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27 August 2008


Owing to my rather busy work schedule I have answered this query directly by telephone.
Therefore I am printing this to help other pilots who may have similar requirements.

My personal view regarding crossing the channel is to file a flight plan to your choice of coastal airport ie. Calais, Le touquet, Cherbourg etc.These airports are so used to flight plans and customs duties that it is just a formality to land and clear customs.
If you file a plan further inland you are more likely to suffer more officialdom when clearing customs owing to the fact that it is not a usual daily requirement also many customs airports require 24 hours notice prior to arrival.

Apart from the restricted Class A airspace around Paris I have never found any problem transiting class D airspace, all the controllers are helpful and willing to allow zone transit.

The landing/fuel fees are usually payable by credit card or cash.Some airports are unable to take fees "on the spot" they provide forms for your details and will send the bill to you at a later date.
Many airfields are now using 24 hour card operated fuel pumps which accept chip and pin cards.
Hangarage is difficult to find but tie down facilities are offered by most airfields.

On the question of finding people who are English speaking, usually if you try to speak a little French first they will take pity on you and either speak English to you or find someone who can speak English to translate for you.
Like aviation enthusiasts everywhere they are usually friendly and helpful and very interested in your aircraft and the routes flown by you.

Hi Sue,I note that Steve intends to route Isle of Wight- Cherbourg. I routed to Cherbourg from Andrews Field via I O W and found Cherbourg a pleasant and friendly place to fly too and from. However read the Jeppessen reference re VFR FPL. A copy should be transmitted to Deauville and Nante as well as Cherbourg, if not on calling Deaville app at LFRR you could be refused entry. There is a big notice in Cherbourg flight planing office about this. You will find the airport manager very friendly and helpfull especialy if you buy some first class wine from his well equiped store! Have a good flight.

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