Paris 2023 Rugby World Cup: Business Aviation Planning Guide
The 2023 Rugby World Cup starts on September 8th in Paris and will continue at various venues in France through the October 28th Final in Paris. The event is highly attended and a major draw for business aviation operators. Previous World Cups such as the 2019 event in Japan and the 2015 event in England drew 1.7 million and 2.47 million fans respectively.
Because the tournament is spread throughout the country, we don’t anticipate major traffic issues with the exception of the days immediately before the opening match and Final, which will be held in Paris.
Here’s what business aviation operators need to know:
About the Rugby World Cup
The Rugby World Cup is considered one of the premier sporting events globally, though it might not have the same level of recognition or viewership as the FIFA World Cup or the Olympic Games. However, within nations where rugby is popular, the tournament garners significant attention and is a major sporting event.
2023 Tournament Venues
The Opening Match and Finals will be held in Paris. But much of the Rugby World Cup tournament is thinly spread across France. As a result, we do not expect significant traffic issues in Paris, with the exception of the opening and final match.
- Stade de Bordeaux, Bordeaux
- Stade Pierre Mauroy, Lille
- Parc Olimpique Lyonnais
- Stade Velodrome, Marseille
- Stade de la Beaujoire, Nantes
- Stade de Nice, Nice
- Stade de France, Saint-Denis
- Stade Geoffroy-Guichard
- Stadium de Toulouse
Primary Airport for Opening Game and Final Match
Universal Aviation France advises that Le Bourget Airport will operate under a slot allocation system from October 19th to 29th. Your handler will be responsible for securing these slots.
Paris Restrictions – No-Fly Zones
From September 8 to October 28, 2023, there will be restrictions and limited air travel areas to keep the event safe.
On game days at the Stade de France, the no-fly zones will be active usually from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM, on the following dates: September 8, and October 14, 15, 20, 21, 27, and 28.
Additionally, there’s a different no-fly zone specific to the Stade de France that will be active on September 9 from 3:00 PM to 7:00 PM, and on September 23 and October 7 from 6:00 PM to 10:00 PM.
Prepare for Congestion Before and After Final Match in Paris
The level of airport congestion at Le Bourget is likely to vary depending on which teams advance to the quarter-finals, semi-finals, and, ultimately, the championship match. We will continue to provide updates as the tournament progresses. The teams that advance through the pool stages will likely have an effect on traffic. The Southern hemisphere teams are less likely to travel, but Northern hemisphere teams are close by and fans are more likely to attend. In other words South Africa v Samoa would generate less aircraft than France v Ireland.
Outside of congestion in Paris before the opening and final match of the tournament, we don’t anticipate any major impacts to business aviation operators in Paris during the 2023 Rugby World Cup. However, if you’re planning on being in Paris in the days immediately before or after the Oct. 28th Final in Paris, you should begin planning immediately and prepare for the possiblity that no parking will be available at Le Bourget.
Universal Aviation France can help.