Business Aircraft Ops to the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games and Paralympics

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The 2020 Tokyo Games will now be held July 23 – August 8, 2021 in Tokyo. We will update this article as we move closer to that date.

The time to start planning for the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games and Paralympics is now. Japan Civil Aviation Bureau (JCAB) has just released guidelines for non-scheduled aircraft operating to Japan for the Games.

Slot applications started being accepted as early as Aug. 1, 2019 for Chubu Centrair International Airport (RJGG/NGO) and Sendai Airport (RJSS/SDJ), with “tentative” slots being issued as early as Sept. 30, 2019.

As is usual with an event of this size, we highly encourage you to make arrangements with your Universal® Trip Support Team and as soon as your schedule is known so that you can secure your best options. Based on the volume of inquiries we’ve already seen come into Universal Aviation Japan, early indicators show it will be another high-demand event.

Here’s what you need to know:

1. Overview

The 2020 Summer Games will be held in Tokyo from July 24 – Aug. 9, 2020. The Paralympics will be held from Aug. 25 – Sept. 6, 2020. We estimate at least 1,000 business aircraft will be operating to Tokyo for the games.

In advance of the Games, JCAB has published guidelines for slot coordination at the six airports that will handle general aviation traffic to the Games.

The six airports are broken down into three Tokyo Metro Airports and three Specially-Designated Airports. JCAB has also developed slot coordination periods and rules for non-scheduled flights to those airports, including a classification of who is allowed to operate to which airports during certain periods.

2. Primary Airports

There are six primary airports that will be used for general/business aviation operators attending the Games. All six airports will be treated as Level 3 Airports from Jul. – Sept. 2020—requiring slots managed by the JCAB “Special Coordination Office.”

These airports are designated by the Japanese Government to receive official Summer Games stakeholders such as the states’ guests, the Olympic Committee Members, athletes etc. Fast lane, welcome reception desks and special security services will be available.

3. Tokyo Metro Airports

The three Tokyo metro airports are:

  • Narita International Airport (RJAA/NRT) – Will be designated an official port of entry for Summer Games. RJAA is a 1 –1.5-hour drive (65 km / 40 mi) to central Tokyo (depending on traffic and destination).
  • Haneda International Airport (RJTT/NHD) – Will be designated an official port of entry for Summer Games. RJTT is typically a 15-40-minute drive (20 km / 12.5 mi).
  • Ibaraki Airport (RJAH/IBR) – Will be designated an official port of entry for Paralympic Games. It is located 80KM northeast of Tokyo and will be used during the Summer and Paralympics Games. The airport is commonly used by JCAB and Japan Air Self Defense Force (JASDF). It has two close parallel runways:
    • One is 2,700m (03R/21L) for JASDF use
    • The other is 2,700m (03L/21R) for JCAB use
    • There are eight parking spots, three are fixed spots and five are open spots (small) for JCAB use

When applying at Tokyo Metro airports, operators cannot designate which airport. Japanese CAA will automatically assign slots if available.

It is important to note that, the majority of slots at the Tokyo airports during the peak game periods are primarily only be accessible to VIP flights, including the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the athletes, corporate sponsors, and other VIPs with direct ties to the Games during the peak demand periods of the games (July 17th through September 20th).

If your flight is not VIP, we’re recommending you make your slot request now at one of the Specially-Designated Airports (see below) and attempt for a slot at a Tokyo-area airport later. If you apply for a slot at a Tokyo-area airport and don’t receive it, you will not automatically be assigned a slot at a Specially-Designated Airport.

4. Tokyo airports parking restrictions and alternates

Due to parking spacing limitations at all three Tokyo Metro airports, aircraft will be allowed a maximum of three hours on the ground. If more time on the ground is needed, aircraft will be re-positioned to another airport based on assignment by the Special Coordination Office.

Recommended parking reposition airports:

Japan

  • Kansai Airport (RJBB):
    • There is no regulation specified for a maximum parking period, it depends on actual availability.
    • Distance by airline: One hour and 10 mins by airline (from RJBB to RJTT) and will take 30 mins from RJTT to Tokyo downtown by car.
    • Distance by car: Seven hours by car from airport to Tokyo station.
    • Distance by train: One hour from airport to Shin-Osaka station by car and two hours and 30 mins from Shin-Osaka station to Tokyo station by high speed railway.
  • Niigata Airport (RJSN):
    • Maximum parking period is seven days (six nights) and depends on actual availability.
    • Distance by airline: One hour and 15 mins (only one flight/day from RJSN to RJAA) and will take one hour and 30 mins from RJAA to Tokyo downtown by car.
    • Distance by car: Four hours and 20 mins by car from airport to Tokyo station.
    • Distance by train: 20 mins from airport to Niigata station by car and two hours and 10 mins from Niigata station to Tokyo station by high-speed railway.
  • Shizuoka Airport (RJNS):
    • Maximum parking period is 8 days (7 nights) and depends on actual availability.
    • Distance by airline: No airline service from RJNS to RJTT.
    • Distance by car: Two hours and 50 mins by car from airport to Tokyo station.
    • Distance by train: 50 mins from airport to Shizuoka station and one hour from Shizuoka station to Tokyo station by high-speed railway.

South Korea

  • Gimpo Airport (RKSS): Two hours by airline (from RKSS to RJTT) and will take 30 mins from RJTT to Tokyo downtown by car.

Taiwan

Note: As we check with local authorities, regulations for parking at these airports may change for the upcoming Olympics.

5. Specially-Designated Airports

These are the airports being elevated to Level 3 (slot coordinated) for this event.

  • New Chitose Airport (RJCC/CTS) – Will be designated an official port of entry for the Summer Games. It is located 820 KM north of Tokyo (1 hour and 40 minutes via airline flight). This airport is being elevated from a Level 2 Airport to Level 3.
  • Sendai Airport (RJSS/SDJ) – This airport is being elevated from a Level 1 Airport to Level 3. It will be designated an official port of entry for Summer Games. It is located 300 KM northeast of Tokyo (1 hour via airline flight). It has two runways:
    • Main runway is 3,000m (09/27)
    • Crosswind runway is 1,200m (12/30)
    • 14 parking spots; six are fixed spots and eight are open spots (small).
  • Chubu Centrair International Airport (RJGG/NGO) – Will be designated an official port of entry for Paralympic Games. It is located 280 KM west of Tokyo (1 hour via airline flight). This airport is being elevated from a Level 2 Airport to Level 3.

6. Classification of Peak Periods for This Event

JCAB controls the slots of the six airports from July to September, dividing the period into following three categories. The three months will be classified in accordance with the demand predicted.

  • Demand Concentrated Period: July 17 through Sept. 13
  • Demand Peak Period:
    • Opening Ceremony Periods (Olympic and Paralympic Games): July 21–25 and Aug. 22- 26
    • Closing Ceremony Periods (Olympic and Paralympic Games): Aug. 8-10 and Sept. 14-30
  • Others: Basically, everything else during this three-month window: July 1 – 16 and Sept. 14 –30.

7. Classification of Non-scheduled Flights

Non-Scheduled Flights will be classified into the following categories. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) defines games stakeholders in four levels, V1-3 (i.e., VIP) and everyone else (ordinary non-scheduled flights). Priority is given to V1-3 first, with everyone else being assigned on a first-come, first-served basis.

  • V1:
    • IOC President
    • IOC Honorary President
    • IOC member regarded as Head of State
    • Sovereign or Head of State
    • Head of Government
  • V2:
    • IOC Members
    • IOC Members of Honour
    • IOC Honorary Members
    • Chairman of the IOC Ethics Commission
    • IOC Directors
    • Children of the above under 18
    • IOC Honoured guests
    • Presidents & Secretary Generals of IFs on Summer Games
    • ASOIF President & Secretary General
    • Presidents and Secretary Generals of NOCs
    • Sports Ministers of NOC
    • President & Director General of Host OCOG
    • Mayor of Host city
    • Chairman & CEOs of Top Programme Partners
  • V3:
    • Athletes and Team Officials
    • Technical Officials
    • Broadcast
    • Media
    • IOC Commission Members, Staff, Advisors, Consultants, Agents and Guests
    • Future OCOG and Bid Cities delegations
    • Members and Guests of recognized organizations and federations
    • TOP Senior Executives and Guests, Olympic Project Leaders, Senior Technical Operations Staff, Media Relations, Marketing Partner Workforce
    • Other prominent Government representatives
    • Other approved Games Clients (approved by IOC)
  • Everyone else
    • Ordinary non-scheduled flights

8. Slot Coordination Periods

  • Expired Pre-Special Coordination Period (Aug 1-Sep 20, 2019): Slots can be requested during this period, and answers to these requests are expected to arrive Sept. 30, 2019. However, because this period starts before the initial submission of the IATA 2020 Summer season, any slots assigned in this period will be “tentative” and subject to change at JCAB’s discretion until around Jan/Feb 2020. Non-VIP (V1-3) flights will be able to request slots during this period for RJGG and RJSS only. This is covered in more detail in Section 6 below.
  • Special Coordination Period (Dec 1, 2019 – Feb 10, 2020): This period starts after IATA SC144 from Dec. 1, 2019 to Feb. 10, 2020. The submission of Non-Scheduled Flights for both Tokyo Metropolitan Airports (RJTT/RJAA/RJAH) and Specially Designated Airports (RJGG/RJSS/RJCC) can be made during this period. Answers to these slot requests are expected to arrive Feb. 28, 2020. Non VIP (V1-3) flights will be limited to slot request for RJGG/RJSS/RJCC only during this period. See Section 6 above for more details. Non VIPs may still can request slot at RJAA/RJAH except during the peak period (opening/closing ceremony) at this stage.
  • After Special Coordination (after Feb 10, 2020): Non-scheduled flight requests for the six airports will be coordinated at the JCAB Special Coordination Office if the relevant airport slot is still available. The three Tokyo Metro airports are expected to be in very high-demand. Slot requests submitted before the 20th of each month are expected to be replied to by the end of the same month. During July through September 2020, ad-hoc coordination may take place.
  • Scheduled Flights and Non-Scheduled Flights coordination in the other periods in 2020: Requests for Scheduled Flights and Non-Scheduled Flights coordination in the other periods in 2020 should be submitted as usual.

9. Special Slot Coordination Periods for Each Airport

The Pre-Special (Aug. 1 – Sept. 20, 2019) and Special (Dec. 1, 2019 – Feb. 10, 2020) Coordination Periods are restricted by your Flight Classification Types, Airport Requested, AND Peak Period requested, as follows:

RJTT/NHD:

  • Pre-Special Coordination is not available.
  • During the Special Coordination period (Dec. 1, 2019 – Feb. 10, 2020), only these requests types are available:
    • V1 requests for the Demand Peak Period (the Opening/Closing Ceremonies)
    • V1 and V2 requests for the Demand Concentrated Period (July 17-Sept. 13).
  • For those who need to divert to other airports, JCAB announced that the maximum parking time is three hours.

RJAA/NRT:

  • Pre-Special Coordination is not available.
  • During the Special Coordination period (Dec. 1, 2019 – Feb. 10, 2020), only these requests types are available:
    • V1-V3 requests for the Demand Peak Period (the Opening/Closing Ceremonies)
    • Non VIPs can still request slots, except during the Demand Peak Period
  • For those who need to divert to other airports, JCAB announced that the maximum parking time is three hours.

RJAH/IBR:

  • Pre-Special Coordination is not available.
  • During the Special Coordination period (Dec. 1, 2019 – Feb. 10, 2020), only these requests types are available:
    • V1-V3 requests for the Demand Peak Period (the Opening/Closing Ceremonies)
    • Non VIPs can still request slots, except during the Demand Peak Period
  • For those who need to divert to other airports, JCAB announced that the maximum parking time is three hours.

RJSS/SDJ and RJGG/NGO:

  • Pre-Special Coordination (Aug. 1 – Sept. 20, 2019) is available for all non-scheduled flights
  • Special Coordination (Dec. 1, 2019 – Feb. 10, 2020) is available for all non-scheduled flights

RJCC/CTS

  • Pre-Special Coordination is not available.
  • Special Coordination (Dec. 1, 2019 – Feb. 10, 2020) is available for all non-scheduled flights

10. Further reading


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