Private Jet in EU and greater Europe

Private Jets in the EU and greater Europe Blog Post

Private jets are governed by international aviation rules and CFR regulations. Cabotage air law deals with the carriage of passengers and cargo from one airport to another within the same country, by a foreign-registered aircraft. Cabotage rules prohibit, however, carriers licensed in the EU are permitted to pick up passengers from one country to another within EU states. Bilateral agreements are in place for outside the EU, and other regions have similar Cabotage agreements. Australia and New Zealand allow domestic and international flights within each others’ borders, for instance. 

CFR Flight Regulations

The General Operating and Flight Rules, 14 CFR 91 governs all commercial flights and private jet travel. Additional regulations are contained in 14 CFR 119, which specifies rules for commercial airlines and larger jets. Regulations found in 14 CFR 125 cover larger private aircraft, while 14 CFR 121 covers commercial airlines. Rules 14 CFR 135 cover commuter and charter, commercial operators. Private jets have fewer regulations than larger aircraft and are not required to comply with airline and charter operators regulations. Such a requirement for commercial operators includes compliance with operational and maintenance laws. Moreover, commercial airline pilots have strict limitations on the number of flight hours allowed while on duty.

In comparison, private jet pilots have no flight time limits; however, they can decide not to fly if it could be unsafe. Commercial airline pilots are subject to stricter medical checks and requirements, and the FAA must be notified of any mechanical problem. Flight regulations for commercial aircraft dictate how far the plane may be from an airport, while no limits are imposed for private jets. 

Private Jets vs Commercial Airlines 

Passengers have to be screened and checked against no-fly lists for commercial flights maintained by governments, and more frequent mechanical inspections are required. With limited exceptions, commercial planes need to be operated by a company, which is the certificate holder. Furthermore, management personnel, including the Chief Pilot and the Director of Maintenance need to be employed. Private jets may be managed by a single person, who could even be the pilot. 

Registering a private jet in the EU

Every aircraft is identified by a unique alphanumeric string of characters, differ from one jurisdiction to another. Aircraft registered in the US have numbers preceded by the letter ‘N’, and ‘G’ is for those registered in the UK. If the aircraft was registered in the Cayman Islands, the number is preceded by ‘VP-C’. A significant difference with aircraft registration is they are not necessarily based in the jurisdiction of registration. The Isle of Man has more than 250 private jets registrations, with only two actually operating from the island.

Where can you register a private jet?

Where a plane is registered is a personal choice, with many owners opting for their native country of residence. Others are attracted by the favourable conditions offered by other jurisdictions. Perhaps they are seeking a registry that can deal with unconventional requests quickly and at short notice. Politically neutral countries can be beneficial to register a private jet, with Aruba and the Cayman Islands a preferred choice for many. A highly visible registration prefix gives away the nationality, regardless of where it is actually based. The effectiveness of an aircraft registry largely depends on the needs and demands of private jet owners. It is a common consensus among aviation lawyers that some aircraft registries are better than others. The Isle of Man was voted the best aircraft registry in 2012, and there are currently more than 600 private jets registered there now. 

Gold standards of aircraft registration

Before registering a private jet, owners should first consider whether the aircraft is intended solely for private use, corporate-private use or charter. The registration process is primarily governed by these three scenarios. What does make a good aircraft registry? The best use the Gold standard of aircraft registration which specifies the following. There must be high regulatory standards, with high levels of service and quality of an international reputation. The registration prefix should be neural nationality, and there needs to be a secure mortgage register. Insurance premium tax, and a transparent, straightforward taxation regime, stable legal and political environments and insurance requirements are requisites. 

How to register an aircraft

Regardless of the jurisdiction, you select, private jet registration is a relatively straightforward process that can be completed quickly. Ensuring your private jet is properly registered will have significant implications on whether it is legally able to leave the ground. It is highly recommended to check with the relevant authorities to ensure you have followed all the correct rules and procedures, so your private jet meets all legal requirements.

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