The CAA has issued a guide to cost-sharing rules and, for the first time, endorsed flight-sharing services such as Wingly and Coavmi.
The rules for ‘cost-sharing’ General Aviation flights were relaxed across Europe four years ago, when the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) introduced a new set of Air Ops regulations.
Now, the costs of private flights can be shared by up to six people including the pilot. The rules do not specify what each person has to pay and restrictions on advertising were also removed, allowing online platforms to introduce pilots and passengers.
These services – Wingly and Coavmi being the best-known – match pilots with passengers for specific journeys and co-ordinate the admin between the two parties. Pilots who take advantage of these services can build up their hours and therefore their experience.
Wingly recently raised €2m to expand its services across Europe. “With fresh capital, we can now further accelerate our concept and boost general aviation in Europe,” said co-founder Emeric de Waziers.
“In the long term, flight sharing won’t only help increasing the flight hours but also spark interest in aviation to the wider public so that the number of pilots in Europe will rise even further. Flying is the oldest dream of mankind, we shouldn’t forget that.”
Tony Rapson, Head of the CAA’s General Aviation Unit, says in a blog post on the CAA website, “Flying with strangers is a totally different experience to taking family or friends for a spin, so we at the CAA are very keen that pilots who do embrace these new-found opportunities fully understand the risks involved.
“Many of the risks involved in such flights haven’t changed just because the passengers were not previously known to the pilot – it is important that the risks and the nature of the flight are understood by both parties.
“Flying with strangers opens new potential issues ranging from security and personal safety to insurance implications.”
The CAA’s guide to cost-sharing can be downloaded here