The European Parliament has recently presented the new EASA regulations EC 216/2008; 2009 and its 2013 amendments, in order to abandon foreign (non European) licenses.
What does this mean for N-REG flyers and operators in Europe?
- Everyone who lives in Europe and operates a N-reg aircraft, is no longer allowed the use of FAA privileges within the European countries, unless the operator of this N-registered aircraft is located in the USA, or outside of Europe.
- In other words, you are not allowed to operate an N-Reg aircraft form a European operator in the EC even if you have a current FAA pilot certificate.
(see notes as operator, owner, and pilot in command)
- The FAA Instrument Rating (IR) even if you possess an ATP certificate, will only be usable in Europe until April 8th 2016.
This is terrible news, because it will be practically impossible for you to legally use your FAA instrument Rating to fly under IFR in “N” registered aircrafts in all European countries*.
All pilots have to pass an EASA Instrument Pilot exam or add on an Instrument Rating according to the recently adopted new European regulations EASA EC 216/2008; 2009 and its 2013 amendments. For a lot of you this is almost impossible! Let us think of the reasons why we need N-Reg flying in Europe.
- Reasonable medical checks for pilots in 3 categories. European medicals are often done with the umbrella technique of:”doubts are always a medical refusal”. In most cases you had to prove your 100% fitness and in other cases you had to bring your fight to court.
- All FAA pilots have completed advanced training and exams and have more world-wide flying experience.
(EASA is trying to copy this experience from the FAA)
- Most FAA pilots are in possession of an Instrumental rating! Such a rating was almost impossible to have in Europe because obtaining it was too expensive and took too long.
This is one of the reasons that the accident rate of European VFR pilots in bad weather is high compared to IFR pilots.
- The politics of the European countries (with some exceptions) always has been: We don’t want too many pilots in our airspace. That’s why they created an almost impossible VFR airspace; a kind of zoo for VFR pilots with almost impossible regulations. The idea is; someone who needs to travel takes national or public transport.
- The FAA exams are already more serious than the EASA ones and include an English proficiency. If you cannot read, write and speak English it’s a refusal. (This is why Europeans are now starting to require some English proficiency for licenses.)
- The FAA certificates are ICAO certificates with clear privileges agreed upon worldwide, while EASA licenses are a mix of local and JAA certificates with unclear privileges and are often issued to people who are not proficient in English. Remember that English is the worldwide aviation language.
- Maintenance of FAA aircraft is not only a paper thing, but is something done seriously by qualified mechanics. If they are making abuses or mistakes they will be sued. EASA maintenance is often done ” a la tete du client” at the dinner table by officials, and not at the workbench.
- Who taught the world to fly? The Europeans or the Americans!
- Who has the best collection of materials for learning to fly with maps, books and the exchange of knowledge?
- Having a N-Reg aircraft is financially possible but having a European registered aircraft is a financial disaster made almost impossible by the taxes, fees and maintenance fees.
- Having an FAA certificate gives you the satisfaction that you are a pilot, able to fly!
AFTC has some solutions! We all have to do something now if we want to fly N-Reg aircraft and if we want to keep on flying with our FAA certificates after April 2016.