Hong Kong Parking & Slot Restrictions – Part 2: Parking & Services
This business aviation blog post continues from our article last week, entitled “Hong Kong Parking & Slot Restrictions – Part 1: VHHH Requirements & Airport Slots.”
It’s becoming more and more difficult for business aircraft operators to secure long-term (anything beyond two days) parking at Hong Kong (VHHH). In most cases you’ll not be granted a parking stay in excess of two days, and you may only get one-night parking at this location. While Macau (VMMC) is the most convenient parking alternate, this location is also becoming more of an issue for longer-terms stays.
The following is an overview of what you need to know:
1. Parking availability
VHHH has approximately 20 parking spots for General Aviation (GA), and these are located on the General Aviation Terminal (GAT) ramp. Note that the size of your aircraft may play a role in parking approval. Overflow parking outside the GAT ramp is rarely available as it’s generally reserved for scheduled commercial aircraft. VHHH parking spots are assigned on a first-come-first-served basis, with no special priority given to any operator, including mainland China-registered aircraft. For any parking you must obtain Prior Permission Required (PPR) which may be requested as early as 30 days before operation. Keep in mind, however, that slots cannot be requested more than seven days in advance. Therefore, if you have a parking confirmation but are unable to get a slot, you may be giving up your parking. If parking at VHHH cannot be confirmed, you’ll usually have the option to drop passengers and reposition. Note that parking PPRs are not needed if you’re able to secure parking space within a hangar at VHHH. Note that hangar space for transient GA operations is very scarce.
2. Parking – length of stay
We’ve found that for every 25 parking applications for VHHH often only one or two may be successful. Chances of approval are much better if you’re requesting a stay of one and up to two days. While you may apply for stays of longer than two days, the chance of approval drops dramatically. It’s possible to request parking extensions once you’re on the ground, but such requests are usually not successful.
3. Parking applications
Parking applications are made online, and status of your request will be known within approximately 12-24 hours. Airport parking authorities work seven days a week, but not 24 hours a day. If you request a PPR before noon local, you’ll generally receive an answer the same day or – at latest – by noon the next day. For parking PPR requests, you’ll need to provide your schedule, tail number, and aircraft seating capacity. Note that to-be-advised schedules are not accepted, and parking will only be approved for the schedule provided. Parking extensions require a revised approval.
4. Parking compliance
If you park at VHHH longer than what’s been pre-approved, you’ll receive a letter from airport authorities requesting an explanation. While there are penalties in place for violating airport slot times, penalties have not yet been applied to parking violations.
5. Parking alternates
Preferred alternate, when you’re not able to park at VHHH, is VMMC. However, VMMC also gets very busy and may not always be a viable alternate. In this case you’ll need to reposition farther out – perhaps Hanoi (VVNB), Manila (RPLL), or Kaohsiung (RCKH). Using a mainland alternate airport in China is not the best option for non-B-registered aircraft, as you’ll need permits and special “C” crew visas, in addition to paying several thousand dollars in airspace compensation fees to organize a landing in China.
6. Airport services
Full support services are available at VHHH along with credit on prior arrangement. When parking on the GAT ramp, you’ll normally be able to obtain aircraft services, including fuel uplifts, at your parking spot. However, as parking on the GAT ramp can be tight, there will be times when you’ll need to be towed to a departure area for fuel uplift and to obtain some services. While there’s no need to have your own towbar for VHHH, it’s recommended that a tow bar be carried, in the event you need to reposition to another destination in the area.
7. Fuel uplifts
GA fuel uplifts at VHHH are normally via fuel trucks. However, airport authorities are looking at putting hydrant fuel at two of the parking bays. Be aware that fuel uplift delays are possible at this location. If the truck needs to leave to pick up more fuel, this may cause an uplift delay of an additional hour.
8. CIQ procedures
Customs, Immigration, and Quarantine (CIQ) clearance for GA operations is accomplished within the GAT. Be mindful that visas may be required, for certain nationalities of passengers/crew members, and these must be obtained prior to arrival. It’s always best to confirm visa requirements with your 3rd-party provider.
9. Other considerations
It’s recommended that operators have their handler file departure flight plans three to six hours prior to the estimated time of departure. Should you need to reposition your aircraft, after dropping passengers at VHHH, ensure you have all required overflight and landing permits for your alternate destination. When overflying Hong Kong, be aware of the Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcast (ADS-B) requirements now in effect. If you’re not ADS-B-equipped, you’ll have to overfly Hong Kong at a lower flight level. And, if you do not have RNP 1 certification, you’ll not be permitted in Hong Kong airspace at all.
If you need to remain in the Hong Kong area longer than two days, we suggest you submit the parking application well in advance and be prepared to reposition if parking isn’t available. It’s also recommended that operators consider alternate parking contingency plans – as longer-term parking cannot be guaranteed at VHHH.
If you have any questions about this article or would like assistance planning your next trip to VHHH, contact Alan Pong at email@example.com.