Business Aviation Trip Planning Tips: Malaysia Grand Prix 2014

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Business Aviation Trip Planning Tips: Malaysia Grand Prix 2014

The 2014 Petronas Malaysian Grand Prix will be held March 28-30 at the Sepang International Circuit. This race circuit is located closer to Kuala Lumpur Intl (WMKK) and about 60 km south of central Kuala Lumpur. If you’re heading to this part of the world during this time period, it’s recommended to begin setting up the landing permit, aircraft parking, hotel and local transport arrangements as early as practical.

The following is an overview of what you need to know:

1. Best airport choices

First choice for this event is Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah (WMSA), approximately 45 minutes from the circuit.

Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah (WMSA)

  • Airport of Entry (AOE): Yes
  • Operating hours: 24 hours
  • Prior Permission Required (PPR): Not required
  • Airport slots: Not required
  • Aircraft parking: Available
  • Ground handling: Available
  • Aviation fuel (Jet A): Available
  • In-flight catering: Available

Notes:

WMSA was formally known as Subang International, and it’s located close to downtown Kuala Lumpur.

While WMSA is set up for, and caters to, business aviation traffic, it’s unable to handle some large aircraft types due to lack of ground support equipment.

Customs/immigration is only available 0700-2300 local, and customs requires at least six hours’ notification for all international flights.

A VIP area is available as needed.

Aircraft parking at this location is power-in/push-back. Due to the push-back requirement, operators should carry a tow bar onboard the aircraft. Be aware that a push-back fee may be levied at WMSA.

Operators may encounter fueling delays at WMSA due to a shortage of fuel trucks and the permanent decommission of the hydrant fuel system.

2. Alternate airports to consider

The alternate for this event is the other airport in Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Lumpur Intl (WMKK), at 15 minutes from the Sepang International race circuit.

Kuala Lumpur Intl (WMKK)

  • AOE: Yes
  • Operating hours: 24 hours
  • PPR: Not required
  • Airport slots: Required
  • Aircraft parking: Available
  • Ground handling: Available
  • Aviation fuel (Jet A): Available
  • In-flight catering: Available

Notes:

WMKK is primarily geared toward scheduled commercial operations, and it’s located farther out from the city center.

WMKK has 75 parking bays fitted with aerobridges and 31 remote bays for passenger aircraft. International passenger aircraft are usually parked in outlying areas.

Airport slots are required for all operations at WMKK, with slot deviations of only +/- 5 minutes. Airport slot requests must be made along with your landing permit request. Once a landing permit is approved, airport slots are also approved.

3. Landing permits are needed for Malaysia

All flights traveling to Malaysia – both private non-revenue and charter (non-scheduled commercial) – require landing permits. Prior to requesting the landing permit, airport slots for your destination must first be arranged. Be aware that Malaysia’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) requires nine business days to process landing permits. Permit requests within this lead time may be possible at the CAA’s discretion. All landing permits have a validity of +/- 72 hours. Revisions to the schedule within the permit validity period only requires a notification. A new permit is needed if you plan to revise your schedule outside the approved permit validity period, if the departure point prior to arrival into Malaysia changes, or if the arrival destination within Malaysia changes.

4. Hotel and local transportation arrangements for the race

There are plenty of 4- and 5-star hotel options, including international chains, to choose from when operating to Kuala Lumpur. It’s recommended that accommodations be booked early due to the increased traffic this event will bring to the city. Due to the popularity of this race, some city center and area hotels may increase room prices and extend cancellation policies. For the best hotel options/pricing, it’s best to book as early as possible.
When traveling to Malaysia, pre-paid transport (car with driver) is recommended. Rental vehicles are also available at both airports, if you’d like to explore those options.

5. Check online for additional information

Additional information on the 2014 Malaysia Petronas Grand Prix can be found at the Formula 1 website.

Conclusion

Due to fairly long permit lead times for general aviation operations to Malaysia, advance planning is recommended. While short-notice permit requests and last-minute hotel arrangements may be possible, success cannot be guaranteed. We anticipate plenty of aircraft parking availability at both airports during the time of the Malaysian Grand Prix. But, it’s important to work closely with your 3rd-party provider and local ground handler to source and confirm the best options for your particular requirements.

Universal is not associated in any way with the Formula One group of companies. F1, FORMULA ONE, FORMULA 1, FIA FORMULA ONE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP, GRAND PRIX and related marks are trademarks of Formula One Licensing B.V.

Questions?

If you have any questions about this article or operations into Malaysia, contact us at greglinton@univ-wea.com or christinevamvakas@univ-wea.com.

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About

Greg Linton, Team Lead, ELATE Team, is known as a solutions-oriented problem solver. He’s also known as an expert on operations around the globe, particularly to Europe, Africa and China. Since joining Universal in 2000, Greg has facilitated more than 9,100 trip legs. He has represented Universal at numerous industry tradeshows and conventions including the European Business Aviation Association Conference & Exhibition and the National Business Aviation Association Conference. Greg has also been interviewed for and contributed articles to many industry publications. Prior to joining Universal, Greg served as an aircraft maintenance administration supervisor in the United States Marine Corps. Greg holds a bachelor’s degree in aviation management. He can be reached at greglinton@univ-wea.com.

About

An FAA-Licensed Dispatcher, Christine Vamvakas is an expert in all areas of trip support services, including TSA Waivers, international visa requirements, aircraft fuel ranges, operations in Greece, and charter operations throughout Europe. A native of Greece, Christine is fluent in Greek and has more than a decade’s experience working in trip support services with Universal Weather and Aviation, Inc. Having served as Master Trip Owner and Team Lead for Universal’s Charter Management Team, Christine has facilitated thousands of international trip legs and uses that experience in her role as Universal’s Operations Communications Manager. Christine holds a bachelor of science degree in business management and a master’s degree in business administration. Her expert commentary has been included in multiple business aviation publications. You can reach Christine at christinevamvakas@univ-wea.com.

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