With summer approaching, French Riviera airports such as Cannes or Saint-Tropez are getting ready for peak season. These two are part of a list of airports subject to numerous restrictions due to the infrastructure or the weather.
Runway Length: To access short runways, crew must be qualified and aircraft certified. Additionally, it is important for users to understand the difference between non-revenue flights (booked by the aircraft owner) and commercial flight (paying passengers), as European regulations are far more conservative for commercial operations. For these flights, safety margins are more important than technical capabilities of the aircraft. On a non-revenue flight, a jet can land on a 1000-meter runway; however, with similar payload, regulations require commercial flights to use a 1600-meter long runway. This number increases by 15% with rain/or a wet runway.
Airport Situation: The airport environment is also a determining factor. For example, the London City approach is very steep, and all aircraft are not allowed to operate on this airport. Only qualified crew and aircraft certified « steep approach » can access London City.
Weather Restrictions: Certain airports can only be accessed with good weather conditions. Some aircraft are only able to perform flights to/from Cannes with advantageous weather conditions and a dry runway. In Saint-Tropez La Mole, flights are obligated to follow the same take-off and landing directions. If the wind rises in the opposite direction – adverse to take-off or landing – operations can be interrupted and aircraft redirected to Cannes or Toulon airport.
Non exhaustive list of airports with restrictions:
Saint Tropez/ La Môle
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