Global trade association for the air charter industry, The Air Charter Association, have designated 21st January as Fly Legal Day to raise awareness of the dangers of illegal charter flights.
The date commemorates the anniversary of Premiership footballer Emiliano Sala and his pilot, David Ibbotson, who tragically lost their lives in an illegally chartered aircraft that crashed into the English Channel on that day in January 2019.
Fly Legal Days sees the industry united in spreading the word and shining a light on this illicit practice, with the goal of preventing similar tragedies in the future.
What is an Illegal Charter?
An illegal charter is an unlicensed aircraft charter operation, where the operator does not have an AOC (Air Operator Certificate) and is not legally allowed to accept payment for a flight.
An AOC demonstrates an operator’s adherence to a strict set of regulations designed to ensure the safety of passengers and crew. These include specific standards for aircraft maintenance, flight operations, ground operations, crew experience and training.
While they are rare, unfortunately illegal charters do occur and are a very dangerous practice. They do not have the layers of safety, security, risk assessment and compliance management that legal charter operators put into their flights.
How to Avoid an Illegal Charter
Transparency is key to avoiding any kind of illegal private jet charter. You are completely within your right to ask a potential jet charter operator if they are certified and to see their licences.
To ensure your flight is legal and compliant with regulations, The Air Charter Association recommends using their accredited members to book and operate flights, of which jetlogic is a member of. They also encourage discussing the requirements with an accredited charter broker, check the operator’s licences and to check that your pilot is correctly qualified. And finally, trust your instinct. As they say, if it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is.
Fly Safely with jetlogic
jetlogic is not only a member of The Air Charter Association, but of the British Business and General Aviation Association (BBGA), European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) and National Business Aviation Association (NBAA).
Above all else, the safety of our passengers is our highest priority. We have stringent requirements that we ensure our partners meet to enable up to offer their aircraft, such as:
- Every partner and aircraft we use must have an AOC issued by the country they are based in. This means the Aviation Authorities of that country audit the operation and aircraft to ensure they meet the requirements to operate commercially. All the partners and aircrafts we use have to meet the same standards as all the airlines within that country.
- Every partner we work with carries out two simulator checks each year on every pilot to ensure they meet the required standards to operate the aircraft.
- All our partners have independent maintenance organisations to ensure all the maintenance and checks are complete as required on their aircraft. This is a legal requirement and any deviation from this would result in the operator losing their AOC.
- jetlogic also ensures every partner and aircraft has the correct insurance requirements to operate commercially and this is audited by us.
There can never be any compromises on safety, and we only offer aircrafts that meet all the requirements above. We will not recommend any operators that fall short of our exacting standards.
At jetlogic we are proud to maintain a 100% safety record. Not only do we ensure all our operations have the necessary certificates and licences, but we also make detailed and regular inspections of their operating records, closely monitoring their standards of service and reliability.
Contact the jetlogic team with any questions you might have about Fly Legal Day or to enquire about a charter around your travel needs.