Key Issues Facing International Flight Operators to and from Europe

With the 2018 European Business Aviation Conference and Exhibition (EBACE) taking place this month, all eyes in the business aviation industry will be focusing on Europe. We thus wanted to share the key issues flight operators need to keep in mind when traveling to and from Europe.

Regulatory Compliance

2018 has ushered in some significant changes that impact the business aviation industry. For those operating to and from Europe, the two key regulatory issues to keep in mind are:

  • The 2018 IS-BAO standard. Released at the beginning of 2018 in beta version, the go-live date is scheduled for July 1, 2018. It is a code of best practices designed to help flight departments worldwide achieve a high level of safety. If your manual has not been updated to the latest IS-BAO standards, and you have an audit prior to July 1, 2019, you should consider updating your FOM at least two months prior to your audit. We can include best practices and any revisions that you may have as part of a standard reissue.
  • Part-NCC. The European Union’s Part-NCC (Non-Commercial Complex) is a regulation aimed at enhancing safety, training and record-keeping protocols within Europe for companies flying complex corporate aircraft privately. With Part-NCC, it’s not about where the aircraft is registered, but where the operator of the aircraft is established or, in the event of an individual owner, resides. So, if you are a UK-based operator with a Cayman Island registered aircraft, you should be Part-NCC compliant for instance.


Customs can be a challenge for flight operators traveling to multiple European destinations. Each country and airport may have unique customs requirements, and managing those requirements for flight operators is critical to quickly and efficiently clear customs. The US is currently working on a customs compliance guide for private operators with hopes it will be commonplace within the next few years.

A key factor to keep in mind is ensuring passports or visas for all flight crew are current, and making sure visas especially – which may vary from country to country – are approved well in advance.


On Atlantic crossings, weather and volcanic activity become a significant factor and one that flight operators need to be prepared for. Temperature conditions, for instance near Greenland, may also make it challenging to maintain altitudes in certain aircraft.


Flight operators need to stay vigilant when it comes to personal and IT security. With recent system hackings, it is crucial to ensure that flight (and personal) devices stay within your control and that malware is not downloaded. Breached network issues also apply to onboard Wi-Fi systems, so it is important that operators equip aircraft broadband access with secure networks.

Finally, regarding personal security, flight operators should establish an emergency plan that is ready to be implemented if a situation arises. This should include, for instance, an evacuation plan coordinated with passengers designating and communicating a meeting place.

To learn more about how AviationManuals can help support your efforts to achieve trouble-free flights to and from Europe, contact us today.

Get Ready for Revised 2018 IS-BAO Standard

As you may be aware, IBAC is making significant changes to the IS-BAO standard this year. We wanted to share some information about the changes and how they may affect operators. In addition, we have highlighted steps you will need to take in order to be compliant with the new standard.

The 2018 IS-BAO standard was released at the beginning of the year in beta version with the go-live scheduled for July 1, 2018. Operators, however, can continue to use the 2017 standard until July 1, 2019.

Key changes

  • ERP protocols are being added back in and slightly expanded
  • Redundant protocols are being removed or consolidated
  • The International protocols are being removed or merged with the ‘regular’ flight operations protocols
  • The ‘regular’ flight operations protocols are being reorganized to align more closely with the steps of scheduling/planning a trip and phases of flight

What does this mean for you?

Depending on your situation, one of the following scenarios will apply to you:

  1. If your manual has not been updated to the 2017 IS-BAO standard and you have an audit prior to July 1, 2019, you will need to update your FOM at least two months prior to your audit. We can include best practices and any revisions that you may have as part of a standard reissue.
  2. If your manual has been updated to the 2017 IS-BAO standard and you have an audit prior to July 1, 2019, you don’t need to do anything at this time. That said, we still recommend updating your manual with best practices and any applicable revisions.
  3. If you have an audit after July 1, 2019, your manual will need to be updated to the 2018 IS-BAO standard at least two months prior to your audit. Again, we will also include best practices and any revisions that you may need at that time.

You’re in good hands

We recognize this is an unusual IS-BAO update transition; rest assured, we will stay on top of these changes for you.

Please find attached an information sheet that goes into more detail.

Questions? We’re there to help. Get in touch today.

Are You In Compliance with 2017 IS-BAO Standards?

The New Year has brought a new IS-BAO Standard revision! For operators who are IS-BAO registered, who wish to be IS-BAO compliant, or who just want to ensure they adhere to a widely accepted safety standard, this is a perfect time to review your operation to see if you are in compliance with the updated protocols.

Here are two of the biggest changes of 2017.

1. Annual Review Process

The greatest addition to the IS-BAO Standard this year is a new protocol specifically requiring operators to “establish and maintain a process to ensure that changes to IS-BAO are verified, analyzed and incorporated into the organization’s processes, as applicable.”

While this process was implied in previous years with the compliance monitoring requirements, those protocols did not specifically reference IS-BAO. This year’s new standard heavily implies that operators should be conducting annual reviews of their processes as the IS-BAO Standards are revised every year.

While addressing the new protocol, operators should take the opportunity to review all of their manuals. Manuals should be reassessed to ensure all protocols are addressed and that the procedures described are true to the procedures actually being practiced. Any deficiencies or differences should be resolved through their manual revision or reissue process.

2. Consecutive Audit Limits

In previous years, there was no set limit on the number of consecutive audits a single auditor could perform for an operator, although operators were encouraged to use different auditors.

This year, a new audit procedure standard states that individuals are discouraged from conducting consecutive audits as the lead auditor and prohibited from performing three audits in a row, in any capacity, for an operator. However, this requirement may be waived under certain circumstances if it is deemed in the best interests of the International Standards Programme and approved by the IS-BAO Audit Manager.

The purpose of this change is to help ensure the validity of the audit process and to provide operators with a broader perspective of industry trends and practices and to ensure the IS-BAO does not devolve into a simple box-checking effort.

Operators due for an audit this year may want to start the process a little earlier to leave time for finding and vetting a new auditor.


This year’s ISBAO Standards changes center around the periodic review of procedures and documentation and bringing diverse points of view into the auditing process. 2017 can be a great year for operators to establish a regular review process of their documentation and to grow their network of potential auditors.