BizAv Planning Tips: 2016 Venice International Film Festival
This is a post by author Gheri Armano. Gheri is the supervisory representative for Universal Aviation Italy – Venice, which has fixed-base operator and ground support locations at Rome (LIRA), Venice (LIPZ), Milan-Linate (LIML), and Milan-Malpensa (LIMC). Gheri is an expert on business aircraft operations in Italy. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
This year’s Venice International Film Festival (or the Venice Film Festival) runs August 31 – September 10 at the Lido Venice. It is the oldest film festival in the world, founded in 1932, and comprises one of the “Big Three” film festivals alongside the Berlin International Film Festival and Cannes Film Festival. Because of its popularity, the Venice Film Festival always attracts a significant volume of general aviation (GA) movements. For the best aircraft parking and crew accommodations options we recommend beginning the trip planning process as soon as schedule is known.
The following is an overview of what you need to know:
1. Primary airport
Venezia Tessera (LIPZ) is the primary airport for this event. This is a 24-hour airport of entry (AOE) with a prior permission required (PPR) mandate—but no airport slot requirement. LIPZ has approximately 20 parking positions for GA and there’s an option for additional GA parking on the commercial side of the field, should the GA ramp fill up. Parking for up to one week is usually not a challenge, but for longer stays it’s important to confirm availability in advance. GA parking was not an issue at last year’s Venice Film Festival, and we don’t expect this year to be different. However, the parking situation at LIPZ can always change at a moment’s notice, so it’s best not to take unnecessary chances with last minute parking requests.
2. Operating to LIPZ
Parking for LIPZ is managed via PPR, and this is normally requested by a ground handler on the operator’s behalf. Airport authorities usually advise PPR status within one to two days. While there are no size limitations or restrictions for GA aircraft traveling to this location, it’s important to get PPR requests in early for larger BBJ- or ACJ-sized equipment. Note that Stage II operations are banned at airports in Italy. While LIPZ has no slot requirements, this is an Airport Collaborative Decision Making (A-CDM) location, so it’s important to understand the A-CDM process prior to arrival. A-CDM implementation has been a good thing for LIPZ as it has reduced airport delays.
3. Fuel, services, and credit
We see very few fuel uplift delays at LIPZ. The same fuel supplier handles both GA and scheduled commercial operations but, in most cases, has been able to handle both with no issues. All services can be arranged on credit, with advance arrangement. In-flight catering is available at this location, and ground handlers will provide assistance in coordinating catering from local hotels and restaurants.
4. Handling and parking requests
For parking and handling requests it’s important to provide:
- address of operator
- aircraft type
- registration and call sign
- arrival and departure times
- origin and destination of flight
- a valid tax ID number (EU-based companies are only required to provide their VAT number)
Parking and handling requests are submitted via a special online form. If any of the above information above is missing, airport authorities will not consider the request.
5. Handling and CIQ clearance
LIPZ has a general aviation terminal (GAT) open 0600-2200 local, with overtime generally available upon request. Note that customs, immigration, and quarantine (CIQ) is always cleared within the main terminal for flights arriving from outside the Schengen area, but there’s a separate CIQ entrance for GA passengers/crew to use. CIQ procedures normally take less than 15 minutes to complete. Be aware that although LIPZ is a 24-hour airport, GAT overtime may not always be possible. Therefore, we recommend making any overtime requests as soon as schedule is known.
6. Flight plan considerations
For operation to LIPZ it’s important that the PPR confirmation number be placed in Remarks section 18 of the ICAO flight plan.
7. Alternate airports
If parking is unavailable at LIPZ, or you choose to park elsewhere for crew accommodation purposes, you may drop passengers at LIPZ and reposition. Recommended reposition options include Trieste (LIPQ), Treviso (LIPH) and Milan Linate (LIML). These are all 24-hour AOEs with full GA support and credit available. Parking should always be requested in advance for any of these alternates. For most operators LIML is the preferred alternate.
8. Hotels and local transport
Hotels in the downtown Venice area generally sell out during the Film Festival period, with room prices higher than normal and stricter cancellation policies. Outside the city center, on the mainland, crew accommodations are easier to source and less expensive. We expect local transport options to be readily available during the Film Festival period. Both public and private water taxis operate from the GAT to downtown Venice and Lido areas. Regular ground taxis, along with pre-paid transport (car with driver) options, are also available from LIPZ to locations on the mainland. Note that water taxis will be a limited resource during the Film Festival period and should always be arranged and confirmed in advance. Private water taxi services are recommended and usually cost 100-150 USD each way between LIPZ and the Venice/Lido areas.
While short notice and last minute GA travel arrangements to the 2016 Venice Film Festival will be possible this could potentially entail a drop, go and reposition. For preferred parking and accommodation options it’s recommend that operators submit PPR, handling and accommodation requests 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.