BGKK/Kulusuk has updated opening hours: 1100-1900Z Tuesday to Saturday. They ask for 3 hours minimum notice PPR.

PLCH/Christmas Island Fuel is in short supply, notified as being only available for Scheduled service and emergency flights. PLCH is often used on Pacific crossings as an alternate, so any diversion would be considered an ‘emergency’, but check before actually planning a tech stop.

LEZZ/Spain Previously notified fuel strike now appears to be one provider only, so it looks like impact minimal.

DGAA/Accra ATC is having a few VHF issues, primarily on 126.7 – if you can’t reach them, call HF 8903 instead.

EDDT/Berlin Tegel will be busy 14-18 NOV due to state visits, they won’t accept GA/Private traffic during this time, but you can check specifics with them at vvd-txl@berlin-airport.de

HLLS/Sabha, Libya The airport has been closed for over 2 years due to fighting in the area. A new Notam has been issued which officially extends the closure period to 26DEC, as talks continue between the authorities and local groups to find a way to re-open the airport.

LYBE/Belgrade Jet A1 not available through the airport fuel service provider until the end of the month. Make sure you get a confirmed fuel release through a third-party fuel provider before operating here.

LTZZ/Turkey On 29 October, the US Department of State ordered the departure of family members of employees posted to the US Consulate General in Istanbul due to security information indicating extremist groups continued aggressive efforts to attack US citizens in Istanbul. US Operators should consider ops into airports in Turkey carefully.

OMDB/Dubai Traffic was stopped for approx 1.5 hours on 29OCT due to a drone. The Airport closed from 1930-2050 LT, and some flights were diverted. OMSJ/Sharjah was also briefly closed due to the same drone. Unauthorized drones have halted airport operations in Dubai twice in recent months.

GMZZ/Morocco is busy from 4-20NOV, GA and non-sched traffic will see restrictions. Check their Notam A0896 from 01NOV. If you’re part of the event, put RMK/COP22 in your FPL. No long stays will be allowed.

WSSL/Singapore Seletar We’ve received crew reports of challenges with visual approaches into Seletar (there are no instrument approaches). There are unlighted obstacles on the approach to Runway 21. After dark, approaches are only possible to Runway 03. More importantly, noise rules will soon demand a challenging base turn, greater than 5 degrees, to a half-mile 3.5 degree final, to a 1% down slope runway. We welcome further comments (bulletin@fsbureau.org).

LGZZ/Greece There will be a ferry strike between the Greek mainland and all Islands on 24NOV. No services will operate that day.

FTZZ/Chad Reports of nationwide public service strike including Airport operations at N’Djamena. The unions stated that the strike will persist until the government pays overdue wage arrears.

View Full International Bulletin 03NOV2016

Midweek Briefing: NAT changes postponed, Matthew Airport Update

NAT changes postponed 05OCT Phase 2 of Reduced Separation on the North Atlantic NAT Tracks will not go ahead as planned, slowing down the rate of change in the NAT region. Read the article.

Matthew: Airport Update 05OCT The next 24 hours will dictate the impact that Hurricane Matthew will have on Florida, as it leaves Cuba and begins to track north through the Bahamas. Airports Update: for Haiti, MTPP/Port-au-Prince … Read the article.


DGAA/Accra, Ghana has a radar outage until Oct 19th in the southern area.

EGKK/London Gatwick has a Runway Occupancy Trial starting on 08OCT, all medium and large aircraft (A319 upwards) should plan to vacate at FR. Smaller aircraft vacate at E.

ENGM/Oslo has a fueler strike – plan to carry return fuel to avoid issues, until 10OCT at least.

OAZZ/Afghanistan Security reminder from Kabul: serious threats to safety and security exist in the city of Kabul and throughout Afghanistan. The threat of kidnapping is high. The potential also exists for protests to occur in Afghan cities at short notice. Militant groups usually plan attacks against locations and individuals with potential American connections, including: Afghan and U.S. government facilities, foreign embassies, military installations, commercial entities, non-governmental organization offices, restaurants, hotels, airports, and educational centers.Travel to all areas of Afghanistan remains unsafe due to the ongoing risk of kidnapping, hostage taking, military combat operations, landmines, banditry, armed rivalry between political and tribal groups, militant attacks, direct and indirect fire, suicide bombings, and insurgent attacks, including attacks using vehicle-borne or other improvised explosive devices.

MYZZ/Bahamas all Airports closed due to Hurricane Matthew with effect today until 1900Z on 07OCT.

YMHB/Hobart is extending the 12/30 runway, see AIC H30/16 for impact information.

FEFF/Bangui has an overnight airport curfew from 2200-0500Z until the end of the year.

DIAP/Ivory Coast It’s now possible to apply for a visa online; after registering and paying online, you can collect the visa on arrival at Abidjan airport.

LTZZ/Turkey The state of emergency will officially be extended until January 2017. The announcement came after a Cabinet meeting; President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has also supported the extension. The state of emergency was put in place on 20 July following the 15 July attempted coup.

Typhoon Chaba While many eyes are on Hurricane Matthew, on the other side of the world Chaba is tracking north towards Japan after strongly impacting South Korea, however the system is weakening.

BIZZ/Iceland Volcano Katla downgraded to colour code Green, after last weeks concerns of elevated activity.

HAAB/Addis Ababa There are reports of anti-government protests taking place on the outskirts of Addis Ababa on Oct 4th. Unconfirmed reports indicate that protesters are attacking government property in the Akaki, Alem Gena, Burayu, Sebeta, Keta and Ayer Tena areas and that police officers have been deployed to the affected locations. Meanwhile, in the city center, shops have reportedly closed and there have been isolated reports of gunfire. Transportation to and from the affected areas has shut down.

LGZZ/Greece Greek trade unions have announced strike action that is expected to cause disruption to a number of domestic flights between 4 October and 8 October.

FVZZ/Zimbabwe The UNIVISA system has been suspended. If travelling between Zimbabwe and Zambia more than once either way, you should get a double entry visa; due to the ongoing cash liquidity crisis, authorities have announced a series of measures designed to stem the flow of US dollars out of the country; take sufficient cash to cover your needs for the duration of your travel.

View full International Bulletin 05OCT2016

Midweek Briefing 11MAY: Reykjavik Oceanic Closure, Australia to turn off Navaids

Reykjavik Oceanic Closure 11MAY Operators planning eastbound flights across the NAT should be aware of a NOTAM issued earlier by Reykjavik Oceanic/Iceland ATC, that essentially asks traffic to avoid the airspace wherever possible, due to further ATC Industrial Action. Read the article.

Australia to turn off Navaids 11MAY On 26MAY, Australia will switch off around 180 different VOR’s, NDB’s, and other ground-based Navaids. All international operators will be required to have GNSS/GPS as primary navigation. Read the article.


CYMM/Fort McMurray, Canada is closed due to Forest Fires; only emergency and evacuation flights are allowed.

EGPX/Scottish Expect delays from 17MAY when controllers change to a new ATC system. ATC advises a fundamental level of change in the method of operation within Scottish Upper Airspace will result. There is no change to the Oceanic Operation, and Domestic CPDLC will be available at all times from 17MAY.

KATL/Atlanta closed one of its three security checkpoints in the domestic terminal for three weeks and will reopen 25MAY. They have added additional security lines to the other 2 checkpoints in hopes of reducing the impact. Plan for extra time if you are heading through ATL in the next few weeks.

LGZZ/Greece An update on 09MAY was issued for the slot allocation Rules and Guidelines for all Greek Coordinated Airports. The updated document can be found at GABA report.

YZZZ/Australia CASA has issued clarification as to who is responsible for Terrain Clearance when ATC instructs an aircraft to “resume own navigation”. Consistent with ICAO standard, while under radar vectors below the MSA, ATC assumes responsibility for Terrain Clearance. The AIC is worthwhile refresher reading as this applies to most International Ops.

OYRN/Mukalla has reopened after it was recently re-captured by government and Emirati soldiers. It is currently only accepting humanitarian and aid flights.

HKIS/Isiolo is a new airport in Kenya that will be operational in early JUN. The new facility will cater to domestic and international flights and will have annual passenger capacity of 125,000 and a 1400m runway. Isiolo is located near many national reserves, approximately 125 mi/200 km northeast of Nairobi.

BIRD/Reykjavik Oceanic Operators planning eastbound flights across the NAT should be aware of a NOTAM issued earlier by Reykjavik Oceanic/Iceland ATC, that essentially asks traffic to avoid the airspace wherever possible, due to further ATC Industrial Action. Eastbound flights in particular will not be accepted into the airspace unless … Read Full Article.

LIZZ/Italy Another ATC Industrial Action in Eurore has been announced for 14MAY, this time in Italy and affecting only part of operational personnel. Only some air navigation services may be affected. The following NOTAM has been issued.

EGLL/London Heathrow has been identified as the airport most affected in the UK by laser strike incidents with 121 in 2015, followed by EGBB/Birmingham with 94, EGCC/Manchester recording 93 and EGNM/Leeds Bradford with 77.

SKBO/Bogota has introduced a significant enhancement to the current ATC infrastructure by adding Secondary Surveillance Radar or SSR. The Columbian CAA issued AIC A07/16 to cover the upgrade. This will help increase the level of safety for operations in SKBO, especially given the terrain in the vicinity.

WZZZ/Indonesia The Visa-Free Program has expanded to Nationals from a total of 169 countries and are now eligible to enter Indonesia without a visa.  Although the regulation is silent on the allowable activities under this status, the previous version of the law restricted its use to tourism.

LFPG/Paris The first IFR LPV approach was implemented at LFPG for Runway 26L on 03MAY The new approach mirrors Cat I ILS approach minimums, including a 200-foot decision height, and it is supported by the European Geostationary Navigation Overlay Service (EGNOS).

WSZZ/Singapore has introduced a system called ATLAS (Air Transportation License and Administration System), for obtaining the application, renewal and administration of licences and permits for scheduled and non-scheduled air services.

View the full International Bulletin for 11MAY2016

Multiple ATC Strikes Europe

Greece has just announced a strike of ATC staff on 07APR (Overflights unaffected), starting 2100Z on 06APR and ending 24 hrs later. Italy has also announced strike action by its controllers for 09APR. The best place to keep informed on these two strikes is the Eurocontrol NOP.

 

 

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