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Charter Aircraft Customs Question

Tue Oct 30, 2007 9:07 pm

My dad's friend is chartering an aircraft to take him and his family to the Bahamas (NAS I believe). They are departing from TEB. The aircraft is being chartered from Halcyon jet holdings, which I was unfortunately unable to find info on. They are flying non-stop to NAS. However, they have to stop in ILM for customs on the way back. Does anyone know why this would be?
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RE: Charter Aircraft Customs Question

Tue Oct 30, 2007 9:26 pm

Quoting Bok269 (Thread starter):
They are flying non-stop to NAS. However, they have to stop in ILM for customs on the way back. Does anyone know why this would be?

Good question. TEB definitely has customs, so I don't quite understand the need to go to ILM. However, there are a number of government rules on private flights from the Bahamas which I'm not familiar with, so it might fall under one of those.

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RE: Charter Aircraft Customs Question

Tue Oct 30, 2007 9:27 pm

When you are coming back into the US from the south you have to stop for customs at the first airport you come to that has customs when you cross the "border". I am not sure of the kind of jet you are talking about, but ILM might also be a fuel stop, there are a lot of reasons, but maybe they have cheaper Jet-A than TEB and MYNN I am sure, even though they non stop it down. Certain carriers such as my own, have overfly rights, where it allows you to overfly the first stop if you get permission from the customs you are overflying and the customs you want to clear inbound at which isn't always easy. An example of a typical flight I have flown using the overflight is flying from MMMY(Monterrey, Mex)-LIT(customs)-DET(drop off) instead of going MMMY-LRD(customs)-LIT(fuel)-DET. Hope that helps some...I think it has mostly to do with the drug smuggling problem coming up from the south.
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RE: Charter Aircraft Customs Question

Tue Oct 30, 2007 11:15 pm

Quoting Bok269 (Thread starter):
However, they have to stop in ILM for customs on the way back. Does anyone know why this would be?

As noted above - drugs is the reason.

Some jets/ other aircraft can fly from the Caribbean, Mexico and South America and overfly the border to a destination with customs rights. My company G-200 flies to KADS from Mexico occasionally.

However, to qualify for that privilege - the aircraft, the individual crew members, and the passengers all have to be cleared in advance.

Should the company have to put a substitute crew member on board - the plane will have to stop at the first airport after crossing the border. Should a not pre-approved passenger be on board - the plane has to stop. Right now the President of our International Division is an Australian citizen - non-US citizen on board - stop at the boarder.

I have been told that Mexico has a similar rule which requires many planes to stop at the first airport upon entering Mexico - both from the south and the north.

From the AOPA web site (fair use):

The U.S. government is serious about catching drug smugglers and Customs agents consider general aviation aircraft one of the highest risk vehicles for narcotics smuggling, especially those arriving from the south. Violating Customs rules means possible aircraft impoundment and fines starting at $5,000.

Your landing must be at the designated airport nearest to the point of first border crossing, unless an overflight exemption has been granted to land at a Customs-served airport farther inland. Due to the increasingly tight requirements for overflight exemptions, AOPA recommends the returning tourist not consider this procedure or to get details from the AOPA Aviation Services or from U.S. Customs before departure from the United States.
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RE: Charter Aircraft Customs Question

Wed Oct 31, 2007 12:41 am

Quoting Bok269 (Thread starter):
The aircraft is being chartered from Halcyon jet holdings

Some airports will not allow 135 overflights however. LAX can be difficult for one. I have worked with halcyon and they should be able to get an overlfight if given enough time. Some customs offices will ask upwards of 30 days notice to process though. Some can push it through in a few days.

Everyone in the biz knows-always, always, always kiss custom's ass. Even if the are giving attitude, just smile and say, "Thank you, may I please have a reach around with that?"

So its all in the timing. If the flight is in 10 days or less, it may be difficult to get an overflight.
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