Flying Yourself to ABACE? We Can Help You Understand the Requirements

March 25, 2014

International operators preparing to fly to Shanghai, China for the 2014 Asian Business Aviation Conference & Exhibition (ABACE2014) should thoroughly review operational procedures in the region, with a particular emphasis on airport slot procedures and sanctioned arrival and departure times and routes, according to aviation trip planning provider and ABACE exhibitor Universal Weather & Aviation.

Shanghai features two primary commercial airports, Hongqiao (ZSSS) and Pudong (ZSPD). Given its role as host facility for ABACE2014, traffic into Hongqiao will be limited primarily to exhibitors parking aircraft on static display during event.

Pudong’s emphasis on international traffic also makes it the more attractive choice for operators flying into China for the show, wrote Jimmy Young, country manager for Universal Aviation China, in a recent ABACE-related column posted to the company’s “Operational Insight” blog.

“Airport slots are needed for both ZSSS and ZSPD,” Young continued. “The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) processes all landing permit and airport slot requests, which should be requested as soon as the schedule is known. You will not receive an airport slot confirmation number, but your landing permit will serve as slot approval.”

Nanjing (ZSNJ) and Hangzhou (ZSHC) are available as alternates. CAAC strictly regulates business aviation operations at all facilities, including landing permits, and recommends that operators make these requests as soon as a schedule is known.

Operators must also remember that CAAC changed its regulations limiting operators to a maximum of two permit revisions. Furthermore, CAAC currently permits just 10 civil aviation movements daily into Shanghai and Pudong, contingent upon time of day and flight path direction among other factors.

Young recommended that operators request arrival slots three to four business days prior to departure and, if at all, possible, stick closely to the filed plan and arrival time.

“Both ZSSS and ZSPD limit operations to just one airport slot during peak hours of 0800-2300 local. This means that drop-and-goes may not be possible,” he added. “If you arrive during peak hours, your only departure option, the same day, will be after the peak-hour period.”

Young further noted that airport authorities might require an explanation for a delay exceeding 2-3 hours, though officials may be more lenient if the delay was weather-related.

Read more on tips for operators flying into Shanghai for ABACE2014.