BizAv Ops to the 2016 Carnival of Venice, Italy – Part 2: Handling Requests, CIQ & Operating Costs

BizAv Ops to the 2016 Carnival of Venice, Italy – Part 2: Handling Requests, CIQ & Operating Costs

This is a post by author Stefano Bruno. Stefano is the station manager for Universal Aviation Italy – Milan-Linate, which has Fixed-Base Operator (FBO) and ground support locations at Rome (LIRA), Venice (LIPZ), Milan-Linate (LIML), and Milan-Malpensa (LIMC). Stefano is an expert on business aircraft operations in Italy. He can be contacted at

This business aviation blog post continues from our article last week, entitled "BizAv Ops to the 2016 Carnival of Venice, Italy – Part 1: Airports, Parking & PPRs."

Venice (LIPZ) is a user friendly airport for general aviation (GA) movements with a full range of support services; however, it is important to be aware of all customs, immigration, and quarantine (CIQ) requirements when arriving from outside the Schengen zone and to be mindful of potential cabotage issues.

The following is an overview of what you need to know when operating to LIPZ during the busy Carnival period (January 23 – February 9):

1. Ground handling requests

We recommend sending handling requests as soon as you have a tentative schedule. It’s always best to advise your ground handler the moment you have a firm schedule so that the Prior Permission Required (PPR) for LIPZ can be requested.

2. Operating costs and credit

Airport and landing fees at LIPZ are somewhat higher than many other Italian airports, and aircraft parking is billed at 0.62 Euros per metric ton per hour. Additionally, there are national passenger airport taxes that must be paid. With prior arrangements, your ground handler can extend credit for all airport charges, handling fees, and 3rd-party services which permits the invoicing of the operator at a later date.

3. CIQ considerations

LIPZ offers CIQ clearance 24/7, and no charges apply for these services. Note that CIQ at LIPZ is located in the main terminal. If you arrive from a non-Schengen country, your ground handler will transport passengers and crew from the general aviation terminal (GAT) to the main terminal, where you’ll clear CIQ in a separate area from scheduled commercial traffic. In some special cases, it’s possible to clear CIQ within the GAT (i.e., if security is a consideration due to particular passengers onboard), but this is always at CIQ’s discretion.

4. Clearance specifics

Passengers arriving from outside the Schengen region must present passports with at least 90 days remaining validity. Passengers who arrive without required visas are subject to deportation. Crew members who are on duty and have proper crew IDs—issued based on IATA standards—do not normally require visas to enter Italy; however, it’s always best to confirm crew visa requirements prior to arrival with your visa provider or appropriate Embassy/Consulate. CIQ clearance at LIPZ’s main terminal takes about 5-10 minutes. If any passengers have value-added tax (VAT) rebate claims to make, it’s best to advise your ground handler in advance to ensure the process goes smoothly and without delay.

5. Charter permits

All charter (non-scheduled commercial) operators to Italy require landing permits. For more information on these permits see our articles:

6. Cabotage cautions

Italy is strict on cabotage and routinely monitors potential violations. You may not transport any passengers not associated with your international legs on internal flights within Italy as a charter flight, as this is considered cabotage.

Note that cabotage rules are not applicable to private non-revenue flights.

7. Fuel and reposition considerations

Fuel uplift delays are possible at LIPZ, particularly if you’re competing with scheduled commercial operations during peak periods.

Upon landing, airport authorities will have the crew sign a document agreeing to leave parking brakes off and aircraft “ready to move.” If your aircraft needs to be re-located on the field the ground handler will always notify crew.

8. Hotel availability

There are two options for crew accommodations in the Venice area – the downtown area where prices are higher and water taxi transfers are needed, or on the mainland (near the airport) where room prices are lower and transport by land vehicles is possible. Note that 4-star crew accommodations in downtown Venice will normally run at least 200 Euros/night during this period. Note that the downtown hotel options are the primary options for persons traveling to Venice for the Carnival and will be the first ones to sell out during this period.

9. Local transport options

As the Carnival is a busy period in Venice we recommend booking local transport well in advance, to ensure preferred options are available. For connections from LIPZ to downtown hotels, public and private water taxis are available. Private water taxis are more expensive, but they’ll take you right to your hotel or destination, whereas the public options only have specific stops they make.

10. Additional information

To find out more information on this event, please visit the Venice Carnival official website.


The customs and immigration process is straightforward, but it’s important to ensure that you have proper validity and appropriate visas when needed. Ensure that you don’t uplift fuel during peak hours to avoid delays. Preferred hotel accommodations for Carnival festivities are those in the downtown Venice area, as you’ll be close to most of the major events. As these hotels will likely be the first to sell out, it’s recommended that crew accommodations be confirmed as early as possible.


If you have any questions about this article or would like assistance planning your next trip to Italy, contact me at